“You scare me y’know…how can you not have done anything with any guy?…nah I still don’t believe that!” he said. A look of disbelief, nurse order amusement and curiosity was plastered on his face as he uttered these words. “I just haven’t” I replied; shrugging and refocusing my gaze on the TV ahead. “Not even a touch, wow” he whispered to himself, shaking his head and chuckling. I had been speaking to this guy on the phone for several months and this was the first time we saw each other following a brief encounter at a dimly lit bar. I had gone out for a friend’s birthday celebration and he was simply celebrating the fact it was a Friday. After months of talking and tentative flirtation on the phone, he had finally convinced me to meet him at his sister’s house; so romantic right?. I was admittedly very sceptical and his jokes, often laced with sexual innuendos did little to quell my fears. The day before we were to meet again, he rang to make sure that I would be making an appearance. “You’re still coming right?” he asked, confident that he had said enough to reassure me that he wouldn’t try anything. “Sure, but one metre rule applies” I insisted for the last time, “I sit on one side of the sofa and you sit on the other side”. He laughed as he always did when I mentioned this arbitrary rule and assured me that he would respect my wishes.
So here I was, sitting on a leather sofa in a room adorned with floral wallpaper and family photographs. On the other side of the corner sofa, as promised, was a slightly confused guy who would occasionally glance at me from the corner of his eye and lick his lips. I could only imagine what he was thinking. The night ended exactly how I had envisioned it. He ordered some Chinese takeaway, we watched three films together and I left to take the train home. After that, I knew I had to delete him from my contacts. He was a great guy- funny, assertive and understanding- but he wanted something completely different to myself. I already knew this already going in but on our second and last meeting, I knew for sure that he wasn’t the guy for me.
The reasoning behind my kiss virginity is somewhat unconventional. I’m not particularly religious nor do I ascribe to archaic notions of chastity or purity. I am a kiss virgin, simply because I am. I haven’t met anyone that has captured my interest deeply and consistently. That’s it. That’s honestly the best way I can put it. I’ve never thought too deeply about being a kiss virgin, because it’s all that I know at this point. I’ve had crushes, normally very fleeting crushes- lasting up to a week. It would normally consist of me laughing more than normal at a guy’s jokes. That was it. My first awareness of my condition was years ago in year nine at secondary school. I vividly remember getting ready for PE in the changing room near my best friend in our usual changing spot. She turned to me out of the blue, cocking her head to one side with squinted eyes asked “B, are you asexual?”. I was admittedly caught off guard, and slowly straightened my back against the wall as I finished tying my converses. “I don’t think so…” I replied quietly. At this time, I had no awareness that people identified as being asexual. Yet, I did know that this didn’t describe me. I knew I found guys attractive. I’ve never questioned that. I knew I liked how guys could make me laugh till my stomach ached. But I also knew that I didn’t relish in the idea of having a boyfriend. In fact, it made me cringe. Really hard.
I know that for many, being a virgin is slightly weird, especially in today’s hyper-sexualised world. Being a kiss virgin only adds a few more layers of weirdness to this. But I honestly wasn’t aware of how people perceived this until I started speaking to people outside of my cosy bubble of loyal, protective friends and family. I think the main reason why I’m still a kiss virgin is that I’m a hopeless romantic. I truly believe that everyone has their match and they will meet that match when they least expect it. A part of me loves the idea of being with one person forever and building memories with that person that we can recall together in old age. Yeah, I know that this is very idealistic.
I am fully aware that being a kiss virgin doesn’t make me immune from meeting less than nice guys. However, I do believe that for me personally, being a kiss virgin at the ripe old age of 22 has given me clarity. I’m beginning to understand what kind of person I want to become and also who I want to keep close to me. A common misconception that I often hear is that virgins or kiss virgins think they are better than girls who are not. I find this statement wholly ridiculous and unnecessarily divisive. Virginity is a deeply personal thing, for both men and women, so no one has the right to judge you for whatever decision you make. I also want to emphasize that this is only aspect of my reality. I’m more than a kiss virgin. I love art, I love travelling, I’m doing my master’s degree and I have clear goals in place for both my personal and professional life. It’s exciting and sometimes daunting, but I trust the journey that I’m on in life. I really do.
Written by Bella Kwaimah