Being a 20-something and a virgin are two concepts that people seem to find hard to accept when put together. Yes, I survived my teens without having a sloppy, messy first time. And yes, I made it through university with no walk-of-shame regrets. As do many women that have decided to have sex. But what is it that people find so intriguing about not giving it up – whatever “it” is supposed to signify.

I am confident to speak up for the rest of the women out there who remain virgins in their twenties, thirties and maybe even forties. The word “virginity” itself is such a fluid concept that it astonishes me how people will still associate being a virgin with being a “spinster” that no person will have sex with or a “weirdo” who is “frigid” and rejects the touch of anybody. Can we just take a moment to appreciate that sex is the choice of an individual, whether that means doing it or not doing it, for reasons that are personal or religious? We all make our own choices in life and waiting until you decide to have sex for the first time is just another life choice. What can be so hard to understand about that?

Maybe the pressure of sexualised relationships from reality television is affecting the way we view relationships in real life. With the digital age, we are constantly looking towards the actions of others to determine what it is that we should be doing. I’ve come to the conclusion though, that being open about your sexual activity and being open about having no sexual activity should be received in an equal manner – in theory.

As a virgin myself, there is a distinction to be made between being sexually active and having had sex. Just because one person hasn’t made it to fourth base doesn’t mean they haven’t explored first, second and third bases. Repeatedly. With many different guys. On many different occasions. Equally, if a woman decides to skip bases one through three and go straight to four, there should be nothing wrong with her choice to do so, and certainly no judgement should be passed on the non-conventional sexual route that anyone wishes to take. Sexuality is different for everyone, and what is deemed to be the norm when it comes to having sex can never be applied to everyone. It may be perceived the norm to be a raging sex monkey in your twenties but your level of sexuality sits on a spectrum and should not be defined by either extremes.

This seems to be what surprised people most about me. I love being sexually active, I love intimacy and I love talking about sex. Despite not having experienced sex. It doesn’t mean that I don’t want to because, believe me, there have been times where I really wanted to; it just means that I have made a certain emotional decision at a distinctive moment during sexual activity. A moment where others may decide to keep going should they wish to. I simply feel no pressure, not from a guy nor from society, no pressure to keep going, no pressure or guilt that I want to stop.

Once people have gotten over the fact that I haven’t had sex, the next stage of processing this tiny detail about me is what I would call the “fantasising” stage. Both men and women equally react with a glint in their eye; the best way to describe it is a mixture of shock, curiosity and a “perhaps-she’s-a-unicorn” glare. Their voices get higher, their eyes open wider and their questions come flooding at a faster pace. Had I revealed the complete opposite sexual fact about myself, such as I have slept with over 100 men, would this reveal the same reaction? Why is it that being a virgin creates such an intrigue? I see myself as equally deserving of social normality, as should any woman, with no distinction being made according to her sexual choices.

Now to reveal the real reasons why I haven’t yet given “it” up because curiosity is what led you here. Perhaps the thought of sex scares the life out of me, perhaps I just enjoy being a tease, or perhaps past experiences are preventing me from moving on. Maybe all of these reasons belong to me and maybe none of them do, but they will definitely belong to other women out there. Honestly, it is none of anyone’s business why I, or anyone else, choose not to have sex. It makes no difference to reveal my reasons, just as I would never approach an extremely sexually active person and ask “why do you have so much sex?” The reasons for being a virgin should have no impact on your impression or opinion of me. I should not be perceived to be more fascinating and more attractive than the next woman, nor should I be portrayed as an outcast to the erotic norms of our generation.

My sexuality will not define me as a person. I am confident in my lifestyle and the choices that I make. Whether you have no sex or you have lots of sex, be assertive in the person that you are because society should not distinguish us through our sexual activity. To all those out there who are sexually active, virgins and non-virgins, I accept you as the unicorn or the raging monkey that you are. After all, we are all beautiful creatures.