Monday, October 24, 2005

Virginity Explored

I’m reading a thread full of mostly straight men discussing virginity. It’s hilarious.

Some of them have sarcastically decided that since penis + vagina = intercourse, then all gay people are therefore virgins.

I sorta like that idea. I’m not celibate, I’m claiming my virginity.

However, since virginity as a concept is probably about ownership of children, I wonder that the word works for us at all.

I’ll back up. Virginity, as I understand it in the cultural sense, is a way of ensuring that the man’s family can safely regard a child as the legitimate successor to their worldly goods, if any. It’s a continuation of their genetic line, although why this is important to people has always escaped me. I feel it’s enough to load a child with your cultural and emotional baggage. Genetic baggage as well seems like overkill.

Since (if we weren’t previously married and had children as a result of that relationship) we make a conscious choice to deal with the exhaustive process of alternatively making children, we are not necessarily continuing our genetic line (adoption, surrogacy, anonymous donation) nor do we contend that a non-genetically related child is unable to inherit, I don’t know that virginity is a concept that works very well for lesbians (gay men, feel free to comment).

The culture certainly doesn’t seem to support it. In my experience, many lesbians absolutely refuse to sleep with “virgins”. Unfortunately, this attitude leaves out the only true method of “reproduction” we have that will increase the lesbian community. Alas, most lesbians have straight children, regardless of gender of the child.

Virginity is a negative concept, defining a stage in a woman’s life by what she has “not” done. Lesbian community should be about celebrating what women “have” done.

Not only should we not care whether a woman is “untouched”, we should optimize the person who has already discovered her sexuality, and hopefully has learned a couple of things we don’t already know, just to keep it interesting.

I’m enjoying watching my fellow internetters engage enthusiastically in the discussion, but I think many of them may be missing the point. If one is old enough to consent, and has found someone who makes one’s naughty bits tingle, then virginity is not necessarily a noteworthy state of being.

Sex should be safe, legal, and frequent. Laws, cultural mores, and Mrs. Grundy should be egalitarian and quiet about whether Slot B prefers Tab A or Slots C, D, and E. Folding and spindling optional


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