Is There a Right Time to Lose Your Virginity


Sherley is a Haitian-American flight attendant who served eight years in the US Army Reserve. Her journey with Femme Naturelle began in 2012 as a way to build a safe space, a community to uplift and empower women in relationships transitioning out of crisis. She resides in New Jersey with her husband and two children.

Hi, I'm sherley

listeners' stories, advice, and questions

This article was written by Lynn Joseph on behalf of Sherley Altidor

Society spends so much time devoted to finding “the one” and living out the “happily ever after” and not necessarily enough time on listening to your body, your soul, your mind, your needs, and your desires. When we get caught up in the white patriarchal system of expectations, we can lose ourselves easily and lose sight of what’s good for us as the individuals that we are. So when it comes to sex, the question of values often comes up and with it, western religion values. The question you might hear is “Is there a right time to lose your virginity?” But today, I ask you to reframe this and ask yourself, “Is there a right time to assess all of the things that you value?”

There is only one answer to this question. The answer to that is yes. There is always a right time to assess all of the things that you value. We do this every single day, multiple times a day. From the moment we wake up to the moment we lay our head back down to sleep, we are attributing value to our thoughts and making decisions based on the value of those thoughts. 

Also read: Sex Before Marriage: Is it Important

So if you’re going to go online to take a quiz and find out what your Love Language is, you can take the time to get to know and love your body. If you’re going to take the time to research your zodiac sign, you can take the time to go get bloodwork done and visit a gynecologist, Planned Parenthood, or LGBT center to become and stay educated on your personal health and the safety of such. If you can take the time to get that extra cup of coffee no one needs, you can take the time to get contraceptives. I think you get the point here. No one is making you take the time to be responsible and educate yourself and take care of your body but remember that you make time for what you care about.

If losing your virginity is important to you, you will take time to think about what is best for you if you do lose your virginity in this present moment vs. a later date. No one else can tell you what is best for you. There are wiser choices to make if you know that you’re unprepared and ill equipped to handle the possible effects from sex (unwanted pregnancy, sexually transmitted infections – STIs and sexually transmitted diseases – STDs, etc…) but ultimately, the decision is yours to make.

Also read: How To Make Love Last; Is There A Secret

There are other factors to consider as well. Do you know if you’re allergic to any ingredients in certain lubricants? Do you know how your body responds to pleasure and are you interested in finding out on your own through masturbation before having sex with someone else? Seriously. Do you even know what your own vagina looks like? Take a mirror down there and examine your body. When you know what it looks like in a healthy state, you’ll more easily be able to notice abnormalities. Do you feel safe exploring things about yourself and your body while someone else does the same at the same time? Which brings me to my favorite point of discussion…

Communication. Are you and your possible sexual partner on the same page about why you’re having sex with each other? Have you discussed if sex is being had only between the two of you or elsewhere with other people? Have you discussed consent, expectations you have of each other, as well as soft and hard limits? These are all things that will make the sexual experience better because you talked about as much as you possibly could have beforehand and that high level of respect has been established before anyone does anything. Clear communication is the sign of a healthy and mature relationship, no matter the timespan of that relationship. Communication is key. If you are not ready to communicate clearly, it is not a good time to have sex. Your partner will know how to please you if you don’t speak up for yourself and you won’t know how to please them if you don’t listen to what they have to say. That won’t lead to a positive sexusal encounter for you or them. 

Also read: Common Law Marriage vs. Marriage: What You Need to Know

What you don’t want to do is get caught up in thinking that everyone around you is having sex. This is simply not true. Even some married couples aren’t having sex. Which is not good because that line of communication between the two is not open. So learn how to communicate before you lose your virginity, so that you are able to set a healthy groundwork for your future relationships. 

Sure, some people lose their virginity early on and have plenty of sex for many years before they really master the art of making love. Some people lose their virginity later on in life and get right to the point of learning how to make love. It’s all a spectrum. Sex is a journey. We’re all on different paths. So the question, “Is there a right time to lose your virginity?” ultimately becomes, “When do you want to begin your sexual journey?”

To recap, here’s what to ask yourself if you want to know if you’re ready to lose your virginity:

  1. Communication. Am I a good communicator and if not, what do I need to do in order to become better at communicating? Do I need to go to therapy to learn how to become a good communicator and unpack my needs and desires and ability to please others? If the person that I am considering losing my virginity too is also a virgin, have they done the work to know if they are ready to have sex?
  2. Consent. Have I discussed with my partner consent, expectations we have of each other, fantasies, as well as soft and hard limits?
  3. Sex Education. Do I know about how the human body works and pleasure points? Do I understand female anatomy and male anatomy? Do I know where my clitoris is? Do I know all of the different ways a woman can orgasm? Do I know how my body responds to pleasure? Do I know what a urinary tract infection (UTI) is and how to prevent getting one? Am I willing to masturbate to find out? Do I understand that sex in professional porn is not a realistic portrayel of sex? Do I understand the proper hygiene routine for sex?
  4. Sexual Identity. Am I firm on how I identify sexually or do I need to explore and discover if I am gay, lesbian, bisexual, or pansxual? Do I even want sex – am I asexual? Do I even know what asexuality is? If I am asexual, what am I willing to do for my partner who wants to have sex? 
  5. Allergies. Am I allergic to any lubricants?
  6. Prep: Am I equipped to prevent an STD/STI and unwanted pregnancy and am I financially prepared for treatment if I do get an STD/STI or for whatever outcome I choose should I become pregnant? Am I aware of the side effects of certain contraceptives? Do I understand all of the phases of the female reproductive system?
  7. Vaccinated: Regardless your view on being vaccinated, it is important to some people. Is the person that I am interested in having sex with vaccinated from COVID-19 and if they are not, will they be tested and quarantined before we have sex? Am I comfortable taking their word for it or do I need to see their vaccination card? Am I willing to take a test for them if they ask even if I am vaccinated or not?

Also read: What Makes A Healthy Sexual Relationship

Sex education is vital. There is never a wrong time to educate yourself before taking care of yourself and others. If you’re into podcasts, I suggest starting off with Clit Talk. If you’re into YouTube and are interested in the kinkier side of things, may I suggest Evie Lupine. For queer sex resources, consider checking out Auto Straddle. There are dozens upon dozens of sex positive podcasts and YouTube channels to choose from, so do your research and find what works for you. There are a host of streaming documentaries and docu-series dedicated to sex education if this information is necesary in aiding you make an informed decision. There’s even a fun and entertaining comedy, Sex Education on Netflix for a more lighthearted doorway to becoming more comfortable with the idea of sex. Just remember that no one can tell you when you are ready. 

When you make the decision of when you want to have sex for the first time as a consenting human is your choice. No matter what happened in the past, you can and will determine at some point in your life for the first time when you consent to sex for the first time. Don’t worry about what other people are doing because chances are, those other people are not going to encounter you within that sexual space on your sexual journey. And if they are, communicate. Get those burning questions out and answered. 

Remember, stay safe.

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Femme Parler, which in french means, “woman talk,” is a podcast speaking to women about regaining our power after a crisis in a relationship. 


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