I’m the only child of single mother, abandoned by the father who I adored. Yeah daddy issues.
I nevertheless grew up with a lot of advantages: Private schools, music lessons, dance classes, etc. I had new clothes and shoes every season, satin ribbons keeping my unruly curls in place, vacations at Disney World and ate regularly at restaurants all over the city (Mom hated cooking). Spectacular achievements for a single mom who had no child support.My mother did everything right in raising me, but didn’t really love me all that much. She couldn’t help it; I was the Big Mistake she made with a married man, the disgrace, the sin. She couldn’t love me really. But she sucked it up, went to work and determined never to make another mistake again. She would carry her family’s disapproval and condemnation around like a trunk for the rest of her life (she still does). She decided that she and I would never give anyone an iota of a reason to suspect that we were anything but the best people. Hell, I didn’t own a pair of jeans or sneakers until I was 13 years old and went shopping for myself.
Catholic school + uptight Mom + absent Dad = insecure, damaged Daughter.
This made for a lot of repression. My developing curves were considered unfortunate, because they were pretty formidable. Instead of celebrating and exploring my body, I was encouraged to cover up and ignore it because there was something indecent about it.
Which explains why I retained my virginity until the age of 23, when I exploded into a relationship that was just as emotionally damaging as my upbringing. But in his arms the cold, aching emptiness that had lived in my chest for my entire life disappeared. Roof-shaking sex + emotional abuse = 13 years of on and off craziness.
Cut to 20 years later — past more bad relationships, one almost-marriage, childbirth, a horrible split, devastation, depression, diagnosis, therapy, realization and recovery. Here I am at age 47, single mom (another f*king cliche) who has decided after years (YEARS) of dateless self-imposed celibacy that I must meet a guy, have some sex, settle down.
But here’s the thing: what do you see when you think of settling down? An age-appropriate guy, maybe with a kid or kids of his own who all somehow get a long with my one. We get married and live happily ever after. Holy monotony Batman, pass the Xanax! Part of the reason I’ve never gotten married is that the whole suburban family sitcom lifestyle gives me HIVES.
So what then, do I want? Ah, the point, at last! I thought I wanted a deep committed relationship with someone with whom I had a lot in common — you know, all that e-harmony shit. But to my surprise, after posting my profile on a few dating sites, I find myself taking the road of a horny 20 year-old guy.
That is: pick hot guy, communicate with got guy. Meet hot guy. Fuck hot guy repeatedly. Rinse, Repeat. Oh yeah, I’m liking this middle-aged fuckfest I’m having.
I didn’t plan this, I just found myself doing it, and have decided to enjoy it and record with commentary and analysis for what I and any other woman out there (and man) can learn from my experience. Yes I’m acting out after a long celibacy (that’s part of it), but also having the sex I should have had in my 20s but was too scared and insecure to have, and have finally lost a lot (but not all) of my Catholic school girl inhibitions.
Image credit: Pietro Antonio Rotari (Italian, 1707-1762), Young Girl Writing a Love Letter, c. 1755, Oil on canvas, by Pietro Antonio Rotari (Italian, 1707-1762), © Norton Simon Art Foundation. No infringement intended.