The Ice Princess Debunked

4 myths about women who wait until marriage to have sex. {In Frozen film analogies}


“Yes, I’m positive. I’m not pregnant,” I repeated to my Doctor.

“Mam, if you tested positive, we ask that you schedule an appointment with your OBGYN,” she said. I shook my head at the failure to catch my own positive pun.  “No really, there’s no chance of pregnancy,” I said again. “I’m just here because of a bad nagging stomach ache.”  But she wasn’t convinced. Dangling my legs off the scratchy wax paper table, I pondered about how I could possibly communicate this any more clearly; I took a deep breath.

“I’ve never had sex, and don’t plan to, until I get married.”

She stared at me with a look I had seen many times before, and a silence swelled in the air between us before she cleared her throat and returned to a standardized questionnaire about abdominal pain. Considering that only 3% of the American population consists of couples who married as virgins, her reaction predictably lined up with that of the popular view: that saving sex for marriage is an archaic and useless practice

To shed light on the oft misunderstood small people group, whom I shall refer to as “women who wait,” I distilled a collection of experiences and stories down into four Frozen based stereotypes.

# 1 The Ice Princess

The Myth- You have a frozen heart


And there on the icy shores of Arendelle, the film begins with the chilling opening lyrical ballad “Frozen Heart”.  In monotonous chants, the harvesters slice through ice, singing “beautiful, powerful, DANGEROUS, COLD!” And sadly, the way the harvesters describe ice differs little from the way that some people categorize women who wait. Labeled as unloving and undesiring, you grow accustomed to fielding questions such as: “Have you ever had any real feelings for anyone? Do you even like guys?  Will you even know what to do if you get married?”

The Reality: Imagine a dinner guest announcing that they have decided to wait until after the main course to indulge in dessert. Would everyone else express doubt about the person’s love and loyalty for chocolate chip cookies? Or ask about whether they possess the proper technique to spoon out their ice-cream. That sounds absurd. Humans have naturally scooped ice-cream with both big and small spoons for centuries. More likely, the dinner guest made a choice with an intentional ordering of events, with a positive anticipation of each course to come. Also, the multifaceted nature of intimacy allows one to build emotional, spiritual, intellectual, and recreational connections, in both friendships and relationships, well before entering a marriage.

# 2 Olaf 

The Myth-  You don’t know anything about sex

Okay, don’t throw a snowball at me for saying this, because I adore that quirky fun-loving snowman character as much as everyone else, but realistically speaking, Olaf, is not exactly the brainiest of the bunch. Despite a bodily mass composed entirely of snow, he fantasizes about summer, plays with fire, and says so himself that he does not have a skull.

Likewise, whenever someone tries to feed me a nonsensical story, about how the marks on their neck are actually dog bites from their neighbor’s foreign breed of small-mouthed Chihuahuas, for example, I raise my eyebrows and ponder: Did I just get Olafed? On other occasions, people mean well but still assume ignorance and take it upon themselves as an act of civil duty, to inform me about very simple concepts. “Be careful when referring to the oceanic sperm whale,” they say before dropping down to a whisper, “because sperm has another meaning.”   To this day I wonder how to thank them for the enlightenment.  I mean this whole time I thought newlyweds honeymooned on islands and boat cruises to watch the migration path of marine animals and sperm whales.

The Reality: Well, I did pass college Biology. But regardless of report cards, we live in a world where sex and its consequences undeniably intertwine with everyday life. Friends share medical details about IUD complications; screenwriters weave romantic encounters into box office hits; abortion remains a hot topic political issue. Abstinence does not create an automatic shield to the rest of the world. Listening and paying attention to others can go a long way.

# 3 The Abominable Snowman

The Myth- You are judgmental,  fragile, and therefore, downright SCARY

Just as Anna, Kristoff, and Sven, cower in fright when encountering the abominable snowman, the phrase “I’m waiting until marriage” can trigger the same type of fear response in people. Based on the assumption you carry around a scary superiority complex, female acquaintances may write you off as confidante material, for fear of judgment. In the romantic realm, it’s not a complex puzzle as to why many men bolt after hearing the waiting news. But sometimes, even good guys, from good places, find you frightening. “You’re such a perfect pure Christian,” I’ve heard.  “You make me feel like a heathen,” they say. My observation is such: If a man has yet to come to terms with a past experience section of his relationship resume that was perhaps more decorated than he intended, you transform into a mirror. Cringing at the reflection of their unresolved personal value breech, they can hardly stand to look at you for fear of inflicting damage and corruption. It’s almost as though they believe the fiery gaze in their own handsome eyes is so hot, that any white as snow type of woman would melt into an avalanche of sin with a single glance. But I can’t be sure, I just know that no one wants an avalanche on their conscience, except maybe Mulan.

The Reality: As for the ladies– picture lunch in San Francisco with your favorite vegan foodie friend. Just because she abstains from meat doesn’t mean she will reprimand you for ordering a steak sandwich. Of course, if you ask her about veganism she could explain in depth about why she believes it bodes well for the planet, but that’s beside the point. In short, I enjoy conversing with friends who attend a variety of different schools of thought.

As for the men- the roots of our stories run much deeper and wider than that of our past relationship resumes. Placing someone on a pedestal of perfection for their sexual purity alone, while whitewashing over the rest of their flaws, traps them in a box of impossible expectations. Furthermore, the oxymoronic compliment “perfect Christian” stunts growth by shrinking the space of freedom and grace necessary to understand that others accept them for both their gifts AND imperfections. So fear not, just like Olaf, we like warm hugs.

# 4  The Special Snowflake

The Myth- What you really want, is a bad boy

When Kristoff walks into the wintery meadow and gawks at the beauty of the unadulterated icicles, the look on his face says it all. He wants to get some…ice, of course. Indeed, the rarity of arriving at the quarter century age as a virgin, statistically speaking, makes you a unique snowflake. The special snowflake stereotype is built on the assumption that you exist in an overprotected, caged snow globe of a life (like that of young Britney Spears or Miley Cyrus) and secretly, you want out. Inevitably, a few men will go after the hidden challenge that comes along with your paradoxical combination. You’re hard to get–without actually playing it. But at the same time, you exude just enough innocence and naivety not to come across as impossible.

The Reality:  Those who chose to wait and stick to it past the high school purity pledge days, typically have deep-seated convictions and well thought out reasons as to why. Because if not–if waiting is seen as just another arbitrary restrictive rule passed down from 6th-grade health class—the resolve won’t last. Eventually, they consider themselves caged like Miley Cyrus and make a break. Mainstream society tends to look at commitment through a jaded cloudy lens, associating it with boredom and complete loss of freedom. But ironically, I choose to wait for the boundaries of commitment, in part, in order to be free. Free to be completely me with all quirks included, to take risks and make mistakes, to love without jealousy or fear of loss.  And one day, free to give everything away knowing that no matter what, we built our love on a promise made before God and others. There’s nothing wrong with a good challenge, but I’d like to believe that the vulnerability of pursuit, or being known, or waiting, might just be thrilling enough.

So Who is She, Really?

Regal, brave, and beautiful, Princess Elsa of Arendelle entered the world with a unique power to create ice and snow with the wave of her hand. From sparkling winter wonderland scenes to personalized snow flurries, it’s truly an exquisite ability. That is–when stewarded well. If ruled by reckless emotions, the power grows dangerous, leaving her haunted with regret. On the other hand, concealing herself in a kingdom of isolation freezes the entire land of Ardendelle into an eternal winter. Society cannot thrive without her. When Elsa learns to harness her strength and embrace who she is, she discovers her gift was designed to be incredible, and quite literally, life-giving. She imparts beauty and glistening light into the desolate barren season of winter. But, as the story goes, Elsa spends a solid period of time waiting in a castle on the North Mountain. Because it’s not quite time to let it go.  Not just yet.

But as for the stereotypes? I have an idea,  Let it Go.

4 thoughts on “The Ice Princess Debunked

  1. Have I got news for you!!
    Rolling Stone did an article back in the late nineties called revenge of the church ladies. It talked about many different surveys that have been done through the years, and the women that were having the best sex based on how free they felt with their partner and how many orgasms they had. The fact that they waited until their wedding night to have sex and most the time their husbands were virgins as well gave the couple’s and immense freedom mentally and emotionally.
    Some of the reasons that were listed from a psychological and sociological standpoint are;
    No memories of Prior Partners to compete with whoever they are married to.
    No fear of STDs, and if he/she wait that long there’s a little fear of an adulterous relationship.

    The idea that you get to start together, explore each other, and have Adventures both in the bedroom and in life are amazing.


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