For some students, the idea of boasting about newfound sexual promiscuity at uni is enticing. Why not? The freedom of suddenly being away from home is there to be embraced. However for those who are still virgins when they reach university, the idea of sex itself (not to mention the kind of environment mentioned above) can be incredibly nerve-racking.
I was raised as a Hindu, in a community where having sex before marriage or casual sex is incredibly frowned upon. If I was ever caught or found out to be sexually active or even worse, found out to be pregnant, I would have faced serious consequences.
Therefore I felt I had no choice but to avoid it. But honestly, even if I had had permission to have sex, I still don't think I would have taken the opportunity until I was ready and with the right person.
This remained the case during university. I was incredibly nervous that I would end up making a huge mistake or be pressured into sex. Now three years on, I have graduated, maintained my virginity - and still managed to gain that all-time, invaluable university experience.
The first tip for all virgins is that when you make friends at university, be prepared to talk about it. It does come up a lot - at least, in my circle of uni friends it certainly did. I will not lie to you, it is incredibly awkward at first - but sometimes it is better that you listen. You will hear different experiences and hopefully you can learn from them.
Also don't be afraid to ask questions about things that confuse you. You will be shocked about how many people are OK with answering these sort of questions, especially at university. It is not like at high school where they would laugh. Of course, there are moments where we still laugh. But most of the time, people are cool about it.
I suspect that the time that you are most afraid of this is when you are going to a club, so here is my advice. Firstly try not to drink yourself senseless, as this can cause your judgement to blur, meaning you are less capable of making informed decisions. (As a side note, always make sure you take your drink with you at all times, so that you have a less likely chance of getting your drink spiked.) If someone does try to hit on you and you don't want to do anything, whether you know them or not, set the boundaries there and then. It may sound awkward in your own head, but in all honesty, it is the best thing to do. If they have a problem with this they are probably are not worth it anyway.
Just because I am a virgin does not mean I mean condemning the act all together. Sex is one of the most natural parts of life, and I am sure when with the right person it is truly wonderful. So, if you are going to university in the possibility that you want to have sex, the advice I have got from friends is do it with someone you are comfortable with. From what I have heard, the first time, eight times out of ten, is never good. But if you are with the right person, it really doesn't matter.
But I am going to say now something that university students should really say all the time, and that is, unlike the press would have you believe, that not everyone is having sex at university.
Many of my friends are in long term relationships that began at uni. It is possible that, rather than it being a time in which you have a lot of meaningless sex, it may in fact be when you meet someone that you genuinely want to be with for the long haul.
There are some who don't have the strict religious background that I have, but still choose not to have sex. They feel like myself, that is something that should be given away at the right time to the right person. And you know what? The majority of uni students are really ok with that.
Just remember, it is your body and nobody should be able to pressure you over what you want with it. Above all, you need to the confidence to say "I'm a virgin, deal with it." or "I am ready to lose my virginity now." If you have these two things in mind, then you should be fine.