‘I don’t know whether you can help me or even if I can be helped. I saw an article about Surrogate Partner Therapy in a magazine in my dentists waiting room and it could have been written about me… I am 30 and still single. Although I have been out on dates before I have never had what I would call a ‘real’ boyfriend; because of this I am sexually very inexperienced. Don’t misunderstand – I am not naive and I’m not generally a shy person – I have a good job and great friends but I’m beginning to give up hope of ever being in a loving relationship. I just don’t have the confidence to meet the kind of man I want to meet.’
The letter above was sent to us by a past client who, after completion of the ICASA Sexual Self-Development Programme, is now in a happy relationship.
Client’s feelings about being virgins vary from somewhat embarrassed at 25 to extremely embarrassed at 45. Statistically, if you didn’t have sex in your teen years, you’re in the minority. According to a research (albeit in America, we can almost certainly assume a similar ratio to population in the UK) the average age to lose virginity is 17.1 for both men and women. Virgins make up 12.3 percent of females and 14.3 percent of males aged 20 to 24. That number drops below 5 percent for both male and female virgins aged 25 to 29 and goes as low as 0.3 percent for virgins aged 40 to 44. But it’s never too late. At ICASA we have successfully treated women who are in their 50’s and 60’s as well as those who were younger.
Some of the typical causes behind and wanted midlife virginity are childhood physical or sexual abuse, trauma in the body such as surgery, emotional abuse, fear that you’ll be bad at sex; the environment a girl is brought up in, such as homes where sex is never talked about or where parents are not openly affectionate with each other these and other such conditioning can lead to issues leading to fear of intimacy.
Just touching certain intimate parts of the body can reawaken emotional pain or anxiety. Even if the touch is gentle and loving, if it’s not but backed with a certain amount of strength, confidence and support, it can cause varying degrees of anxiety either at the time of the intimate or sexual touch, or in the days following.