Tuesday, March 4, 2014

My Journey: Delayed Sexuality

As my classmates navigated the rough waters of puberty, my journey was delayed. Through junior high and even high school, my interest in sex remained somewhere between a child's "ew gross, they are kissing" and a spectator's detached disinterest. I attribute this primarily to two things. First, my physical maturity lagged behind the norm. I was the last girl in my class to start her period, by over a year, and I was among the older kids in my class. My hormones were markedly delayed. And I believe my sexual interest was delayed as a result. But equally important, I have three significantly older siblings. I had watched their teenage drama, up close and frequently theatrical, through a child's bemused eyes. I watched my classmates date and wrestle with sex the same way, as a disinterested observer. By the time my classmates were dating, my siblings had settled into their adult lives. When I became interested, I wanted to skip the angst for a mature relationship. That isn't to say I was particularly happy in my detachment; I wasn't. I wanted very much to be "normal." But I didn't see my interest in spanking as a sexual interest, so I began to wonder if I even had an interest in sex. I certainly was not interested in the cautious fumblings of my first post-puberty boyfriend. When that relationship imploded (there is simply no other description when your high school boyfriend impregnates the girl who had been offering your little brother blow-jobs on the school bus), I found myself more interested in another girl. Our sexual exploration was far more satisfying, but that relationship was equally doomed. Her interest in me, unfortunately, went only so far as the boys were willing to pay for our affectionate displays with alcohol and other mind-altering substances. I graduated high school a virgin.

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