.Herstory wrote:I have struggled with this definition my WHOLE life and it’s honestly got me in a bad depression right now. I consider the first time I had sex to be the first time I was fingered by my ex boyfriend, but I didn’t always perceive it to be. We were in a parking lot, completely naked, and he gave me my very first orgasm ever through fingering my clit. Before him, I never masturbated, but then he showed me how through mutual masterbation, which showed me what I liked and didn’t like being done to my body. For all of high school, I didn’t have interest in having intercourse. I had the “everything but” intercourse, and I mean everything. My bf and I would penetrate each other’s anuses, he would give me multiple nipple orgasms, I would orgasm through clit stimulation by finger, etc. But the one thing that never interested me and even turned me off was intercourse. My boyfriends werent into it either (I had 4 to be exact), so we never did it. The only reason I even began having intercourse in the first place was because I felt like I NEEDED to, like that was the only posible way to have sex and that everything else I did was nothing, even though it was extremely pleasurable for me.
Fast forward to 18, I have intercourse for the first time and I cried. I cried because it felt horrible, even though I was with a partner I loved very much. I cried because it didn’t feel like this huge thing everyone made it out to be and I felt like something was wrong with me. I cried because I realized at that point that I was doomed to have this for the rest of my life if I wanted to be considered valid or human, even if it’s not what brought me pleasure.
So then, I became obsessed with intercourse. I would have it with many partners, have it very frequently, have it for long sessions, tried different positions, tried everything and nothing worked. I still felt nothing from it. I still felt like it wasn’t a big deal. I still didn’t like it, and I would cry myself to sleep sometimes thinking that something is so inherently wrong with me. When I told one of my most recent exes about my feelings towards intercourse, he discredited me, and disregarded my pleasure because what I found to be pleasurable wasn’t “real” sex. He wanted to have intercourse and only that, to which I was obviously very dissatisfied because I didn’t like it. He made me feel shame for the way I had pleasure, for something I can’t change about myself, and for the fact that I didn’t have “real” sex in high school, so my relationships meant nothing. And these thoughts are still with me today.
Not only that, but in high school, I was actually sexually abused by one of my boyfriends. He would bring me to orgasm through fingering and then, when I orgasmed, he would press my clit harder and faster even though I was yelling at him to STOP. Please STOP. And he kept going until I collapsed from the amount of pain I experienced. He also forced me to give him oral and would grab my head and force it on his penis. He once did it so hard, my throat hurt for months. All of these acts were non penetrative, not intercourse, and although they hurt very much and to this day still make me weary, nobody ever considers it to be significant because the acts he performed on me werent “real”, which meant my abuse was imaginary, fake, made up... I talked to many people about it and they all said the same thing: “well, at least it wasn’t real sex. Come on. That’s not assault. That’s not rape.” How can it not be? How can people discredit this? And I was revictimized time and time again, which hurt even MORE than the rape itself. And there are no laws to protect me, or to protect anyone, especially LGBT, from these acts when being forced on you because they’re not “real” or valid.
Finally, I am also bisexual, which means I like girls too and that also brings me a lot of shame about the sex that I have. When I was in high school, I never watched heterosexual porn. It was ALWAYS lesbian porn. I just loved it so much, but I also felt so ashamed because it felt like I was doing something wrong or forbidden and enjoying something wrong or forbidden. When I finally came out and got around to dating and having sex with women, I found out how much more I loved non penetrative acts than intercourse. It’s always felt so natural and pure with women. I never felt the pressure to have this specific sex with them, but after it was done, I’d go into this massive depression realizing that what I liked wasn’t real. That I wasn’t real. And some women I slept with even told me that too. That the sex that we had was nothing because I didn’t have a penis and it made me feel useless, like I was less than human because it was impossible to give them the “real” sex they wanted.
To sum it up, having intercourse as a standard did at least these three things to me:
1. It discredited my pleasure because it didn’t allow me to not like intercourse
2. It discredited my rape because the acts that were forced on me aren’t “real”
3. It discredited my feelings and sex with women because no penis was involved
And these three things led me to the biggest depression and hurdle I have ever faced in my life.
Personally, I don’t consider intercourse to be “real” sex. But I know more than to discredit other people just because they can have pleasure with the acts that I can’t. Even though I feel like intercourse isn’t real sex, I know that it is, even if I may not enjoy it, becuasue everyone deserves to feel like their pleasure matters. There is no such thing as “real” sex. It’s ALL sex. Now what varies is the KIND of sex you have, not whether you consider it to be sex or not. I think the moment society embraces that is the moment other LGBT and people in general who don’t fit with the norm can finally live in peace without people always telling them they’re nothing and that what they have and experience is nothing too.
I wish I knew how to stop these feelings of worthlessness, but these messages about intercourse have been so ingrained in me that I have a lot of trouble getting over what has happened to me and what society has done to me. I’m going to therapy and trying to fix it, but it’s so hard when everyone has that standard. Even some therapists I first visited made me feel that way. They would tell me that I didn’t like intercourse because I was immature, traumatized by intercourse, or because I was doing it wrong, but none of that is that case. I wasn’t traumatized by intercourse I was actually traumatized by non penetrative sex yet I still find immense pleasure from them. And that was coming from a sex therapist, someone who should have the knowledge to understand that sex is a lot more than just penis in vagina and should know more than to be so narrow minded.
This problem infiltrates more than you think. It’s literally everywhere and because of it, it’s a lot harder for me to get the help that I need, especially when every time I do, they just discredit me. It’s been a very very difficult situation for me and it’s all because of intercourse being a standard. If you don’t think that’s a problem, you’re mistaken.
Sex is and should be defined by the participants of the act(ions) and can be whatever they decide is sex.
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