I Have Never Had Sex, And I Talked About It On National TV

This post is part II of this one. Perhaps it should have been the article to post the first time around. 

My name is Alice, and I have never had sex.

I guess you could say I’m one of those girls. Those girls who wanted their first time to be “special” in some way. Those girls who wanted to “wait for the right person”. Those girls who say things like, “I need to feel a connection with them”. And through a combination of growing up the tall, shy and awkward one, and not being fortunate to come across someone I really clicked with, over the years sex unintentionally passed me by. At 27, I suppose I’m a little late in entering the game. But in a recent study 1 in 8 of the 26 year olds they interviewed were still virgins. So despite living in a society where people bang on about sex all the time, it seems there are a lot of us out there not, well, banging.

27 year old virgin this morning

I grew up on Disney movies. I loved early Taylor Swift music. Tim McGraw. Love Story. You Belong With Me. People in my university halls berated me for not pulling guys on nights out but I didn’t see the appeal. I wanted a boyfriend, love, marriage, family. But I was too tall, too skinny, too shy, too awkward to get it. Class freak in school, didn’t fit in at university, online dating never really worked for me. I’ve had one boyfriend, but he 180ed after a couple of weeks, so sex unintentionally didn’t end up happening. Aside from that, I’ve kissed a fair few men (and a few women too), I’ve been on dates, but I guess I never met the right person.  I’m an “all-or-nothing” person- I tend to know quickly if I see something going somewhere, and if it’s not, I don’t see the point in dating casually to kill time. I find making out with guys in clubs boring unless there’s a genuine attraction. I find the idea of doing more odd unless there’s a deeper connection. Friend with benefits is a non-starter: I know I’d get attached, and to be honest, I don’t see the point.

People can have sex for all kinds of reasons. Some do it for love, or at least, lust. Some do it because they quite fancied each other on a night out. Some do it because they didn’t particularly fancy each other, but they were horny and the other person was there. Some do it for money. But equally, people can not have sex for all kinds of reasons. Some are waiting for marriage. Some want a connection that’s more than sex, and they haven’t found that person yet. Some just haven’t had an opportunity where they have particularly wanted to. And some people just aren’t interested. All these and more are equally valid, and to be honest, they’re none of anyone else’s business. The reasons why someone is a virgin can be as varied and complex as the reasons people choose to have sex. People are individuals and life doesn’t always fall into stereotype.

I have never had sex

We’re told that numbers don’t matter. That we shouldn’t judge people for sleeping around. And we don’t. If you write an article on “slut-shaming”, you’re publishing opinions that you already know 90% of people are going to agree with. Yet it’s the same people sharing those articles that later comment saying they would never date someone who’s a virgin. It’s the same people who shame me for not having sex who then complain about how awful it is for women to be judged for sleeping around. Men who complain about slut-shaming judge conservative women as less sexual. Men who think its terrible for women to be judged for having sex on the first date think it’s OK to stop seeing someone for not having sex on the third. It seems like the only number you’re allowed to be judged for is 0.

They say representation is important. And I suppose it is. We all want to feel like we’re not alone in the world. As a skinny blonde girl, I see my look represented over and over on the catwalk, in the media, in other people’s blogs. But my mind and my heart, I never see in the mainstream. I see sex positive, I see liberal, I see the majority view. I read other girls’ dating blogs, I watch their YouTube videos, and they’re interesting, but they’re not relatable. I never see me. So I look to alternative media, and I see the girls that think like me, the ones that think differently. But the girls with views like mine are restricted to alternative media. Their voices aren’t allowed to be heard.

But recently, I was given an opportunity to represent those people on a bigger platform. After the results of the survey revealing how Millennials are having less sex were released, I was commissioned by The Telegraph to write an article about my thoughts and experiences, and ended up appearing on the front cover. I then appeared on 3 radio shows, in other magazines, and I was interviewed on This Morning. I had my 15 minutes of fame. My story was covered by The Daily Mail, the Independent, Unilad, and more. I had a load of people try and add me on Facebook. People tweeted me offering their congratulations. I read through the comments. Some offered me praise. One came out with the classic “get it over with!” (because I’ve NEVER EVER heard that one before!). Some said they can’t believe I’m only 27 as I look like I’m in my late thirties, and I have a face that should be hung around a witchdoctor’s neck. But it wasn’t about those people. It was about the ones who messaged me, the girls like me, who told me they loved my interview and feel more confident now they know they’re not alone. Now they know it’s OK to go against the grain.

virgin in your twenties

I have never had sex. But I’m not unattractive. I’m not undateable. I’m not frigid, or prudish. I’m not disinterested in sex. I am not pure. I’m not virtuous. I’m just a twenty-something dating blogger who goes against the grain. And I refuse to be ashamed of my choice.

Photography by Keyframe Images

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16 Comments

  1. May 27, 2018 / 6:09 pm

    The only thing you need to do, is to be yourself.

  2. Chad Weakley
    May 27, 2018 / 6:42 pm

    I wouldn’t subject myself to the noise you’re listening to. Other people’s opinion isn’t fact. If you’re gonna read opinions then here’s mine; sex is worth having even if you don’t feel connected to that person in a special way.
    I knew a girl who slipped her phone number to a construction worker who was working in her building once. It simply said “Call me ###-###-####, Tina”. She handed it to him and smiled at him. That’s sexy and flattering yet she was so nervous. It worked.
    You should try it. I think you’re beautiful.
    Chad

    • May 30, 2018 / 8:11 pm

      Haha maybe I should- it’s good to be proactive after all!

  3. Anonymous for the moment
    May 27, 2018 / 7:39 pm

    I’m glad you’ve had some coverage because your point of view is not the norm and it needs to be heard.

  4. May 28, 2018 / 1:28 am

    While I much older than you are I support that you are looking for love or a connection. While sex is a natural part of being human I feel as if many who just want sex lack the necessary connection with a partner. Anyone who says get it over with or feels as if they have to offer some unsolicited advice probably have issues of their own.

    • aliceeriley
      May 30, 2018 / 8:13 pm

      Yeah I think it depends on the person, but the “get it over with” thing needs to die out, like, yesterday!

    • aliceeriley
      May 30, 2018 / 8:12 pm

      Cheers!

  5. June 28, 2018 / 11:28 am

    I loved reading this. While I am only 22 and have had sex once I met the right girlfriend, I used to feel like the older I got that I should have an idea now, of what sex is like and have tried it before. But like you I feel like I need to meet the right person and I don’t see a point in messing around with someone for a while if it’s not going to lead to anything serious. For me it was quite a relief to have sex for the first time because it meant the pressure fell off me, but if I hadn’t I think I would have eventually concluded what you have – that it is fine not to without necessarily feeling disinterested in it. It’s quite amazing that you spoke to major newspapers about this. That’s so brave! Thank you for sharing this with us!

  6. July 14, 2018 / 8:17 pm

    A woman who maintains her dignity and awaits the right time is commendable especially when she is attractive.

    • aliceeriley
      July 17, 2018 / 7:59 pm

      Thanks so much!

  7. July 19, 2018 / 2:30 pm

    There is a proverb : “Only that tree that has fruits is thrown stones at” (african proverb). This means only someone who has some good qualities is thrown words at.

    • aliceeriley
      July 27, 2018 / 3:55 pm

      That’s such a great proverb!

      • July 27, 2018 / 3:59 pm

        Yes so don’t worry because if you had nothing and was just like everyone else no one would say anything about you.

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