Love & Sex

My First Time: Female, 18, New England

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Female • 18 • New England

My first ideas about sex stemmed mostly from poetry and movies. These were romantic, waist-up fantasies of arching backs and passionate kisses and a guy breathing hard — whimpering, even — into my neck. They were of trailing my hands up his sides and clawing down his back, of holding each other afterwards and not needing to whisper "I love you" because it was already in the air, of looking out the window at the quiet moon.

Even though the consensus was that he like, totally liked me, nothing was happening and that made me sad.

He was one of my first real guy friends. I went to an all-girls Catholic school, and being kind of a bookish introvert, I didn't get out much. But when I arrived at my fancy schmancy New England liberal-arts college, guys suddenly surrounded me. He was one of the first people I talked to, and we soon bonded over what we deemed to be superior tastes in music and movies. I spent my first few blurry weekends with him, and all of our friends assumed something was eventually going to happen between us, but I shrugged it off. My closest friends — the ones who were scattered down the East Coast at different colleges — knew before I did. They'd never met him, never seen us together, but they knew it. They knew I was falling for him.

What followed was a few months' worth of brooding while trying to seem friendly and put-together. It wasn't that he wasn't interested or that I wasn't happy. I'd surrounded myself with a great group of people, and he was at the heart of that; I saw him every day and we got closer and closer. But he picked up a sport, our schedules were very different, and when I didn't see him, I missed him. I was disgustingly jealous and possessive, but at least I contained it to my inner monologue. Eventually, I revealed my feelings to my girlfriends, and even though the consensus was that he like, totally liked me, nothing was happening and that made me sad. I had urges completely unfamiliar to me. Even though I still had visions of us cuddling on the couch, I also saw myself sucking him off — I wanted to hear him groaning and know the sounds he made were because of my mouth.

As the weeks went on, I noticed subtle changes between us. We'd always bickered in a flirty way, but soon those fighting matches were interspersed with quiet, comfortable stretches. Homecoming weekend, during the weird period between the game and the parties, we watched Pulp Fiction on his couch, and he rested against me with his arm on my thigh. (I got so wet.) After that, we seemed to physically orient ourselves based on the other's position. And I was more than okay with that.

Then — finally — he got the nerve to act. We were sitting together, reading for some class or another, and suddenly, his hand was on my knee. I wasn't going to make the first move, but this was all the initiative I needed. I reached over and slowly twined my fingers with his. I heard a massive intake of breath, and looked over to him. His eyes were half-shut, and he whispered, "Are we really going to do this?" All I had to do was smile and hold his gaze. Before I knew it, he had leaned over and kissed me, unabashedly. It wasn't my first kiss, but it was definitely the best — slow and full of meaning. He traced my face and neck with his fingers and, knowing that we'd probably be caught if this went down on the couch, I suggested we move to my room. Ah, the romance of the bottom bunk.

We were clumsy and rough, him nibbling my ear and my fingertips exploring his chest and waistband. Eventually my shirt was off and my jeans unbuttoned, and I was happy to discover that he actually knew what he was doing. We both knew each other's sexual histories (or, more aptly, lack thereof), but it was obvious something serious was happening. I toyed with the tip of his dick, which was already pointed almost directly upwards, and he went down on me for a while. I was close, but wanted him inside me so badly that I pulled him to my face and got out a condom I'd received in an embarrassing packet of brochures after a visit to the health center.

He asked one more time if I was ready, and I responded, "It's you. Of course I want you." He slowly pushed into me, and it hurt more than I was expecting. But he was sweet and patient, staying still and whispering into my ear what it felt like — how warm and soft I was. Eventually, he couldn't not move, and I was feeling better anyway. We found our rhythm, and even though it didn't last that long, and even though I didn't come, it was perfect. Then we spent the afternoon in my bed, tangled in the sheets, listening to the activity outside but caring more about what was happening in our own little world. That night, we had sex again, and I bid him goodnight, but not before demanding he give me his t-shirt, since it smelled like him. (God, how clichéd.)

After that, we became the predictably infatuated couple in our group of friends. We were always together, always touching, and always slipping off to my room for "just a minute." For the next three years, we lived in a romantic alterna-heaven straight out of a Cat Power song. But life was taking us in different directions, and so like everything else, our relationship came to an end. Those were some of the happiest times in my life, and in a way, I'll always love him. I still miss him, but soon, I hope, there will come a day when I don't reach over expecting to find him on the other side of the bed.