‘There’s different ways to have sex’

by NEW YORK DIGITAL NEWS



Gen Z have already redefined ancient human behaviors such as walking and eating dinner — now the intrepid youngsters are reinventing another age-old concept: virginity

Just 56% of Gen Z respondents aged between 18 and 26 say they’ve had sex, according to a survey conducted by Business Insider — but that doesn’t mean they’re all virgins in the traditional sense of the word.

“There’s as many ways to view virginity as there are ways to view sex,” one Zoomer told the publication in an interview. “What sex means to everybody is going to be a little different, especially based on your gender or sexual orientation.”

“When you decide that you’ve had sex … that depends on a lot of social and cultural factors,” the Gen Zer added.

Losing one’s virginity has conventionally referred to the act of sexual penetration, but with more than a quarter of Gen Z identifying as LGBTQIA+, the concept has become murky.

Bisexual teacher Sasha Roberts, 20, told Business Insider that she’s been in “virginity limbo” for five years. Roberts was sexually active with women in her teens and only began dating men in 2022.

“I’ve had so many people say to me, ‘You’re a virgin until you’ve had sex with a man,’” Roberts explained. “But in reality, I’ve been having sex with girls since I was 15.”

“Do all those times not count?” she asked. “They just disappear?”

Losing one’s virginity has conventionally referred to the act of sexual penetration, but with more than a quarter of Gen Z identifying as LGBTQIA+, the concept has become murky. Dmitrii Kotin – stock.adobe.com

“Everybody has sex in different ways,” Roberts further declared. “Everybody identifies in different ways of different genders and everybody is hooking up in so severely different ways.”

“There’s no way for me to quantify it,” she added, saying it doesn’t bother her that there’s no certainty about the age at which she was no longer a virgin. “There’s no way for me to be like, ‘Yep, that was it. That was exactly what made you lose your virginity.’”

Meanwhile, many Zoomers believe virginity has been used as a tool to shame and police people’s sexual activity for centuries — and they’re eager to do away with the concept.

Some say it was used as a way to deter women from having sex before marriage. In recent decades, many men were shamed if their status as a virgin remained in check beyond a certain age.

“The term is complicated,” Danielle Bezalel, a sex educator and the host of the “Sex Ed With DB” podcast, told Business Insider. “It comes with a lot of baggage.”

Another Zoomer told the publication that the concept of virginity doesn’t hold much weight among his peers, saying members of his generation are free to have sex of any kind — or not have sex at all.

“I mean, I don’t even think I’ve heard the word virgin in a very long time,” Tymiq Williams, 27, declared. “I don’t think it really matters anymore.”

One Zoomer told the publication that the concept of virginity doesn’t hold much weight among his peers, saying members of his generation are free to have sex of any kind — or not have sex at all. Antonioguillem – stock.adobe.com

Many Zoomers appear to be eschewing sex altogether, according to Sue Milstein, an assistant professor of health studies at Springfield College in Massachusetts.

The academic has spoken to many members of Gen Z and believes the COVID pandemic has had a profound impact on their views of sex, health and safety.

“Some of them saw their friends getting sick,” Milstein declared. “So they’re like, why do I want to be with a stranger physically when I don’t know where they’ve been?”

She says many Gen Z women prefer masturbation over an actual sexual encounter.

‘They’ll say: ‘I don’t really feel like doing a hookup because it’s not giving me what I want. I’m getting what I want for my friendships, getting what I want for my vibrator, my toys, whatever it may be,’” she explained.

Many Zoomers appear to be eschewing sex altogether, according to Sue Milstein, an assistant professor of health studies at Springfield College in Massacusetts. Shutterstock

Tess-Mathilde Bryan, 22, told Insider she has not had sex in five years, saying: “A lot of us aren’t sexually active. I think it’s because a lot of us are a little bit traumatized.”

Bryan was in an abusive relationship, and while she’s not technically a virgin, she wants to take back the term.

“I almost still consider myself a virgin just because I want to erase that whole thing, and I think I should be allowed to do that,” she stated. “I think I should be allowed to say, ‘Well, that doesn’t count.’”



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