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“I'm sad that I didn't have sex until I was 37”

“The sadness of living without sex”
……性生活的必要性或重要性因人而异吧,Jane Austen、Emily Dickinson等一辈子单


I am 61 and still waiting and I am probably too late to start now. I have
always been too worried about being laughed at and ridiculed. I finally
realised I was unlikely to get anywhere when turned down by a prostitute
when in my 30s.

I particularly hate comments like: "It's overrated, you aren't missing out
on much"; "You can't miss what you've never had"; "Never had a woman! What
are you gay?" If I thought it still possible I wouldn't know how to find or
approach a woman. While I would still like to lose my virginity it is the
physical affection I miss most.

Reading this story, I felt many emotions. I recognised myself, as it is the
story of my life in many ways. Only, I am female and 35. I have never even
kissed a guy, never been on a date. What I would like to say is that people
like me are not as rare as one might think. Popular culture will have you
believe that everyone has a love life, and that is simply not true. Another
thing to note is that no-one goes around telling people, "Hey I'm in my 30s
and still wonder what kissing feels like." On the other hand, people who do
have a boyfriend/girlfriend, or are actively dating, are usually quite vocal
about it. This adds to the impression that everyone dates. A part of the
story I can strongly identify with is the strong sense of shame. I used to
live in constant fear that people would find out that I have no dating
experience. I felt I was living with a deep, dark secret. But as I got older
I stopped caring about what people think.

I lost my "virginity" - (a woman loses her virginity, I suggest - a man just
has penetrative sex for the first time, but that's another story) with a
prostitute at the age of 47. I can relate to Joseph's account of first-time
sex - far from being fumbling and unsatisfactory it was actually really good.

I have suffered, and am suffering, all my life from debilitating love
shyness, which has completely ruined any chances I may have had of having a
satisfying and intimate family life and fathering any children. I've no
doubt that love shyness is a real condition and is not simply a part of
social anxiety disorder. I can be quite brave in many social situations but
if there is someone I fancy I am completely clueless as to what to do to
take it to the next level. It is as if some power has hijacked your brain
and your desires and just wants you to stay where you are - single and

I am pleased for Joseph that he overcame his shyness and at least enjoyed a
relationship for part of his life. Many do not achieve this.

I am a 35-year-old white male. I lost my virginity at the age of 31, almost
32. It was something that I rarely talked about and still rarely talk about.
Occasionally a female friend would flirt with me, but I would become so
flustered that I would try and keep as much distance between myself and them
, for fear of someone else discovering my shame. There was an instance when
a friend of mine kept attempting to put a move on me and in order to keep
that separation I, knowing that she was allergic to peanuts, began carrying
around Snickers bars and making a great show of snacking on them. I began
self-identifying as an asexual.

The woman who chose to engage with me, I didn't tell about my sexual history
, or lack thereof, until after we had sex a few times. It was such an odd
conversation. I still feel alone in that experience, of feeling unable,
unattractive, unloved, unwanted, and not knowing what I bring to any

Reading this story really hit me hard. I am a 32-year-old woman, and I am
still a virgin. So much of this man's story sounds so similar to my own. But
then, most the time, I feel just fine with my single life. I mostly think I
would like to have had sex just to be "normal". To get it over and done
with. So it's not such a Big Deal any more; because the longer I wait, the
more of a Big Deal it becomes. I honestly don't know if I will ever lose my
virginity. Which, I have to admit, is pretty depressing if I stop to think
about it... which is why I usually try not to.

Unhappy Soul:
I wish I'd lost my virginity at 37. I'm 54 and still waiting for something I
know will never come. About 10 years ago I remember sitting with a group of
friends over a drink and the subject came up of losing your virginity and I
just fled the room when it came to my turn. One of the others came out to
find me and they'd assumed I'd had a bad experience of some kind. It didn't
occur to them that I had no experience to recount. All I ever wanted from
life was to be a husband and a dad.

I am now 60+ and retired. I have never kissed a girl and certainly never had
sex. I have been interested in a number of girls/women over the years and
made some unsuccessful attempts. I also have backed away when I have noticed
a woman showing what I have interpreted as some interest in me. I have
reacted in the same way you do when you pull your hand away from the fire -
but it was the opposite of what I wanted. I have always, every day, longed
for something that I have succeeded in avoiding my whole life. And I
certainly don´t blame the women.

The closest I came a woman I liked was maybe 30 years ago. She was about 10
years younger and we were seeing each other for a period, as friends. We
were sitting on my sofa talking about something and I put my arm around her
shoulders and she didn't protest. I thought I was dreaming. It couldn't be
true. But she wasn't interested in me in that way, so we just stayed friends.

I'm 42, and still a virgin. I get told (often it is turned in to a joke)
that I can just go and pay for it. Get it over with. But to me, that lacks
any affection, there's no emotional intimacy in it, not even just simple
caring. And I would like at least that. I feel like I am different from
other people. Excluded. Often made fun of by people who know. To be blunt,
sometimes it makes me feel like I must be a monster. I work and do volunteer
work as well, go to classes and interest groups, but meeting someone who
accepts me, even meeting someone to talk with, just never happens. I just
feel extremely alone, and, I guess, forgotten, in this world.

I am 45 years of age and still a virgin. I do not advertise the fact in
general, so there are not many people who know it. I feel like the
assumption is by this point that of course you will have lost it. I still
remember when the film The 40-Year-Old-Virgin come out, and I was mortified
by it then, only being in my 30s. The advertising and premise of the film (I
never saw it) made it sound like it was an absolutely enormous deal - like
the titular character were some astounding aberration.

I sympathise deeply with Joseph's story of not being touched for 15-20 years
. My diet of touch is limited to handshakes and the very occasional hug from
friends who are comfortable doing so. I live over 500km from my nearest
relative, so family touch is limited to once or twice a year. By this point,
I feel like a number of women (possibly most of them!) assume that if I
haven't been married by 45, there must be something wrong with me. At times,
I wonder that about myself.

I can relate to this story. I am 35 years old and still struggle to talk to
girls. I am still a virgin but the difference is lately I have tried to
break this barrier and approached a few girls but I always get brutal
rejection. I don't know why. And that sends me into another cycle of "No-one
wants me," and then I am like, "I am OK... I don't need to have anyone." I
blame my ethnicity, my religion and, when all else fails, my weight and my
face. It's not easy to be not wanted by anyone.

I'm 58 and have never had a girlfriend bar a couple of tentative platonic
friendships which never even progressed to hand-holding never mind anything
else. In my teens, 20s and 30s it made me thoroughly miserable and
incredibly lonely as it didn't seem like an unreasonable thing to want, yet
seemed as improbable as winning the lottery. The skills required appear to
be something learned in adolescence and if for some reason you don't acquire
them, the whole area of relationships becomes an alien world. I sometimes
see it as looking into a fish tank.

There is an irony in that my entire career was spent in a female-dominated
professional environment. I liked working with women and had a huge respect
for their abilities, which frequently surpassed mine, and got on well with
nearly all of them. Despite this no-one seemed willing or able to come near.
I'm quite open about my situation and it usually provokes surprise when
mentioned. In one or two cases I've suspected women of being put off by it,
any interest being shut down. As one ages I suspect it increases the
difficulty of a relationship ever happening, as essentially I'm still a 70s
teenager, whereas potential partners will have all the experience of 40 or
more years.

Almost 40 and just found my first girlfriend six months ago. I find it very
disturbing the way men who have had to no success with women get treated on
the internet. There's so much mocking and scorn, and the general consensus
is that any failure in that area must be due to the guy being extremely
awful in some way or another. Why people would take such pleasure in kicking
people who are already miserable and living without any kind of sex,
affection, or intimacy is beyond me.

As "Joseph" said, it's not an issue that garners much attention or is
treated very seriously and I do hope that it will be taken more seriously in
the future. I certainly wasn't given any direction or taught anything about
how to date, and many of the places a guy can go to find help in that area
are toxic and misogynistic.

I recently turned 26 and just finished my first year of grad school. I
believe I am in decent physical shape and relatively intelligent, but I have
also had zero intimate relationships with the opposite sex. I have never
held a girl's hand, kissed, or had sex. With the rise of the Me Too and
Incel movements I have become even more fearful of trying to look for a
partner should I be seen as violating someone's personal space. The latter
movement has me worried that if I ever was to admit my status as a
relationship-less virgin to anyone new I would be lumped in as an angry time
bomb waiting to seek vengeance on others for my loneliness. I know that
there is something wrong with me I just do not know what exactly it is and
as time continues I feel a little more helpless and hopeless.

There is a large community out there that is profoundly hurting and believes
that society views them as nothing more than a freakish joke. I have
experienced first-hand that stigma and there is no-one to stick up for this
community. Most people are too shy and awkward to come forward with their
stories and share their experiences with one another. The other extreme, in
the shape of the Incel movement, wants others to experience their suffering.
The news focuses on the violence and anger because it is easy to
sensationalise, but all that does is drive people's opinion against the
whole of the community. Maybe if they could share more positive stories of
people who have overcome this lack of intimacy, that is vital to the human
experience, they could help to give people the strength to either find help
or better themselves.


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