I was raised in a time when it was drilled into the minds of testosterone filled young men that their virginity was the greatest asset they had to offer an intimate relationship. They were taught to protect their virginity like a precious pearl. This pearl was to be saved for one woman, not passed around, touched and caressed and shared with many, cheapening it with every encounter. No, this precious gem, sex, could only be given to one woman, his wife. This valuable gift was to be cherished, preparing him for the day when, in all white, he’d look his wife in the eyes and declare his pure and faithful love to her.
It was the one thing, if given to the right person (his wife) at the right time (on their wedding night) that would almost guarantee that he had chosen his mate correctly and that his marriage would last a lifetime.
If the young man “slept around”, it was said that he had given pieces of himself away and he had become “damaged goods.” He should have remained untouched, they said, until he found a woman to marry, no matter how long it took, for his heart and body, ultimately belonged to Jesus.
What caused this man to lose his virginity? Maybe it was because he dressed immodestly, showed off too much skin with all those muscles, or maybe he acted flirtatiously. Maybe he was at the wrong place at the wrong time, doing the wrong things. Whatever the reason, he’d have sexual problems in his marriage, they said, as he was no longer under the umbrella of God’s blessing; never to be pure again, never to be the same. But there was still hope. It was possible that a woman would still take him and forgive him, and she would see him as Jesus sees him and overlook the wounds and damage, and they could have a good marriage in spite of it all.
This all sounds ridiculous, of course, because this doesn’t happen, never has, at least not in my world. Except it has happened the other way around; this has been the training for females almost from birth. Sad, isn’t it, that we’ve put all this pressure on girls and women to bear the burden not only of their own sexual purity, but also the virtue of both genders?
I wonder how different our world would be if we stopped putting so much pressure on girls and women for this made up standard of sexual purity, and especially if we put equal responsibility on both male and female for their own sexuality. Men, be responsible for your own bodies and your own sexual behavior. And women are no longer responsible for how men view them! Women deserve the freedom to dress in whatever way it is that makes them feel good and go where they want and dance if they want and drink what they want without fear of getting drugged, assaulted or raped. How about that?
There are certain conservative groups that take the meaning of purity to a whole new creepy level by having what they call “purity balls.” These are dances where young teenage daughters sign vows of sexual purity until marriage and the dads vow to protect their daughters. I think if the whole purity thing were turned around and boys vowed themselves to be virgins until marriage, it would add an interesting twist to the term purity balls.