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Virginity


Retaining Virginity: An Important Goal

In some North American cultures, retaining virginity until marriage has been an important goal. Many parents and some sex educators disapprove of loss of virginity until marriage and are especially adamant about teens remaining virgins. A chief motivator of this standard is concern about the welfare of young people, particularly young women, who are at risk for pregnancy.

A number of religious groups also are in favor of virginity until marriage, but their sanctions against premarital coitus are based more on the churches' ideology.

Peer Pressure

Not all adolescents and young adults are comfortable with the idea of virginity, however. Peer pressure often dictates that being a virgin is an undesirable indication of immaturity or prudishness. Losing one's virginity is seen as a rite of passage into the adult world of sexuality.

Like most sexual behaviors, remaining a virgin or not is a personal choice. Nowadays there may be more ambiguity about the goal or milestone for which virginity is being maintained. Until recently, marriage was the clear-cut boundary separating sanctioned intercourse from sinful intercourse.


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