Helping you get through life
Wondering about your virginity or what it means to be a virgin? You're not alone - journeying into the world of sex is a big decision for anyone.
Virginity, or being a virgin, is when you haven't had sex. You 'lose your virginity' when, and only when, you have sex for the first time. This usually refers to penetrative penis in vagina, heterosexual sex.
The average age of first (heterosexual) intercourse is 16 in the UK. It was 21 in the 1950s.
If you've had sex - then you are no longer a virgin. Even if the penis was only inside the vagina for a second, and even if you didn't come.
However, masturbating, using tampons, or being fingered by someone else doesn't mean you've lost your virginity.
Nor does the presence of our hymen tell if we're a virgin. Our hymen can break long before we've had sex, and some hymens don't break even after penetrative intercourse.
If you're under the age of consent, it's illegal. Other than that, you shouldn't have sex until you're certain that you're ready for it. This could be when you're relatively young, or at any time in your life. Whatever feels right for you.
Don't do anything until you're clued-up on safe sex and you understand what sex is all about. If you aren't sure you're ready, you're probably not, no matter how old you are or however long you've been in a relationship.
It's difficult when you feel like you're inexperienced compared to your friends, but try not to let it get you down. Peer pressure is such that people do lie about whether they've had sex or not.
You're an individual and you shouldn't let what other people do stop you from doing what's right for you. If you're only doing it because you feel like you should, it's probably not right. The right person won't mind waiting until you're ready.