Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Virginity: A Girl and a Mom's perspective

I was raised with parents who really never talked about sex. I still don't know who placed the thought in my head of remaining a virgin until the perfect man came along. Maybe it was the church? Maybe some of my friends?

I dated a few boys in high school. Nothing of substance really. During my first year of college, I decided that I was going to leave my hometown and move to Texas. Wouldn't you know it? That's when I began dating someone seriously.

And that was the boy who took my virginity.

We weren't as serious as we could've been. I knew he wasn't "Mr. Right". I knew we wouldn't last since I was moving. But we were enjoying each other sexually and though I would never touch his penis, he wanted to put it in and I wanted to know what it felt like.

I was riddled with guilt for weeks afterwards.

Fast forward 3 years... I was friends with a girl who was 3 years younger than me and still a virgin. I was madly in love with the man I would soon marry. I couldn't tell her enough about how wonderful sex was. My boyfriend and I were trying everything. I wanted to know and do everything!!

My young girl friend was dying to experience all that was promised in the world of sex post-cherry. So, she went out determined and came back used. She wanted to learn more... she wanted to know and do everything as well. The guys in the crowd we hung out with started using her for blow-jobs because she was easy. They had horrible nicknames for her and I felt responsible.

She was depressed and still had no idea what an orgasm felt like.

I love sex and I think sex is worth loving. I don't think it is anything to feel shame or guilt over. If we weren't so prudish in this country about sex, maybe this wouldn't even be a topic of discussion. Why do we use sex to sell everything from clothes to beer but God forbid we actually go out and enjoy it?! I believe the shame some people feel from sex causes much of what is disturbing in this country... from marital problems to sexual harassment to sexual predators. I hope to raise my children to have a healthy view of sex by making discussions around the subject as comfortable as I can.

I began masturbating at an early age and my daughter is not far behind me. Though it shocked me to know that she was already enjoying herself (at age 6 no less), I knew that I began at that age as well. I was also happy that she didn't feel shame in learning how to pleasure her body.

My children know what the anatomical names of body parts are. My children know to keep their explorations private. However, we keep the discussion open. If they want to know, I will answer their questions. One of my friends said the best gift her mother ever gave her was a book about masturbation. I think masturbation is healthy. Don't you feel much more empowered knowing how to please yourself?

Now, what will I tell my daughters about virginity?

Well, I hope that they will feel comfortable making decisions that relate to their body. I am doing all that I can to teach them to respect their bodies. I would like to think that they would treat their bodies just as respectfully with sex.

I could tell them all day long to save it until you find the right man. But I would hate for them to feel the guilt that I felt should they just want to explore what it felt like.

I could also tell them that sex is amazing. But I would hate for them to go out and try it just for the sake of doing it and not put any thought into choosing someone they could trust.

Trust.


Maybe that's the one thing that was missing. I trusted my first partner to experience sex with. I don't think I trusted myself. I was so terrified of getting pregnant. He didn't even come inside me. Its almost funny to think about now but I didn't know any better. No one had told me anything about sex.

And my girl friend? She felt no trust towards any of the men she was with. She was only out to "do it" and experience the wonders I had promised her. She didn't know there was more to it than just bedding any man that came along. She kept hoping the next guy would be the guy who could show her how amazing it was. I don't think she knew how to make it amazing for herself.

Maybe that's how I would handle this subject with my daughters. I would equip them with knowledge of their bodies and how to protect themselves from pregnancy and disease. I would allow them to ask the questions that needed to be asked. I would let them know what I didn't know. I would help them to trust themselves and feel empowered with knowledge.

Then I would hope that they would find someone they trusted as well. Someone that they felt comfortable exploring with... whether he be the man they marry or the boy who takes their virginity. If they felt trust, then maybe they could walk away with no regrets and feeling like it was worth it. Hopefully then they too will grow up with a healthy view of their bodies and their sexuality.

And if I could help them to trust themselves, then hopefully I could trust them too. All that we can do as parents is teach them and let them go.

So that's my job. To teach them well.


This post is part of a roundtable series on virginity as started by Honey and Lance. I will be linking to other great posts below during the week and I will bump this post so that it shows up on Wednesday as well. Feel free to chime in yourself and leave a comment over at honeyandlance.com.


Beauty of the Year: Virgin Vendetta
Hot Alpha Female: Lets Talk About Sex... Baby
Effy's 'lil Place on the Web: Why wait? An argument against saving yourself
Hammer: Why I Don't Date Virgins
Evil Woobie: Why is Virginity a Big Deal Among Filipinos?
Project Infinity: The More "Touchy" Part of Dating: Sex and Virgins
Dad's House: Virginity: Its So Overrated
Single Mom Seeking: Why I'm aspiring to be a virgin again
20-40: The Value of Virginity
20-40: Losing your V-Card: Big Deal or Big Whoop
TSB Magazine: Virgins for Sale
Work Love Life: How my mom helped me lose my v-card
The Modern Savage: The Dilemmas of Male Virgins
I Date White: The Brotha Virgin



Oh... and for a really interesting read... check this out. I'm not promoting it but boy did it make my head spin...

7 comments:

  1. interesting entry. My mom was simply horrified when i started pleasuring myself very young, like you. she taught me it was wrong & shouldnt be done. She also taught me that sex was very very wrong. Its amazing what we carry around in our heads. Sadly, I still cannot get over being taught that & have never enjoyed sex.

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  2. Wow. I could write a novel on this...

    I waited until I was 19 and in college. And the night I lost my virginity I cried...and cried...and cried. I was told by my mother in the only talk ever had that it was a wonderful thing only to be experienced between husband and wife, and that both my parents were each others' first. So on top of the incredible disappointment factor of it not being all that it was cracked up to being (and I, too, had been always listening to others talk. I had done everything but penetration up until that point.), I felt like I had chosen with that one sole action my mate for life. When we broke up, I was relieved...and free! But always was searching for something that always evaded me.

    I remember enjoying the monkey bars as a little girl and wetting myself on them...not realizing that these were orgasms, but knowing that my body was telling me it was time to go play on the monkey bars and I felt an incredible release. I have never felt this with any other partner but one and only one...the only one I have ever achieved the required connection with to make that magic work for me.

    My daughter has discovered pleasure, too, and she's pushing 7. We watch a latin telenovel together, so she gets lots of good questions in triggered by what we see...but we watch it together. Having a little brother assists with anatomy; I didn't know what a penis was until I was in 6th grade--and was equally ignorant about periods. I was so horrified by the thought of masturbation--which I still can't do easily or without guilt (hence the dead rabbit batteries, I suppose...) that I grew up unaware of my own anatomy. I got the chicken pox at 17 years old, even had them in my vagina--I didn't even know that was a possibility.

    I feel like I am much more aware of my sexuality now as a 36 year old than I ever have been. But it has been a long, hard (no pun intended at all!!) battle filled with so much disappointment.

    Good post, sure brought back floods of memories for me. Sorry so wordy--feeling wordy today.

    Be well, T.

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  3. I have many many many females (here or IRL) that didn't self pleasure. SOme that were 20-30 that had never had an orgasm. Thats just insane. When single though I thought it was terrific, I could show them and they still adore me today!
    It does seem to me though that the girls like your friend that were to easy seemed to have far far more problems than the ones who were stingy with it.
    Anyway
    good post!

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  4. You nailed the stigma - if someone is hanging dearly onto their virginity, they might go the oral route to an extreme. Nothing wrong with oral, but you need balance. And at that young age, tenderness is a good, and maybe even necessary, part of the experience.

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  5. As the mom of two teens (T you know this) I have to say that I am glad that at the ages of 17 and 15 that they have chosen not to just "have sex" to have it. I have never professed to them that I wanted them to wait until they were married, but I would hope that they would not just do it, to do it, so they could say they had, or so they could be like their friends.

    Unfortunately life is much worse now then it was when we were growing up.....I have also raised them to respect themselves, if they don't, then no one else will, it comes from a "loving yourself" mentality type of parenting.

    However, my husband and I have been open and honest with them about sex and any questions they have, to include ones about their own bodies I have answered....I have told them that being well acquainted with themselves, what feels good, right and what doesn't is the only way they will ever evolve into a happy sexual women...and as such they have asked questions and I have answered them.

    I am not secretive about my life, my past or the fact that their dad and I are very sexual beings, private yes, but we enjoy one another.....but I do think that teens need to be ready, both mentally and emotionally before they just go out and have sex....and if that means waiting until they are ready verses when their friends were/are, then I'm proud of them for standing their own ground, regardless if someone says that they are sticking to the principles of the way they were raised, that is my job, to teach them principles and to ultimately keep themselves safe in all ways.

    I don't believe they will go off to college and be used in any capacity, simply because of how open we have been with them....something my parents weren't....but then I don't remember how many of my friends' parents that were back then either. Maybe we did learn from our parent's mistakes after all....

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  6. I had no idea what a penis looked like until I got with my current boy. My parents were semi-open but I was still in the dark...I also started masturbating early and I'm hoping that I can be really open when I have kids. I think it's great that you are open...so much healthier than making it a secret.:)

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  7. I would definitely be a lot more picky if I were ever single again...I was not as discriminating when younger and don't think there's anything wrong with that morally speaking and did have fun. But, I have discovered that so much of the joy of sex is being with a long-term monogamous partner with whom you are compatible... that it would be difficult to be casual again. Hopefully I don't ever need to!

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