My Changing Body, My Changing Mind: Abishai’s Story

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Series disclaimer: HA’s “Let’s Talk About Sex (Ed)” series contains frank, honest, and uncensored conversations about sexuality and sex education. It is intended for mature audiences.

Pseudonym note: The author’s name has been changed to ensure anonymity. “Abishai” is a pseudonym.


“No way, they don’t get naked! A baby is made when a Mom and Dad pray for it.”

In spite of the neighborhood kids’ efforts, I tried so hard to defend what I’d been taught. Their version of making babies by getting naked would mean three things:

1. My parents had lied to me.

2. The public school kids had been taught correctly.

3. The jumper-wearing moms in our homeschool group were doing things (naked things!) with the stern dads.

I think I somehow made it to about ten or eleven years old when my mom finally had to sit down and have her version of “the talk” with me.

It wasn’t really informative though, at least not in the way I needed it to be. She had purchased a typical Your Changing Body book through one of the homeschool book catalogs. I learned about periods and that my hips would get wider and that I should be glad I’m not a boy because they have something called wet dreams. Then came the sex part – the extent of which was that a married couple would get naked, move around, and it would be emotionally fulfilling for the wife and sexually fulfilling for the husband. She would become pregnant. The end.

As I grew older and heard more things, the info from my Mom was pretty… uninformative. Birth control and condoms were things that irresponsible people used when they were sleeping around. Those methods always failed, and because the type of people who have sex before marriage are selfish, they will inevitably have an abortion once they get knocked up… if they don’t die of an STD first. Sometimes people are confused and dress like the opposite sex – we should pity them for being so conflicted. Gay people? They choose to be that way and they have an agenda!! Oh the agenda!! Seduce the kids and make everyone gay. They will also all get AIDS. Men look lustfully at women, and as a woman I should dress in such a way so that I don’t lead them astray. God-forbid they should be in control of themselves and their thoughts.

Girls at church wearing low tops or short skirts were always referred to as sluts.

It’s hard, twenty years later, to look back at all of this and laugh about it as a coping mechanism. I can’t, it’s still too painful. I can also see now that I was very interested in sex from a really young age. Yet I was taught to feel ashamed of those feelings.

I knew that the craziest things would give me that “funny feeling down there” and I was pretty sure that in addition to liking boys… I also liked girls. Yet, I knew that not only was I suppose to not be boy-crazy (though I should pray for my future husband!) but any feelings for females meant that I was confused, and was as bad as those “dykes” who were the butt of many of my Mom’s jokes.

Oddly enough, it was those early days of AOL, it’s Instant Messenger and the chat rooms that came with it that were my sanity and my education. When I was about 16 I finally had found a place to find answers to my questions. I was able to engage in a really colorful online life where I could be myself but not have to take any risks – which was especially important given how very naive I was. It was a perfect way for someone like me to finally figure out who I was.

Now, at 30, I harbor a lot of resentment for the limited information I was given. I’m now in year seven of a happy, monogamous, kinky relationship. To my parent’s dismay, we live in sin. To my dismay, nearly all of my friends who quickly got married out of high school like they were supposed to, are now divorced or separated.

A few of my younger siblings are now married; each got married very young, to their first loves. Their speedy relationships were grounded in purity and of course won my parents’ approval. Meanwhile, I’m still told that this cow is giving her milk away for free.

Some things will never change…