Oh, Regina George–half a virgin when she met Shane Oman. This quote makes some giggle, but it also makes me wonder: is it possible to be “half a virgin”?
Regina George is right. She is, was, and still could consider herself as “half-a-virgin”. Regina could have meant a fuck-ton of things by saying claiming that identity. She could have engaged in anal penetration, oral sex, digital play, vuvla-to-vulva, or even penis-to-pussy penetration and still be considered “half a virgin”. Still, it doesn’t matter whether we know the nitty gritties of what she defines as “sex” or what made her half a virgin. She counts what she wants to count, and cuts off what she doesn’t. Sexuality is defined by nobody else but yourself. Similar to Regina, I like to (re)construct my own rules and definitions about sexuality. I’ll explain.
Sexuality is socially constructed, but that doesn’t mean it’s not real. We adopt socially accepted definitions of sexuality, which include ideas and social ramifications about losing your virginity. The topic and meaning of the term “virginity” is also socially constructed to police women’s sexuality. You’re not special because you’re a virgin, you’re special because you’re a human. You’re also not trash if you fuck a lot, and you’re also not trash if you don’t or never have fucked. Everyday Feminism discusses myths about virginity and Cal alumnus and Laci Green discusses cherry popping and hymens in a YouTube video. There’s something about losing your virginity that makes some people feel like they lost a part of themselves but really no one’s losing any part of themselves when they shed the identity of “virgin”. By dismantling what it means to be a virgin and what it means to lose your virginity, we take a step in empowering ourselves.
To be honest, I’ve had two first times and I don’t think that there’s anything wrong with that. People can have multiple firsts in their lives: first time ever, first time with someone you love, first time in the shower, first time with sex toys, the list goes on. Here’s a story about one of my first times, when I identified as both a virgin, half a virgin, and not a virgin:
It was my first time. Sort of. I’d done this kinda thing before but only for 15 seconds until my partner fell asleep. This time, we fucked til sunrise. The feelings overwhelmed me. He was strong. He seemed ready and I was, too. I told him I wasn’t a virgin because I didn’t want him to think I was weird or ask about why I’ve held my V-Card for so long.
I remember crying. Not from pain but because it was an incredible amount of pressure which penetrated me at a really fast pace. I wiped my tears so he wouldn’t see. When he fell asleep, I closed my eyes but felt too electrified to sleep. I lay in his bed, enlivened by the ambience. After feeling dead this past semester, it felt good to feel alive. When he kicked me out of his apartment, he brought me home on his bike and played Miguel’s “Do You..”
June 6th wasn’t just my sexual debut, but my introduction to a new world of casual sex. I didn’t anticipate that he would disrespect me as hard as he did during the weeks that followed. On one hand, I felt validated by his attention. On the other, I couldn’t tell if he wanted to dispose of me or keep me around. I don’t know why I gave him that power over me.