'I Wanted To Wait For Marriage - Then I Changed My Mind'

Throughout the next few months, HuffPost Teen is highlighting the way teens think and feel about sex through anecdotes written for our series, "Teen Sex: It's Complicated." All of the authors are teenagers who have agreed to be published anonymously. If you want to share your thoughts, join the conversation here.

By Rebecca, 19

To me, sex means love.

It’s cliché and corny, I know. But it does. I’m a 19-year-old girl who is a hopeless romantic. No, I am not a virgin. How is it possible that I believe in waiting for love and am not a virgin? Simply put, I fell in love. There is a lot more to it than that, though.

We met our sophomore year of high school but didn’t start dating until our junior year. We were so different from each other, but we complimented each other in the best ways possible. We both come from two completely different cultures, yet we thrived on learning more about the other. He brought out my silly side while I mellowed him out with my seriousness. We saw every animated kids movie we could. In a short amount of time, I fell hard and I fell fast for him.

I had made myself a promise to wait until marriage when I committed myself to my faith. Over time, I began to change, though. If anything, I was more faithful while with him, despite him being Hindi and I being Lutheran. He knew about my values and morals and respected them. I had never done a lot of the things we did and he never wanted to push me too far. And that made me love him even more.

Four months into the relationship, he told me he loved me. We had danced around those three little words for so long, scared to jump off the cliff alone. He was so nervous and scared when he said it; my heart, however, was leaping for joy. I said it back immediately. Not just to make him feel better. I meant it with every fiber of my being.

Up until that point, we had never actually had sex. We were both virgins. And truthfully, it took us about a month more to get there. I was actually the one who brought it up. I had changed but I didn’t know how yet. I just knew I loved him and I wanted to be with him in the most loving way there is. And yeah, I thought he was “The One.”

The first time, it was awkward and nerve-wracking and, in retrospect, it was pretty hilarious. Yet it was one of the most beautiful experiences I’ve ever had. It wasn’t us “having sex." No. We made love. And it was a lot of fun, too.

Afterward, I was left with a lot of questions. I had broken my vow to myself to remain chaste until marriage. Did that make me a bad person? Was I going to hell? Should I regret it? I didn’t regret it at all. I loved him and he loved me. It was a celebration of our love for each other. How could God send me to Hell for that?

I began to do a bit of research and faith searching. I discovered what I had hoped for all along: it was ok. I wasn’t a bad person for loving another person and giving myself to them. God wants us to love and respect one another, and we had done that.

Flash forward to the present. We ended up breaking up about four months ago due to college issues. That is another long and complicated story, in itself. Turns out, I was wrong: he wasn’t my happily ever after. But I know that we did love each other. What we had was real, even if only for the short time that it lasted. And a part of me will always love him. He taught me how to love with no reservations.

Now, I’m a freshman in college, surrounded by people who think sex is pedestrian and the norm. And for them, I guess it is. But for me, I can’t give myself to someone I don’t love. I’m still heartbroken, but things are getting easier. When I flirt with guys now, it’s so easy to tell who is interested in getting into bed and who is actually interested in getting to know me as a person. Those are the guys I respect. And many of them are now my good friends who I can go to with anything.

Sex, making love, is not just a feeling of lust and yearning, it’s a commitment to each other to respect and love each other in every way that is possible. It’s also giving a part of yourself away to the other person. You should trust the other person wholly before you are give them that much of you. You should have conversations about it beforehand. No matter how awkward it might start out, it’s worth it in the end to be on the same page.

I don’t know when I will have sex again. It might be later in the school year. It could be on my wedding night. All I know is that it will be with someone I love. Hopefully, it will be with my Mr. Right.