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I’m 24 and have never had a girlfriend before, and yes– I’m still a virgin. Is that weird?
I thought I’d ask that first before I give you some background on myself, to see what your initial reaction is.
I’ve never had a relationship before, mostly due to the fact that I was a weirdo in middle school, and had zero confidence in high school until near the end of my senior year. It wasn’t until my last two years of college did I start to feel comfortable with myself. My friends had girlfriends though. And as they came and went, I started to notice things I did and did not want in a relationship, to put it nicely. I’ve had a pretty good sense of what I’m looking for in someone, and figured that since I’ve waited this long, I might as well hold off for something that would be of substance. Same thing with sex. I’m not religiously or morally opposed to premarital sex; I’d just rather it be with someone I like at least. That, of course, has yet to happen.
I can confidently say that I’m no longer the schmuck I was in my early days, and think of myself as a decent looking, normal guy. I don’t find my virginity/lack of a previous relationship particularly off-putting since I’ve seen my friends/others get into pretty disastrous relationships and would rather not have a girlfriend for the sake of having a girlfriend, but it seems women might think otherwise. Thoughts?
As rare as your situation might seem to you–or to other readers out there–I actually have known several people (mainly women) who got well into their twenties without having had a relationship. They have lots of friends; they have good jobs; they come from nice families; they’re fun, normal people. And most of their friends would say, we don’t understand why so-and-so has never had a boyfriend. But I think you bring up a likely response to that–late bloomers. For many people, high school is where you begin to figure out how to flirt and date; college is where you continue to hone those skills (yes, flirting is a skill, men, learn it), as well as other more mature talents…like sneaking out of a stranger’s bed at 4am. If you mature later on, or you’re excessively shy during these formative years, you fall behind what most other people your age are doing, and it can be really hard to catch up. You won’t be used to picking up on women’s signals, or you may be terrified of asking a man out, or you just don’t know how to segue from friendship to dating to relationship. It’s unfortunate, but it doesn’t mean you’ll be alone forever. And, I don’t think women will find this particularly distressing. Unusual, yes, but not run away! bizarre.
It is much more atypical to be a virgin at your age. For good or bad, the late-to-dating friends I’ve known have tended toward having sex with anyone the first time in an effort “to get it over with” so that they don’t feel like the last American virgin. These “forced” experiences have been what you’d expect–awkward, disappointing, even upsetting–so this is not a tact I’d suggest in the least. But this is where women will have a harder time understanding your situation. Most people understand not having sex due to moral or religious reasons, but you simply haven’t gotten around to it, and that’s not something that women run into often.
If you do start dating, I see no reason to put any of this information front and center with prospective girlfriends. Date for fun, and then when you begin to really like someone, you can tell them about your lack of experience. She may be taken aback, but if she’s a quality person, she’ll stick around. Hey, Andy ended up with Trish, right?
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