I prefer watching sports over trashy reality television.
I am comfortable debating politics, the finer points of baseball, or the specifics of at home hair color.
It is quite a contradiction, one that I don’t think guys my age know how to deal with. At least, that’s what I’m telling myself.
You see, I am not the average eighteen-year-old girl for another reason. I’ve never been kissed. Like, ever. Not even in the midst of Truth or Dare, if you want to get technical. Nor have I ever had a boyfriend, though not for lack of effort. I assure you that I engage in all manner of oral hygiene practices deemed necessary. I am not a Cyclops, and I am, in fact, attracted to boys. I actually think I’m pretty and smart.
The average response is not, “Oh hey, now that you mention it, that makes sense because you’re so young.” In fact, when I tell people for the first time that I’ve never been kissed or had a boyfriend, their reaction is usually shock. I suppose, to them, never being kissed by 18 years-old is a bad thing.
I should probably have a much bigger issue with my “innocence.” The thing is, though, I don’t really care that I’ve never been kissed.
I’m so cool with my virgin lips, in fact, that I wonder why other girls my age, and even younger, aren’t. I mean, where did that convoluted way of thinking start? Whoever said that females had to be concerned with making out with boys? Who in the hell told a woman that how many smooches she’s shared is a direct correlation to her self-worth?
Enough of this “Poor girl, she must be homely or socially awkward” mentality. Since when is it customary among women to assume one is undesirable based on lack of experience? I’m perfectly fine with being about ten times less experienced than most of my age group.
Sure, there have been guys that I liked, even one that I was downright infatuated with (which is a whole other story), but I am not the type of girl that will date a guy just to date. For me, and this is a somewhat radical view amongst my peers, there has to be a REAL connection. Liking the way his hair falls boyishly over one eye simply isn’t enough. Maybe my standards are just too high.
I’m not trying to put down anyone that had a successful relationship during high school, but I do wonder whether there was a genuine connection, or whether they just liked the other person’s hair. If it’s the former, then I guess I’m just not one of the lucky girls, if it’s the latter, then I’ve made the right decision to wait until something seems genuine.
Keeping my lips to myself hasn’t been a conscious choice either; but, as I get older and the circumstances remain the same. I am compelled to make sure that my first lip lock is one that I won’t regret. Even though I am perfectly comfortable in my own skin, my self-esteem has both good days and bad. I dare you to show me the woman that feels 100% confident everyday.
I long for an unconditional love like Ellie and Carl have in the movie, Up. The Notebook has me aching for the passion of Noah and Allie. Boy Meets World has me wishing for the deep friendship of Cory and Topanga. Not to mention Harry Potter (almost every relationship in that series is a model for true love).
I know that who I am is enough. Without a man to call my own or the memory of a first kiss to treasure, I know that I am worthy. I’m worthy of love, of adoration, of friendship, of laughter, of honesty, and of respect.
That’s something that I think all of us young women – whether you’re on kiss number 1 or 1000, boyfriend number 2 or 20 – need to remember.
Fallon lives in Western WI geographically, but her heart will always be in the suburbs of Chicago, where she was born and partially raised. She’s 18 years-old with a high school degree and a year off to focus on sleep, work, and various other shenanigans. She’ll being going to college in the fall for a double major in Broad Field Social Studies and Secondary Education with a minor in Japanese. You can read more from Fallon on her blog, Childlike Abandon.