TikToker Dr. Jennifer Lincoln is taking on the shameful reality that only 17 out of 50 states in America require medically accurate sex ed.
Dr. Lincoln asked her viewers what “losing your virginity” meant in a video. (scroll to bottom for full video)
Responses, of course, did vary, but many hit a similar note: consent required and it’s not a real loss.
“There is no one answer for what losing your virginity is,” Dr. Lincoln said in the TikTok post.
“Maybe it’s having vaginal sex. Maybe to you it’s anal sex. But what about women who have sex with women? Do we just consider them virgins forever? I mean, I don’t think they would agree. There’s no one scientific definition of ‘losing your virginity,’ and that’s the point… Virginity is a social construct, and not a really useful term, is it?”
Dr. Lincoln told BuzzFeed:
“I often get questions from scared teenagers who want to know if they are still considered a virgin if they’ve done a certain activity. Why? Because society is obsessed with virginity and the idea that it indicates purity, which means you’re dirty if you are no longer a virgin. Questions range from if just the tip of the penis goes in, or just goes in for a second, or if it’s just oral sex – what counts? And my answer is always the same: There’s no definition of virginity and your worth is SO much more than society’s obsession with purity culture.”
There is, Lincoln explains, no medical requirement for the definition of virginity — it’s simply not a medical necessity. So we’re left with a social construct that defines what virginity is and, she argues, why bother with that?
“Imagine if we took just a percentage of the energy that goes into telling young people why they need to remain virgins until marriage and instead emphasized consent and understanding how their bodies worked in a medically accurate, comprehensive way?” Dr. Lincoln said. “Think of how impactful and empowering that would be! It is completely fine if you choose not to have sex or have your own definition of virginity – but don’t let society define it for you, and through that define your worth.”