“You have a weird relationship with guys. You’re like…their warm body.”
It was an unexpected, though dishearteningly true, observation from a friend. I don’t remember the specific anecdote that elicited this comment and it probably doesn’t matter; it’s one in a million.
I recently spent a slightly-too-drunk-to-drive evening in a friend’s bed after a concert. I had his clothes on, he offered to let me use his toothbrush (which I politely refused), and we spooned. There was touching and hand holding and tickling and we weren’t good enough friends that it was mutually and understandably platonic. In fact, it was kind of sexy. The whole time, all I could think was, “Why aren’t we making out right now?”
Is it possible this is just another boy I will add to my long list of unrequited loves? Yes. Is it possible I scared him off when I went on a rant in bed about how I hated bad breath, which is why I didn’t order onions with our late night burritos, knowing full well he saw me making disgusted faces as he dominated large onion slices with his? Most likely. But the point is this: I have become a real-life security blanket, a placeholder until the real thing comes along. (That’s not to say I’ve never used a friend for some human contact, but that’s different.) I like cuddling and pillow-talk, so it makes sense that I’d be the perfect candidate when in need of some affectionate, yet harmless, company. But perhaps that’s just the issue. I’m harmless. Comfortable. It’s why guys in relationships always seem to flirt with me. Or is that why I always flirt with them?
It seems I’ve reached the point in my virginity where I’m no longer a sexual threat to anyone or anything around me. And this mindset is not specific to guys. I have had many an issue with female friends who consider my feelings a non-issue when it comes to boys I’ve expressed interest in. It’s as though because I don’t have sex, my “dibs” aren’t legitimate, because really, what would I do with them anyway? Just as sex is the line between close friends and boyfriends, so does sex seem to be what divides being considered real competition from being seen as the cute kid who has a crush on her older sister’s boyfriend.
It has been suggested to me that men are intimidated by my “innocence;” that my virginity is a factor even when it’s not. It is not uncommon for guys to be so afraid of being “that guy” that they preemptively, and may I add, presumptuously, announce their unwillingness to take my virginity despite that option never being on the table in the first place. Some guys are visibly unsure about making a move or showing a little aggression as though my virginity became their conscience, sitting on their shoulder telling them to be careful. I haven’t quite figured out, however, if the concern is that they will corrupt me or that I will brutally reject them, protecting the sanctity of my virginity like a mama bear its cub.
People’s candid opinions about my virginity are perhaps a direct result of my seemingly nonchalant, self-deprecating attitude toward it, though that makes them no less unwelcome or erroneous. It has been blatantly misconstrued that because I’m not having sex, I’m not a sexual person. Let’s clear this up: I watch porn, I have sex dreams, I hammertime. The result of this lifestyle is, of course, that my sex dreams are based less on reality than they are on porn, but I’m okay with that. Don’t let my unfortunate lack of self-esteem or overabundance of self-control fool you. I think about sex as much as a puberty-ridden teenaged boy, probably more. My “fear” at this point is that once I get over that initial hump (pun intended), I am going to run sexually rampant.
Boys, don’t write me off and don’t be afraid. I won’t reject your advances because I’m a virgin, I’ll reject them because I don’t like you. If you feel like you want to make out, kiss me. Just know that you might have to finish up on your own…at least for now.