Sometimes I think I’m a horrible, disgusting person. Not because of how I act or behave, or the way I treat people or the way I think. I feel like a horrible person because people tell me I am…
I’m a horrible person because of the advice I give to 14-year-old girls on this blog. I’m ruining their lives, taking their innocence, and turning something sacred and special like sex into a casual, vulgar act. I’m a sick pervert, a slut, a whore.
You get the picture.
I get trolled from time-to-time, and the people who leave comments on my blog are unappreciative and downright disgusted by my story, experience, opinions, and advice.
I don’t allow these comments to be published, I delete every single one of them. I used to allow them, thinking everyone was entitled to their own opinion. I had this one guy leave a very sombre message about how it was twisted for me to refer to sexual partners as “lovers” at the age of 14. I’ve had religious individuals tell me I’m a sinner, that I’m in direct violation of the word of God and I will face my judgement.
Whenever these comments come into my inbox, my heart hurts for a few days. I feel really bad about myself, and question my morality. I worry that the advice I’ve given – practice safe sex with a respectable partner only when you give consent – is wrong, and that I’m destroying peoples lives.
It’s a horrible experience to be trolled, especially when you reveal such personal and intimate details about your own life. You begin to doubt yourself, and question your values and beliefs.
But then rational thought comes flooding back into my brain and I remember some fundamental truths about human nature, society, people.
We are a living, breathing species. Our biology is designed to procreate. Females begin menstruation as early as 11-years-old, some even younger. Males begin puberty at roughly the same time, and sometimes as early as 9-years-old. In some cultures, women have their first child by the age of 13. Is this right? Not in my eyes. But it demonstrates a fundamental reality about sex: as human beings our bodies are physically ready for sex by the time we become teenagers.
And guess what? Teenagers have sex.
I’m not telling them to have sex. Society is not telling them to have sex.
They are having sex on their own. Despite the advice from their parents and teachers. They are doing it, whether you like it or not.
So why should I feel bad for telling them how to do it safely, and on their own terms?
The reality is, I shouldn’t. And neither should you.
Sex, like anything else in life, is a deeply personal decision. No one can make that decision for you. And no one should be allowed to pass judgement on you for it. But sadly they do.
I can’t control what people think about me or say to me. I can, however, control what I think about myself. And I can choose to let the opinions of others stop me from giving helpful advice.
The choice is mine, and it’s yours.
I choose to be helpful and supportive of others. I choose to keep writing about sex because it helps people.
I may not be able to control what people think or say about me. I may not be able to control what comments they submit to my blog. But guess what? I can control what gets published. With the swipe of a key I can delete a message they composed with considerable heart and emotion.
Whenever we’re confronted by haters, let’s all swipe the proverbial delete key and keep going. Because my truth, like yours, deserves to be told.