This was really disturbing for me to read. Having to survive rape and sexual assaults and live thorugh the ramifications — as if it were a cultural rite of passage for young people — is not only unfortunate but truly consequential societally when we are interdependent on each other.
Needless to say, I didn’t have the type of critical thinking skills to come to that conclusion in the late 80s, but I did have a mother, aunts, grandmothers, cousins and my sisters to know better. They also instilled enough self-confidence in me to never even consider raping or sexually assaulting a girl. Forcing myself unto any woman has never been an option.
I have felt the burn of rejection on many occassions but never have I felt entitled to, or felt that slighted to the point of embitterment to use my strength and male privilege to overpower a girl and force myself unto her. I didn’t learn sex this way.
I overstood sex at an early age to be based on trust. Trust that she was not going to hear it all over the school the next day and trust that I hoped she knew what she was doing — cause I had no clue my first time, nor my second time, and I opted for visual aids — lights on, heavy petting and foreplay the third time. Yes, I researched and asked my female cousins and my aunts for advice. They were cool like that with me — a bit older but same age group.
I also had not watched porn before and the first time I saw a nudie magazine was when Vanessa Williams was in it. It was just laying there strewn about near the garbage cans on my way home from school and I was thoroughly confused. The boys I hung around were always bragging and most assumed I was already having sex when I wasn’t. I felt like the man when clearly I wasn’t. They assumed this because I would never respond or chime in about the girls we knew and hung out with. I knew some were either lying or trying very hard to get a rep. Most were just very horny and out of control. Some were bullied and they in turn bullied girls. And then there are those who just have no common sense.
My closest male friends during that time in elementary and junior high were r&b song fanatics. Basically we knew that the instructions were in the songs. Whereas the songs nowadays seem overly aggressive and devoid of intimacy to say the least, the songs back then were more instructional and helpful.
This first time for me was with a girl I still know to this day who was one year older than me. She had been forced upon her first time and subsequrently thereafter. She shared this with me not long after our first time. I was upset to learn this and I believe that made me even more conscientious when it comes to sex.
The taboos surrounding the discussion about sex was actually counterproductive and more harmful than the taboo itself suggested. I think it also contributes to criminal sexual deviancy and makes even a non-sexual relationship between the opposite sexes nearly impossible. The established sexual mores are rather tainted and seem to mar relationships than develop them as substantive and fruitful.
Thanks for sharing Marley K. and having this courage to share your experience and for providing the answer to the million dollar question, Why?