Last year some schools in Yunnan introduced a new course on sex education. Its name – “No Apologies in This Life” and it is the product of partnership between the regional Ministry of Education and the American Christian group “Focus on the Family”.
In its original, American, version upon graduation the students make a virginity pledge. Although Chinese authorities opposed to the idea of the pledge, you can easily understand what kinds of things are taught in this seminar.
What I found more interesting, however, was not the course itself but the discussion of premarital sex subject in one forum thread which mentioned the “No Apologies in This Life”. This is, actually, a Chinese forum for people who want to practice English language – so most of the posts are in English and you can follow this link to read the whole discussion. Below I am posting the most interesting reactions which can give some insight into what Chinese think about virginity.
The most often comment people made was a diplomatic “This is a very sensitive topic”. In spite of its brevity, it illustrates two important points: first, Chinese are not open to talk about sex; second, premarital sex is [possibly] widespread.
Now, let’s take a look at more lengthy answers:
Follow your heart, follow your soul, and follow your love, then there is nothing to regret. That’s my point.
Conserving virginity is not only our tradition [passed] from generation to generation, it’s also the principle of our conduct dealing with love. I am absolutely for this attitude: conserve virginity before wedding, conserve your happiness of lifetime.
I think it is essential process for human and maybe called human nature. Let them go. But you can pay if you just play. It’s not a game… If you lose this game you will regret whole life.
I think people have right to choose their lifestyle, including sex. However, the government should tell the public about the bad situations if you are careless before marriage (have sex) via school education and public advertisement.
I have once read the news report that a father in America gave sex education to his two sons, one is 10, and other is 12, after he found the physical change of their bodies. He searched pictures of both male and female genitals from the internet, as well as a video about how the sperm swims into the germ cell. Opening with “you asked the question where am I from since you are a little boy, now it is the time to let you know,” the father showed the pictures and video to his two sons with little shying. The father revealed that his two sons turned into doctor and engineer after their graduation from college.
The above story impressed me, and I to learn from the American father when I have my own children.
It’s hard to say but I hold the opinion that we should follow our heart and our own feelings. Making love with your love is the most sweet thing in the world and I have to say we human beings are also animals and we need to satisfy ourselves by making love with our lover. For me, it’s acceptable to have this before marriage.
It is important to conserve virginity before marriage for traditional Chinese family. But in the modern society, it is difficult for young women to do it, especially under temptation of money and impulse. When lover comes, she will not control her behavior.
I don’t support the sexual behavior before marriage but accept sweet kisses, warm hugs and quiet and tender caress. It is because I know that a girl, who loses her virginity, may meet probable troubles, if she married to a future husband who cares about this. […] Maybe you think that I am fossil and a little feudal. But it is better to avoid hurting yourself and your love like this because you love her soul and heart. Impulsive between boy and girl is a devil […] you need to pay bill for what you have done. Friend, you believe you can pay for it?
In the mental aspect, I think it is not necessary to keep virginity until marriage. […] We just need to know he/she just loves me, and that is all we need.
However, in the physiological aspect I have a different opinion. Actually, I read an article about women’s first time. That article says when women give the first time a man, that man’s semen will make reaction with the woman’s ovum. After that, the woman will be changed […] and fall in love with that man. This is the reason why some people’s sons look like the lady’s former husband.
Who gives a damn about the so called virginity, it’s 2010!! Virginity sux!! Just go get married to people u love. It’s nothing about virginity, it’s just about who u love. And those who still remain virgins may be those who are in troubles getting boyfriends!! Simply, if u love her/him, marry her/him. If not, find another. However, if u do really care about virginity, u could get it from someone else by paying!!
I am a married woman, I have a daughter, I am so scared that she will grow up, I am afraid that she will face the same problem in the nearest future. As a mother, I of course don’t want her to have such things; I am always worried about it. Having sex affairs before marriage is really dangerous, if the man who you made love with is just your husband later, then it is ok, if not, it must be another thing, not only bodies, but also minds, it surely will influence the marriage. So in my opinion, be careful.
I insist girls should conserve virginity before marriage, and boyfriends should help them.
As a boy I have to say I hate the man who does not take the responsibility for what he did!
If I tell you that I took your wife’s virginity away, what do you feel and what do you want to do?
Obviously, you wanna kill me right? You feel shameful! So I just wanna tell boys – as a man you should not only think about yourself but also others.
Firstly, yes, some men will say, I don’t care whether my girlfriend is a virgin or not, but try to think – if you are not a virgin, he can make love with you, but he will not take responsibility for you. One day, if he doesn’t love you anymore, he will leave you without any guilt.
Secondly, as a wife, you will feel guilty for your husband who didn’t make love before marriage. The bad feeling will influence your marriage.
Thirdly, if you didn’t conserve virginity before marriage, after married, your husband sometimes will think “Can I trust my wife, she could do sex before marriage, how about after married?”
Lastly, if you are a student, it will influence your study, because you will worry if you have pregnancy, or some sex disease.
I think if you really love your bf or gf you can have sex with him or her.
Our lives are not too long. We should do the things we want to. [...] For many reasons, all of the people who stay with us finally leave us one day. We should cherish the time we spend with the people we love. Don’t regret after they leave us.
Children should know one thing: you’d better give your first time to someone you love. That is enough. Conserving the virginity after marriage is unrealistic and meaningless.
Maybe the one you marry is not the one you love.
I think you must conserve virginity before marriage. We Chinese should have our civilization.
As a man, I want to say that the female should conserve virginity before marriage. And we should know it is our tradition and our moral. Maybe you will think I am a male chauvinist. However I want you to know that I respect women rights and I never look down upon the female. I’m just a man of traditions. There are many young ladies who may believe it cool and fashionable to make love before marriage. They like breaking rules and rebelling. So do I. But I think we’d better [not] experiment this with virginity. Because most people will regret what they had done before and you’ll find it’s not cool at all.
What do we give to our lover? It’s the best one? Do we hope that we can also receive the best one from our lover? So, why don’t we conserve the virginity until we find the destined lover?
It’s worthy of reserving the virginity. We know after losing the virginity, we’ll definitely be different, not only in physical body but also in spiritual.
No one should be condemned in both sides of answers to this question. If you feel disgust for a second-hand man or woman, just wait and seek a virgin. But if you are OK about that, make it.
To conclude, I want to give a more objective perspective to the topic of premarital sex and virginity in the modern Chinese society. I refer to the recent research on this topic – “Chinese mate preferences: Cultural evolution and continuity across a quarter of a century” (doi:10.1016/j.paid.2010.12.016)
Authors of this research analyzed the importance of different factors in choosing a mate among young urban Chinese and compared their preferences with the sample made 25 years ago (2008 vs. 1983). The participants were instructed to evaluate different factors in choosing a mate and rate them according to the following grades: indispensable (3); important, but not indispensable (2); desirable, but not very important (1), irrelevant or unimportant (0).
Results showed that the value of chastity, deﬁned as ‘‘no previous sexual intercourse’’ has considerably decreased. Both sexes viewed virginity as nearly indispensable in 1983 (rated as 2.54 and 2.61 for men and women). By 2008 it dropped in importance to 1.70 and 1.36 respectively.
By the way, the factor which in the same period increased a lot was the “good earning capacity”, but this is a topic for another post :smile: