S.E.X.

Yes, you read the title correctly.

S.E.X.

I am going head on into uncharted territory. A subject that I believe isn’t openly discussed enough.

Disclaimer: DO NOT read on if you are easily offended, close minded or judgmental. And as always, if you have nothing nice to say, don’t say anything at all.

So… I’m going to get it all out on the table… Virginity. Sex. Boys. Temptation. College. What’s the right age?, When is the right time?, How will I know?, Do I wait until marriage?, If I don’t wait until marriage, am I a bad person?, How to avoid temptation and one night stands?, If I am still a virgin, does that make me “uncool”?

I know going into this, that I will more than likely be judged and many people will disagree with the things that I’m going to say. And that’s okay… Everyone is entitled to their own opinion (and I respect that). But for the sake of our teenagers and young adults who go through these battles every single day – I hope it gives them some sort of comfort, and provides them with information, insight, and advice from someone who has been there before.

I am not perfect (and if you ever believed that I was) you are mistaken. I’m not the devil nor am I Mother Theresa. I’ve made mistakes and I will continue to make mistakes. Am I religious? Yes. Do I love The Lord? Yes. But I am also human. We are all human. So before you continue reading this (if you choose to) remember this…

“DO NOT JUDGE SOMEONE BECAUSE THEY SIN DIFFERENTLY THAN YOU”.

Alrighty… now that all of that is out of the way… Let’s get into the real stuff!

VIRGINITY: This has always been a touchy subject (especially coming from a very religious upbringing). It is something I believe everyone struggles with (boys and girls), especially girls. The reason I say this is because I feel girls are always held to a higher standard when it comes to virginity and sex. If a 15 year old boy loses his virginity, he gets pats on the back and his friends ultimately view him as “cool”. A 15 year old girl does the same, but she is automatically a “slut”, boys taunt her, other girls gossip about her, and she officially has earned her “reputation” (not in a good way).

Personally, I always valued my virginity, not only because of how I was raised and what The Bible says about it, but just out of self-respect for myself and my body. In middle school and high school, I dated a few guys, liked a few guys, texted a few guys, and flirted with A LOT of guys. I guess you could say I loved the thrill of a chase or in my case… (being chased). I was a cheerleader, a partier, loud, outgoing, and unapologetically flirtatious. It’s just who I was. I was offered and tempted to throw in my ‘v-card’ on multiple occasions throughout high school, but I somehow always ended up saying “no”.

TEMPTATION, BOYS, & COLLEGE: Unfortunately, temptation is something you can never out run. Temptation is everywhere, not just when it comes to sex. Don’t believe me… Try driving past Krispy Kreme when that hot sign is on (gets me every time). Alright, back on subject. Temptation, from what I’ve experienced, as it pertains to sex is highest near the end of high school and beginning of college. This is really when your eyes are opened, you leave home, you meet new people, you have no curfew, and have WAY more freedom (a lot more than your parents want you to have).

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For me, a typical night back then always started by getting ready with my girls, music blasting, spontaneously dancing, pictures already starting, and a red solo cup within arms reach filled to the brim with Franzia boxed wine or $7 Brunettes vodka topped with a fruity mixer. After we drunkenly got ourselves presentable, we walked to the closest bar (remember we’re in heels) to find more free drinks and cute boys to act interested in. Proceeding into the night, we would continue to drink… By this point, we’ve already lost one or two of the girls that we originally came with. Someone has lost a shoe. Someone broke their Blackberry. While your other friend is making out with her ex-boyfriend who hours before swore she hated, your eyeliner is running and the sweatiness of you and your new dance partner is enough to make anyone vomit.

FYI: [Parents, just in case you weren’t worried enough, I’m sorry. But this is probably what they mean when they say they’re going to the “library” to study. I understand not everyone has this type of college experience, but many do. Not because you raised them wrong or were bad parents, but because it’s just what young kids with a lot of time and freedom do. Don’t take it personal.]

Yes, temptation was surrounding us the whole night, but it really sinks in AFTER the bar, AFTER that greasy, yummy meal at Sup Dogs. You know that saying nothing good happens past 2 o’clock? Well, this is right around that time. This is where the decisions are made (who’s going home with who and who isn’t coming home with you). This is where you have a say in what happens next… This is where you consciously make the decision. And if you have good friends, they will help you make it. Chances are the guy that wants to come over is not interested in staying up to watch Mean Girls with you and your roommate. Sometimes, yes, you will come across that guy, that gentleman, that genuinely has good intentions and does just want to hang out… But 9 times out of 10, you won’t meet ‘that guy’ until way later in college. The guy that wants to come back to your place tonight, has one thing on his mind.

If you’re one of those girls, who lost their virginity a long time ago, it’s okay. No judgement here. There’s enough judgement already on just about everything we do, so why add more… Sure, that guy might have been perfect at the time and you may have given him exactly what he wanted (and at the time what you wanted). Some girls lose their virginity because they genuinely wanted to. Not all sex encounters are by mistake, some are purposeful, and that’s okay. If you’ve already made a mistake, you are probably well aware of it. But instead of pointing fingers and shaming you, just know either way… it’s okay. Without experiences, mistakes, and missed steps we can’t continue to learn and grow. So keep your head up!

So ladies, moral of this story… Take it easy on the booze. Have good, trustworthy friends to hold you accountable. Hold yourself accountable. If you want to remain a virgin, the good news is you actually CAN. If you don’t, then you won’t. Yes, the temptation may be too much to bare at times, but remember it’s always YOUR CHOICE. Sure, the guy may be pissed, or say mean things to you… But the good thing is, there are plenty of other guys out there (much better for you) ones that actually care about you. I know what you’re thinking… “Yeah, right! These guys just don’t exist”. I too used to think that… But find hope and comfort that they do. They do exist. You could be one day away from meeting them, so don’t give up on that hope. Until then, enjoy the NOW. Love yourself. Love your friends. Be content. Be patient. And always have faith that God has the very BEST for you!

Alright, I guess it’s time for me to get really personal with y’all. I’ve always wanted this blog to be an honest, real one, so I’m going to get uncomfortable and vulnerable for a second and share my personal experience with you.

What’s the right age?

When is the right time?

How will I know?

Do I wait until marriage?

If I don’t wait until marriage, am I a bad person?

You want the answers to these questions… Well, here’s the answer.

NO ONE has the answers. Plain and simple.

These questions often filled my head during high school… During all of the growing, learning, meeting, and partying I always came back to these 5 questions. I guess you could say I struggled to answer them. Growing up in church and around religion, I knew I wanted to wait until marriage to lose my virginity and I was pretty committed to it. Many people don’t believe me when I tell them that I stayed pure throughout high school, I guess I can’t blame them… The personality I had (loud, outgoing, energetic and flirtatious) doesn’t exactly read “good girl”. I was in no way a “bad girl” or out of control, but I figured out early on that I was never going to fit into that “modest, quiet, reserved girl” category (to my parent’s dismay). I was just too full of life and I’m still that way!

Alright, here’s the question I’m sure you are all dying to know… “So, did you actually save your virginity until marriage?”… Sorta. Kinda. Not really. It’s a tricky thing.

To better answer your question, yes I’ve only had sex with one person in my entire life – my husband, Willie. So technically, yes I fulfilled that promise I made to myself so long ago. But the timeline may have been a little off.

For as long as I can remember, my promise remained to save myself for my husband. However, as I continued to grow into my own and mature, I realized how much pressure I was putting on myself. Yes, I still wanted to honor God, but I didn’t want to feel like a total FAILURE if I didn’t keep that promise. So I changed and tweaked it a little. My promise was now, to save myself for my husband OR when I felt the time was right. After I edited my original promise, it honestly was like a weight was lifted. This didn’t mean I would go sleep around with whoever I wanted to, it just meant I gave myself a little more freedom and trust in my decision making and a little more grace if I were to fail.

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[Our very first picture together]

I met Willie when I was 17 years old. He was everything I wanted, prayed for AND MORE! He was funny, charming, thoughtful, genuine, caring and he loved The Lord (which was also one of the other promises I made to myself – that I would marry a Christian man). I won’t go into the intimate details, but I lost my virginity to Willie when I was 18 years old [hope Willie doesn’t mind that I share that… Oops! Too late now]. It didn’t take long for me to fall in love and I quickly came to the realization that I wanted to spend the rest of my life with this man. So… Did I wait until marriage? No. Did I save myself for my husband? Kinda. Did everything feel right? Yes. Did I feel any kind of guilt, regret or remorse? No. Not at all… Because my promise was to save myself for my husband OR until it felt right. Of all the guys I dated or hung out with, something always held me back and I couldn’t figure out what it was – or if it was God. But something inside me kept saying “no, not yet”. However, this time was different. I felt at ease with my decision and for once in my life, every thing just felt RIGHT.

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[Almost 9 years later, we still have each others back]

When I tell people that I’ve only been with one person, I always get the same questions… Do you feel like you settled?, How do you know what’s good if you’ve never experienced being with anyone else?, Do you feel like your missing out?… My answers have and will always be the same. I chose Willie. I could’ve chose many other guys if I had wanted to (and no, I am not saying that to brag or gloat). Sleeping with multiple people doesn’t ensure you happiness, fulfillment or acceptance (in fact most of the time it doesn’t). Yes, there are cases where sex with different partners works for some people. However, most do not find satisfaction in the long term when choosing to live this way. The way I choose to look at it is… I’m happy. Willie is happy. We more than fulfill each other’s needs. He has so much more value to me than just sex. He loves and supports me. He makes me laugh. He takes me on adventures. What I lack in sexual partners, I more than make up for when it comes to having a FULL, ABUNDANT, BEAUTIFUL LIFE WITH MY VERY BEST FRIEND! Something that not everyone is so lucky to have! I don’t know about you, but I’d take that ANY DAY of the week…

VIRGINS: If this pertains to you… Be PROUD of it! OWN IT! For the longest time, I used to question whether or not making and keeping my promise would really be all that satisfying or worth it in the end. I questioned since all my friends are doing it, should I? I questioned is it really THAT big of a deal to begin with? With all these questions and doubt starting to fill my head, I remembered why I made this promise to myself in the first place. Not because I HAD TO, or my parents wanted me to, or my church told me to… But because I valued my one on one, personal relationship with God. Whether you want to get technical or not about whether I kept my promise or failed at keeping it… thats up to you to interpret. But for me, I did what made me happy and tried my best to comply with the promises I had made.

As you can probably see, I mention God in just about every paragraph. I’ve always had a strong faith and it grows stronger by the day. Of course I would love if everyone believed in God, but that’s just never going to happen. Some people no matter how much you share or reach out, will never believe in something or someone they cannot see. I don’t want to ever push religion on you, which is why I also want to say hanging onto your virginity can also just be a personal choice (with no God, faith or religion tied to it). Just a simple practice of self-respect, patience, and waiting for the right person to come along. Never short, discredit or be embarrassed if your still a virgin… BE PROUD! In this day in age, think of yourself as the modern day UNICORN!

Word to the wise: Even though most guys won’t admit it, they love virgins. In their younger years, a virgin may not be someone they come running to, but when it’s time to settle down that’s what every man wants, but by that time… All the good ones are taken by good men who realized their worth much sooner.

So ladies, moral of this story… Try your best to honor your faith. Don’t be too scared or embarrassed to make promises to yourself when it comes to sex. If you fail, it’s okay (however this is not an excuse nor does it justify giving in to temptation) but a reminder to give yourself grace. Don’t put too much pressure on yourself to be perfect, but in the same token, be smart and hold yourself accountable. Find good friends that will help you, not hinder you. Remember losing your virginity is a BIG commitment, so really think about your actions, the people you surround yourself with and the situations you choose to get involved in – they will play a BIG role in whether or not you are able to keep those promises you make to yourself. Set yourself up for success.

Lastly and I would say most importantly

No matter how many things you feel you’ve done wrong. No matter how unworthy you may feel. No matter how many regrets you have. No matter where you land on the spectrum. No matter if you’re sexually active, a virgin, pregnant, single, in a relationship, or married… Always know that God will never stop loving you!

“In all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 8:37-39

XOXO

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4 thoughts on “S.E.X.

  1. This was amazing Ashley! Thank you for opening up about your life & struggles and being vulnerable. I hope my daughters have the wisdom and courage to hold fast to their beliefs and make good choices like you did.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is a beautiful creation. A strong foundation in not only religious faith (although it is so very important), but the support of a family to allow you to become secure in your self-confidence and the ability to forgive yourself are necessary parts in maturing into a happy and satisfied individual who is FREE to experience life at its best.

    Liked by 1 person

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