Toronto
3 min

Scarlet V

My virginity has made it hard to find a man

VIRGIN SLUT. Writer John Sinopoli says the men who want in his pants don't respect him as a person. Credit: Jan Becker

During my days in the closet I thought that my sexual orientation was going to be the most earth-shattering secret I would ever admit. Then came my other secret. The secret I’m still trying to find ways to explain.



It’s not an STD, and it’s not a childhood trauma that has scarred me for life. No, I’m not sleeping with my best friend’s father, nor do I enjoy some offbeat sexual behaviour like fistfucking or being pissed on.



I just turned 23 and I’m a virgin. By choice.



My admission invariably elicits looks of shock, sometimes even repulsion or its antithesis, attraction. All of which have shown me how hard it is being a virgin in a society where most people have their first sexual experience in their teens.



No matter the tone of their reaction, the first thing people ask me is, “What do you mean by virgin?”



My answer usually involves looking at them like they’re idiots and offering up “birds and bees” metaphors. Everyone seems to have a different definition of virgin, but to me, a virgin is anyone who has not penetrated or been penetrated. Oral sex and hand jobs don’t count.



After people hear my definition, they still don’t accept what I’ve told them.



I’d like to think it’s because I am so damn attractive there is no way I’ve been able to hold out for so long. But the disbelief can be blamed partly on my blunt tongue. The way I talk has led many people to think I’m more likely to be a slut than a virgin. I’m brazenly open in my discussions of sex and sexuality. I’m a flirt (which, I know, always equals a tease when you’re a virgin) who talks about sex like you’d talk about the weather. Virgins aren’t supposed to talk or act like that.



Among my friends, my nickname has become the “virgin slut,” a phrase I’ve had emblazoned on a T-shirt. The shirt almost invariably leads to the question, “So, which one is it?” I usually tell them to guess. They always guess wrong.



I feel like my friend Sonya who constantly tells her parents that she’s a dyke, but for some reason they always think she’s joking.



Why have I held out to the ripe old age of 23? Well, I’m not some pseudo-puritanical Catholic boy who’s waiting for some religiously-sanctioned marriage. Though I can say that, like that good Catholic boy, I am waiting for the one I love.



And frankly I’m picky about the jeans I wear. If I’m really picky about something that covers my ass, imagine how picky I am about something that penetrates it.



There are a myriad of other reasons why I’m a virgin. Mostly it’s a subversive act. Men my age, gay or straight, aren’t supposed to be virgins – and being something I’m not supposed to be attracts me. I like to fuck it up.



It’s also an ego thing. I want to be acknowledged for what I am – a person, not a fuck hole. I want to be desired and respected for my personality and not just my body. The men who have tried to get in my pants, for the most part, have failed to do that.



I’m also nervous about catching a sexually transmitted disease.



The main problem with being a virgin is trying to date. Because I’m finding dating is mostly about fucking or being fucked.



With potential partners my admission can cause some guys to recoil in fear. They seem afraid of bearing the weight and responsibility associated with deflowering.



One time, a guy at the bank made a pretty obvious pass at me. He was cute, so I reciprocated. We ended up going out a few times. He made it very clear that he was very into me. Until I told him I’m a virgin. Then he told me I was too innocent for him. I never heard from him again.



Other guys express other doubts: “He’s a virgin, so there has to be something wrong with him. Does he have a small dick? An STD? Or some unmentionable sexual proclivity?”



Then there are guys who are attracted to the fact that I’m a virgin. They’re usually too old for me and a little too sleazy. I end up running away from them as fast as those guys who are afraid of virgins run away from me.



Though being a virgin at my age can be a hassle, I will continue to wear my scarlet V with pride.



Until one day, that one guy convinces me to take it off.