Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Blog Share Guest Post

I'm hosting an anonymous Blogger today as part of Blog Share. Many thanks to -R- for undertaking this project again even while being pregnant. I hope you enjoy and bestow many comments on the guest post below:

I almost don't want to write about this, but not for the reason that you all probably think. I'm not particularly ashamed or embarrassed or afraid. Instead, I feel like it is a story that has been told in so many forms and mutations that it is no longer even remotely original. And also: I sound whiny, because there are countless other women with stories worse than mine - stories that horrify rather than cause one to sit back and go "hmm", which is basically what I do when I think about it.

But, here goes. After all, this is something I have never written on my own blog, and therefore it makes it perfect blogshare material.

I lost my virginity unwillingly.

No, it wasn't rape. Not in the traditional sense. I know I sound bratty in saying this, because of course I don't wish I had been raped, but in some ways I wonder if that would have made it easier to deal with, simply because I could then have classified the experience, categorized my anger, made some level of sense of it all instead of wondering whether my distress over the situation was abnormal, whether I was too sensitive or just plain silly.

Here is my story.

I was in college (shut up. I was a late bloomer), living in an apartment off-campus with one of my best friends. She was tall and thin and gorgeous and all the boys loved her. I was short (well, I felt short compared to her) and plump-ish and had never had a boyfriend but was fun-loving and easy to talk to. Together, we made a great team, sort of: we would drink lots and go out to one of our favorite bars (fake i.d.s safely tucked into our wallets, of course), and I would strike up conversations with boys who inevitably flirted with my friend while I continued chatting with some other guy that I assumed didn't like me.

(We can talk about how unhealthy that sounds and how moronic I was to assume such things at a later date).

After one particularly drink-filled night, I ended up talking to our cute neighbors' friend (who I had a raging crush on) while my roommate chatted it up with one of the cute neighbors. When the bar closed, my roommate and I came home in the wee hours of morning, after which I promptly fell asleep. The remaining details are a bit hazy, but what I know is this: later that night, my roommate was awakened by the sound of a knock at the door. She opened it to find our neighbors' friend on the doorstep, asking for me.

Excitedly, she came into my room and woke me up. "Neighbors' Friend is here and he wants to hang out with YOU!" she said. Thrilled, I invited him into my room.

Presumably due to the mass quantities of boxed wine that I had consumed in the hours before, I don't remember much else. I remember talking and playing music. I remember making out. I remember making out heavily, and I remember saying, "Um...wait a second. What is happening here?" I remember the confusion that ensued as I learned that what I thought was his finger was actually not, and the awkwardness that followed as I realized we were having sex and asked him to stop.

On the one hand, he is not a bad guy, because when I asked him to stop, he did. On the other hand...what kind of guy has sex with someone who is so drunk or passed out that she doesn't even know she is having sex?

I don't know. To this day, I don't know whether to blame him, to blame myself for not telling him, "hey, why don't you come back at daylight and we can actually talk?", to blame myself for drinking so much, to...well, think any number of other things.

My roommate didn't understand why I was such a mess in the months afterwards, and I never felt like I could talk to her about it without her being perplexed. I think she thought I was being a drama queen. Who knows? Maybe I was. We ended up moving out and growing apart when our lease was up, but have become friends again in more recent years. It wasn't all due to our inability to talk about this event, and after so much time has past, I don't even remember why we stopped being friends. Still, we haven't talked about the night our cute neighbors' friend came over and asked for me, ever again.

And so, there it is. When I count up how many people I have slept with, I omit one. I don't think it counts.

24 comments:

CityStreams said...

I don't think it counts either. You've handled it really well. You're very gracious in the telling and you don't sound bratty at all.

I don't think I could be so mature about it all.

Pants said...

I also do not count my "first" in my total number. I remember NOTHING from it...which I have since decided was a blessing.

I'm not sure if this will help you, but inability to consent (intoxication) makes what happened to you sexual assault. I'm sorry you experienced this...even if he did stop when you asked him, it doesn't make it OK.

Thank you for sharing your story.

Makkaio said...

I think it is an experience like this that you need to own instead of try to distance yourself from. Maybe writing it down and letting it out like this is a way for you to do that. I bet that in many ways this experience has made you the person you are today.

Purely from a writer's point of view, this line is brilliant...

"I remember the confusion that ensued as I learned that what I thought was his finger was actually not..."

I think that just about anyone can identify with that. That's one of those "oh sh%t", revalationary moments that no one really wants to talk about. It's really the point of your whole post.

3carnations said...

Thanks for sharing the story. The way you tell it, he doesn't sound like he was a BAD guy. Miscommunication...or no communication. I think you handled it well, and he did the right thing by stopping. I am curious if you ever spoke to him again...

patsy said...

your story resonates all too much with me... being a late bloomer myself, not understanding what exactly was occuring and a little booze makes up my first time that I have always been ambivalent about... nice to know I am not alone in that...

Mr. Social said...

I think in a good way, this is very Hemmingway. No bells, no whistles... almost a report. The matter-of-fact delivery exposes the true emotion of it. Thank you for writing this.

Shelly said...

I think it's very telling that he came back to your apartment, asked for you, and then after that, didn't hang out with you. I'm sorry that this was your first time. How confusing.

lizgwiz said...

My first time wasn't anything to write home about, and I have friends with stories similar to yours...it's got me wondering--is anybody's deflowering a beautiful and precious thing? Maybe it shouldn't count for any of us.

Anonymous said...

I just popped over here to respond to comments and found myself saying "Thank you" to each individual person. So - THANK YOU. To all of you.

Citystreams, I appreciate you calling me "gracious". Keep in mind - it's been over a decade since it happened, which makes it much easier to discuss.

Pants, I am so sorry that you can relate to this.

Makkaio, I'm verklempt at being called brilliant.

3Carnations, I agree. Would you believe that, after all that, he actually slept over? And then lingered the next day? Talk about awkward. I never spoke to him again after he left that morning, though - although I very immaturedly later signed him up for Columbia House so that he would receive (and be obligated to pay for) 20 embarrassing CDs delivered to his fraternity house.

patsy, I'm sorry that you can relate to this as well.

Mr. Social, I'm so honored to be compared to him.

Shelly, thank you. I always figured he was just as uncomfortable about it as I was. Also...I suspect it is not particularly flattering to have a girl confuse your penis with a finger.

Anonymous said...

Lizgwiz, I suppose I always assumed that it was more significant for others...or a more affirmative choice, at the very least.

Jess said...

I'm not a legal expert, but I'm pretty sure that having sex with someone who is too incapacitated to make a reasonable decision about whether or not they want to join in does qualify as rape. In the technical sense of the term.

Ultimately, our "numbers" are subjective. The definition of sex is blurry. You count what counts in your mind, and that's what matters.

Stefanie said...

I don't think it counts either, and I'm sorry you went through that. Incidentally, I omit one person from my "count," too, for very similar reasons. At least it wasn't my first time. :-(

Sauntering Soul said...

I agree with pretty much everyone who has commented before me. I am glad he stopped when you asked him to. There are a lot of guys who wouldn't have done that.

nancypearlwannabe said...

I also have one that I don't count, due to drunken stupidity. Thanks for sharing this!

Allie said...

Absolutely doesn't count.

This was a great post!

seven said...

I'm sorry that happened to you... but like everyone here already said, I'm glad he stopped.

The Coconut Diaries said...

It makes me shutter that I have at least 2 very similar stories. Sharing it here, may make one less. (OMG, I am quoting commercials in a blog!)

Noelle said...

It seems like you've gotten to a good place after a bad event. Looking back, college is so different from real life, and it's hard to always be in a situation where you're making good choices. Thanks for sharing, I hope it helped!

Evelyn said...

thanks for sharing! I'm sure it's hard to carry something like that around with you, but it sounds like you're not letting it dictate who you are now...

it definitely doesn't count.

Courtney said...

I concur with everyone else; it doesn't count. I'm glad he stopped when you asked him to. I'm not sure if that counts as sexual assault in the legal sense, but I'm glad you've grown to be OK with it now.

Anonymous said...

I had a very similar experience for my first time. Except, I totally blacked out and only remember brief glimpses. I know in my heart that the person I was with remembers. It was with someone who was a good friend. He even reads my blog now. I'm still angry.

Anonymous said...

I leave one out too. I still cringe about it. I knew better. I was 23 years old. This happened almost 20 years ago, and I still cringe. He was my aunt's ex-husband.

Maria

Anonymous said...

Thank you all so much. It's so frightening (and in a weird way nice) to know so many people can relate to this.

Anonymous said...

i realize i'm super late in responding to this, but this could have been written by me!! the details of HOW you knew the person were different, but everything else is almost identical. I, too, omit that one when counting and haven't admitted it to anyone but my best friend/roommate at the time.

thank you for writing this.

- J

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