"They only want one thing."


I fish my hand in the bowl and pull out our psychology group’s topic.
Sigmund Freud’s Stages of Psychosexual Development.
We find it in our books.
Their chins sink to their chests.
“I’ll take the Genital Stage,” I say, knowing their uneducated fears.

Sex is taboo.
Fuck is a bad word.
You are a whore, slut, skank, floosey if you flirt,
If you touch yourself,
If you let someone touch you.
Don’t do it.
You’ll get pregnant.
And die.

People call me a whore for liking sex.
For finding what brings us into this world fascinating.
For loving the pleasures our bodies have to offer.
For losing my virginity at 16.

"Did he force you?"
Of course not.
But a part of me wants to say yes.
A part of me is twisted, confused by what they tell me.
A part of me feels like I have to say yes.
A part of me has been told, “They only want one thing.
They’ll do anything to get it.”

I curled up into a ball,
Wrapped myself in your blanket,
And thought.
Did I really want to?
I thought maybe I was too easy.
I was just another dumb whore.
I didn’t realize that the only reason I wasn’t saying yes was that part of me.
The words I had been taught my whole life,
Wrapping around my body,
Covering me from you,
Choking me,
Squeezing me.
I couldn’t breathe.
The words were keeping me from you.
I wanted you.
I wanted to be closer than ever before.
I loved you.
But the words.
They were the only case supporting “No.”
No scientific proof, no case study, no potential disease, no potential pregnancy.
Just words.

"Save it for marriage."
“Your body is a temple.”
“You can never be a virgin again.”
“They only want one thing.”
“Wait until you’re married.”

Said as if a piece of paper makes you love someone more.
As if being joined by law has some sort of magical ability to weld our souls closer than they were in that moment.

You were the first to see me naked.
I felt so amazing. So free!
I loved you so much.
But the words.
The teachers, politicians, parents,
Spewing their bullshit,
Kept me from what I wanted.

I wanted to fuck.

I am so sorry.
It took me so long.

I listened to you say, “We don’t have to. It’s ok. I just really want to. But I can wait”
I wish those were the words that dominated, 
That wrapped around my body,
That pulled me closer to you instead of farther away.

I am so sorry.
It took me so long
To say, “Fuck what everyone else thinks,”
To finally do what I wanted to do,
To turn around,
To unwrap myself,
And have sex.

I was sixteen.
I was naked.
I had sex.
And it wasn’t rape.

"The body is a temple."
“Sex before marriage leads you straight to Hell.”
“Don’t touch those boys. Don’t lead them on.
They only want one thing.”
The words haunted me after that day.
After the ecstasy.
They kept me from what I really felt,
Who I really was.

Rape culture has two parts.
A girl, young and in love, has sex.
She is forced to regret it every night.
“Your body’s a temple.”
“Wait until marriage.”
“They only want one thing.”
They ignore the love.
She was in love.
She actually trusted him.
But this can’t be true!
Teenagers don’t know what love is!
That’s why the most celebrated love stories if all time are Romeo and Juliet and Titanic.

The big, fat-headed congressmen see teens having stronger relationships than their marriages.
They look down at their sweat-stained prostitutes and think of how much they hate their wives.
They go to work,
Sit inside those promising white pillars,
A symbol of the freedom only this country can offer,
And insist abstinence.
Abstinence will save our schools.
Abstinence will stop STDs.
Abstinence will cure the fucking world of impure thoughts.

They are wrong.

Was Eve so terrible when she didn’t resist temptation?
Of course she was.
They say so.

Children, drowned in religion, kept in an uneducated glass box,
Are desperate to know what’s going on.
They don’t know anything about the world around them.
All they want is a flicker of light after being kept in the dark for years.
And who’s there to blame when they tackle that light,
Grip on for dear life,
And create a fire?

The ones who say, “Abstinence is key.”
“Sex before marriage is a sin.”
“Don’t do it. You’ll go to Hell.”
“They only want one thing.”

Is it really that “one thing” adults are so afraid of?
Or is it their children potentially having stronger commitments with their high school sweethearts than they do with the one they share a bed with every single night?
Those insisting on abstinence programs in schools aren’t trying to prevent sex.
They are trying to trap their children in the same confused cage they were stuck in when all their superiors said, “They only want one thing.”
Where does the cycle end?
When do we start spreading the truth?

You don’t need a piece of paper to have sex.
You need love, commitment, trust.
And who’s to say you can’t find that at 16?


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