Amanda Pendolino
July 19, 2013

Tamera Mowry-Housley Was a Virgin ’til 29. Would You Wait for Marriage?

Tamera Mowry-Housley did something pretty unusual for these days: she kept her virginity until she was 29.

In an interview with Hot 97, the actress and co-host of The Real divulged details about her decision to wait to have sex with now-husband Adam Housley, the only man she’s ever slept with.

“I don’t know how to explain this, but I’m religious… So I waited ’til I was 29 to lose my virginity,” she said. “And then — you may not understand this — I did it and then I felt guilty, and then I became celibate until I got married.”

“Just ’cause you only had sex with one person don’t mean you not a freak, and I think that that’s a good thing,” offered co-host Adrienne Bailon. “I think people think that you could only be a freak by doing it with a bunch of people. You can be a freak and just be a freak with one person. And I think that’s beautiful and dope.”

This isn’t the first time Tamera, a devout Christina, has discussed her long-lasting v-card.

“We decided, it was both of our decision, not to live together for religious reasons,” she once said in an interview with Young, Black and Fabulous.

“I’m being very honest. We actually didn’t wait before we got married to be intimate…but we did wait 3 years. […] I wanted to do what felt right for me,” she explained. “I became re-virginized. It’s something that just felt right for me. It was just a personal choice. And even after being intimate, we decided as a couple to be celibate until the wedding.”

I give props to Tamera for being so open and confident about her personal decision, given how unusual that path is today.

But is it wise to wait until marriage to have sex?

Although some studies suggest couples who delay sex are happier in the long run, almost all Americans have had premarital sex (95 percent of those interviewed back in 1995). The high rates even extend to those born in the 1940s, so it’s not a new development. (No wonder the people on TLC’s The Virgin Diaries seem so unusual.)

Slate columnist Dear Prudence is outspoken about her disapproval of waiting until marriage: “I’ll never understand people who don’t go for a test drive before purchasing the vehicle,” she advised a reader earlier this year.

Author Jessica Ciencin Henriquez agrees. She took a virginity pledge at age 14 and says it ended up ruining her marriage.

“There were some issues that I wasn’t really aware of in our relationship that came to light in the bedroom,” she said. “There’s a different way of interacting during sex than you do in other aspects of your relationship.”

Are you waiting until marriage to have sex?