Young girls in the dating world nowadays have it rough. If you date too much you’re a slut and if you don’t date at all you’re a prude. They are given these labels that, in most cases, couldn’t be further from the truth. I have first hand experience from this as I didn’t date until I was almost 20 years old. I’m here to tell you that it is okay to wait.

All through high school the only attention that I got from the opposite sex was of the friend variety or being ignored completely. Suffice to say, the dating pool for me wasn’t very big so I didn’t worry myself with the idea of having a boyfriend. For a while, I was fine with that until the end of my junior year and beginning of my senior year. I still wasn’t actively looking for a relationship but as time went on I grew embarrassed that I hadn’t had one or done anything intimate with the opposite sex.

It took my best friends and a lot of my family to tell me that I should be proud of waiting for a relationship and waiting to lose my virginity for that matter. Once I started college, the embarrassment, or shame, that I held went away. I was proud that I made the decision to let it happen in its own time.

Waiting, however, came with its challenges. With kids being so sexually active and boy/girl crazy these days it’s almost an abnormality if you are a virgin or if you don’t date.

There were times I was asked if I was a lesbian because of my lack of male companionship. I have no problem with lesbians, you like who you like, but just because I don’t have a boyfriend, it doesn’t mean that I’m suddenly a closeted lesbian. I mean wouldn’t I be bringing a lot of girls around then? Instead I wasn’t bringing anyone around because there was no one to bring around.

Then there were the people who thought I was a prude. I wasn’t. I just hadn’t taken that step yet. I had no problem with sex or people taking about sex I just hadn’t done it yet. To be honest, the more people thought this, the prouder I was of my decision.

Next is my favorite question that I was often asked, ‘Are you waiting for marriage?’ No, I wasn’t. Just because I chose to be a virgin for as long as I did doesn’t mean I was waiting for marriage. That would be like me saying ‘Are you trying to have a baby because that is what sex is for.’ Obviously, that’s not what teenagers would be thinking. The truth is I wasn’t waiting for marriage, the opportunity just never presented itself and I just didn’t worry about it.

I chose to focus on me. I chose to focus on school and getting good grades to go to college. I chose to work on myself so that I was comfortable in my own skin. I chose to wait for the right guy to come along that I deserved and who deserved me. I believe that you need to be pretty sure of who you are as a person first before you enter relationship and you can’t really do that as a teenager.

I got a lot crap for waiting so long from some of my friends, my family, even my own mother, but at the end of the day it was my decision to make and today I couldn’t be prouder of that decision.

Because I waited, I ended up finding a really good guy or rather he found me. We have so much in common and we are always laughing and having a good time. He respects me and treats me right. I’m not going to lie we are not the perfect couple and we have had our hiccups and no doubt will have more in the future but that is to be expected in a relationship. I was upfront with him about my lack of experience in the dating world and he was completely understanding of it. He was patient with me when it came to the more intimate matters and that made it easier to make one of the biggest decisions of my life. We could break up tomorrow and I still wouldn’t regret giving up my virginity to him.

Let this be an inspiration to you. Don’t listen to your friends or family or anyone trying to pressure you to date if you are not ready.

IT IS OK TO WAIT.

This is a decision that you have all the power over. I’m so glad I waited to date and lose my virginity till I was 19 (a month or so shy of 20). If I hadn’t of waited I might not be in the relationship I am in now. I could have been in a relationship that I hated. Worst of all, I could have made decisions I regretted.

There is a power in waiting and you never know, you could meet your prince charming all because you made the simple decision to wait and let things happen on their own.