Some girls, at seventeen, were pretty sophisticated, even way back then. Some had the figures to wear their mom's dresses to school dances, and not look as if they were in costume.
I wasn't one of those. I looked more like fourteen...stick figure...hair that stubbornly refused to be teased up into a "bubble"...makeup applied badly due to lack of practice...no social graces whatsoever.
So. Imagine my surprise when an older man began to ask me out!
He was twenty-two, and a bit of a "bad boy." He smoked and drank and didn't go to church, even though his mother was the Girls' Auxiliary Leader at the church my family attended.
I was VERY IMPRESSED!
I had had a couple of boyfriends in my last year of high school. One of whom thought a perfect date was a fossil hunt, complete with a picnic of sardines and bread. Suffice it to say that I acquired two broken toes that year, trying to teach geeks to dance. (It was dangerous. Who knew?)
Anyway, due to Mr 22 being out of work, and my youth, a lot of our dates consisted of sitting around with his family or mine, and his trying to cut me out of the herd for some serious sex education.
I learned a lot more than I wanted to about how men suffer due to lack of sex. All I can say now is, it's a good thing that wasn't true, or none of the poor little darlings would survive to procreate! I also learned a lot about the benefits to girls of "becoming women."
Over months, he wore me down. Not a stubborn person at the best of times (I know, right? You wouldn't believe it of the "me" you know now), I was pretty easy pickings for a determined predator.
The deed was accomplished in my father's big old 1957 Dodge Mayfair (Mr 22 didn't have his own car), parked out by a rural dump site.
How romantic is that?
Still, it fit with my mood. I was going to hell in a hand basket for this guy, and trashing my reputation as well as my person--the dump was as good a place as any.
Not to put too fine a point upon it, it hurt, it was invasive, I had no idea that it should be enjoyable, I had a bruise on the back of my head from the door handle, and, worst of all, everyone was going to know! It would be writ large all over my face. I would walk differently (so I was told by Mr 22).
"Now you're a woman," he said, "and only mine."
There went the alarm bells! Dingdingding! I wasn't at all sure I wanted to be "a woman," if that was what it took, and I was even less sure I wanted to be "only his."
One thing I was sure of: I didn't want to do it again. Ever.
I found out pretty quickly that once was not enough, and now every date was just the preliminary to a return to our romantic hideaway.
I told him it was the wrong time of the month. As he was, by then, working at a logging camp, he only got home one weekend a month. He started to grumble about that.
We were communicating mostly by mail when he was away at work, and so I finally screwed my courage to the sticking place and wrote that I didn't want to "go all the way" again.
In some unconscious attempt to get my parents to help me out of the situation, I accidentally left that letter on the dining room table, and my mom saw it. That phrase, "go all the way," kind of jumped out at her, and the next thing I knew, I was being awakened in the middle of the night for a parental grilling.
My dad handled it from there. Probably with threats of prosecution, because, even then, it was against the law for a man the age of Mr 22 to be messing with girls under 18.
So, the thing I learned from this is as follows:
You are going to remember the first time. Do your best to make it a memory that you will treasure and cherish for the rest of your life, and not one that will make you cringe.
If you're not ready, don't let anyone convince you that you are. There is always next week, next month, next year. If your partner won't wait, maybe you need a different partner.