Friday, August 17, 2012

Oral Sex

I titled this "Oral Sex" because not only is that what this post is about, but I knew it would be eye-catching.  I also knew that when people typed it into Google hoping for some tips and tricks, they might just get this post instead, and gain a different sort of understanding.

I spent the past week at my parents' house, which gave me a rare opportunity to talk with my mom almost uninterrupted.

We talk via telephone often, but there are always chores or kids calling to me in the background, and my thoughts can get muddled.

We've become friends over these last several years, my mom and me.  It hasn't always been that way.  There was a lot of lost trust and argument and general dislike through the years... especially the teenage ones.  We have our differences now, but we've chosen the road of sorting them out over coffee, instead of estrangement, and I'm thankful.

This past week we got to talking about how things have changed since she was attending the public school system.

She told me about a movie that she watched on Lifetime that discussed oral sex in middle school, and how it is becoming so common - even at school.

I already knew this, unfortunately.

A school in our area ended up with separate lunch tables for boys and girls and banned recess because 11 - 13 year olds were using the time for, let's face it, blow-jobs.

For the girls, it didn't always feel like a choice.  Peer pressure was intense.  If you wanted a boyfriend, it was expected.  And when you're 12 or 13 and just slamming head-long into puberty, you desperately long for acceptance, especially by the opposite sex.  And the boys felt like - well - if he's getting it, then I deserve to have it too.  A dad even stood up at the parent meeting and announced that his son was just doing what he wished he could do at that age.

When I was in middle school I am certain this was happening, but it wasn't quite as common.  More common was groping in the hallway and during movies in the social studies classroom.

As a young girl I can't say that I enjoyed any of that, but I allowed it.

I didn't know what else to do.

I remember feeling incredible attraction to several different boys.  I remember wanting them to like me.  To choose me as their girlfriend.  To dance with me at the 8th Grade Dance.

I was a bit awkward, and so they didn't often choose me for for their girlfriend or their dance partner.  That would have been much too public an acceptance.  But they did grab my butt in the hallway.  They did touch my breasts in social studies class.  And so...  I thought... it seemed better than nothing.

At all ages, we women simply want to be thought beautiful, attractive, lovely. 

My daughter wears her dance costume covered in pink sequins and her pink hair bow and sparkly, strappy shoes and asks her daddy to dance with her.  Asks us to watch her put on a show.  Loves for us to delight in her beauty and personality.

We never really lose that.

It stays with us.  It just manifests in new ways.

We realize there is a great big world outside of our family and we'd like them to accept us too.  We want them to delight in us as we wished our parents would.  For some of us, our daddy's said yes to dancing.  Said yes to applauding our preschool shows.  For others, they turned away: ridiculed us, left our moms.  And for BOTH it is intensely difficult to navigate the pressures that lay before us when we hit middle school and are faced with boys who are riddled with hormones and educated by their peers and the pornographic media that is so readily available on the internet and all around us from the time we are born.

I don't blame the boys.  The media portrays sex as something they deserve in a dating relationship.  And it feels good... obviously.  Oral sex is "better" because it doesn't result in pregnancy.  It feels safer.  And it can be carried out under the lunch table or within a circle of your friends in the parking lot.

The thing is...  it's a really bad idea.  And without a serious committed relationship...  it's degrading.

First of all - oral sex can transmit the same diseases.  You can get them all, Ladies.  On the Lifetime program that my mom watched an STD infected so many girls there was a line stretching down the hallway outside the nurses office for treatment and testing.

But second, and really more importantly, this is about our dignity.

This is a huge loss for girls AND boys, and while boys shouldn't be asking for it, they're battling the urge to fit in, the screaming of their hormones AND the fact that YOU are allowing it.

If all the girls got together and said NO, then the boys would back down.

Sure, it would get ugly for a few days.  Maybe even a few weeks.  But girls need to stick together on things like this.  We are strong together.  You can take a stand at your school.

You're not a plaything or a cheap hooker.  You are a young woman of dignity.  You are beautiful and priceless and there will be a man someday who won't ask such things of you.  And those men will be much more common if you stand up for yourself today.  Should they get a clue about treating you like a princess?  HECK YES.  But as long as they aren't, it's up to us to tell them NO.  It's up to us to hold on to who we are and not give that away to a boy just because he asks, or pressures, or gets his friends to pressure.  Because after you give a guy a blow-job, you don't have a lot of other places to go, physically.  And he has already used you just to pleasure himself.  It's like masturbation with a doll.  You can't go places emotionally with a boy that you've already gone everywhere with physically.  If it happens, it's rare, and you've got to take a lot of steps backward to go forward.

Take it from a girl who's been there.  Who has felt the pressure and who has given in.  Who has been called "dirty" by someone she loved.  Who has tried everything to get a boy to stay - and they left anyway.  Guys respect you if you stand up to them.  If you use your smarts.  If you respect yourself.  It is okay, even today, even in our rape-driven, sex-on-the-first-date, Cosmo reading culture to look a boy (or man) in the eyes and say, "I'm not that kind of girl."  It doesn't matter how many times you've already given in.  You can change.  You can be bigger and better than you were.  You can be a leader and stand up for you and the other young women around around you.

You can walk away.


T Peter said...

Awesome post, Ma'am. This is important stuff to say loudly and frequently. I like how you make a call to action at the end, without in the least saying this is a girl's fault. There's enough shame-blame floating around already. It's better just to stand up and say "I'm not that kind of girl."

Missy said...

Thanks so much, Peter. As always, comments from you mean a ton. Thanks for reading.

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