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Virginity Is A Social Construct


Written by Yelita Ali

As a society, we teach girls to protect their virginity from very early on. It’s almost described as something that gives you more value. We are taught to save ourselves.

Female sexuality is taboo. This in itself is dangerous for cis women who cannot protect themselves sexually or have access to contraceptives.  This leaves many women with poor knowledge of their own anatomy and very vulnerable. Virginity itself doesn’t really exist. It’s something we have created to separate those who have had sex and those who have not.

The only thing this has done is shamed women into thinking there is a loss in value from exploring their sexuality. The concept of virginity has also perpetuated violence and discrimination against women who do decide to have sex.  Virginity is also centred around the idea that there is one definition of sex, which is exclusionary of the queer community. Despite cultural ideology, having sex does not make you any less than someone who does choose to have sex. The fact that our society chooses to insult cis women for sexual exploration while praising men is an issue in itself.

 Virginity is unquantifiable. There is no medical or biological definition for it. Many people believe that you can tell someone isn’t a virgin by their hymens not being in fact, this is false.  What is an Hymen? Well it’s a tiny membrane that covers your vagina.Your hymen can break in many ways whether it be horse riding or gymnastics. In essence, virginity means nothing, and is a social definition unless you chose to put a value on it. That is a personal decision. Virginity attempts to silence female sexuality.

Not to mention with the definition of losing your virginity being the heteronormative cissexist idea you must have penis-in-vagina sex to have sex. Thus queer sex has been regarded as not sex which again ignores the experiences of the queer community.

To amend virginity it would be best to take a few things to mind. There is no universal definition of sex. Everyone has their own perceptions of what it is and what it isn’t.  Also the idea that you “lose” your virginity is an inherent implication of loss.

Like you lose something from exploring something natural. The best way to think of virginity as a continuous cycle and or journey. No sex is exactly the same and each new experience is a learning curve. We need to see virginity as an experience. One that you can choose or not to partake in. We need to stop seeing sex as one thing and stop forcing our sexual values on others.

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