So I’m back at my parents house for the next couple of months, and of course, because I’m at my parents house I end up going to church with them. Mostly I just tune it out or write scenes for the book I’m working on, but sometimes I can’t help but pay attention and the things I hear make me so mad.
This last Sunday, the pastor was talking about over coming inferiority. For the most part I agreed with him. His list of reasons why we feel inferior were, for the most part, fairly accurate. Then he got to the section on how guilt can make us feel inferior, and of course, the church having an obsession about such things, he had to make his example be girls who lost their virginity before marriage. He said something like “Now, I’ve known girls (back when he was a youth pastor) who would get into relationships they shouldn’t have, and done things they shouldn’t have (aka lost their v-card). Then they would feel guilty and dirty, and that guilt would make them feel worthless. And because they feel worthless they go right back out and do those same things all over again.”
All through this I wanted to scream “Of COURSE she feels guilty and dirty. The church has spent her entire life telling her that once she’s no longer a virgin, then she’s nothing more than a dirty disgusting rag. She’s spent, used up, no longer worthy.She’s been told over and over that her no longer being a virgin on her wedding night means that she doesn’t love her future husband enough to wait of him. Every youth conference she’s ever been to (not to mention the Youth Group messages during the entire month of February every year) has told her that “giving up” her virginity is the worst sin she could possibly commit (except homosexuality of course, but I don’t have the energy to rant about that right now). She seen speaker after speaker (always women of course, you never see men speak on how they regretted losing their virginity before marriage) trotted out to cry on a stage about how dirty they feel because they didn’t wait to lose their virginity until marriage.”
In other words she’s spent her entire adolescence being told that girls like her are now worthless. She’s been brainwashed into believing that her virginity is more important than anything else about her. After such brainwashing, I’d be surprised if she didn’t feel inferior. And that burns at me. Because she shouldn’t feel inferior, she shouldn’t feel like she is worth less than she was before, just because she’s no longer “sexually pure”. Her sin is no worse than that of the church elder who’s 50 pounds overweight (after all gluttony IS considered a sin, even if the church doesn’t like to talk about it). After all if we’re to believe the Bible, then all sins, from the smallest white lie up to and including the worst mass murder, are equal in the eyes of God. So tell me please, why is the church so obsessed with a girl’s virginity?
Now in the interests of full disclosure, I will freely admit that I am still a virgin. Not that it would be the church’s business if I wasn’t. But still, I am. There’s never been anyone who I cared deeply enough for to cause me to change that. Yet at the same time, I will also admit that while I might be a virgin now, I don’t intend to be one on my wedding night. Because, well, I want to enjoy my wedding night, and well, it’s not like it’s a secret that many women do not enjoy the feeling of losing their virginity. Plus I actually want to at least kind of know what I’m doing before I’m standing naked in front of my husband on our wedding night. (Of course all of this assumes I ever get married at all. I would currently classify myself as an asexual, so yeah.)