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I Regret Saving My Virginity For Marriage.

I skipped this post on RML some days back but I went back to it yesterday. It raised so many questions in my head:
Do people who save their virginity for marriage feel guilted into doing so, or actually do it because they want to?
Do they feel a sense of guilt during sex even after marriage?
Does the Christian religion repress women sexually? It's often said to be patriarchal, does this also extend to sex?
Do women who save their virginity for marriage feel superior to women who engage(d) in premarital sex?
Do they feel there's a special reward that awaits? Do they believe that they will have better marriages than others?
Why do women who keep their virginity till marriage never demand or expect same from their husbands?
Has anyone got an experience similar to the one in the story below?
I've got a few more questions but I'm sure you may have some questions of your own too. 

You may find this article a bit lengthy but please read and let's talk. 

"Believing that true love waits, I make a commitment to God, myself, my family, my friends, my future mate and my future children to be sexually abstinent from this day until the day I enter a biblical marriage relationship. As well as abstaining from sexual thoughts, sexual touching, pornography, and actions that are known to lead to sexual arousal." 
At the age of 10, I took a pledge at my church alongside a group of other girls to remain a virgin until marriage. Yes, you read that right -- I was 10 years old.
Let's take a look at who I was as a 10-year-old: I was in fourth grade. I played with Barbie dolls and had tea parties with imaginary friends. I pretended I was a mermaid every time I took a bath. I still thought boys were icky and I had no idea I liked girls, too. I wouldn't get my period for another four years. And most importantly, I didn't have a clue about sex.
The church taught me that sex was for married people. Extramarital sex was sinful and dirty and I would go to Hell if I did it. I learned that as a girl, I had a responsibility to my future husband to remain pure for him. It was entirely possible that my future husband wouldn't remain pure for me, because he didn't have that same responsibility, according to the Bible. And of course, because I was a Christian, I would forgive him for his past transgressions and fully give myself to him, body and soul.  
Once I got married, it would be my duty to fulfill my husband's sexual needs. I was told over and over again, so many times I lost count, that if I remained pure, my marriage would be blessed by God and if I didn't that it would fall apart and end in tragic divorce.
I believed it. Why wouldn't I? I was young and these were people I trusted. Everyone knew I'd taken the virginity vow, of course. Gossip is the lifeblood of the Baptist Church. My parents were so proud of me for making such a spiritual decision. The church congregation applauded my righteousness.     

For more than a decade, I wore my virginity like a badge of honor. My church encouraged me to do so, saying my testimony would inspire other young girls to follow suit. If the topic ever came up in conversation, I was happy to let people know that I had taken a pledge of purity.
It became my entire identity by the time I hit my teen years. When I met my then boyfriend-now husband, I told him right away that I was saving myself for marriage and he was fine with that because it was my body, my choice and he loved me.
We were together for six years before we got married. Any time we did anything remotely sexual, guilt overwhelmed me. I wondered where the line was because I was terrified to cross it. Was he allowed to touch my breasts? Could we look at each other naked? I didn't know what was considered sexual enough to condemn my future marriage and send me straight to Hell. 
An unhealthy mixture of pride, fear, and guilt helped me keep my pledge until we got married. In the weeks before our wedding, I often got congratulated on keeping my virginity for so long. The comments ranged from curious (how in the world did you manage?) to downright disgusting (I bet you're going to have one busy wedding night!). I let them place me on the pedestal as their virginal, perfect-Christian-girl mascot. 
I lost my virginity on my wedding night, with my husband, just as I had promised that day when I was 10 years old. I stood in the hotel bathroom beforehand, wearing my white lingerie, thinking, "I made it. I'm a good Christian." There was no chorus of angels, no shining light from Heaven. It was just me and my husband in a dark room, fumbling with a condom and a bottle of lube for the first time. 

Sex hurt. I knew it would. Everyone told me it would be uncomfortable the first time. What they didn't tell me is that I would be back in the bathroom afterward, crying quietly for reasons I didn't yet comprehend. They didn't tell me that I'd be on my honeymoon, crying again, because sex felt dirty and wrong and sinful even though I was married and it was supposed to be okay now.
When we got home, I couldn't look anyone in the eye. Everyone knew my virginity was gone. My parents, my church, my friends, my co-workers. They all knew I was soiled and tarnished. I wasn't special anymore. My virginity had become such an essential part of my personality that I didn't know who I was without it. 
It didn't get better. I avoided undressing in front of my husband. I tried not to kiss him too often or too amorously so I wouldn't lead him on. I dreaded bedtime. Maybe he'd want to have sex.
When he did, I obliged. I wanted nothing more than to make him happy because I loved him so much and because I'd been taught it was my duty to fulfill his needs. But I hated sex. Sometimes I cried myself to sleep because I wanted to like it, because it wasn't fair. I had done everything right. I took the pledge and stayed true to it. Where was the blessed marriage I was promised? 
I let it go on this way for almost two years before I broke down. I just couldn't do it anymore. I told my husband everything. My feminist husband was horrified that I'd let him touch me when I didn't want him to. He made me promise I'd never do anything I didn't want to do ever again. We stopped having sex. He encouraged me to see a therapist and I did. It was the first step on a long journey to healing. 
Ten-year-old girls want to believe in fairy tales. Take this pledge and God will love you so much and be so proud of you, they told me. If you wait to have sex until marriage, God will bring you a wonderful Christian husband and you'll get married and live happily ever after, they said. Waiting didn't give me a happily ever after. Instead, it controlled my identity for over a decade, landed me in therapy, and left me a stranger in my own skin. I was so completely ashamed of my body and my sexuality that it made having sex a demoralizing experience.
I don't go to church anymore, nor am I religious. As I started to heal, I realized that I couldn't figure out how to be both religious and sexual at the same time. I chose sex. Every single day is a battle to remember that my body belongs to me and not to the church of my childhood. I have to constantly remind myself that a pledge I took when I was only 10 doesn't define who I am today. When I have sex with my husband, I make sure it's because I have a sexual need and not because I feel I'm required to fulfill his desires. 
I'm now thoroughly convinced that the entire concept of virginity is used to control female sexuality. If I could go back, I would not wait. I would have sex with my then-boyfriend-now-husband and I wouldn't go to hell for it. We would have gotten married at a more appropriate age and I would have kept my sexuality to myself.
Unfortunately, I can't go back but I can give you this message as a culmination of my experiences: If you want to wait to have sex until marriage make sure it's because you want to. It's your body; it belongs to you, not your church. Your sexuality is nobody's business but yours.

By Samantha Pugley. 


  1. Woman the grass is always greener.
    Your virginity to you might have seem like it's not worth it cause you have a host of reasons why but my dear at the other side the grass ain't greener.
    Your virginty saved you from a host of STIs, abortions, damaging your womb, soul ties I could go on and on.
    Many of these are irreversible, unlike your present condition that is perfectly reversible. So do us a favor and count your blessings ma'am

  2. People like this give Christianity a bad name. Blame it on your church and your pastor, not on God. They gave you the wrong message. This woman is just looking for a reason to convert pple to atheism.

  3. If U've even been to one of these churches that make Christianity sound like one frigid set of rules and uptight doctrines all the while painting God as a tyrannical unapproachable being, den it becomes easier to understand where she's coming from. Churches that neglect man's personal fellowship and relationship with God and focus more on hw terrible a God He can be to sinners. The mere mention of sex is sin itself, and even some churches frown at married couples that over delight in sex, as they become perceived as carnal minded and still subject to their flesh. I even heard of a certain church who's senior pastor makes it a point to remind it's members that sex is for procreation alone, and so shouldn't be engaged in unless for that purpose. She certainly didn't make her purity choice because she really believed in it, but rather because of religious pressures. It's easy to see how she could have felt guilt even after marriage because obviously the message that had been drummed into her was one that painted sex in itself as sordid and shameful. Merely saying "I do" while dressed in white doesn't automatically change any individual's lifetime belief.
    In answer to your questions thelma... YES!!! Most people are guilted or scared into saving their virginity till marriage and the ones that succeed really believe they are superior and so are bound to be rewarded especially with sound marriages. I belong to one of such christian groups and this belief is prevalent among the women there! Ironically the same women don't expect the same from their husbands because our men of God, usually when preaching the chastity sermon conveniently focus on the women. Our mothers don't help matters too as d 'save urself for marriage' pep talk is rarely ever given to d boy child. D general belief that promiscuity is only a disease when exhibited by a woman is deeply rooted in our society. The same society that tells U that a man will always be a man and is only being true to his nature by sowing his wild oats.
    I agree that virginity helps in our walk with God. It's a sacrifice made in d love for God. Not for any future husband or perfect marriage, as God just doesn't work that way. While He has laid down certain requirements for his blessings, He still goes ahead to bless whoever He so wills regardless of how pure they think they are or are not. We'd have better Christians the moment we begin to realise that the guidelines in the bible where made to help us avoid a lot of hurts that careless living would bring otherwise. It's really no different from our parents instructions, to not do certain things because they love us and wouldn't want harm to come to us. Same way we'r to obey them out of love, respect and trust.
    Fire and brimstone preachers, as well d self righteousness that abound in most churches are really the problems I see here. Lots of pastors advocate the fear of God over the love of God. Enough said on that.
    The only way you could ever be turned to atheism, is if U only know God through your pastor and church and not on the one on one basis that is fundamental to salvation.
    Longest piece av ever had to write here... forgive me for d blabbing but ds whole virginity and sex thing being done more harm dan good by some churches just gets to me.

  4. Bia! U want to hijack this post wt ds ur epistle?

  5. I don't see how her narrating her experience would turn anyone to atheism. She never for once blamed God, but made it clear she thought it was her church that made her d way she is. My mum is one of those people who frown at sex generally, and view it as a woman's duty to give her husband in order to make babies and to stop him from seeking it elsewhere. Grew up totally uncomfortable with my sexuality, so I can totally relate

  6. I ll read it after, before my madam ll catch me on my phone *shines teeth*

  7. Thelma yes o. A lot if them virgins have superiority complex. They think they're better than others. Virginity cannot get you into heaven! Rme.

  8. You Should only keep your Virginity because of personal beliefs not because the CHURCH SAYS SO. Delayed gratificfation helps and avoids you a truck load of problems. Then you dont get into marriage with false expectations or marry a man whose dick has been in every hole. Virginity doesnt mean you should be ignorant either. Read books and be open to learn else you will become very rigid. Speaking from experience.

    1. Dear anonymous Rider,what kind of books biko??? asking from no-experience *covers face.

  9. This is one reason why girls shouldn't go telling anyone willing to listen that they are saving themselves for marriage. It's a commitment you make, and should be between you and God. Even your family or church members do not have to be told of your decision. When you make it centre stage, it becomes your identity, and when you lose it... well, you write an article like this.

  10. There are two different issues here. The idea of maintaining virginity till marriage, and then the idea that sex is "dirty", "sinful" etc. Most people combine them, but they are actually different.
    The lady in the article combined those two ideas. Likely she heard (and internalized) a lot of ideas about what the loss of her virginity would mean (you're soiled, no longer pure, dirty, etc etc). Now she feels "less than" because she had sex, even with her husband.
    Even in Naija, I have heard some people say they are shy to get pregnant because everyone would know they "did that thing". Someone even went as far as to say they look at Pastors' pregnant wives that way "So you sef dey do that thing upon all your holiness?". So sex with your husband is now shameful? How did we get here? I thought sex with your husband is a blessing straight from God!
    Women are fed the idea that sex in general takes something away from you. It is meant to keep women pure for marriage, but then when that idea carries over into marriage, then it's a problem.
    If you choose to keep chaste till marriage, that's your choice. I believe that there are blessings that come with that. If you choose to have sex, that's your choice as well, there are some advantages to that as well . In either situation, having sex does NOT make you less of a person. That's the thing we need to teach our daughters.

  11. I wanted to save myself for marriage but I was raped at the age of 16. Then I said what's the point and started having sex. It wasn't worth it. I didn't even start enjoying sex until after I got married. Never told anyone that I lost my virginity to a rapist. He regretted it because he didn't know I really was a virgin. I neither saw nor spoke to him afterward. I hope he is dead.

  12. I really understand the point the gal is comn from. The church has found a way of painting sex black and givn people a wrong picture. They have made it look lyk upon gettn married u immeadiately get it right wt sex bt we all know dats not true. It takes patience and pratice to av a fulfilling sexual life. Now tell me ow d couples are supposed to go arnd dis when dey r meant to av sex just for children. I thought Eve was created bcos Adam was lonely, of all the fun in marriage sex tops d list. Most times I begin to wonder what's really taught in marriage counselling. Evn though fornication is bad and I don't believe in sex before marriage,not many have suceeded in being a virgin at marriage. I think the church should start been real, and still tell us the truth.

  13. The sex and virginity thingy was misinterpreted to her, the church didn't balance it well, hence her predicament.

  14. I worship where virginity is preached, encouraged and applauded, yet my pastor never forgets to tell us how sweet and cherishable sex is, making us long for it but after marriage. My mum also taught me that keeping my virginity till marriage saves u from STDS, STIS, AIDS, ABORTIONS and what have you, but she doesn't forget to mention how good it is. So it's the fault of her church, parents and the kind of orientation she was given not the fault of Christianity.

  15. all i can say is hmmmm....

  16. Its really funny how we streamline virginity to women, and where in the bible did God tell this woman that you save your virginity for your husband??? Like WTH?

    She learnt everything she claims to have learnt and did not think it wise to confirm them as truth (or lies) from her bible??? She paints a picture of a devoted Christian, but like many of us, she was/is just a confused weakling, who did not think it necessary to deepen her faith by reading the scriptures and seeing for herself what God has to say on a topic, but rather relied on what their pastors tell them (whether true, half truth or plain lies) Now, she comes back to blame her church and Christianity??? Did they stop her from reading the truth??? She (and every other person who thinks like her) should take several seats!!!

    God admonishes his children (men and women alike) to keep themselves pure for HIM, not for their spouse, church, or anyone else, but as a sign of reverence for His temple (our bodies) and in total submission to His authority.

    Songs of Solomon, is filled with (gory, if you like) details of sex, lovemaking and the like? Stories and poems of how to love, make love and enjoy sex.
    Everything made by God was/is good, sex inclusive. However, like every other creation (or man-made products), we turn to the maker's manual for directions on how to use it and get the optimum satisfaction from using it.

  17. @Anon 10:58, you nailed it straight.

  18. Well I believe the bible is for correction, instruction and all. The bible speaks against fornication which is sex before marriage! Until people realize that staying away from sex as the bible says is for our own gud, it would continue to be an issue! It saves u from a lot... Me I'm 21 and I'm still a virgin. I don't preach it so I don't keep boyfriends. I've learnt that it would do me more gud than harm so I'm sticking to it.

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