After many a failed forced friendship, here’s what I’ve concluded: Friends, family, I don’t care if you don’t like my boyfriend.
For some reason, across many cultures it’s socially acceptable for some reason for friends, cousins and coworkers to express their disapproval of your partner.
Hesitantly, with my head on his shoulder in his big wide bed, I all but whispered the words, “I’ve never had sex before.” Nervous about his response, I expected shock, discomfort, misunderstanding. When that time never came, I was in the unexpected position of not wanting to wait anymore.
I felt like I had found something, and even though it ended, I knew that I wanted something like it again: with someone to trust, someone to love, and someone to share this experience with.
I know what I want, I always have, and I’m willing to wait to get it.
But sometimes, waiting is tough, and now, I’m also waiting for the next moment that I’ll have to tell a new guy that yes, I’m still a virgin.
He wasn’t mean or judgmental about it—we were just about 18 after all—but he laughed at me when he saw the tears in my eyes and suddenly I felt misunderstood, and more important, pressured. I knew that my emotional reaction meant that something about him didn’t sit well with me. Meeting guys in bars or going on first dates was much more complicated during my college years, because when the time came—when that question,“Wanna come back to my apartment? That happened so many times that I practically perfected my responses, and, more than that, I avoided first dates. Would every “good” first date end in an invitation for sex?I’d met this pushy guy at a bar and he proceeded to text me nonstop for two weeks, trying to glean every bit of information about me all the while informing me what a catch he was. At that time, I wished there were a middle-finger emoji to send him.I was in a post-breakup downswing of emotions so I probably should have kicked him to the curb a lot sooner, but when the subject of sexual partners came up, I was craving acceptance enough to tell him—a virtual stranger—that I was still a virgin. But I also just felt drowned in shame and embarrassment, and despair that I would ever again be in a position to not feel that way about my virgin status. They’ve made me happy despite the complications, and I feel like I haven’t betrayed who I am.I’d be thrilled if my coworkers thought my boyfriend was super cool and invited him to every company KTV outing.I’d jump with joy if my friends said, “Wow, your new guy is clever and handsome - bring him along!