Part of me is scared to write this post. The other part of me wants to free my secret that has been buried within for most of my life.
I grew up in a tight-knit Zionic intentional community. Contained within the community were futuristic, experimental Terra-Domes and dome homes that looked like they belonged on the set of Star Wars.
At an early age I was told by adults in this community that I was going to hell because I would frequently respond with a ?No? when asked the question, ?Do you believe in God?? My parents decided to let me and my brother decide for ourselves if we wanted to join the RLDS church or not. This particular religion didn?t make a lot of sense to me as a child, so I never joined it. But I lived in an RLDS community for my entire childhood, surrounded by both religious zealots and well-meaning Christians. Sex, cigaretttes and booze were all taboo in there. My grandmother, a firm RLDS believer, thought that dancing was the work of the devil.
In my community, I had sex when I was 8 years old with a boy who was also 8 years old. It took place in his bedroom at his house. The definition of sex for this story: his penis went into my vagina. We didn?t lay on top of each other or kiss. All he did was stick his thing into my thing while we were standing up, with our pants down. I remember the sensation felt good. It was different. It was pleasurable.
Here?s where the terror sets in: we were encircled by other kids of varying ages, including some who were around 12 years old. We ended up having sex with each other because of a dare. Someone dared us to ?do it.? Of course, I didn?t know what ?do it? meant. And I can?t remember how I decided to ?do it.? I don?t know if I was pressured by the other kids or just decided to do it on my own. I was a shy child, easily influenced by others.
It gets worse. Right at the moment when the boy?s penis was inside me, his mother opened the door to his bedroom and found us standing there with our pants down, encircled by the other kids. It must have looked incredibly freaky and disturbing. She screamed hysterically,
?My little annnnnnnngggggggggggggggelllllllllllllll!?
In a millisecond, we disengaged then I froze in terror. My body was shocked and filled with shame, horror and regret. I was made to feel like I had committed a crime. It was one of the worst moments in my childhood.
Every day after the event, my friends teased me relentlessly at school and at home. They called me bad names and terrorized me by singing a tormenting song. Every day they insinuated that I was a whore.
That was the beginning of my sexual schizophrenia. Many nights I would kneel down by my bed before I went to sleep and promise to ?God? (I didn?t believe in ?God? really, but during these moments, I pretended to***) that I would never have sex again with anyone. In my child mind, having sex was equated with being evil, dirty and hideous. Having sex caused me enormous amount of pain in the form of bullying. Also, from this moment on, my brain connected having pleasurable sensations with evil, guilty feelings.
I?m fairly certain my struggles with sexuality were born from this traumatic experience. I call it ?sexual schizophrenia? because I feel that throughout my life I?ve attempted to dissociate my sexuality from my personality.
My sexual neurosis was in full bloom by the time I reached puberty. I believed that the ?sperm? from that first sexual encounter was still inside me and would make me pregnant once my body became fertile. I also became terrified of toilet seats and swimming pools because I thought I could be impregnated by them.
I suffered for most of my adult life from a morbid fear of contracting STD?s. I never did actually get any. I consider myself a success since I never contracted herpes, AIDS or warts. I?m now celibate. But I?m not judging myself anymore. Maybe one day in the future, I?ll be able to have sex again without hating myself.
***The only times I?ve pretended to believe in ?God? were this and another time I was on an airplane that felt like it was going to crash. It never crashed, but as I took the crash position, I prayed never again to get on airplanes for silly reasons.