My name is Rahab and I’m a virgin at 33.
I grew up in Nyahururu, Nyandarua County as the last child of a strong, hardworking and religious single mother. Aside from being much younger than my sisters, I was also the dark skinned one amongst my closest female relations, and thought myself ugly.
I therefore turned my attention to academics with my mother’s encouragement. In terms of sex education, I was counselled when I was younger that I would get pregnant if I got close enough to boys.
There were always examples of girls I knew who had gotten into trouble with boys and these would be pointed out to me as illustrations. I remember when a school mate stained her skirt in primary school and we all believed that she had sat on plums.
The information about sex we were given in class was confusing for most girls my age. What I learnt about the reproductive process I did as a member of the African Inland Church’s female pre-adolescent group – The Cadets.
Fear remained a motivating factor for me, steering me clear of male associations throughout my primary and high school years. My mother had also experienced a painful separation from my father and I was determined not to add to her burdens so I was a good, obedient girl.
I studied hard and excelled in my academics, and my teachers loved me. I said to myself that I would wait to get into a relationship in my third year of campus, one that would hopefully lead to marriage. That was not to be.
I have had two serious long-term relationships; my first, which lasted two and a half years, ended because our ideals on sexual boundaries clashed. This was between high school and my first years in campus. The second ended two months to my wedding date, but was also platonic. That one had lasted three years. Coming from a really humble background, I have also had men trying to buy me off with promises of a more lavish life.
But for me it is always about sexual purity. I have normal challenges. I have had some really near brushes with sex where I got close to crossing my boundaries. By God’s grace, I have escaped three rape attempts. I trusted those men too much and they tried to take advantage of me.
Some days are hard hormonally and I know my body well enough to know that given the chance, I may slip. So I rush straight home from work and keep my socialising at zero until these winds have passed.
I have also realised that reading certain books and watching some soaps gets me thinking in a way that is dangerous to my commitment to purity. So I simply do not. I do not kiss or caress men. I might give a hug and peck if it’s really necessary.
I have mentors and a close circle of friends to whom I am committed to being accountable. We will talk about everything candidly. One of my mentors, Mama Adah Adoyo, told me that I need to break certain patterns in my family. I want to do this.
I want my children, if I ever have them, and my nephews and nieces to know that they are able to stand because I stood. These boundaries have helped me. I don’t think a decent man should just up and say ‘let’s go have sex’ to a woman who is not his wife. I think it is a process. I have made these decisions not because being intimate with a man does not feel good, but because I did not want to make a habit of asking for forgiveness for sins I could prevent.
I am a born again Christian and I do not want to offend God with sexual sin – sex outside the marriage bond is sin. I want to have sex, just like the next person, but because I haven’t before, it is not a distraction. God has been good to me.
This discipline has enabled me to grow in my chosen field of marketing. I graduated with both a Bachelors and a Master’s Degree in Marketing from the University of Nairobi, and I am a member of the Chartered Instituted of Marketing.
I work with the East African Portland Cement Company as a commercial services manager and I attend Christ is the Answer Ministries on Valley Road where I mentor young people through my involvement with the Fellowship of Christian Unions – FOCUS. There are many looking up to me, and lowering my standards and letting them down just isn’t an option.
One of my lowest points was when I was diagnosed with fibroids. I cried out to God and asked Him very many questions. I remember a nurse attempting to do a Pap smear test but I involuntarily shut down and she was not able to get through.
After a while she gave up and asked me if I was a virgin. She had assumed that at my age, 33, I must be already sexually active. Medical staff tried to convince me to find a boyfriend and get pregnant quickly. Some of my friends were concerned about my status too, believing that remaining a virgin was not good for me. They said that I needed a child.
Then I met Dr. Anthony Wassuna who not only prayed for me but encouraged me. He shared that his own wife had been found to have even bigger fibroids, but had opted to trust God and wait until marriage to have sex. They are now blessed with three beautiful children.
I decided that I would wait too, and if I sensed that marriage would not come, I would adopt a child. I remembered that I had decided to remain sexually pure in honor of God and my body, which is His temple. Even if I got to the age of 50 and was still unmarried, it would still be worth it. Besides, what guarantee did I have that having sex would even lead to conception? None.
I am not the only virgin I know. Most of my friends, both male and female, live by the same ideals. About two in ten have fallen off the wagon, but we don’t judge them. We don’t think we are better just because we have remained virgins. God has kept us.
Source – SDE