We threw away our cares on petting and necking, because as we all know affection is just another word for instant gratification.

We squirmed away in closets and hallways and parent's bedrooms, achieving victory in a mess of cries of pain and anxious attempts to match rhythms (and often failing miserably).

And we called it good. We called it normal.

And then we asked ourselves...what's next?

After all, we'd done it all. Well, except for the stuff with the latex and chains.

Firmly quashing that little voice in the back of our heads that said it may have been about something more than "coming of age" or "getting off".

...And then we stopped talking about ourselves in third person plural.

It took me the longest time to figure out that affection was about that connection with another person that went beyond emotion or personal gain.

It took even longer to admit that perhaps, just perhaps, virginity was in my heart as well as my groin, and that perhaps the two needed to line up for the whole practice to be more than just mutual masturbation with a variety of appendages and orfices.

Maybe, for some of us, it's more a practice of gaining our virginity, our hearts, the ability to feel and be safe with another person, rather than just another goal to achieve...