Selfish, yeah sometimes. Occasionally even ungrateful. Stubborn. I told little lies from tiem to time. But there is generally an understanding within my household that I am “the good child.” 95% of the time, I was a straight-A student. Doing my homework was always top priority, even if my friends and I would get distracted as we struggled through calculus together on the phone. I maintained a job during the school year and bought my own school clothes, supplies, lunch, etc. and paid for all my own fun. I didn’t even kiss a boy until I was 18, and waited until the unheard of age of 21 to let go of my virginity. [I don’t like the phrase “lose;” it was a conscious decision.] My friends used to tease me about how innocent I was, and were shocked that I never talked back to my mother and was concerned about being dishonest. I was a good kid.
The only time I’ve ever really felt “bad” was during the two months I snuck around with my first boyfriend, whom my entire family disapproved of (for very good reason–I myself disapprove of him in retrospect). It’s probably slightly problematic that he was my first experience with physical/sexual pleasure at hands that were not my own, so being bad was (temporarily?) conflated with feeling oh so incredibly good. I intentionally misled my mother about where I was to engage in actions she would not have approved of in any manner, but dammit I was 18, had just graduated high school, my whole life was changing, and it was nice to rebel a little!
I’m getting off topic here. Basically, the point here is that I have always thought I was a good kid.
And then I found out yesterday that a very close friend of mine didn’t start to masturbate until high school. And I was FLOORED. And I know you all of the internet are going to think I’m joking, but this person would not front with me about this. We don’t play that. This person even told me hir [haha third-gender pronoun; I’m not giving away any hints] best friend doesn’t know this. Part of hir explanation was having been “such a good child.” And I was still like Sebastian in The Little Mermaid with his jaw on the ground.
Because I’m almost positive I started to experiment with self-pleasure around the age of 8. I might have been 9, but I’m positive it was in the house that we lived in when I was in 2nd and 3rd grade, which means first half of being 9 at the absolute oldest. When my cousin and I played Barbies, our Barbies had sex. I discovered porn accidentally in the 6th grade, with that same cousin, but we were both intrigued rather than disgusted, and made a ritual out of sneaking down to the living room to see what was on HBO and Cinemax late at night when she slept over.
Does having a sexual appetite (and having had one from an early age) make me a “bad” child? I know that there are some people, even some people I’m very good friends with, who have never masturbated, either for religious reasons or because our patriarchal misogynistic society has socialized them into believing that women are not sexual beings and that our bodies are disgusting and should not be touched/probed unnecessarily. I am sad for these people. I am also sad for my friend. But maybe I should be sad for me?
[On second thought, fuck that. Who equated “sheltered” with “good,” and why do they deserve my time/attention? I turned out just fine, if I do say so myself.]