“Like A Virgin”: British Study Finds One Out Of Two Hundred Women Claim Virgin Pregnancies

220px-LikeAVirgin1984There is a surprising report out this month in the British Medical Journal that one in two hundred women in the United States claim to have have been impregnated without ever having sexual intercourse. These are women who later give birth so this are not cases of pseudocyesis or a false or hysterical pregnancy that we discussed earlier. Some 31% of the women studied had signed a “chastity pledge” and 15% of non-virgins who became pregnant claim to have made similar vows. I imagine that many might take offense at the title and timing of this study: Like A Virgin (Mother). They might have wanted to stick with the rest title “Analysis of Data from a Longitudinal, US Population Representative Sample Survey.”

The report covered almost 8,000 women between the ages of 15 and 28 as part of the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, between 1995 – 2009. Of those, 45 reported at least one pregnancy “unrelated to the use of assisted reproductive technology.” The most significant statistics may be that 36 of the 45 women claiming virgin pregnancies told researchers their parents never or very rarely spoke with them about sex or birth control.

The authors cite religious and cultural influences in “occurrences of parthenogenesis in vertebrates”:


During Advent, many recount the birth of Jesus to the Virgin Mary. Virgin births in non-humans are generally by asexual reproduction, where growth and development of the embryo occurs without fertilization, termed parthenogenesis (from the Greek parthenos for virgin and genesis for birth). Occurrences of parthenogenesis in vertebrates, including pit vipers, boa constrictors, sharks, and Komodo dragons, have attracted much attention. Parthenogenesis also appears in popular culture, including the Spielberg blockbuster Jurassic Park and the 2008 Dr Who episode “Partners in Crime.” Births without a human father are seen as distinct from asexual reproduction, and involve a non-mortal father—for example, the gospel of Matthew reports that Mary’s was found to be “with child” from the Holy Spirit, and numerous Greek demigods, such as Perseus, were reportedly born of mortal women5 (or in the case of Dionysus, his immortal father, Zeus).

Some supporters of the doctrine of the perpetual virginity (aeiparthenos) of Mary (who include not only Roman Catholics but also reformers such as Martin Luther) believe that Mary dedicated herself and her virginity to God, and that her husband Joseph was guardian of that virginity—perhaps a precursor of present day pledges of chastity. Chastity pledges may be signed by those who plan to remain chaste until marriage and by non-virgins who pledge to abstain from further intercourse until marriage; the latter are often called “born again” virgins; this concept of the reconstitution of virginity has also appeared in pop culture, notably in the play Camino Real.

22 thoughts on ““Like A Virgin”: British Study Finds One Out Of Two Hundred Women Claim Virgin Pregnancies”

  1. Of course, non believers like myself might suggest artificial insemination with a somewhat advanced alien race. “The angel of the lord came down” & might have been a UFO. But then again, Jesus’s brilliance was spiritual not physical, but this might explain away the ‘heavenly father’ part.

  2. Awesome movie! Very funny! I guess the virgin birth is on a par with Father Christmas only its for adults. Heavy petting might account for a smaller percentage, just not that high.

  3. As a Catholic, I have always wondered about the whole “Virgin” birth thing. I am surprised that the 1 out of 200 isn’t more like 50 out of 200!
    Merry Christmas to all!

  4. I am down here studying human behavior and the role of government in these United States. Why do the states pay women a monthly sum of money after they give birth, but only when the father is not paying for child support? Second, why do such states not require both the father and mother to work to repay this money? Teenage children report that they intentionally get knocked up to “get my check” and that this gives them independence from their mother who got knocked up when she was fifteen so she could “get her check”. Instead, why not pay them Not to have children?
    Ants are somewhat smarter.
    Please give some replies, I have to report back to Remulak before midnight Eastern Standard Time because something is going to happen at midnight.
    It has something to do with a huge meteor.

  5. Some 31% of the women studied had signed a “chastity pledge” and 15% of non-virgins who became pregnant claim to have made similar vows.
    In order to keep their self stories intact I imagine many who took these “vows” and then became pregnant would claim they kept their vow by abstaining from intercourse.

  6. I pried a couple of the regular’s comments out of the clutches of Askimet which were near the top of the queue, but the number of spams caught since midnight ran well into three figures and six pages. Some were hundreds of lines long, and it is too early in the morning to go blind trying to find comments, If yours was not one of the two I dug out, try posting again.

    The anti-spam algorithm is secret, but we know it is prone to catching long comments, especially if there is formatting in them.

    Merry Christmas everyone, commenters and lurkers alike.

  7. I wonder if included in this study was the STDs transmitted orally…. And kids are ending up in the hospital with some very bad cases of oral STDs that are resistant to antibiotics…..

    So again…. It’s possible…..they could not have had intercourse…. As all is intact….

  8. Myth,…
    a : a usually traditional story of ostensibly historical events that serves to unfold part of the world view of a people or explain a practice, belief, or natural phenomenon
    b : parable, allegory
    a : a popular belief or tradition that has grown up around something or someone; especially : one embodying the ideals and institutions of a society or segment of society
    b : an unfounded or false notion
    : a person or thing having only an imaginary or unverifiable existence

    “Beware your choice of Gods and Poisons, They are most disguised by ourselves” …
    …………………..Fish news journal. 😮

  9. Even intact hymens are perforate; by the same route that allows menstrual blood to make its way through an intact hymen, semen from non-penetrative sex can make its way past an intact hymen and into the uterus. This is not a one-way valve. Virgin birth is unlikely but is not ruled out by physics or biology, if what one means by “virgin” is never having penetrative intercourse.

  10. When my quote of “Dear Abby”, in my comment up-thread, is resurrected from the Word Mess death, the virgin birth syndrome will become abundantly clear.

    The mystery is “wiggle room.”

  11. Christmas is cancelled, Joseph confessed !

    (old French joke : “Noel annulé, Joseph a avoué!“)

  12. It’s like asking a Catholic Priest if they are celibate. Yes, except when I’m being a pedophile.

    A friend wrote a book called the Borg Wars. BORG stands for Big Business, Organized Religion and Government. His contention is that all the major institutions in society are corrupt and for the same reason. They do not allow for a high enough plurality vote for controlling the operations of the organization.

    As an example, a constitutional amendment takes 2/3’s or 3/4’s of the existing States to ratify it, depending on who initiates the Amendment. Most Organizations run on a 50% +1 simple plurality vote. a trial of a Capital Offence must be determined by an unanimous decision. So for really important decisions we increase the necessary plurality but almost always run and operate our major institutions by a “simple” majority.

    His studies have shown that the higher the plurality, most often the better the decision. Also smaller groups of 8 people work best. To few or to many people minimizes the effectiveness of the organization and many groups can however work together for the same cause or project.

  13. Jamie Dimon-bankster – you might want to read the study before going off half-cocked about the role of religion in producing virgin pregnancies.

    From the study linked in the article: “Perceived importance of religion was associated with virginity but not with virgin pregnancy.”

  14. Sometimes exceptional claims require exceptional evidence.

    Where are the paternity tests and/or the genome readout of the children’s DNA?

    I read the report and it seems to be based on informed interviews rather than genetic tests for confirmation.

    Sometimes teens or adults will experience the following:

    How to Get Pregnant

    One of the questions I have been asked often by teens is: “How far can I go without getting pregnant?”

    That is not a dumb question. It’s a very intelligent one. A lot of kids get aroused by just lying close to each other while kissing. Then they just naturally proceed to the next step, which is petting. Sometimes they remove some of their clothing because it’s “in the way,” or they burrow underneath it to explore each other’s bodies with their hands. This is known as heavy petting, or “doing everything else but.”

    The technical (and legal) definition of sexual intercourse is “penetration.” (The male’s sex organ must penetrate the female’s.) However, as impossible as it may sound, in the medical literature can be found cases where there has been no penetration-the girl remained a virgin but, after engaging in heavy petting, she found herself pregnant.

    How can that be? Simple.

    The boy and girl were lying very close to each other (unclothed), “doing everything but,” when a small amount of sperm leaked out . . . near (not inside, but very close to) the girl’s vagina. The sperm got into the moisture around the vagina and found its way up into it, and fertilized the egg!

    (Dear Abby, not NCIS).

  15. Yeah! I swear daddy…. We only had b*** sex…. I don’t know how I got pregnant!

  16. It’s not surprising, Replacing factual and rationally taught sex-ed with rightwing, religious themed, sex-is-evil-ed will result in an increasing number of ‘virgin’ pregnancies….

Comments are closed.