For once, I won’t intro a story. Ok, just a little one. Some stories you just want to chuck right out there, fresh off the press, pretty much the moment they land in your inbox and tell the world about them. A lot of shitty things happen in this world. Here is a story that doesn’t include any of them. Please listen to ‘La Isla Bonita’ for added atmosphere.
I'm an American almost-woman (although now maybe more woman than girl), age 21, currently studying abroad in Europe. I lost my virginity just about two weeks ago. This is how it happened:
I am what some people might call a ‘late bloomer’* when it comes to sex. I didn't have my first kiss until I was 18 (in a blow-up pool filled with foam at my first frat party), and have only had a few brief relationships in my life. Thanks to years of listening to the Savage Love podcast, I'm a firm believer in the concept of losing your virginity in stages: first hand job, first blow job, first person who sees you naked, first person you see naked, etc. Over the past few years, since starting college, I've ‘lost’ each stage except actual penetrative sex, mostly with different men. In no way do I consider myself a ‘slut’. I just like to share my body and have others share theirs with me, and that sometimes a connection of a few hours can be as powerful as those that build over several weeks.
*a late bloomer (Novemer in the Balearic Islands)
I arrived in Spain in January for a semester abroad. I hadn't had any type of sexual contact with anyone for the entire fall semester, and was mentally preparing myself for experiencing the Spanish language (and Spanish men) in all ways possible. Before I left, I talked with a few close friends and decided it was pretty likely I would lose my virginity abroad. After a few heartbreaks and many nights regretting the opportunities I had to have sex and didn't, I was ready to go to Spain and come back literally a different person.
Two weeks ago, my group of friends and I went out one final time before we all went our separate ways to travel over spring break. At this point, the other students in my program and I have developed a close group of friends, the kind who you could tell you're still a virgin and know they won't judge you. On this night, we started out at our favorite bar where the bartenders pour heavy and rarely make us pay. I wasn't trying to get wasted; I had a big trip coming up and still had to pack the next day.
We were there for a few hours, and while my group filled almost the entire bar, there were a few locals as well. One group of guys in particular caught my eye. I talked to one of them, and we established that I'm an ‘extranjera (foreigner) and that I'm originally from California.
An hour later, my friends and I moved to another bar down the street. We weren't drinking anymore, just wanted a change of scenery. The same group of boys was there, and the one I had talked to, Hugo, slowly started moving his way towards my group, and in particular, me. After some more small talk, music started playing and pretty soon we were dancing...then kissing...then making out in the corner booth.
Soon after, his friend, my friend, Hugo, and I walked to the nearby clubs to dance. Hugo and I were getting pretty hot and heavy on the dance floor, with hands everywhere and little attention paid to anyone else nearby. After a couple hours, we went outside for some fresh air. We were mostly sober at this point, more buzzed from dancing and the cool night air than from any leftover booze in our bodies. Hugo asked me if I wanted to go back to his apartment with him; I wanted to, but told him that if we did, I wouldn't have sex with him (clearly that changed).
At this point, though, I was clear on my no-sex policy and said if he couldn't agree, ‘no pasa nada’ and I would go home with my friend. He insisted that it was absolutely okay and after a short talk with my friend, I left with him. In an amusing turn of events, his friend's car got locked in the parking garage and we ended up taking the subway back to his apartment.
On the subway ride back, he asked if he would see me again after that night. For some reason, I decided to be a punk and said that I knew it was just a hook-up and he didn't have to pretend he was genuinely interested in me. He got honestly frustrated and all of a sudden, pulled a small hemp bracelet off his arm and tied it to my wrist, telling me ‘If at the end of tonight, or whenever you leave, you want to see me again, take this with you; it's my favorite bracelet and if you leave with it, it's a promise you'll see me again if only to give it back to me.’ That quickly put a stop to my brattiness; and for the rest of the ride we sat in near-silence fingering the frayed edges of his bracelet.
When we finally got there, it was 7am. His roommate had dead-bolted the door, so there were several minutes of knocking until his roommate woke up, unlocked the door, and then actually saluted us as we made our way to Hugo's room. Once inside, it was probably less than half an hour until we were down to just underwear.
Hugo stopped, reached for his wallet, and pulled out a condom. I had learned that his first language is French and that he's almost 24, but we both speak fluent Spanish; to me, there was something cool about all this happening for each of us in a second language. He told me, ‘If you want to, I have it; if you don't want to, we don't.’ After cautious mumbling for a few minutes, I finally spit it out: it would be my first time. To my surprise, he said it would be his first time, too. I didn't believe him at first: ‘You're almost 24! You're handsome! You live in Spain!’
He sat both of us up and told me that he's been ready to lose it for a while but that it didn't feel right until that moment with me. He told me that I'm the first girl he's brought back to his apartment since moving in over six months earlier. I know that some people will think that he was lying just to convince me, but I have a good bullshit detector, and I didn't think that his obvious hesitation and sincerity were fake.
I told him that I had been waiting to lose it for a while, too, and that if he was sure, I was sure. If I hadn't believed that he truly was a virgin before, I did when it took him several tries to put the condom on. He was slow and gentle and it was both exactly what I thought it would be and like nothing I expected.
When we finished, we decided that after almost 24 hours awake we should try to sleep a little. We ‘slept’ for an hour, and then woke up for Round Two. He stopped, though, because he didn't have any more condoms (the one in his wallet was a gift from his brother for when his lucky moment finally arrived). After more fooling around, I thought it was finally time for me to go home. It was almost noon.
It took another hour to slowly find my clothes and put them on; every time I tried, he would pull the hem of my skirt or bra and I'd get distracted. We finally left his room and kissed goodbye for what felt like days in his doorway until I decided I really should leave. Right before walking out, I held up the wrist with his bracelet and asked, ‘Lo llevo conmigo?’ (I'll take it with me?) And he answered, ‘Lo llevas contigo’ (You take it with you).
Due to travel plans, we won't see each other for another couple weeks. We've messaged several times and he wants to make sure we keep talking to not lose momentum, although with guaranteed sex at the end of our vacations, I don't think either of us is having a hard time staying interested.
For the past two weeks, I've been waiting for some kind of regret to set in; to regret losing it to a near-stranger, to regret having it emerge from a night out, to admit that maybe I won't see him again. And two weeks later, I'm positive that I would have made the same decisions had we met totally sober on a Tuesday afternoon rather than in a bar on a Thursday night, and that I would have regretted more not having sex with him than I potentially will regret in the future having gone all the way. In the event that we actually don't see each other again, or that all his talk about being a virgin too was a lie, that's okay with me--in that moment, with him, it was perfect.
Sometimes things just work out,