I wanted to let you know that your advice to DOM, the 29-year-old
anxious to get it on with his legal-where-he-lives 16-year-old
coworker was spot on.
When I was 14, I had a very satisfying sexual relationship
with a 24-year-old man. We met through some friends who were
college-age. I pursued him for months. He was resistant because
of our age difference and the legal risk to him, but ultimately,
I was hard to resist.
Still, at his insistence, we progressed slowly. I was a virgin,
and he was actually more precious about it than I was. He
bought me a copy of Our Bodies, Ourselves. We read
The Joy of Sex together. We talked and talked about
the risks, about condoms, about my feelings, about the possibility
of regret. We also talked about our age difference, the need
for discretion, and the impossibility of anything more than
a short-term relationship evolving between us. We talked for
months before we finally did it.
It was seriously great sex. Our relationship lasted for nearly
a year before I broke it off. (I was ready to explore other
guys—and girls.) The only downside is that because of the
taboo around our age difference, I haven’t been able to share
my experience with many people without rousing severe judgment.
So your advice to DOM was refreshing. I hope he follows it.
of rousing severe judgment, GNR, a lot of readers wondered
why I didn’t order DOM to register as a sex offender now,
thereby saving himself the time and trouble of being arrested
and sent off to prison. (Can no one read? The girls DOM were
lusting after were of legal age, people.) It seems to me that
a lot of grownups have screwy ideas about teenagers and their
sexual desires and rights—which is odd, considering that all
grownups were teenagers once, most teenagers lust after people
in their 20s, and many grownups lost their virginities as
teenagers to people who were older, and weren’t harmed. But
the official grownup position is that anyone who admits to
being attracted to a particular teenager—a young adult, above
the age of consent—has to be complete scum. What’s worse,
many grownups use “teenager” interchangeably with “jailbait”
and “minor” despite the fact that in most places teenagers
are as likely to be above the age of consent (roughly 16-19)
as below it (13-15). (Age-of-consent statutes vary widely—please
check your local listings for more information.) And to top
it all off, the younger person is always the lusted-after
victim, never the initiator.
Fact is, a lot of teenagers want to bag/succeed in bagging
older, more experienced sex partners for their first times.
When I was a 16-year-old, for instance, I had sex with a few
people in their early 20s—a couple of women, one guy—and I
was grateful for the experience and unharmed by the sex. (Well,
the sex with women was kind of traumatic. No one warned me
about queefs—I had to be peeled off the freakin’ ceiling.
“Holy shit!” I thought, “Why is that thing barking at me?!”)
As a grownup, I refuse to shove those early, beneficial sexual
experiences down the ol’ memory hole.
It seems to me that so long as the older, more experienced
person in an April/June romance is kind and sensitive—and
doesn’t mislead the teenager about the long-term prospects
(nil)—I can’t work up much outrage. I didn’t think it was
wrong when I was a teenager, God knows, and it would be hypocritical
of me to blow my stack about it now. (Check back with me when
my kid’s a teenager—I may feel differently then.) The trick
for a young person who’s attracted to an older person is being
able to tell the good grownups from the bad grownups. One
easy test: Feeling pressured to put out immediately or attempt
a varsity-level sex act? Walk away. Another test: Some people
seek out much younger sex partners because they either enjoy
the power trip of exploiting a younger, more naive person
or they can’t convince older, wiser people—people who can
see through their bullshit—to sleep with them. Again, walk
Finally . . .
I’m not only officially against sleeping with someone under
the age of consent, I’m really most sincerely dead set against
it. The man to whom you were lucky enough to lose your virginity,
GNR, sounds like a nice guy, almost the Platonic ideal of
a first sex partner. (If only everyone’s first lover came
with a required-reading list!) You were lucky to find him.
He, on the other hand, was lucky too—lucky that he didn’t
get caught, lucky he didn’t wind up in prison. You may have
been ready for sex at 14, but I doubt he was ready for prison
at 24. And yet you pursued him anyway—you were a bad teenager,
As a female who had sexual experiences with older men as
a teen, I am concerned about DOM. While at 16 or 17 many of
us females may look and act like adults, we aren’t yet. I
felt so pressured by peers and media to grow up fast and the
lure of an older man prompted me to have sex at 16. I even
initiated the situation. I wish I could take that back. DOM
needs to put desire aside and think about what I’ve said.
I work now as a youth worker with many girls who have been
in my situation. We are so regretful of what we did when we
were not ready.
hear you, RT: Not all folks who have their first sexual experiences
with older partners remember them fondly. (The same could
be said, however, of teenagers who lost their virginities
to other teenagers.) We both need to bear in mind, however,
that neither your negative experience nor my positive one
proves anything. Whether or not people who lose their virginities
under similar circumstances will feel good or bad about them
years later depends on a whole host of factors—including whether
they were ready and whether the older person was an asshole.
Clearly I was ready, RT, and you weren’t. I would encourage
any teenager thinking about becoming sexually active—with
anyone, whatever their age—to think long and hard about whether
A bunch of us were sitting around talking about sex. This
girl mentioned that her boyfriend disconnected his speaker
and connected the speaker wire to her genitalia. I tried to
obtain more details but was unable to due to a combination
of the group’s shock and laughter and the girl’s realization
that this was a tad unusual. She did indicate that it was
painful. I assume that this would fall in the “not recommended”
approach to e-stim.
wires? Definitely not recommended, WOW. And while we’re on
the subject of “not recommended” approaches to e-stim . .
In some papers, my column on e-stim was illustrated with a
drawing of a man with electrodes attached to his nipples.
I wrote that e-stim was for genital and anal stimulation.
Perhaps I should have emphasized more strongly that e-stim
is not recommended for above-the-waist play, period.
Passing an electronic current through someone’s chest cavity
can cause him or her to have a heart attack—and unless were
talking about Dick Cheney, heart attacks are never sexy. To
read more about e-stim and e-stim safety go to www.eroticelectrostim.com