Wednesday, May 4, 2011

First Orgasms, and Why They're Important

*Trigger Warning: talk of self injury*

*Warning: Personal Sex-Talk Stuff.  Don't read if it makes you uncomfortable! I won't mind. Really.*

I was with my boyfriend for 5 months before we had penetrative sex.  I went from never wanting to have premarital sex ever, to asking, begging, pleading with him to throw caution the wind as I wagged my aching vagina around.  Lucky for me, he said “wait until we get condoms, and after you’ve thought about this with a clear head”.  Although five months seems like a short amount of time in which to undo 19 years worth of training and conviction, it wasn’t sudden.  It also wasn’t nearly finished being undone.  I should also mention that - as my boyfriend just called out from across the room, lounging in post-coital sheets - it was less than 5 months if you count all the amazing oral sex we had.  I didn’t ‘count’ oral sex at the time, but I sure do now.  
So, 5 months of before penetrative sex.  Then? At least six months until I had an orgasm, about a year before I had orgasms on at all a regular basis.  I wonder at this, sometimes.  Because that amazing oral sex we had before penetrative sex? It was amazing.  It was also, however, always directing the physical sexual pleasure toward my partner.  That’s not to say I didn’t enjoy it in a sexual way, or never received pleasure, but it did take me a while to simply get comfortable with my nethers.  I had to quiet the thoughts, and to stop cringing at the feel of my own flesh.  This probably doesn’t seem like a big deal - my story is not unusual.  That in itself makes me angry, and sad.  Consider: my partner started masturbating when he hit puberty.  He had regular orgasms for seven years before I had the smallest, rarest of orgasms.  He saw it as such a normal thing that he can’t even remember his first orgasm.  I remember my first orgasm distinctly.  And my second, and my third.  I remember them vividly, almost painfully.  
Now, there are aspects of my situation that made me somewhat unusual.  My brain stuff is certainly a part of that, but I also believe that my religious upbringing was a major factor.  About two months into the relationship, I burst into tears while kissing because I “didn’t want to ruin his future marriage”.   We sometimes discussed in religion class that a useful way of telling if what you were doing with a boyfriend was ‘appropriate’ was to imagine what his future spouse would think of it.  I told this to my boyfriend - he was horrified.   As a teenager, I only thought of sex in the vaguest (or most medical, pragmatic) of terms.  I only began thinking of sex as something I might conceivably find very enjoyable when I started kissing a real live person I was attracted to.  
When I had my first (and second and third) orgasms - I shook and cried in my partner’s arms for a good 10 minutes.  My first thoughts post-orgasm were that it was just like self-injury.   The sense of desperation, of being unable to stop, and of intense relief felt so similar to the times that I had ripped out my flesh in fits of deep depression.  The physical intensity of the emotion terrified me.  For a while, I wasn’t sure that I liked orgasms.  But even though I was dealing with residual guilt, and this weird association with self-harm, I never felt deeply ashamed of orgasming in the same way I had when I hurt myself.  I intuitively knew that orgasming was healthy, that gushing blood wasn’t, and I was angry.  Angry that I hadn’t been told about this before.  Angry that I wasn’t taught that masturbation was a good thing.  Angry that if maybe I had known how to identify my own sexual impulses, if I had even thought of masturbation as an option, maybe I wouldn’t have entered into so many frenzied trances.  Maybe even just the fantasy of sex could have made tangible some of my many faceless urges.  Maybe the warm release of sexual climax could have replaced the warm release of blood running freely down my legs.  Maybe my coping mechanism would have helped me learn to love myself, rather than reinforcing self-hatred.


  1. Wow, what a powerful story, and a painful reminder of what can happen when the importance of sexuality is overlooked in one's youth.

  2. Thanks! Yeah...that's a big part of why I decided to start this blog (and why I constantly read yours!). It's so, so important.

  3. A great blog and SO MANY PROPS to you for telling such a personal story! I am constantly shocked to hear women who are new to masturbation or orgasms, because I can't remember being new to either one. It makes me sad to think of years of pleasure they missed out on and angry at the people/culture who took that away from them. But getting back your sexual power is such an amazing thing. Good for you!