I grew up in a household with very blurry sexual boundaries. My sexual identity was clearly defined by trauma, self-loathing, confusion, and an extremely difficult relationship with my body. I was unable to have anything close to a functional boyfriend/girlfriend relationship as I was achingly insecure and clumsy with my femininity and sexuality.
At the age of 17 I met an older guy who seemed to take a liking to me, or at least paid attention to me in a way that made me feel better about myself, or at least a bit worthy of his affections. Our relationship was kept secret from my parents for the first several months, as I knew they would not like him and would forbid me to see him. So I snuck around, and spent a lot of time with him and his roommates in their little house. There were other women and girls there quite often, and for the most part everyone was paired off to a degree. There were 2 rooms that were used for sex, and the guys and their partners would take turns using the rooms and the beds. In my mind, everyone else was comfortable in their sexual trysts and the often public attention that it attracted. I was just waiting for my “turn” with E. We were not really even friends, we had nothing in common, we barely spoke. I was just there, with him, for him, I knew. I did not like myself, and was unable to remove myself from a situation where a male in my life had an expectation of me. From an early age, I believed I was to be ruled. My body was not my own, and I had to earn what affection and attention I wanted. I was still a virgin, had never even had an orgasm, had very little experience even making out with a boy, and never had been in bed with a male of my choice.
One day during one of my late afternoon visits with E, it became apparent that it was my “turn” to go into the bedroom and have sex. I was totally unprepared in every way, other than it was something I owed E. I tried to put on a good face, and pretended to be excited in front of everyone else. They all knew what we were going to do. I remember my body was starting to shut down, and then I sent myself away while I undressed and laid down on the bed. E was already on the bed, his huge penis in his hand, waiting for me to pay my dues. My little girl was terrified, and although I wanted to run out of the room, I complied. For my part, I laid there, and let him get on top of me and penetrate me with no lubrication or so much as an pre-emptive moves. I will never forget the pain, the shame, the fucking realization that I could not tolerate this. I began to cry, to ask him to stop, please, I am bleeding, please stop. I know everyone else could hear so I was also humiliated. Pathetic me, I thought. You knew what you were getting into, you did everything he asked and laid down on that filthy bed and opened your legs for him.
It was over pretty quickly as I remember, however, it does not take long to allow something so harmful and traumatic to happen, especially when you are participating in the process. I felt ashamed, quickly tried to clean myself up, but realized I needed to attend to the vaginal bleeding and pain I felt. I gathered what little of myself I had left to leave the room. I don’t remember talking to E again that afternoon. I walked to the store to buy some tampax, went back to the house, took care of the rest of my physical needs at the moment, and decided to put on a good face and return to the group. Later, I went home. E never said a word to me about our experience.
Why did this incident seem to settle in,find it’s place inside the pockets of other old trauma, stored inside of me just like all the other incidents had? Why did this incident not cause me to feel angry at E? Why do people feel like sort of behavior is okay to perpetrate on me? Is it my job to satisfy other people’s urges? Whose body is this anyway? Why do I let this happen? Why am I so weak?
Well, when you are taught at an early age that your body and soul are to be shared by those who dare to take what they want from you for their own satisfaction, what do you expect?
— MaryLynn Hinde