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Understanding Virginity: Here are the things you might be missing about virginity

Do you really know what virginity means? Here are facts about virginity you must have been missing on


We live in a society, where there is a lot of confusion in the lines between morality and sexuality. Many people miss out on this line and directly pass judgements of immorality on the basis of the sexuality of the other person. In most cases, being sexually active, sleeping around and having multiple sexual partners is the delimiter for the judgement of morality and the idea of virginity is the one that appears on the top. But what rests as a question here is the fact that is virginity a moral or a social construct?

 

Let’s dissect the term virginity to understand it better

Virginity/ Virgin

It is simply a social construct that is to define the state of never having had sexual intercourse. The term is very loosely or not at all bound with medical observations and is totally dependent on social, cultural and religious beliefs. Infact, virginity is often used as a synonym for purity, flower, modesty, innocence, honour and sinlessness. The cultural meanings of virginity simply mean and suggest the imposition of a moral code, a structure that can define if a woman is spoilt goods or not.

 

The Hymen. What is that?

An elastic membrane surrounding the vaginal opening without covering. And if you doubt if it already has an opening or not, question how do women menstruate? If the blood can come out of the membrane, it means it is already open. And since it is already an opening, it only gets stretched after sex and doesn’t tear or disappear. And, it can also get stretched through non-sexual activities. Hence, there is no argument that can suggest that the shape and size of the hymen can really suggest if a woman is sexually active or not!

 

Read more: Indian Masses don’t ‘Understand Menstruation’, thanks to Poorly Advertised Process

virginity myths

So, this means the concept of virginity has a problem. Here is how they are shaping –

Sexism in virginity

Agree or disagree, the concept of virginity is disproportionally applied to women. The broader idea of virginity is to police female sexuality, and further, it can even be seen as something to provoke abstinence. For the fact matters, women have to go for virginity tests to prove their virginity, which is often dependent on the shape of the hymen. Such a test is wrong and harmful to them in many senses.

 

Exclusionary

It is a hetero-normative view and a common belief, that sex is only when ‘penis-in-vagina intercourse happens. Different people have a different understanding of the term, ‘sex’ and hence, the generalization is making it exclusionary.

 

Moral Policing with the idea of virginity

Virginity is everything, dignity, integrity, pride. A women’s worth is literally being counted by the fact that she is a virgin or not. And eventually, virginity is the ruler that measures the decency of a woman.

Well, these are the problems, here are some myths that people strongly associate with Virginity

“Broken hymen means you have had sex”

– As mentioned earlier, the hymen can break at any age, by any means. Making it a point of judgement for virginity is wrong.

 

“Losing virginity is hurtful”

– The hymen is the membrane that gets stretched during penetration. It is an elastic membrane and hence it is not necessary that it will lead to pain, even for the first time.

 

“Blood is the sign that shows that woman has lost virginity”

Since hymen is an opening already as mentioned earlier, hence, it may or may not tear, and hence, it may or may not bleed. For a woman who has an elastic hymen, there is a possibility that she might not bleed.

“Losing Virginity means becoming impure”

Virginity is not a game where you lose or win anything. There certainly isn’t any link between sexuality and morality, and hence, there isn’t losing virginity that doesn’t define you.

 

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Ishika Aggarwal

Can write, shoot, listen, talk and procrastinate. A feminist at heart, Ishika is an avid writer and multimedia person who loves talking about women, realism, and society. When not working she is either seen watching films or making one.

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