Not everyone is ready to get in the sack as a teen. For others, it’s a bit more complicated.
As a nation of self-confessed bed-hoppers, we’re sleeping with more people than ever. But, while many of us are happy to divulge the number of sexual partners we’ve had, when it comes to confessing when we lost our virginity, nothing is more lied about.
On average, guys lose theirs at 16.9 while girls are slightly older at 17.4, but either way, people are starting to experiment with sex at a younger age.
In the 1950s, the average age was 21 but by 1980 it had already decreased to 17.
Alas, not everyone is ready to get in the sack as a teen. For others, it’s a bit more complicated.
We’re all familiar with the case of the 40-year-old virgin – from Channel 4 documentaries to Steve Carell’s performance in the eponymous 2005 movie – but, what’s it like for women who haven’t had sex until half way through their lives?
Writing for Thrillist, Rebecca Golden revealed that she didn’t lose her virginity until she was 35.
Having struggled with her body image, aged 33 and weighing in at 600lbs, Rebecca had gastric bypass surgery and at 34, a large amount of leftover skin removed.
It wasn’t until she hit 35 that, with her newfound confidence, she decided to enter the dating world.
Like many of us, Rebecca struggled at first to meet men that would become more than friends.
“I have a way of collecting straight guys who won’t sleep with me,” she admitted.
But, not long after she met Stephen, the man she eventually lost her virginity too.
She didn’t tell him she was a virgin though explaining that at 35, there was just no template for talking about it.
But is there ever? It seems that losing your virginity in your thirties is just as rife with confusion as it is in your teens. Have they had sex before? Will it hurt?
These are all questions that anyone about to have sex for the first time will ask themselves, irrelevant of age.
After a brief fling and a consequential relationship of two years, Rebecca had learnt a lot – she had to have her hymen surgically removed, suffered the oddities of dating apps like Plenty of Fish and explored the boundaries of BDSM.
But, she admits that it wasn’t until she was 38 that she really experienced enjoyable, fun sex.
“Actually, I feel lucky there. Many women tell me that it took far longer for them, even though most of my friends started having sex at a “normal” age,” she said.
Waiting to lose her virginity wasn’t without its difficulties but, it meant that Rebecca had time to understand what it was she wanted from a partner; she now knows that she likes nerdy, introverted guys who inspire her.
But, while she may have been having sex for nine years, she insists that it’s not the be-all and end-all. After all, she’s known her own mind forever.
“I date, but not as a way to create identity,” Rebecca insists.
“I almost never think about my first time anymore. But I do think about a future with love, where there’s intimacy and sex and a shared life.”