I can clearly remember

12 mar

I can clearly remember my first time (and maybe everyone can!) but maybe it made such an impression on me because my first time was a whole mix of all kinds of strong contradictory feelings, ranging from absolutely wonderful, to great excitement, the feeling I was doing something completely wrong and out of order combined with the fear of punishment, confusion, not knowing how to behave and so much more. Perhaps my first time made such an impact as well, because I was very young, only eleven years old, and I did not have any relevant information about sexual intercourse, and what it would involve… And I mean not just information about the physical side of it all… Yes, I knew you could “make babies” if a girl would get her period, but I did not know anything about “getting an orgasm”. Neither did I know anything about the whole emotional side of it, and all the big feelings it involved.

When I was eleven, it was 1975. And Holland, the country I come from, was in the midst of the Hippy revolution. And with that a sexual revolution was going on as well. Sex became “the topic” and I remember clearly all the long haired hippies sitting in our front room, meeting with my father, who was a notary, to officially start communes involving new ways of living together in which open relationships were a standard way of going on. I remember how akward I felt when we at school we all in our class had to watch a film about sexual inter course and after this we had to “feel” different kinds of materials, such as silk and wool, and describe what aroused us most. I remember clearly the film “The Naked Ape”, which was a hit in Holland. We were send to see it, and it involved scenes with people making love. We giggled, not knowing how to handle the contradiction.

And contradiction there was. Although everything seemed to be so called “liberated”, sex was actually still a large tabu in most layers of society. I was born in a family with a strong catholic moral, we went to church at least once a week, and I only saw my mother naked once, by accident, which caused a great shock to the both of us. So there was this climate of opposites, and I was exposed to it as well, I was in the midst of it, but hardly aware of it.

A few houses away from us lived the neighbour girl. I will call her Monica. She was my age, a friendly girl and getting into puberty. Her breast were developing and I remember how I suddenly looked different at her. No longer was she just my neighbour girl, I sometimes played with, suddenly I found her exciting, and I dreamt of making love with her. I did not fall in love with her, she just aroused me. And  these feelings were new to me, they were very strong. I felt akward seeing her, because she now triggered this feeling in me, which I somehow felt was “wrong”. Not just because of the catholic background I had, but also because I looked different at her. I wanted something from her, but I did not dare to tell this to her.

A few houses away from us to the other side of the street, a boy lived I used to play with who claimed he had seen Monika´s breast and her vagina and that he had kissed her. This I found very interesting. If he can, I can as well, I thought. And it told me Monika was not closed to these kind of things. So I asked Monika if she wanted to go on a boat trip with me. I had this little rowing boat, and from our house, situated next to a channel, it was easy to row to old centre of our town which had bridges more than 400 years old. Some of these bridges were long, and under them there were some perfect places to do, what I felt, was “forbidden”. Monika said yes to my invitation, and together we got in my little boat. I remember how excited I was. Although I knew her for many years, I felt not at all “at ease”. I was to a high degree incredibly self- aware and I remember talking to her as if I was in a fish bowl. My words came out, somehow blurred, and it was as if there was another person talking to her, which was not me. I was with this mental picture in my head, where I imagined her naked in front of me.

Under a very old long bridge, in the centre of town, I pressed myself to kiss her. I knew no one could see us, as we were embraced by dark shadows. And this settled me somehow. It was safe. I moved towards her mouth and then she kissed me back. It was a very clumsy kiss. We tried to move around with our tongues, basically because I had seen this on a movie and I had talked about this on school with my friends… I can´t remember if I asked her if I could see her vagina. But I knew she put up her dress and pulled down her woolen stockings. And I showed her mine… I remember it was still quite cold, so it must have been March or April. I remember the colour of her green coat, but apart from this, not so much more…

But because I had succeeded, I felt I now could ask her home to visit me. We lived in this big house, an old house, some parts dating back to the fourteenth century. On our attic, which had this enormous space which was constructed with heavy beams, I had built a huge hut in a hidden corner, out of old curtains and planks of wood. It was my domain, and my parents did not come here much, neither my younger sister, maybe because it all looked quite “spooky”. In the hut I made I had put an old matrass, and I had covered it with a nice looking piece of cloth. This was the perfect environment to invite Monika into. First of all, because it was so much better than the clumsy boat, in which there was no space to move, and for my next move I needed more space…And I needed to feel safe as well. Suppose someone would find out what we were doing… My parents, as an example!

Monika came and we went up to our attic. I can´t remember what we said, but I remember asking her if she already had her period. To which she said no. So I felt safe to proceed. We took all our clothes off. I remember touching her breasts and she touched my penis and I touched her vagina. And we tried to kiss, me laying on top of her. I remember getting an erection and then I tried to stick it into her. And somehow this worked. I was enormously excited and suddenly I felt this shocking movement in my penis and hips. And I felt something coming out of my penis. I pulled my penis out of her vagina, and then there was this white stuff coming out of my penis, and I did not know what it was… No one had ever told me about the effect of an orgasm or what sperm was, and I had never experienced this before. So I was shocked, I thought I had a disease, that something had broken inside my penis.

I remember I felt very nervous. I just wanted to get dressed. I wanted her to dress. To get home. She did dress, but as I remember it, far to slow. I was really worried that someone would come up to our attic and discover us. My mother or sister… or maybe even my grandmother living next door… Suddenly all my previous excitement was gone, and it was replaced by one big worry. I can´t remember how we got down from the attic, if we even said farewell…

I never had sex with Monika again.  I also stopped playing with her, because after the summer I went to the “big school”, a kind of gymnasium, which in Holland started at that time at the age of twelve. I got new friends and childhood time was over. I sometimes met her, because her brother, who was two years older than me, was someone I sometimes “hung out” with. She was always friendly, and there was no hostility, and although I at times fantasied about another opportunity, it never happened.

Thinking back on the experience, with the age I am now, I can only wonder how self- centered I was. Everything turned around my own unique experience, but I never got to find out what it meant for her. I obviously did not treat her nice, and I can only imagine my behavior must have come across rude and strange.

I somehow found out soon that I must have had my first orgasm with Monika, and I was no longer worried about something being wrong with me. Although I felt I had done something which my parents would not approve of at all, neither the priests we knew in the church, I felt a kind of “Provo”, part of the Hippy movement. I was somehow ahead of my time and age, and when other boys of my age kept talking about the “experience”, I felt confident and not under the pressure of “needing to prove myself” in front of them or other girls. In the years to come I never had problems with girls, the contact always went very easy, and I somehow got better along with them than with boys. In groups of boys I never felt at ease, but because I was often in a relationship with one of the nicer girls of the school, I was “untouchable”, and it gave me a certain status. Sex became as such a way to survive in the group, and the more sex I had, the better I and as I perceived it, the others, liked me. I remember clearly the leader of a gang of boys coming up to me in school saying: ” I cannot understand that an ugly guy like you has so much success with the girls”. To which I replied: “It is because I am more clever than you”.

It took me many years to understand that my own self view and my own self worth was very much bound up with sex, and instead of going for the girls I actually really liked, I often ended up with a beautiful princess that in the end did not work for me at all. Today the value I have about myself is no longer based in sex and the status it can provide, but in what I am as a human being and the human values and qualities I represent and want to represent. As such, my first experience has been an imprinting experience. Not one I regret, but one of learning, to become more true to myself.

After years of on and off relationships with a series of “princesses”, I finally came in contact with the woman I share my life with. Although she did not fit my image of princess, she was the first one I truly felt well with and it worked. Today sex has no longer to do with status, based in my own insecurity, but it is part of the many ways in which one can pass on warmth, care, and love.

Man, 48 years old (living in Denmark)

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