vergoldung: (you better know what you're fighting for)
[personal profile] vergoldung
(Argh, I'm already off schedule and this thing hasn't even started yet! Oh, well.)

So this fill is for [livejournal.com profile] laeryn's prompt virginity. This got very theoretical, I'm sorry! Also, I like to use spoiler cuts when things get too personal, but I've noticed that the lj-app doesn't hide spoilers? So just saying, there is one!

Ah, virginity… Fitting that this be the first prompt I have to fill.

I've spent a ridiculous amount of time thinking about the concept of virginity, because it's both so absurd and fascinating. I like looking at virginity as something abstract and theoretical - something I can analyze and discuss. And then there is my personal experience, which is real and hurtful - a story I'm learning how to tell, and something I've obsessed over for days, months, years… But obsessing isn't really the right word, it's more that I've been circling back to this moment in my life, repeatedly. Without understanding why.

In December, the pieces that had slowly been forming a picture finally came together to spell one heartbreaking truth: the night I lost my virginity allowed all the following nights, that night sealed the deal and made fucked-up normal. There are not a lot of things I have as much resentment towards as I have for this first night. (It took me years, years to admit that things had been wrong from the very start. So you can imagine that I was not ready to make peace with the idea that it could have shaped me as much as it shaped everything that came after.)

But in December, I realized what I'd lost that day: my innocence. (Ugh, in the context of virginity loss often being demonized as the loss of innocence, that statement loses all its power.) But a piece of me died that day, and it was my unconditional faith in people. The child within was slapped in the face at its most vulnerable, so it just resigned itself and kept silent, no tears, no anger, nothing, just resignation. And that realization knocked me out flat, because who the fuck does such a thing to somebody they claim to love?

This is the first time in my life I've experience such overwhelming self-pity. I didn't deserve this. I really, really didn't. There's nothing I could have done that would have made this an okay thing to happen.

I'm still mourning for child!Eléonore, who put blind trust into that person, bared all weaknesses, only to be trampled to death. (Yeah, I'm not really over it.) I know this must sound frustratingly cryptic and I wish I could stop self-censoring every other word… But I'm still feeling quite sorry for myself and I can't accept that others be pitying me while I'm in that place. So, just know that I was hurt, that it still hurts and that, given some time, it will get better.


But virginity is not just about my personal experience, it's also about the lies society tells us. Virginity has been at the core of the framing of female sexuality for such a long time, that to this day it still holds a ridiculous amount of power.

[Short disclaimer that I'm dealing with an 8K draft where I once tried my best to dissect that very topic - and no, I will never post it because it will never be finished - so keeping this short is proving to be quite the challenge. Sorry? I promise the next fills will be a lot shorter!]

[Second disclaimer: I cannot possibly speak for anything else but the environment I grew up in, so even though I tend to make general statements, they are nothing but. Please, feel free to disagree with the conclusions I drew and tell me how different your experiences are and what you've seen around you.]

I have a thousand reasons why I'm heatedly against first-time worship. But let's start with that : when does somebody even lose his or her virginity? The fact that virginity is still so strongly tied to the vagina-penis dichotomy drives me crazy. (I'm obviously more annoyed at the way it affects women, but it's honestly just as dumb where men are concerned.)

Yeah, oral sex is sex. But no, I won't take your virginity, there's not enough penetration for that. And the same goes for fingering.
A sex toy? You know it's not a penis person, right!
What? Are you serious? Anal sex? Dear, you already have a vagina, why should you ever want anal sex? (I mean, except to keep your hymen intact. #every radio advice ever)


Yeah, gross hetero-centric statements abound. Tl;dr get a dick in your vagina already, it's all truly that matters anyway.

So loss of virginity?

The reductive framing that's been so aggressively promoted to me growing up, made virginity all about the breach of the hymen, no more, no less. Of course that's not actually what's being said, but it's still the message to take home. Loss of virginity happens the first time there is a penis inside a vagina, end of story. It's not about pleasure, it's not even about discovery. (Of course, you can get lucky and have a wonderful first time, but that's not a defining requisite for it being your "first time". Not in the fucking slightest.) For some people, it doesn't even matter if it was your choice or not. You were raped? Oh, not a virgin anymore then. (Like, what the actual fuck.)

And since penis-in-vagina is bound to happen one day or another - if you're a normal girl/boy, that is - it would make no sense to question the legitimacy of that definition. The importance of whatever happens before or after holds no candle to the moment of "deflowering". Because that event apparently defines you forever. Even though it doesn't say anything about you, your sexual experience, your vision of sex (and love - because a lot of people don't know the difference), or anything that would really matter... It's fucking madness.

Additionally, women are taught to understand sexuality as something that follows love. From where I stand, the conflation between sex and love is a neat way to perpetuate the yoke of marriage as far as women's initiation to sexuality goes... Don't misunderstand, having sex with somebody you love can be a wonderful thing, but it's a big problem if "love" is the necessary factor to making female sexuality socially acceptable. It's not healthy for girls to be told that their sexuality needs to be tied to love. This makes young girls a lot more vulnerable to men* they are attracted to because it's supposedly vital that they develop feelings for them.
*as mentionned earlier the discourse about virginty/sex is mainly hetero-centric, very unfortunately.

I trust you have watched the same romantic movies I did. Those movies targeting young women, promising them that 'sex is meaningful, sex isn't something to give away, sex is a precious gift you don't want to give to the wrong person, etc, etc'. These movies are educating young women about sexuality. Not about sex per se. (Do women even have a genuine interest in that? About sexuality? Huh, what a queer thought!) Yet, there still is a giant pressure around women and sex, and the discourse teenage girls are tought to have about sex remains very fear-driven. How do I position myself? What is the right way to react? What is the proper thing to do? Do I want to be a slut? Am I a prude? What is the safer choice for my reputation? What will make me happy? These romantic movies give answers that are lacking elsewhere, answers that are somewhat comforting because they give an instruction manual - not to the physical mechanics of sex, but to the social mechanics of sex - and that's better than nothing.

The dictature around everything first-time is absolutely crazy. And unjustified. The thing is elevated to something that it's not. And my guess is that's it a very effective to scare girls. Honestly, how scary is this first-time-deal? You have to be ready, it has to be the right time, the right guy, the right place, the right dialogue and the right decor... So many things to mess up! So many things to be disappointed by... Girls are set up for desillusion and everybody applauds. Instead of actually educating them on what's really important. But fear is such a neat way to canalize female sexuality. Old news are old. (Need I say that I hate this? I hate this.)

So, first of all: don't have meaningless sex and especially not the first time. It will make you a slut and you will regret it your whole life. (…I can't even.)

Second of all: choose your guy well. Because, yes. Your virginity is all about a guy and the fact that you're giving him this piece of yourself. No, it's not really about you. What you will truly regret, is not being able to give this present (your virginity!) to Mr. Right once you meet him. So please, don't rush anything, 'kay?

Third of all: "Are you ready?" really means "Are you sure this is the right guy for you?". Be sure (see #2). It also means "Is this the right time for you? Are you ready to not be a virgin anymore ((socially))?".

No, "Are you ready?" does not mean "Do you want it? Are you prepared? Do you know what you're doing? Have you thought about what you would like to try? Have you thought about what you would not want to try?". Ha ha, no. It's not about you. It's about who you're supposed to be. Deal with it and move on.

As a social narrative (loss of) virginity makes a huge deal out of "giving" yourself to somebody. And I don't actually have that much of a problem with that framing per se - I actually think there is some accuracy to it. However, I am not okay with the way it overshadows the way losing your virginity is the first step into a new aspect of your life, or, you know, the idea of self-discovery.

There is a hyper-dramatic sacralisation of the first person you are have sex with, which totally disregards the fact that there is a first time with every new partner. Or that there is a first time every time you cross a boundary that was untouched… Oh em gee, right? Right. Why is the person you give it up to so important? Can we stop framing the female sexuality to be all about the dick at the receiving end of it? Newsflash: there is not always a penis involved!

Virginity loss should only ever be about giving yourself to yourself, not somebody else! (Not that it can't also be about somebody else, but never in first place.) Wanting for yourself is really important because it comes with a sense of knowing what you want. Not necessarily in a concrete, fleshed-out fashion, true. But when you want for yourself there is something there, a curiosity, a selfish need that can be explored together. When one party is at a complete loss re: what they want/desire, problematic student/teacher patterns tend to establish themselves real fast. Knowledge is power y'all. Knowlege is power.

So if girls didn’t have to worry so much about choosing the right guy/person, then maybe maybe they could focus on whether they are actually ready for sex. Because. What if you are ready but you aren’t sure the person is right? What if the person feels right and you aren’t ready, but you’re afraid of losing them if you don’t give it up fast enough? Waiting for the right person is the worst advice to give. Waiting for the right time is all that matters. (The right time can be with the right person, whatever. The point is where the focus lies.) I wish more girls were told that.

Date: 2014-03-04 12:13 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] upupa-epops.livejournal.com
Why is the person you give it up to so important?

I think this is one of the most important questions here, and also the reason why this whole "losing your virginity" business is so complicated/fucked up. Because, on some level, this person IS super important. It's important that this is someone you trust, someone you feel safe with, someone who respects you. Emotions can run high during sex (at least they usually do for me), so it's a good thing to be with someone you can be emotionally vulnerable with.

Trouble is, there is no separate language to talk about this. When I try to explain that "you should only have sex with someone who ensures at least basic psychological hygiene and sexual safety", it sounds dangerously close to "you need to wait for Mr Right". This is super hard to talk about, because on some level, I believe you shouldn't have sex with just anyone. Not because you need to "save yourself" to "give Mr Right the most precious gift", but because you deserve safe, healthy sex. So no, you shouldn't have sex with just anyone -- just like you shouldn't go mountain-climbing with just anyone, and you shouldn't drink with just anyone.

Waiting for the right person is the worst advice to give. Waiting for the right time is all that matters.

I agree, and I disagree. You're right, waiting for the right time is crucial. And you're right, waiting for THE right person is a horrible idea. But I'd still argue that waiting for A right person is important for your health and safety. If you decide to start having sex with a partner, it needs to be a trustworthy person you feel safe with. It doesn't need to be The One, it doesn't need to be someone you love, it doesn't need to be someone you want a relationship with. But it can't be just anyone. You need to choose them carefully, the way you choose your doctors, your partners for risky/team sports, etc.

Date: 2014-03-04 06:02 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] vergoldung.livejournal.com
I totally agree, the person you share your first(s) with is important. Intimacy is personal more often than not, so of course it's going to matter who you share that intimate part of yourself with. What bothers me is the way the focus lies on wrong side. Your first time is NOT about being somebody's gift. Because if we're talking about sharing, then any following time is just as much of a gift. The over-valuing of virginity is very specifically for women and I'm not here for that double standard where female virginity is a gift and male virginity a curse. Just make it die already, world.

Being with somebody you trust is always important. I would never even try to argue that. But I think being in a place where you trust yourself, your own emotions and sensations over "expectations" is EVEN MORE important. People we trust are often people we love and people we love often come with a handful of expectations and this also shouldn't be forgotten. I'm saying this because it isn't all that rare for people we trust to breach that trust - especially wrt sex, where consent is such a fragile thing. Shit happens, a lot, and it's VITAL to be able to recognize something that you do not want, something that makes you feel unsafe. But in a dynamic where the Rightness of the other person (as in: they are supposed to be The Right One) is the main focus, it gets that much trickier to prioritize yourself over The Relationship, The Epic Love, or any variation thereof. I guess, what I'm saying is YES trustworthy partners, but I still wish the first focus to be on SELF TRUST. Because it's so easy to gaslight yourself when you feel like it's not that much about you.

When I try to explain that "you should only have sex with someone who ensures at least basic psychological hygiene and sexual safety", it sounds dangerously close to "you need to wait for Mr Right".
I'm 100% with you of course. Safety is always a priority. Always. Advocating sexually intimacy only with decent human beings has nothing to do with campaigning for Mr. Right. On the contrary, because expectations often exceed reality, somebody can look like Mr. Right and lack the very basics of psychological hygiene (A+ wording!).

If you decide to start having sex with a partner, it needs to be a trustworthy person you feel safe with. It doesn't need to be The One, it doesn't need to be someone you love, it doesn't need to be someone you want a relationship with. But it can't be just anyone. You need to choose them carefully, the way you choose your doctors, your partners for risky/team sports, etc.
LOL. I could not agree more violently.

I mean, as somebody who identifies as gray-ace, leaning towards demi-sexuality, I cannot even conceive myself having sex with somebody I don't fully trust, let alone a general anyone. People are never interchangeable. That being said, I think it's also important to note that physical intimacy does not require the same from everyone. Just like some people easily disclose personal feelings and emotions, others do not. Sex can be scary, but it's not as scary for everyone. Safety is an absolute must, yes. The needed level of emotional safety, however, is going to vary for every human being, so what I really wanted to stress was how important it is to listen to yourself, know what you need to feel safe, in order to then have a safe and positive exploration of your desires. Because if you do that, I think there is a natural urge to search for people with whom you will feel safe in the ways you need. (So really, that's why I find the constant conflation between sex and love to be terrifying, because love is not ABOUT safety. It can be, if you have a healthy relationship, but it's absolutely not a guarantee.)
Edited Date: 2014-03-04 06:09 pm (UTC)

coeur coeur coeur

Date: 2014-03-04 12:56 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sissimoc.livejournal.com
Very proud of how you handled this post !! :D <3

This whole concept that girls give and guys take during sex (and especially the first time) is really upsetting and horrible as well as this idea that if you are not really ready to have sex but you should already have had sex the best thing to do is to just have sex so that you'll be prepared for the next time. It's gonna happen someday anyway so it's best to get ready for it and experience it so this way you'll know what to expect. (smh but it's really scary when I see how many of my friends think that way)

And with this virginity focus on girls, guys are expected to always be ready and wanting sex. They don't ask themselves if they are ready or not because they are expected to want sex and this can lead pressuring someone into having sex even though they might not even be ready themselves.
I mean have you ever heard a guy say 'I don't think I'm ready to have sex but I still want you to be my girlfriend.' Haha no.

Maybe if guys weren't expected to want sex all the time girls would also feel less pressured to give them sex to keep them satisfied. (shiver face à l'horreur de cette phrase)

And it is very horrible how some poeple feel like they have a free pass to you vagina if you had sex with them once (and even more if you are in a relationship with them). It's like we're in a relation you agreed to sex once now I don't really have to ask for your consent because why would you say no if you said yes ?

Haven't really said anything on virginity so here are a few thoughts :
I find it very intresting to see how the status of a virgin girl evolves depending on her age and the environment she is in. When you are under 16 it's normal/good to be a virgin. And then you can start having your first sexual experiences WITH YOUR BOYFRIEND, but if you don't it's still okay. But then, when you are still a virgin at more than 20 it's considered anormal. So you have 4 year to have your first time otherwise you're either a slut or a prude but for sure you are a weirdo. (this of course is from a western and (high and) middle class pov which is my experience. I can't really talk for others)

Ce commentaire est déjà suffisamment long comme ça donc voilà ^^

&hearts;

Date: 2014-03-05 10:51 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] vergoldung.livejournal.com
merci choupsi!!

as well as this idea that if you are not really ready to have sex but you should already have had sex the best thing to do is to just have sex so that you'll be prepared for the next time. It's gonna happen someday anyway so it's best to get ready for it and experience it so this way you'll know what to expect. (smh but it's really scary when I see how many of my friends think that way)
……………….well this was exactly my line of thinking back then :⎜

yesssss smh at the way this affects boys (and as a result threatens girls even more)

And it is very horrible how some poeple feel like they have a free pass to you vagina if you had sex with them once (and even more if you are in a relationship with them). It's like we're in a relation you agreed to sex once now I don't really have to ask for your consent because why would you say no if you said yes ?
the lack of established consent ESPECIALLY IN ESTABLISHED ROMANTIC RELATIONSHIPS is why i'm so adamant about separating love from sex. not because you cant do both at the same time, but because to only look at sex through the tainted lense of romance then it gets a lot more difficult to be objective about what's actually happening. separating love and sex does not mean that they can't happen at the same time or, that when they do, that they are easy to separate in neat boxes. but i think it's crucial to try to look at both on their own at least as often as we look at them together. a lot of romantic tropes build on rape culture, so being objective about sex and consent within the context of love? it's so easy to make excuses when you want your partner to be lovable. idk… i'm not saying separating the two needs to happen all the time, but the fact that it's not really encouraged for people in love to do that is really bothering me.

so much word on everything you say re: age and the social "appropriateness" of virginity. fuck that noise.

Date: 2014-03-05 01:01 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ever-neutral.livejournal.com
I’m so sorry about your first experience, man. I really am. It’s just heartbreaking to think so many young women are also in the same/similar boat.

There is a hyper-dramatic sacralisation of the first person you are have sex with, which totally disregards the fact that there is a first time with every new partner.

Yes. Society is just super obsessed with preserving the idea of “innocence”. It’s just a way to set up more dichotomies between women — if one girl’s first time was terrible then she must have done something wrong, as opposed to that other girl whose first time was magical and wonderful because she followed the right social script. Whatever.

then maybe maybe they could focus on whether they are actually ready for sex.

Absolutely. And to add to what Myriam remarked on above -- there's nothing wrong with waiting past the "normal" point to ~lose your virginity. I haaaaaaate that we're made to feel like we should ~get it over with because otherwise there's something wrong and undesirable about us.

This post is good job.

Date: 2014-03-05 11:12 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] vergoldung.livejournal.com
thank you. i always fear that i'm coming off too strong talking about how we really need to separate love and sex when we look at them, not because they are intrinsically separate, but because young girls are PURPOSEFULLY tought to conflate them. and romance does not ensure safety or consent it just really does not. knowing that i'm everything but alone in this boat makes it that much more difficult to be calm about this because this is hurting young girls as we speak and it kills me that this is such a non discussion. i'm not saying to separate having sex from being in love, i just want sex and love to be looked at separately because they are both too complex to be critically taken in as one.

there is no "normal" point to lose your "virginity" (like the entire definition of the thing is fallacious). it's 100% normative bullshit to keep people from doing things at their own pace and in their own way. it's fucking criminal to do that to young people whose bodies and minds are so fragile and easy to hurt. protect your youth and teach them to listen to THEIR OWN NEEDS not somebody else's. is that so much to ask for. there is absolutely nothing wrong or undesirable about waiting the needed time, just as there is nothing wrong or undesirable about never having sex if the right time is never going to happen because you just don't happen to want sex at all. if anything it's strong and admirable. being good to ourselves, body and mind, should always be encouraged and applauded. the system is so freaking defective.

Date: 2014-03-05 02:30 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] penny-lane-42.livejournal.com
This is so weird for me to read because I've only ever really heard these ideas (the bad ones, the ones you're railing against) from within a religious perspective, so seeing you talk about them devoid of that is so surreal to me. Also because...it's so foreign to me. Like...I really think the odds are at this point that I won't ever have sex? Because I have zero desire to do it with someone I'm not in a committed relationship with, which is what people tell you you're supposed to do and yet I don't feel like I want that because of the cultural narratives I've been fed but because that's what I want. And yet I have relatively little control over whether that will ever happen--I mean, if I wanted to just have sex, I could obviously go and have it. Or if I wanted to have it with someone I really liked, I'm sure at some point I could make that happen, too. But only wanting to have it with someone I'm in love with--well, they tell you that that's what you should do, right? That's the ideal? But what if you're like me and you get to be almost 30 and haven't ever been in love and you start to think you never will? Well, then there's something wrong with you, right? But what am I supposed to do? I haven't ever met a guy I could be in love with. I don't have much control over that. And I don't want to be turned into someone's idea of a prude or a super Christian girl or something, because that's not what it is at all. It's me being demi and me being...super picky about men (like, nothing is more frustrating than being a straight woman who just doesn't like men in general. I JUST DON'T LIKE THEM. NOT LIKE I LIKE WOMEN) and not ever having met anyone that I connect with on that level. And yet I know that people would try to turn my experience into something that it's not if I talked about it--they'd want to frame me as a loser or a freak or a prude or super religious (and yeah, I am religious, but that's got almost nothing to do with this whole situation) when it's really just about how IT HASN'T HAPPENED YET and I am not ready and I won't be ready until certain circumstances are met. And I kind of hate that some of those circumstances fall so neatly in line with the cultural narrative, but the one good thing about never having had any relationship/sexual experience is that I have had loads of time to figure out that it's not about me being brainwashed, it's about me knowing myself. I know what I want and I know what I don't want. And I am really happy about that. I would much rather be here, a "virgin" in every sense of the word at an awkwardly old age, and yet know exactly what I want, than to have done something that wouldn't make me happy.

Okay, I don't even know what I was rambling about up there. Feel free to ignore all that. I appreciate this post a ridiculous amount and I love you and I think it's so precious and beautiful and strong that you're fighting to own your own experience, to name it and see it clearly, to figure out what it is that you want and how you can be comfortable with yourself, and to do all that after the lies culture told you backfired and allowed you to be hurt...it's really amazing. ilu ilu ilu

Date: 2014-03-06 01:56 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] vergoldung.livejournal.com
Because I have zero desire to do it with someone I'm not in a committed relationship with, which is what people tell you you're supposed to do and yet I don't feel like I want that because of the cultural narratives I've been fed but because that's what I want.
I know exactly what you mean. I remember discussing casual sex (as in hooking up with strangers) as a teenager and I was really struggling with understanding how people would want to have sex with "random" people. And I could totally get behind the theoretical idea as a concept, that you just want it to be about sex and nothing else, but like I could not understand it in my heart? Everything about the way I do life is about communicating and I could just not picture wanting to talk with a perfect stranger (I still can't now)? It took me quite a while to come to terms with the fact that, no, people were not necessarily "turning off" part of themselves when engaging in casual sex with strangers.

Darling there is nothing wrong with you, nothing! I might even be a little bit jealous of how well you've protected yourself. (This is an insensitive thing to say and I'm sorry that I don't know how to express it better. But being picky about who you feel comfortable with as your partner (in life, friendship, love, sex…) and being in tune with yourself is pretty much the golden rule of safe anything.)

And yet I know that people would try to turn my experience into something that it's not if I talked about it--they'd want to frame me as a loser or a freak or a prude or super religious (and yeah, I am religious, but that's got almost nothing to do with this whole situation) when it's really just about how IT HASN'T HAPPENED YET and I am not ready and I won't be ready until certain circumstances are met.
I HATE THAT PEOPLE DO THAT I HATE IT I HATE IT I HATE IT. Your framing is the only right framing there can be, how dare people talk over that. Grrr. It's absurd the way the world tries to establish "not being ready" as "being difficult", when it's not that at all. People need different things, but there is a complete lack of respect for that. Not that this is surprising, considering the heavy baggage there is when it comes to sex and respect. But the fact that it's unsurprising does not make it any less upsetting. Ugh.

And I kind of hate that some of those circumstances fall so neatly in line with the cultural narrative, but the one good thing about never having had any relationship/sexual experience is that I have had loads of time to figure out that it's not about me being brainwashed, it's about me knowing myself. I know what I want and I know what I don't want. And I am really happy about that. I would much rather be here, a "virgin" in every sense of the word at an awkwardly old age, and yet know exactly what I want, than to have done something that wouldn't make me happy.
This is exactly what I mean, when I say that you're doing it exactly right and that the self-care you've cultivated is to be envied. This makes you strong and beautiful.

Your words really touch me, more than I can say. I've had (or used to have? I'm not sure anymore) a lot of problems with being The Good Girl, because I was falling into the line of so many key points of the Good Girl stereotype, even though I really hated the idea of embracing a set narrative (and especially such a patronizing one, ugh). But like, how do you defend yourself from a cultural trope that "fits" you but unfortunately tries to erase the agency that you feel that you have? I wasn't being a Good Girl to be "better" than anyone or because I was told to. It just felt like the right thing to do for me and so I did it. (I can say for sure now that I would not have had the sexual experience that I did, had I been with a decent person. But since it was never about me being The Good Girl, I didn't know how to defend WHY I did not want this, you know? Knowledge really is power and self-knowledge above all.)

Um, this comment got away from me, idek what I wanted to say… Except that I love you and thanks for being in my life, I appreciate your presence so much ♥

Date: 2014-03-06 02:39 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] laeryn.livejournal.com
Re: sex with random strangers. I could never do that! I think a lot of it is because I'm super insecure and I just could never bring myself to do such thing, but also because I kinda think sex gets better with time, and if you only get to do it once with the other person, there is just no chance to learn about the other at all. And I need a little bit of connection. Not even love, because I'd be okay with just having a friend with benefits (in fact, it is sort of what I want atm, I've been single for 3 years and a half and I miss sex but at the same time I don't want the commitment of a relationship D:), but a certain something, a certain trust. I can't quite imagine how it is to have sex with a total stranger. It's mind-blowing to me that people dare to do it.

Date: 2014-03-08 08:13 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] vergoldung.livejournal.com
Same. Ideally I would like to explore my (a)sexuality with a trusted friend. Even a love-friendship kinf of deal, but just no established relationship. Those are too tightly enterwined with expectations and I just wouldn't feel safe to explore my sexuality in that loaded context. At least not at the moment. I want to concentrate on me and have a good time with my partner without having to worry if I'm validating them in all the right ways OTL. I feel like I would need an immense amount of trust and freedom to define and redefine things as we go along, in order to feel safe enough to experiment with somebody again. I don't see that happening with anybody I'm not friendly with. And a relationship is just too much additional pressure. So yeah, friends with benefits sounds lovely. Even better if it's a more than two people arrangement (gasp!), so I can have the fun to watch while also feeling less of responsability to take on certain roles etc etc.

Date: 2014-03-08 10:05 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] laeryn.livejournal.com
I've found that a lot of people (like, A LOT) are really against the idea of a friendship with benefits on the grounds that that can never work because one of the two will always fall for the other (not saying in love because those are big words imo). I differ (and think people watch way too many Hollywood movies), but to each their own. As you said, trust and freedom is not something you get with just anybody. And if you do have it with somebody and both sides are OK with it and attracted to each other enough to actually give it a try, WHY THE HELL NOT?

IA to a relationship being too much additional pressure, and it's a pressure I don't need or want. And I bet many many people feel the same way. I've had many friends complaining to me about their relationships and the pressure and wanting out and when I ask them why they don't break up, they go on to point routine, sex, loneliness. Well, all the other, each person deals a different way, but being in a relationship FOR the sex it's just... lame. Idk.

Even better if it's a more than two people arrangement

I said this in front of my flatmates and I was considered crazy, but YES. It is so hard to find yourself in this kind of situation, though.

Date: 2014-03-05 09:44 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] laeryn.livejournal.com
Saw it! Read it! I've got a Japanese exam in a little over an hour, I'll be free to comment this afternoon :) loved reading your thoughts on this.

Date: 2014-03-06 01:59 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] vergoldung.livejournal.com
I hope your exam went well!!! <3

I will reply to your comments tomorrow, because I need to be reasonable and sleep, but spoiler: YOU MAKE ME SO HAPPY :')
Edited Date: 2014-03-06 02:35 am (UTC)

Date: 2014-03-05 05:26 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] laeryn.livejournal.com
I've written this three times now. I am not sure what is TOO MUCH to share, lol. Or when what I say doesn't contribute at all. And it was really long, so I'm gonna try once more and try to keep it shorter.

To sum it up, I consider virginity to be quite a lame concept. Virginity is heteronormative and it places an absurd weight on that one first time (that isn't even that good, even when nothing bad happens), as if all the others didn't matter. As if, like you said, you didn't have a first time with every person you're ever intimate with. I'm glad you mentioned the pressure it puts especially on girls, because it IS absurd, as it is the fact that a dick could somewhat change you forever. Huh. No, thanks.

I think I chose this topic because my own experience was a little different. Virginity was never a big deal to me, and I think it has a lot to do with my mom's attitude towards the matter -- she talked to me about sex from an early age, she was clear and she made sure I knew I could ask her. It was and is a comfortable topic between us, which is a blessing. She never gave a fuck about my first time because it were my first time, she cared that I knew about safe sex and healthy sex, and that I'd be SURE I wanted to have sex with the person I was going to have sex with. Which, if you ask me, it's the important part. To know about safe sex, boundaries, consent, and be sure you really want to. For me sex and love don't have to together (although I do understand the people who think that way) and it didn't when I became sexually active, as I wasn't in love with my girlfriend -- we liked each other and were awfully attracted to one another, but we both knew for a fact we were NOT in love. It was okay with us.

The only reason I was scared of my first time it wasn't about my first time, it was about the intimacy. I know this because it is a fear that is still with me -- I grew a very insecure teenager, as I had been convinced I wasn't worth that much, and the thought of getting naked in front of somebody was terrifying, as it was the idea of being bad at sex. BEING BAD AT SEX WORRIED ME SO MUCH OMG! (It still does). So that was my fear. That is why my first girlfriend and I took it slooooowly. We did one thing at a time. Took time for everything. And it was great because I got to discover things every time (so did she; see? neither of us had had sex before, and the first time we were intimate in any way, we literally ended up laughing so hard we cried, because we were lame and lost at it). I cannot pinpoint the day any of us lost her virginity the way society defines it, and I couldn't really care less?

So that's the thing. I never gave it importance and I never felt the pressure on the first time because it was a first time. And it was great, I think. It's how I want to raise my daughters to take virginity, if I ever have them. I had enough on my plate with my insecurities (I'm a lot better on that side now) and I think having the idea of OH VIRGINITY IS SO IMPORTANT engraved would've had made it awful. Instead, sex for me grew better as the weeks went by. Funnily enough, the next person I dated was a guy and he insisted on taking sex slowly despite I told him I WANTED it, and we never had PIV sex because of that. I didn't notice at the time, but I've realized it was because he considered me a virgin because of the no PIV sex thing. Which, lame. He was fantastic for me in many ways, but c'mon.

Virginity loss should only ever be about giving yourself to yourself, not somebody else! (Not that it can't also be about somebody else, but never in first place.)

IA with this wholeheartedly. First time should be for yourself in many, many ways.

Date: 2014-03-05 05:26 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] laeryn.livejournal.com
Waiting for the right person is the worst advice to give. Waiting for the right time is all that matters.

I agree, too. I am not even sure there is "a right person". I think if you're ready, you usually can discern who you will be okay having sex with? Or at least that was it for me. Most of the people I knew had lost virginity before me but I felt I wasn't ready. When I was with my girlfriend, I knew I wanted it and was ready for it, and we made it work. I also STRONGLY BELIEVE that what works for some, doesn't for others. I know people who lost their virginity with people they weren't in love with, just because they felt their virginity was hindering their interactions with people they could eventually fall for, and they are happy with their decision. Or people that waited till they were in a stable relationship. Or many other things. Basically, I believe there should be less pressure on the first time, and more of a focus on what a person wants, when, that s/he knows about safe sex, consent and boundaries, and on being happy with your own decision, whether society approves of it or not.

And I think I lost half of what I wanted to comment, huh. But there it goes. :)
From: [identity profile] vergoldung.livejournal.com
EVERYTHING YOU SAY IN THIS COMMENT IS LIKE AIR TO ME. BLESS YOUR SOUL.

To sum it up, I consider virginity to be quite a lame concept. Virginity is heteronormative and it places an absurd weight on that one first time (that isn't even that good, even when nothing bad happens), as if all the others didn't matter. As if, like you said, you didn't have a first time with every person you're ever intimate with. I'm glad you mentioned the pressure it puts especially on girls, because it IS absurd, as it is the fact that a dick could somewhat change you forever. Huh. No, thanks.
crying bc we are so sympatico in this

ALSO CRYING BECAUSE YOUR FIRST TIME THAT WASN'T ONE SINGLE TIME IS BASICALLY THE WAY I PICTURE AN IDEAL LOSS OF VIRGINITY??? i am so delighted everytime somebody tells me that they've had an experience like that because it's my wish for everybody. slow, progressive experimentation is best.

Virginity was never a big deal to me, and I think it has a lot to do with my mom's attitude towards the matter -- she talked to me about sex from an early age, she was clear and she made sure I knew I could ask her. It was and is a comfortable topic between us, which is a blessing. She never gave a fuck about my first time because it were my first time, she cared that I knew about safe sex and healthy sex, and that I'd be SURE I wanted to have sex with the person I was going to have sex with. Which, if you ask me, it's the important part. To know about safe sex, boundaries, consent, and be sure you really want to.
I CANNOT EXPRESS MY JOY WITH WORDS. but seriously. this is it. all parents please take notes. THIS IS THE IMPORTANT PART.

oh god i was SO worried about failing at sex too. like the pressure to be good in bed is so high /o\

Funnily enough, the next person I dated was a guy and he insisted on taking sex slowly despite I told him I WANTED it, and we never had PIV sex because of that. I didn't notice at the time, but I've realized it was because he considered me a virgin because of the no PIV sex thing. Which, lame. He was fantastic for me in many ways, but c'mon.
....lol *shakes head* boys boys boys, what to do with them?!

I am not even sure there is "a right person". I think if you're ready, you usually can discern who you will be okay having sex with?
SERIOUSLY. it's so obvious to me that if you're truly ready you'll know what your comfort zone is wrt people and that this will help so much more when it comes to picking the "right" partner. idk idk. it just makes a lot more sense to me to look for safety and comfort starting with learning about yourself and your own needs and not concentrating on other people. like, once you've done that first step, then yes, by all means, go look for that right person.

I also STRONGLY BELIEVE that what works for some, doesn't for others.
THIS THIS THIIIIIIS. it's so important to learn about yourself exactly because everybody is different and there should be no going by the book because there can be no fucking book!!!

Basically, I believe there should be less pressure on the first time, and more of a focus on what a person wants, when, that s/he knows about safe sex, consent and boundaries, and on being happy with your own decision, whether society approves of it or not.
best summary. preach that shit.

ALDKAMLSKAMK SORRY FOR QUOTING THE ENTIRE COMMENT BACK AT YOU BUT YOUR EVERYTHING DELIGHTS ME AND IT HAD TO BE DONE :')

Date: 2014-03-07 04:01 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] happyg-rl.livejournal.com
this is wonderful and perfect and gives voice to all the frustration and confusion most girls suffer from the "losing your virginity" topic. I wish sex ed/parenting/media focused on more than just "this is how a girl periods. This is how to condom. Abstinence is the best form of birth control. Enjoy your lives!" I hope that if I ever become a mother I can properly communicate this to my son/daughter(s). (Perish the thought)
And now I have fired-up angst and anger for the world. (To be fair, you did warn me)
Ilu ilu ilu and I'm so glad you're back and communicating and sharing and being flawless :D
Edited Date: 2014-03-07 04:04 pm (UTC)

Date: 2014-03-08 08:20 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] vergoldung.livejournal.com
Sex ed is a joke. Seriously. TEACH THE KIDS ABOUT CONSENT FFS!!! Ugh.

I am so glad to be back and I'm ever glader that you're here talking back at me ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

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