I remember a few years ago at work a conversation with the women at work. One was telling about a friend’s wedding, noting that her friend was the “only person I ever knew who was a virgin when she got married.” The other women seemed to agree that this was strange to even think about and that they didn’t think they knew anyone like that themselves.
I didn’t take that opportunity to make it known that she indeed knows at least two people who fit into this category. I don’t know why I didn’t say anything at that moment. The fact I was a virgin when I married has never been embarrassing to me, but maybe right then it felt a little weird or strange. Or maybe just private. Whatever the case, it felt a little awkward to pipe in at that moment, “I was, too!” as they were marveling at how weird and unbelievable the whole idea was that someone would do that.
So why the sudden announcement? If you remember, I am a Bachelor fan. Although embarrassed (and somewhat ashamed) that I get sucked into this show, I’ve already ‘fessed up to this guilty pleasure of mine so we’ll move on in the thought process from there. I was reading a magazine last week talking about the most recent proposal and the Bachelor Sean’s decision to wait until their wedding day. A quotation from the magazine stuck with me:
“The pair sat down to talk …about their unconventional path to the altar” (italics added by me).
I always knew I would “save myself.” Although I think it is a common teaching in many religions, I think it is often viewed as outdated or unrealistic. But for me (and most of my LDS friends) this was something I planned to do, for not only God and my future husband, but myself. The culture at BYU definitely promoted this ideal with a strict “Honor Code” that included wearing modest clothes, a curfew for when members of the opposite sex had to be out of your apartment, and a strict no-boys (and vice versa) in the bedroom policy. If you are a basketball fan, you may remember the Brandon Davies controversy where he was not allowed to play in the NCAA tournament despite his importance to the team and their high ranking because he broke this tenant of the Honor Code.
I guess with this background, I never thought this aspect of my history was that weird. And certainly not unconventional. But perhaps it is. I may be weird but I know I am not the only one. I am suspecting there are more of us than you realize. We just don’t talk about it very much. “Hey guys, by the way, did you know that I am/was a virgin? What about you?”
I don’t expect other people to make the same choices I have but I was surprised to realize that “traditional family values” may no longer be “conventional.” I think there are advantages to waiting and I am grateful that is a part of me that I share only with my husband. I guess what I’m trying to say is, if you choose to be one of the weirdo’s, you may be weird, but you aren’t alone.
And as for Sean, I hope he can do it!