Monday, January 31, 2011

Not To Frighten You But…Let’s Talk About Sex, Baby!

When I started this blog one of my oldest and dearest friends called me and said that he’d read my initial post, loved it, and then declared: “You HAVE to write about sex!” Um… yeah… but…my mother reads my blog. He was right, though. I do want to write about sex. Not in a “Letters to Penthouse” kind of way (sorry, guys) but in a way that is somewhat universally identifiable. What’s the point of having a blog… or of writing at all… unless you can write about things in that truly torn-open-soul kind of way? That’s what writing is for. You let people in through what you say, even though sometimes it’s scary as hell. Sex, though? Awfully personal and controversial subject to have my name and face attached to regardless, isn’t it? Hell yes. Besides, aside from my mother, lots of other people I know who I’ve never discussed such a thing with read the blog, too. So, could I take my friend’s suggestion? Well, I’m an adult and so is my mom so… all right… I’ll do it! (*Ma… ya may wanna skip the posts about sex… I’m just sayin’.)

Honestly, though, I think that what he saw in my post “Can You Be A Babe At 40?” was the beginnings of a blog that speaks to people… women in particular… about body image, about modesty, and even about inhibitions and fears. I have no problem discussing any of these things with you. True, the blog has had posts since that first one that have touched on subjects that have nothing to do with any of that, but that’s because life is rich and varied, and people are whole people. And, if you look deeper, you’ll see that what lies underneath virtually everything I write is some level of passion. I can’t help it, that’s just who I am. My writing has been known to smother people, it’s been known to push people away, it’s been known to be a little “too much” for some… but, as my best friend well knows, I don’t believe in holding back a whole lot. If I feel something, I’m going to write about it. I’m going to express it and through the words I choose, you’re going to feel it. It may be fortunate or unfortunate for me that this is what my writing does, but either way, what you read from me will be what I really, truly think and feel.

Sex is a pretty wide topic. I could break it into so many different categories and do an entire blog on each one. So, where shall I begin? I guess the first thing you’d want to know is what my perspective is on the subject? What’s my history and background with it? Am I a sex-crazed lunatic? A deviant? Do I lead a double life as a dominatrix or something? Why post about this? Well, whether or not I’m a sex-crazed lunatic, I guess, is a matter of opinion. I don’t happen to think so. I’m not a deviant, I don’t lead a double life and I was never molested or anything like that. I think, though, that THAT is the reason why I feel so strongly that I should write about it. I think my friend understands that, as well.

As we’ve aged, we’ve realized that very few of the women (oh hell, the people) we know have managed to reach adulthood without some kind of experience somewhere along the line that created uneasy or flat out bad feelings about sex, sexuality, body image, self esteem, or members of the opposite gender. There are days when I feel like I’m literally the only person I know who wasn’t subjected to some kind of traumatic sexual experience. There are days when I think I might be the only person I know who reached adulthood with a healthy outlook on myself and my sexuality. It breaks my heart.

So how did I escape? How did I manage to develop this healthy adult outlook when so many others weren’t able to? I’m not certain I can sum it all up in a few sentences, but in my opinion, I’d say the major reasons are:

·         Incredible parents (THANK YOU, MOM AND DAD!)
·         LOTS of exposure to high quality sex education as a pre-teen and as a teenager
·         A decent head on my shoulders that told me to wait

I remember some of the sillier things I heard around the lunchroom table as a kid. Clearly, my friends were filling in the blanks of what they’d heard with their own assumptions. I know you all have some of these kinds of stories, too… I think the funniest one I remember is a girl telling me that “If you start taking vitamins, you’ll never get your period and you’ll never be able to have a baby.” Seems to me she must have found her mom’s birth control pills and been told “They’re vitamins.” Later, someone else must have explained to her what birth control pills were… or something like that. Either way, she obviously had partial information on “pills.”

Then, of course, as you get a little older, come the many, many bogus “you can’t get pregnant if” statements:
·         If you’re a virgin
·         During your period
·         If you’re in water
·         If you’re on top
·         If you take a shower immediately afterwards
·         If he pulls out
·         If you pee afterwards
And the list goes on and on and on… and let’s not even discuss the horrors that can happen to you if you (gulp) masturbate!!! You filthy heathen, you!!!

The reason I want to write about sex is simply this:

Everyone is well aware that things that happen to us in childhood can scar us for life. If we’re abused, if we suffer some horrible traumatic experience, if we are exposed to frightening things… any number of things will be carried into adulthood and cause issues that we’ll carry around with us. I want to write about sex because I know so many people who find it difficult to truly be able to let go and be completely at ease and comfortable with themselves and their partners. Like everything else I write about, I want to write about this because life is too short. Making love should be one of the top experiences in your life. It should be a bonding experience with your partner, and it should rock the house.

I’ll still be writing about other things, too, but expect to see me approach more and more of this in the future. Now, go give your significant other a great big kiss and tell them you love them, because that’s what it’s all about.

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