Having sex and what it means to have sex has evolved immensely for me since I was a young adult. Let me share with you the sex lessons learned from one experience.

My sex lessons were many

As a young adult living at home and attending college, I had the understanding that having sex with a man, or should I say boy at the time was a way to display affection and gain a real boyfriend.

I had sex quickly after meeting new beaus without fully understanding that I was hurting myself. Hurting myself in the sense of not being true to the fact that my feelings and thoughts mattered.

I began thinking that it was perfectly acceptable to wait to have sex and get to know someone. I decided to put this newfound independence and sense of dignity to the test and I went to a party with a few of my girlfriends on a Friday night. I met a boy who was very interested in me; he talked to me all night and never left my side.

We started kissing and went to his room and before lust took over, I stated to him that I wanted to wait to have sex. I said I wanted us to get to know each other. My final statement in that moment, when I had sex with someone we had to spend the night together.  He was surprised by my willpower and ability to cease the pursuit of having intercourse. He stated he respected my opinion. I thought to myself, wow, I finally did it the “right” way.

We were going to date for a bit and then once we were both ready we would have sex. For the next two weeks, he would call me every day and we would have short sweet conversations. He would make impromptu visits to my place of work; I just knew he liked me.

My parents had gone away for the weekend and I was studying for an upcoming test. He called and explained he wanted to watch me study and I invited him over. Before his arrival, my feelings were all over the place. I felt nervous and excited. Nervous, because, I knew we would be alone and sex may be a possibility. Excited, because, I cared about him and he cared about me.

I was in a relationship. A relationship where we had discussed what we wanted for our futures; where we were going to live and how many kids we wanted. We both loved punk rock music and scary movies. Both of us witnessed horrible fights between our parents when we were children that ultimately ended in divorce. I felt and thought I was in a true relationship.

After he arrived, he was true to his word and watched me study. Rather, he was in the other room waiting for me to finish my coursework. When I finished he took me out to dinner and we discussed how well our relationship was going. He stated that he was prepared to stay the night and asked if I was ready to have sex. I was and we quickly went back to my house. We went upstairs and got undressed while we were making out. We had sex.

It was romantic and I was happy. Happy because I waited it wasn’t a one-night stand; he was not after one thing (sex), he cared about me. I rolled over thinking to myself that we were going to snuggle for a bit and have sex again. I truly enjoyed sex and sex that happened throughout the night is the best.

After I rolled back over, I realized that I was alone in bed. I sat up and looked around and realized he was dressed and walking out my bedroom door. I quickly got up and went after him. I wasn’t truly thinking because I was stark naked at the top of the stairs as he was at the bottom of the stairs. I said, where are you going, I thought you were staying the night. He said, “you live and you learn”. And then, he walked out the front door.

What the f*ck?! What just happened?

My thoughts were racing quickly replaying every conversation and encounter with him. What did I miss? Where did I go wrong? I started crying immensely thinking to myself what an idiot I was for not knowing. For not knowing, that I was being set up. It was a prolonged one-night stand. Prolonged in the sense that he was stumped, when I stopped us from having sex at that party. It was a challenge for him. The end goal was still the same in his mind as it was the first night we met; to have a one-night stand with me. He just waited two weeks to meet that goal.

My definition of sex changed that night that was one of my sex lessons. Let me restate that; my definition of myself changed that night. I felt I was special and one of a kind and I realized I was worth loving. I would not rush into having sex with an attractive male to prove that I was worth caring about. My other sex lesson was it is okay to have a one-night stand at a party and never expect to develop a long-term relationship from a one-night stand. Permit yourself to have a one-night stand or not to have one.

That is truly one of the sex lessons people struggle with constantly.

S. T., Sacramento, California

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