Let's 'Lose' It: Why Virginity Is A Harmful Concept
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Let's 'Lose' It: Why Virginity Is A Harmful Concept

When are you gonna stop being a prude?

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Let's 'Lose' It: Why Virginity Is A Harmful Concept
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It is something we all know about, we all talk about, and we all obsess over. Society places virginity on a high pedestal for people of many cultures, every religion, and various age groups. For teenagers, however, virginity is an especially important value. Teenage virginity is feared and esteemed; it is viewed as a gift or treasure to some, and to others, it is viewed as a barrier or taboo.

The “virgin” label is commonly associated with a pure, pristine, and virtuous person, and maybe sometimes even a fresh or untouched one. Subsequently, the “non-virgin” label associates people with the opposite aspects, leading to harmful gossip and hateful shaming to occur. The concept of virginity is ultimately a plague to society and acceptance, hurting and shaming people every day.

What is important to understand is that “virginity” is nothing more than a social construct. Virginity is not a physical object that can be preserved, given away, taken away, or renewed. However, society has created this imaginative “keepsake” that makes both men and women feel scared, insecure, and out-casted. Because of its sexist undertones, its indefinability, and overall demeaning consequences, the concept of virginity is one that we, as a society, should get rid of.

Although the concept of virginity affects both men and women, the attribute is more commonly paid attention to in women. From its earliest appearances in history, the concept of virginity has defined the actual worth of women, for virgin daughters historically were worth more money when sold to husbands.

Virginity is an extremely flawed concept because it lets society control female sexuality by tying it so closely to female morality. Girls who have had sex are easily thought of as dirty and untrustworthy. Too many women are being quickly judged on their sexuality rather than their more valuable and relevant attributes.

Furthermore, the “possession” of virginity is a very sexist concept. Girls are taught by society that their virginity is a treasure that should be kept; virginity is exceptionally more vital for girls to “possess”.

But it is not just girls that face stress when coming to deal with their virginity, boys are also put under immense pressure. The impervious societal stereotypes for boys are the exact opposite of girls’, while girls are expected to keep their virginity close to their hearts until they find “the one”, boys are encouraged to lose their virginity as soon as possible.

The gender roles that the concept of virginity lays for both boys and girls only proves the sexism that lies within the concept. However, another screaming issue concerning virginity is its indefinability. The mainstream definition of a virgin is a “person who has not yet had sexual intercourse”. What may seem like an easy question turns out to be a very difficult one: what is sexual intercourse? How can you medically define the first time someone has sex? Popular myths state that the “popping of the cherry”, otherwise known as the tearing of the hymen. However, contrary to popular belief, a hymen is never permanently “torn” or “popped”, if ever torn at all.

During sexual intercourse, the hymen will most likely only stretch, opposed to the unlikely event of it tearing. In the event of stretching, the hymen will return to its original state, and in the event of tearing (which is rare), the hymen will heal. By this logic, the “cherry” can be popped over and over again, so did the girl actually lose her virginity?

But furthermore, the last paragraph has only focused on women; when does a male lose his virginity? Is it the first time he ejaculates? By that logic, do most boys lose their virginity around the ages of 12-14?

The concept of virginity becomes increasingly complicated when talking about the LGBT+ community. Because they are not commonly having heterosexual intercourse, when do they lose their virginity?

Virginity is ultimately a societal concept that is more harmful than helpful in today’s society. It is common that both people that have their virginity and people that don’t feel insecure about themselves. People are bullied over the loss and protection of their virginity, and it is ultimately a concept. It is astounding to think that virginity is taken, lost, and renewed every day when it isn’t even real.

Virginity is a label ingrained in our minds, and it should be gotten rid of. Because the concept more commonly hurts people than help them, the world would be much better if everyone just didn’t worry about the label. No boy or girl should be worried about their virginity, which is why it is a concept that we should all “lose”.

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