Well the first thing I want to say is, this series is probably going to start a lot of shit! Not because of any attempts on my part to be provocative. But because subject matter, content, questions, comments and considerations will rarely if ever be politically correct. This lack of PC, however, is not a tool of disrespect, insensitivity nor an attempt at paternalism. Rather, it’s to cut through the bullshit and have adult conversations regarding some of the most prolifically vital yet intractable social topics being dealt with today.
I can’t speak for other cultures around the world. But when it comes to America; sex, sexuality, sex education, and things associated, we have struggled and failed to unpack and extract them in a way that promotes knowledge of sex and self. When it comes to the sexual/self, what starts out as innate natural curiosity and search for discovery (as a child) becomes sabotaged from the outside by judgment, mischief, moral treaties and shame. Combined, these clash with culture, media, and peer pressure. Through all of the distractions we attempt to find our sexual identities. Well good luck with that!
Let’s start with the sex education I received at a young age. The conversations I heard in my household were tantamount to, “Don’t bring no babies up in here!” I remember my then step father making some back handed comments about me ‘fucking.’ He told me he was going to buy me some ‘rubbers.’ I was between 12 – 13 at the time. I’d heard of rubbers. I knew they had something to do with sex but I had no idea how they worked or what the purpose was for using them.
I remember a girlfriend who was far more ‘advanced‘ than I was. She attempted to introduce me to intercourse. After some kissing she laid on the floor, then pulled off her pants and underwear. Stuck and spellbound I simply looked. She motioned me to follow suit. I did. But I had no idea what to do next. It’s not as if I wasn’t excited. But I didn’t know the ‘mechanics’ of how this was supposed to go. I put it on there but not in there. There would be no intercourse that day. But I did receive an unexpected souvenir to take home with me. While ‘making out’ she sucked on my neck. All I knew was that it felt really really good. I didn’t know till I got home and looked in the mirror that there would be physical evidence of this private deed. Shocked and shamed, I looked for something to hide the evidence. I settled on a red paisley bandanna. Picture me walking around with this thing tied to my neck as if I was some undercover faux cowboy… in the HOUSE!
If you are wondering what happened next, the answer is nothing initially. No one in my family said a word about it. That is until a few weeks later. Sitting my my mother’s room she asked me if I was ‘having sex yet.’ Aghast and embarrassed, I said , Nawwww momma!” I knew that sex was something physically intimate between people. I didn’t know exactly what, but I knew I hadn’t done it yet. See previous mentioned episode. I admitted to kissing. And that’s when she said, “Is that what you were doing when you got all those suck marks on your neck?” This moment could have been the very first Southwest Commercial themed, “Wanna get away?” My entire being could have been purchased for pennies on the penny. I mumbled something like, “Errrr, Uhhh…”
Apparently the hankey didn’t hide the hickeys!
Compared to my peers in school, I was probably a bit of an L7 when I was a kid. I was bright, inquisitive and idealistic. I was also naive, and at times gullible. If I had the opportunity to learn the basics and nuances of sex and sexuality I would have embraced it in a mature way. But that wasn’t the case. All I had carried away from that conversation with my mother was embarrassment and shame.
Moving forward, the only tools I had when it came to sex were my imagination, music, and TV/movies in an attempt to get a grip. Because of shame and lack of information, sex for me, while intriguing and mysterious, was also naughty; something to hide and practice only in the midst of not privacy, but secrecy.
Enter adulthood! I get married out of high school and of course there are sexual experiences. These is trial and error, following someone else’s lead and trying to find my own identity. By ‘identity’ I mean answering these important questions:
- Beyond physical pleasure should sex have an emotional component? If so, how much so?
- Is there a difference between a sexual need and a sexual desire? (Nature vs Nurture?)
- Is there a right and a wrong way to do it? What does it mean to be ‘good in bed?’
- How do you communicate with your partner about what you want and how? Talk dirty or nice?”
- What do you do if find yourself sexually attracted to a person who is not your partner?
- What does sexual freedom and liberation look like internally? Are you there?
Now, we’ve all had different experiences coming up. Some details may differ and some may be similar. Then there is the dynamic of how boys are taught sexual codes and values vs girls. I can imagine the reality of having to figure out most of this on your own by trial and error is the rule rather than the exception. Should we be surprised to be in the shape we are in as a culture and society. Most of our early experiences start off with the blind leading the blind. And that’s if you’re lucky. Otherwise there is potential for a power dynamic that could be exploited resulting in emotional distress, trauma and abuse that could have long lasting if not generational damage.
So what is my goal?
I have some strong opinions, but my hope is to encourage discussions and exchange of ideas regarding these matters. If I have anything to teach, I certainly hope to learn more through the experiences, ideas and thoughts of others. I really hope people will open up, be honest and share. A healthy and loving exchange of ideas can make us better. We can set a new trend marking an easier path for those coming after us.
For this to work properly we have to have a set of ground rules.
- Words matter so I’ll do my best to be accurate as possible. But words are limited within the English language. For instance, take the word ‘sad.’ In English sad means one thing. In Russian, there are 3 different forms of the word. Each has a specific meaning. There will be times when I use generalities to make a point. They are just that, generalities. There are no end all to be all absolute to every situation.
- Intellectual honesty and intelligence is a must. Please don’t come simple and plain. That is not going to move the conversation forward.
- Try to have an open mind. As I said, I hope to learn something. I may start off standing on a point. If you believe I’m wrong, let’s reason together about the specifics and nuances.
- Be honest and vulnerable. I know that’s hard. It’s hard for me. Telling that story about the hickeys at 13 is still highly embarrassing. And I’m 51!
- There will be no sacred cows. What do I mean by that? Well I am totally pro the #MeToo movement. That does not mean that women are beyond critique. There will be some commentary in that direction that I hope we can discuss like adults.
With that said… let’s get started! How would you answer the above questions? Feel free to comment via the blog comments section, Facebook or Twitter. For cohesiveness, admin may add comments from social media to the blog comments section.
“Intelligence is the ability to adapt to change. The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge. – Stephen Hawking
**Next, we will discuss why some people are hesitant to believe the accused within the so called #MeToo movement.**