I am a small-town girl with a missionary school upbringing which is kind of hard to shake off even as an adult woman. I have moved cities, even countries for education and work but when it comes to love and relationships, you could still consider me a late-bloomer.
The concept of female desire (or its lack thereof) is almost nonexistent in the society and even in the mainstream media which mostly caters to the male gaze. Even in my early 20s, the idea of kissing someone would fill me with dread and apprehension. What if I didn’t get it right? What if our faces collided? What if someone caught us in the act? I had insecurities about my body and its supposed shortcomings and was forever worried that my then boyfriend (who was also my first) would dismiss me because I didn’t look a certain way. He proved me wrong every step of the way because nothing ever put him off - the stained bed sheets on the day of my periods, my bloated stomach, my bad hair days - he found every thing endearing. And truth be told, I didn’t get it.
Although we were in a long distance relationship, every time we met felt like a progression inside the bedroom. The bases were aced one after the other - hell we even managed to sneak in a shower together - but I was still apprehensive about the big ‘S’. I was beginning to even get comfortable being naked around him but sex felt like a tornado looming over my head - which would take me down. Which would make me so irrevocably attached to this one person that I couldn’t bear being away from him. The fact that I felt things too deeply was a given, I was also wrapped up in how shoddy I would be at it.
Bottom line is: I wasn’t ready to have sex. It felt intimidating and it made me very, very nervous about what I could bring to the table as a sexual being. It didn’t help that I would be leaving for the UK to pursue my masters in a matter of months.
And after beating myself up for it for days, I told him that. And he understood.
He was understanding and empathic and although he was immensely attracted to me, he said that he was willing to wait it out till the time I came around. My happiness mattered to him and he assured me that with both of us being each other’s firsts it would be undoubtedly messy and awkward, but we were in it together, and we would figure things out.
After that pep talk, I wondered what good I had done in my short life to deserve this sweet guy and his consideration. His support made me realize that it was unfair to put so much pressure on myself and that when I am ready, I would be the first person to realize and act on it. Till that day comes, I am willing to wait it out.