Teens and Virginity
Virginity and Your Teen Peers
Some teens use the word "virgin" as an insult, especially teenage guys who are trying to seem cool. They might use slang terms such as "popped her cherry" to describe having sex with a girl for the first time. Girls might similarly tease or shun their virgin girlfriends. The opposite may also be true: some girls might scoff at non-virgin friends, calling them mean names. Treating people badly based on their choices about sexuality can result in deeply hurt feelings because of the very personal nature of these decisions.
One friend might be considering having sex for the first time and need someone to talk with about the pros and cons of doing so. Because this kind of decision is so personal, an effective way to handle the subject among friends is to talk about your own experiences and why you choose to -- or not to -- have sexual intercourse.
Teens, Virginity and ... Parents
You'll hear and read a lot of advice telling you to ask your parents about sex. Let's be honest: It's not always easy for teens to go up to their mom or dad and ask them about what the first time will be like!
But if you think about it, how did you get here? Right -- your parents had sex and your mom gave birth to you. And before all of that happened, they were virgins, too. At some point, both of your parents likely had the exact same questions, confusion, and curiosity that you have.
Even if you are nervous approaching the subject with your parents, you might be surprised about how easy it is to talk about the subjects of virginity and sex. It may feel a little uncomfortable at first. But it's a good way to come to terms with your own beliefs and feelings about virginity.
If talking about sex with your parents just isn't going to happen, try to find an adult who can answer your questions and help you find more information. A youth counselor, guidance counselor, or your primary health care practitioner might be a good place to start.
Should I 'Go All the Way'?
The decision to lose your virginity requires a lot of careful thought. Two important factors to consider are sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and birth control (such as condoms, the "pill," diaphragms, and spermicidal lubricants).
There is a lot of information out there about STDs, and you need to make sure you're aware of the risks, the types of infections, and ways to prevent infections. Pregnancy is another extremely important consideration -- it should not be taken lightly or left up to chance. Do your research about both STDs and pregnancy before making any decisions about having sex.
Peer pressure, morality, religion, and your own values will also play a major role in your decision to have sex. Your decision should be yours alone, rather than your peers'. Make sure you are fully comfortable with your decision on an emotional and spiritual level before you go through with it.