If you opened the Fizz app on October 17th, you likely saw my most popular Fizz post. Upvoted 975 times, my post spent the entire day on the top of the trending page and peaked at #6 on the All Time Leaderboard. In case you didn’t have Fizz, or you don’t have an encyclopedic memory of every day’s top posts, my viral Fizz was under the ‘confession’ category and read simply: just lost my virginity in TD.
The joke, of course, is that TD sucks! Therefore, the concept of someone having sex there—much less losing their virginity—is funny. Ribbing on TD is a common joke on Fizz, so I didn’t necessarily anticipate such insane popularity. I suppose it does have a bit of shock value. Maybe people appreciated the boldness it takes to candidly share such a seemingly personal thing on an app. Maybe they thought it was 100% a joke, simply funny that someone would think to make it up. Others seemed awed by the fact that it was posted during breakfast. Admittedly, that might have been slightly misleading on my part. While I did in fact lose my virginity in TD, I did not lose it at 8am on a Monday morning.
One may have read that and thought: why would someone post that, that’s so embarrassing. To be honest, I didn’t put much thought into posting it. I just did it because I thought it would be kinda funny.
Maybe if you, or most of your friends, had sex in high school, you think losing your virginity in college is embarrassing, and you think I’m crazy for sharing it publicly, even if anonymously. It seems some people think the only reasons you could be 19 and still a virgin are 1) because of some deeply held moral value that inspires you to wait until marriage or at least a relationship, or 2) you simply cannot find anyone who wants to have sex with you. I’m not religious and conventionally attractive enough that when this fact about me comes up, people are shocked. They perceive me as someone who could, and therefore would, have sex. If you didn’t have sex in high school, I’m pleased to let you know we are not alone. A very large percentage of people I’ve met at Yale are still virgins, even multiple semesters into college.
Everyone has a different personal connotation and sentiment around the concept of virginity. For me, virginity, or perceiving myself as a virgin, was not something I valued. I neither was actively seeking someone to have sex with, nor was waiting for a specific person or love or marriage. I wasn’t opposed to losing my virginity to a random hookup, as long as I felt comfortable in the moment. I thought that a random hookup might actually be good. At least then, if it was awkward, it wouldn’t matter.
Leading up to when I lost my virginity, at no part of the evening did I think I was going to. I probably should have. I had gone back to a guy’s room with him, so I should have considered the possibility in my mind. I’d gone home with boys before and maybe those guys could tell I was nervous and so they didn’t ask to go further, or maybe they felt awkward asking and were waiting for me to initiate things. Either way, we never had sex. This boy was sweet and seemed nervous, so I was shocked when he simply asked if I wanted to.
When you’ve never had sex before and you feel like you don’t really know what happens during sex, suddenly the fact that you are a virgin is the biggest thing in the world and is all you can think about. What if he can tell I don’t know what I’m doing, and doesn’t like me anymore? What if it hurts? What if it’s awkward? What if, even though I think it’s not a big deal, it becomes a huge deal and I have an emotional attachment to him (shoutout to my 7th grade health teacher for scaring me with that one)? I was definitely not thinking about going viral on Fizz. Yet, I did.
Overall, the experience was nice. It hurt much less than I was expecting. The crazy thing, considering that I’ve anonymously shared this with a large percentage of the undergraduate Yale population, is that I didn’t tell the boy that it was my first time. I didn’t tell him because I didn’t want to make him think he was pressuring me, or that I had been waiting, and it was a big emotional deal that he may not have wanted to be involved in.
I still haven’t told him, and I don’t plan on doing so because it’s just not important. I see him around and I think of him as someone I had a positive sexual experience with and not really anything more. I couldn’t even really say he was the boy who took my virginity, maybe the boy I lost my virginity to, but I think it’s something personal that he had both everything and nothing to do with, and I don’t regret that I didn’t tell him.
Like much of the media we consume these days, if you did see my post, it was likely good for a quick laugh and then immediately forgotten, no need for any sort of critical reflection. Fair enough. I made the post without any sort of critical reflection. This is funny because it’s likely in reference to one of the most critically reflectable moments of my life. Most of the people who upvoted my Fizz post, maybe even that boy himself, probably didn’t think much at all about the post, but all 975 of those people have completely unique ideas about virginity and virgins, and probably all thought the joke was funny in a slightly different way. That’s awesome.