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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Bodies » Making up your OWN mind

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Author Topic: Making up your OWN mind
Executive Director & Founder
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Can you make up your own mind about your sexual choices, or are your boyfriend, girlfriend, friends or parents trying to make it up for you?

It isn't easy to make your own choices when everyone seems to want you to do what THEY want. Can you manage it, or is it driving you up the wall?

Posts: 68290 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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I refuse to let anyone make up my mind for me. I admit that since I grew up in the church, that's where I got my first ideas about sexuality, and that it was a wonderful thing, to be reserved for marriage. As I grew, I became open to more and more opinions. For example, I un-learned my parents' homophobia. I still feel that I wouldn't have sex out of marriage (that includes intercourse, manual, and/or oral). The farthest I've gone was masturbating with a platonic male friend over the internet. Heh. I don't think that anyone can make up somebody else's mind. About sex, or anything else.
Posts: 752 | From: Canada | Registered: Jun 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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For the most part, I just listen to what sounds right to ME and stay true to MYself. I was one of those teenagers that never had the little sex talk with my parents. Them and talking about sex were never synonymous.
Then my parents split up and my Stepmom is sooo different. She's very open about her beliefs. That's good, only her feelings about homosexuality are completely opposite of mine and it bothers me that she tries to get me to think of it as a horrible thing. She still has childish ideas like it's evil, everyone who is even a shred of homo has AIDS, and so on and so forth.
So even though what people think drive me up the wall, it's still easy for me to just stick by my own sexual choices. That goes for all things. If it was any other way, how could you be happy living by someone ELSE'S sexual preferences?

Meow, baby!

Posts: 9 | From: Saint Charles, MO, USA | Registered: Jun 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Executive Director & Founder
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I just want to take a moment to tell near ALL of you posting here what insightful, astounding and inspiring folk you are.

I truly wish that when people prattled on about irresponsible and immature teens, they saw and heard some of the voices I do in your posts and your letters every day. You all are excellent role models and just darn incredible people.

My kudos to you.

Posts: 68290 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Angel in Disguise
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I have allways tried to be my own person and go my own way but I'm now at an age where its difficult to do that. But I am my own woman and no man will push me further than i want to go. Unfortunately its a different matter with my friends as they are more ready for things like sex than I am but they don't pressure me into anything. I don't really know myself wether i'm ready for sex I guess so but it would have to be with the right person.

Linzi + Chris 4 eva

Posts: 34 | From: Wales | Registered: Jun 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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Exactly. I listen to myself, what my mind thinks is right for me. If my boyfriend wants to do something that I think is going a little too far (eg. having sex at his house when his parents and 8 year old sisters are home. no.), I tell him, and he listens to me. Like mop, I got past my dad's homophobia...he were always telling me that homosexuals were bad, and discusting people (my mom really doesn't have these views.)...and look at me now, so many of my friends are gay guys. No one can really make up MY mind on anything, ask my parents

I like bright colors.

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Well, when it comes to sex, you really need to be firm in your own mind. Boys are constantly trying to convince us to fool around or have sex with them. You need to make it clear with guys that no means NO, because some guys will just try 'till they die to get some!!
Posts: 384 | From: Malibu, California, USA | Registered: Jun 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Executive Director & Founder
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I want to qualify that a little bit, because pressuring someone to have sex is not only something that boys do. Girls do it all the time, though often in different ways.

Some do it the same way boys do, but many (and I'm sure you know someone who has done this) will "bribe" with sex acts to get a partner to stick around, or do something they want to do.

So, girls aren't the only ones who have to be able to make their limits clear, and in addition, it doesn't only happen in heterosexual partnerships.

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I agree. People should never use sex as a commodity for trade or a bargaining chip to get something out of another person. Isn't that almost like prostitution?
Posts: 384 | From: Malibu, California, USA | Registered: Jun 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Executive Director & Founder
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Actually, no. Most sex workers name their price up front, and that's all they want. Nor bribes, no manipulation, no hidden agendas. They also aren't in emotional relationships with their clients in which they are abusing their trust.

So, quite frankly, it's far more manipulative and dishonest than prostutition is.

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Wow, what an old post! I was skimming through and found this one, posted by Miz S herself.
Whenever I first entered high school, I was very self concious about myself. I though it would be just like how it was in the movies... group 1: popular, group 2: band nerds, group 3: jocks... yeah. Now, I realize that I'm here for me, not them, and they're not going to have much to do with my future anyway. This has nothing do do with the topic, but I'm just really proud that I'm this way. I stick with my own opinion, gut feeling, whatever, and I'm proud of myself. The only mistake you can make is trying to be who everyone else wants you to be.

"Only in America, dreamin' in red white and blue."
-Brooks and Dunn

Life is not fair, a fair is a place you show cows

"It's not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog."

Posts: 1619 | From: TEXAS | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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I started visiting Scarleteen when there were only about 200-300 registered users, and when regular members could reply to "Ask a Sexpert". Anyway, when I first came here, I was an absolute mess! I had these feelings of wanting to explore myself emotionally and physically, but I felt disgusted with myself simply because of what I was taught as I grew up. I still have a difficult time accepting certain things discussed here as freely as most of you do, because I keep hearing my family's voices saying "No! That's bad!" etc., but feel I want to hear a different point of view and make my own decision. A couple of times I've talked about a few of the topics brought up here with my parents, but it always ends so weird. Sometimes I feel like I'm "letting my parents down" because I am seeking another point of view on a "controversial subject", when they are so sure they're right, but really, I want to believe something because I investigated it and I formed my own opinion! I still fight with myself constantly over this issue though. *shrug* But I'm here, and proud and glad to be here!!

"You dance from your heart, you dance what you feel, thats how you know a dancer is real." -Unknown

Posts: 136 | From: City of Angels | Registered: Feb 2001  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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That's kind of like me, CrazyGirl. I used to be really grossed out by masturbation, bacuse I'd been taught that by my parent's religion, and have incredible feelings of guilt and disgust if I did it. Now I don't, and I'm very pleased with that.
Also, I have a very homophobic family, also because of religion, and whilst I was never as homophobic as them, I did have some problems. I don't really have those problems any more.
So I have progressed in making my own mind up, and I definitely think Scarletenn has helped me with that. I now know that if I were to go into a sexual relationship with someone, I'd only do things of my own free will, and I'd take responsibility for my body, which would be unlikely before because I was so desperate I wouldn't want to put anyone who showed any interest in me off.
So thanks guys

Posts: 394 | From: Manchester, Lancashire, England | Registered: Dec 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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I made up mind about my sexual choices. I have problems making up my mind for other things (like what do I want for dinner or other things) but I always (now) make up my mind about what I wanted to do sexually.

I did get forced one time to do something sexually, and I didnt like that at all. So after that I didnt want really anything to do with anything sexual until I was ready. I think thats why the 2 boyfriends I did have before my boyfriend now, got rid of me. My boyfriend now never makes me do anything that I really dont want to do. I am happy about my life right now. I am glad that I have a boyfriend who is the way he is.

Bobaroony & Erica Bearica
<3 love forever!

*~*Scarleteen Advocate*~*

Posts: 1978 | From: NY:) | Registered: Oct 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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Wow this just totally reminded me of when my current boyfriend and I started going out.
His previous relationship was very sexual and as a result he has a daughter.
There was a bunch of us sitting around talking and the topic got onto sex and someone jokinly asked him if we were gonna sleep together and suddenly two of my friends started on a whole big "shes waiting till marriage" thing. The thing is that wasn't how i felt, to me it was a matter of being with someone who i loved and trusted enough. There are going to be times when others may just want the best for you or think they know what you want, but the thing is, I realized, is that you have to know too.

"Enjoy the little things in life, for one day you may look back and
realise they were the big things."

I wish you mud puddles and dandelions!

Posts: 123 | From: My House, Canada | Registered: Jul 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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I think I do a really good job of deciding for myself what I want to do and do not want to do. Sometimes I wish I could be as communicative about other things in my life as I am with sex. Most people in my life disapproave of my sexual choices, which does make things somewhat difficult. I'm unapologetic about my limits with sex partners, but I constantly have to lie to my parents. My parents, my therapist (that's super-helpful) and most of my friends think I have too many partners, but I know what I'm doing, and I know what's good for me. I also think that if I'm wrong, I'm the one who's going to live with my own consequences.

*Limes Are Sublime*

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Gumdrop Girl
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i've been thinking about the decisions i've made regarding sex. while at the time, my motives may have been skewed, overall, i feel pretty good. giving up my virginity was, in the long run, a pretty liberating experience for me. trying to remain "chaste" was no longer putting strain on my relationships and my own body. now i am open to myriads of options, including the option of going back to celibacy should i ever feel that it would be most approriate for my lifestyle at that time. one of my biggest fears about having sex was being stigmatized -- reprobation from ppl whose opinions i do care about (parents and confidants). and i was worried about experiencing some serious spiritual dissatisfaction. but it didn't happen to me. instead, i was in a loving relationship for a year and a half. i've been responsible with the choices i've made, and i've been at least minimally mature enough to deal with whatever consequences they entail.

Living proof that it's hip to be square .

Posts: 12677 | From: Los Angeles, CA ... somewhere off the 10 | Registered: Jul 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Scarleteen Volunteer
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My mum want's me to stay a virgin until I get married, and I don't agree with that. She has accepted my sexuality pretty well, and I'm grateful for that.

I disagree with m dad on both counts. All my choices are mine, and religious teachings tend to make me more free, instead of make me conservative

Hugs & Sculoly,
Winnie :0)

Posts: 465 | From: Canberra, ACT, Australia | Registered: Jan 2001  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Miss Thang
Member # 5508

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I only just started to make my own decisions on this topic. I grew up (am growing up) in a very Catholic family, where sex was a huge no-no. We didn't talk about it, except for when my parents or grandparents were condemning the act and those who participated in the act prior to marriage. So I never had my own ideas about sex. I didn't have the opportunity to. I grew up thinking that sex was disgusting and wrong, and I really resent my parents for raising me that way. The least they could do was educate me thus allowing me to form my own opinions about it. So... with my 1st boyfriend, I was extremely self-conscious. We pretty much just made out; he fingered me on two occasions, I was too afraid to do anything else. With my 2nd "boyfriend" (if you could call him that), I had sex with him the 2nd time we went out. It was terrible. And I convinced myself that it was good sex because I was the sheltered girl who didn't know about sex and he was the experienced boy who apparently knew everything about it. He was really unhealthy for me. I was so lonely at the time that I did this that I probably would have had sex with any guy who asked for it just to make them my boyfriend. I have a new boyfriend now, and I know this sounds crazy, but I feel like I've had an "awakening". We haven't had sex yet, but when we do, I know that I won't regret it. It is the most healthy relationship I have right now. I have nothing to feel "dirty" about; I am so in love with him. So, people can only own your sexuality for so long. You won't realize how much they owned it until you finally own it yourself. It's a process; it'll take a while.
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Scarleteen Volunteer
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I was lucky in that I had mt mam and dad explain the basics of sex to me, no shame attached. However, I grew up listening to one fo my best friends telling me how much gay people were evil and how they;ll take over the world and reproduction will end yadda yadda yadda. Well, he's gay now and so am I!!! So that will tell you how good other people's opinions are!!1 However it saddenst me when I came out to a few people and they started to avoid me, not because of anything I had done or other gay people had done, but because of what they had heard from other people. One girl refused to even bruch past me for about 3 months afterwards. Luxkily she came to her senses. It saddened me though, because I knew these people, and they made up their minds about me because of other people's views and stories. Surely that's a bit insane?


Do not try to find out who I am, I am a shadow and you are the light, wherever you are I cannot be...

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Scarleteen Volunteer
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Just reviving this one for the sake of users who may not have read it yet.
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Celtic Daisy
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I'm pretty good with being able to make up my own mind. I don't like other people telling me what to do too often so if i don't wanna do something i won't, and if i do, then i will. Of course there's always input from family and friends, but in the end the decision is for the most part, mine alone, whether it's school decisions, health decisions, work decisions or what not.

'You've got the eyes of ten women. Not in a jar! I wasn't accusing you. I just mean your eyes are really nice'-coupling

Erin Jane
~Scarleteen Advocate~

Posts: 1747 | From: Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada | Registered: Mar 2001  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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i usually make my own decisions, but i do like everyone's input just so i can broaden my look on the subject. one of the reasons why i came to Scarleteen was to find out what there is to know about sex, and to form my own opinion of it. i was taught to wait until marriage, and still have it constantly drilling into my head, at this point i still have no idea what im going to do...cuz right now, im in a very loving relationship..and a healthy one. i may not wait 'til marriage, but i've decided to wait until it is with someone i love deeply and someone i trust.

later rox.
shorter signature, yes?

Posts: 138 | From: ur dreams | Registered: May 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
drAmA quEEn
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i think im pretty sensible when it comes to that stuff and i do make up my own mind. i wouldnt let anyone do anything i wouldnt want them to and if make it clear to them at the start. my parents are cool so i dont have to worry about that. ive gotta admit if i was going to have underage sex the main thing id worry about is my parents etc but id go by how i felt. im 15 now and so i doubt ill be having sex before 16 as ive only been with my guy 2months
Posts: 65 | From: uk | Registered: May 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Member # 7347

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I'd say I'm a pretty smart gal when it comes to sexual stuff. I have had emotional sex and casual sex and I've chosen to be celibate after becoming sexually active (I'm currently celibate, actually). These were all choices I made and I don't regret any of them. I am a very independent person, both in my actions and my ideas, and I refuse to let american society or my family or my friends or my partners decide what is or isn't right for me. Only I know that, and I realize that. I look to people that I trust for guidance, but ultimatly it is me who decides.

It's not always an easy choice. I've chosen to be extremely open about my queerness and very open about my choice to be sexually active, and for both those I recieve many judgements that are uncalled for and unfair. There are many times that I wish that no one knew I liked girls because of the harassment, lectures, and judgements. The same comes from being sexually active. Clerks clucking their tongues at you for buying condoms and telling you look young is no fun. They should be saying they're glad to see you buying condoms and not a pregnancy test.

But I won't let these people decide what morals and ideals are right for me. I know myself better than anyone and therefor only I can make choices for myself. Right now I'm choosing to be celibate because I know that right now, it is the best thing for me. It is not an easy route, and I actually tried to stray the other didn't work out. I was angry at the time, but now I'm glad because I know it would hurt my spirit to have sex.

I know that I could not be happy living by someone else's standards, so I only live by my own.

Posts: 103 | From: Las Vegas, NV | Registered: Mar 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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In the past my mother would always be the one to make choices for me. Whenever I'd go out with friends she'd always call out, "no kissing," etc. She'd always tell me that I was too young for any of that. But I never let her make my decisions for me. I know what's right for my mind, body, and spirit, so only I can decide what's right or wrong for me.
My boyfriend is a very understanding guy...if I ever said no, he immedietly understood, and there would be no questions asked.
No one but you can make decisions for yourself. Not parents, partners, teachers, or friends. You understand your body, so only you know what's best for you.

I just wish that my parents felt the same way :P

Posts: 99 | From: Vancouver, BC, CANADA | Registered: May 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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I love this question! just recently (well in the last 4 years) I have finally understood what it means to be me! I guess it took a boyfriend telling me what to wear and who to talk to but i'm glad to say that i'm now a tower of strength! i think everyone has it inside them somewhere... it just takes something, or someone to unleash it. you know what i mean?

I always had the privilage to do whatever I wanted at home, my parents were that cool, but I never took it. I just went with whatever they said, it was easier than having to fight who they were fighting. and now i'm also glad to add that i've become a very strong and honest person. I have a wonderful boyfriend that took my "no" on the first try and things are so much better. So i guess I should sort of thank that geek for dating me, he made me strong. (hey i had to think of Something nice to say!)

"Always be a first rate version of yourself, instead of a second rate version of someone else" -- Judy Garland

Posts: 3 | From: Mississippi, USA | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Shadow Stalker
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I would have to say that my parents beliefs and opinions have influenced my own... Although for the most part they have let me form my own beliefs and opinions regarding sex and sexuality. However, they have never, EVER made decisions for me.

My friends wouldn't even think about it. I'm currently in the "no sex before marriage" boat. While this choice is based at the root on religion, it's an easy choice when one doesn't have a S.O.

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Member # 12381

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I'm in that boat, too. And I agree that it's easier when ur not with someone. Me and my boyfriend have been together for almost 8 months, and we're both still in that boat (I've waited 18 yrs, he 17, so we're not gonna give in now). My views are my views, but a lot of them are guided by Christ. I know that may sound cliche or just plain stupid to you, but I've avoided a lot of potential hurt, as has my boyfriend. And avoided a lot of emotional baggage as well. My parents do shape my views a bit, too, just because they're really good parents (they've raised me with love and have even practically taken in my boyfriend, who has a less-than-ideal home situation). Me and my boyfriend don't do the whole hickey thing simply because I know my parents wouldn't like it, and I like to make them happy (well, within reason). And if I wanted it THAT bad, I wouldn't let them stop me.

I did at one time let society shape my views. When I was younger I thought, "I'm a Christian, and God tells me not to do anything sexual until I'm married, but that's just not possible in today's age. We don't live in Moses times." But as I grew older I began to talk with others who had waited, and found out it IS possible to live by my own standards, not society's. Most of my friends think that I'm the naive one, and even joke about me being the innocent one, but I've got something they don't (anymore).

Honestly, I don't know a lot about sex. My mom never had a sex talk with me. I learned what I know from sex ed and the internet (sites such as this). I don't want to be totally in the dark. Of course, I don't want to know too much yet, either. I'll figure it out when I'm ready, when I'm married.

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i want to be non-monogomous. and i feel guilty about that. but it's my life. i don't know.
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This post brings back some memories of my own! When my mom found out that I was having sex with my boyfriend... she totally freaked out. She told me how I wasn't her little girl anymore. It made me feel bad and I felt like any decision I made was a poor one because of the way she re-acted. My mom is very religous and believes a person should wait until marriage to "give theirselves away". So my mom tried to hold me back which I never stopped having sex anyways. But it's always safe sex and I've only slept with the one person. But my mom tries to run my life, which she shouldn't because it makes want to prove her that I am old enough to make my own decisions!

~*Never frown, even when you are sad, because you never know who is falling in love with your smile!~*

Posts: 126 | From: Small town, Tennessee | Registered: Jul 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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Hey! Good Question!

Over the course of my life, i looked around, and listened of how people felt on their views of sexuality, and and sex. Society has obviously grown to be a lot more open about these issues than it was back in the 50's when it was so very taboo.

Not anyone has stopped me from making my own decisions. I know that my 'rents wanted me to wait till marriage to give my virginity away but i didn't follow through that. My decision to be come sexually active at 17 was very thought out throughly. I remember spending the last few years before 17 thinking and talking about sex, but i knew i would regret it if i wasn't completely emotionally ready even though i was ready physically. I had to be completely ready on both sides of emotions. So naturally i was at 17, and i have no regrets. I am very open about sex. I believe that everybody's ready at their own time, and i give respect to all people i know regardless if they are a virgin or not. I love my people for who they are because we're all unique. You shouldn't terminate an friendship or relationship based on someone's sexual history or their sexuality. I'm also a bisexual (accepted my sexuality completely also at 17, but didn't come out till 18), and i respect all people who are gay, lesbains, bisexuals, transexuals, and straight. I feel that there has to be an open communication in a relationship with someone. You may not agree with one's beliefs, but at least respect them, don't critize them. We're all beautiful regardless of what decisions we make. We learn, and we grow. I am happy with my decisions that i make, because it's completely reflected upon my own beliefs, and from my own heart


Posts: 369 | From: Ontario, Canada | Registered: Jan 2003  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator

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