In a graveyard, on a couch, in the backseat of a car and next to someone’s house. No, this isn’t a Dr. Seuss rhyme. This in all actuality is the sum total of my friends’ experiences losing their virginity in high school. It wasn’t sweet, it wasn’t romantic and it didn’t lead to undying declarations of love and extended cuddle time afterwards.
Last night, Glee attempted to tackle the weirdness and confusion of having sex for the first time. While Rachel and Blaine grappled with how to “seal the deal” with their respective sweeties, it left me shaking my head when each one ended up happily curled up next to their perspective boyfriends in bed, basking in the glow of their evening of blissful cherry popping.
Yes, I think Glee creator Ryan Murphy is crazy, but usually in a good way. Unfortunately this time he’s mistakenly led hundreds and thousands of teens to believe losing their virginity is this radical magic moment that changes you forever. Reality check: It doesn’t.
Here’s the real truth of the matter:
1. It’s Awkward As Hell — You think first dates are awful? Try stripping down and exposing both your body and your heart to someone who may or may not hold both as special and meaningful. Yes, it’s nice when you have two people that are totally in love, but you shouldn’t hold the person who took your virginity as some ultimate benchmarker for every guy or girl you date.
2. It Only Gets Better With Practice — You barely know your body when you’re a teenager — do you actually think you’re going to (excuse the pun) “nail it” the first time out? Sex has a learning curve, everybody is different and if you’re not comfortable enough to express what you like and don’t like then maybe you should hold off for a little while.
3. Alcohol Usually Plays a Factor — Blaine being drunk was probably the only truthful element I saw last night. Most of us were scared sh%tless at the prospect of losing our virginity and resorted to drugs or alcohol to lessen our anxiety. This is never a good idea for a lot of reasons, but it goes back to what I was saying before: If you can’t be brave or confident while sober, you just shouldn’t be doing it.
4. Its OK To Laugh About It Afterwards — You might cringe in the days and weeks that follow, but I can assure you, you’ll be able to laugh at yourself in the years to come. Sex isn’t all seriousness, you know? Sure, you need to use birth control and protect against STDs, but once you get past THAT awkward conversation, it’s OK to look back and see the humor in your misspent youth.
Yes, I can honestly say losing my virginity wasn’t all that, but that doesn’t mean that I have any regrets. To me, it was a rite of passage and something I put behind me a long time ago. I mean, there are so many more important “firsts” you encounter in adulthood. Some awkward interlude with a teenage boy you probably won’t ever see again once you graduate shouldn’t be the end all/be all you use to measure every guy OR experience against for the rest of your life.