Saturday, January 06, 2007

Let's Talk About....

My friends tell me that am turning into a sex maniac - as in I talk about sex a lot more than I used to. Really? I asked. Yes, they said. I felt I was well within my rights to object to that because unlike most of them, I never discuss or describe my personal experiences. I may blog about them but then anonymous blogging is different.

They all conceded that point but they explained that I was now much more open about sexual issues, discussing them, joking about them. Also, the most unlikely things seem to make me think of sex. My friend D. stated that she'd never known me to start conversations about sex before but that now I do it all the time.

I didn't actually say it to them but of course they should have known that it's marriage that did this to me. Because - being a good Muslim girl - my husband would have been my first. And my wedding night would have been my first time. So I didn't talk about sex before because I had nothing to talk about essentially. And I am more fascinated with it now because it's such an important part of my life - as opposed to when it wasn't part of my reality & something other people did. Perfectly logical & hardly original in this part of the world, one would think.

Except that's not nearly as self-evident to everyone around me as it is to me, I guess. D. would know. She's a close friend. But the others probably may or may not have believed it. Why? Well, before my marriage, I'd heard lots of reasons for why people didn't think I could be a virgin: I don't wear hijab, I smoke, I go out clubbing, I travel abroad without a mo7ram, I flirt etc......Not that I ever bothered to defend my sexual experience - or lack thereof - to all & sundry. I couldn't have for one thing because no one would say that sort of thing to you in your face, would they? They'd say it to someone who'd say it to someone etc...until someone volunteered to tell you about it. Provided they didn't reach my family, I didn't usually worry too much about these things.

My ex didn't help. After I managed to end our engagement, a friend of mine - who was also a good friend of my ex's - was doing his best to get us back together. I tried -as gently as possible - to explain that as far as I was concerned, pigs would have to fly first etc......He would keep telling me how much my ex still loves me, how heartbroken my ex was. And then once he suggested that my ex felt honor-bound to marry me because we'd slept together. I can't remember his exact words. He didn't come right out & say it. Kept hinting around it until I lost patience & confronted him & asked is this what you meant? And he couldn't deny it.

So that was how I came to know that my ex was going around telling people that. What did I do? Well for one thing, I cut off all contact with the guy who brought me these wonderful news. If my ex told him a story like that and he didn't know me well enough not to buy it & he didn't even think to ask me if it was true then he was my ex's friend & not mine. I didn't want his friendship.

The second thing I did was call my ex & describe in great detail how if anything like that reached my family & upset my parents, he would be very, very sorry.

After a while, the rumor died down. Some people still believed it but no one whose good opinion I cared about very much. A happy ending as far as I was concerned.

Even my husband was surprised - and not too happy I remember - to discover when we first started dating that he had a good Muslim girl on his hands. The conversation went something like this:

Him: You're not a virgin, are you?
Me : God, you make it sound like such a terrible thing to be!
Him: You are?
Me : Not that it's any of your business but yes I am.
Him: Ahlan.
Me : Ahlan wasahlan. I want to go home now. Nice knowing you. Bye.

And I walked out on him. Went home & had a crying fit.

He called. And called. And in the end, pretty late the same night, I picked up, fully intending to dump him before he dumped me. I was sure he would. You see, I'd been dumped in similar circumstances before. I once went through a phase of feeling depressed & frustrated because I couldn't face an arranged marriage but dating - in the long-term - seemed to require that I should be willing to sleep with the guy - which I wasn't before marriage. Without sex, guys just stopped calling after a while. Or they started talking about how am like a sister to them & maybe we should stay friends etc....

So we talked.

Him: Ana asif. I was very insensitive. I guess I was surprised.

Which pissed me off. I was tired of hearing that.

Me : Why is it so goddamn surprising? Why can't I be a virgin? Do I look like a slut?
Him: No it's just that you're almost 29 years old. And you're so beautiful.

The 'so beautiful' might have mollified me if it hadn't been preceded by the 'you're almost 29 years old'.

Me : What? So 29 is too old to be a virgin? I didn't know they had an age limit.
Him: La mish el2asd.(No I didn't mean that.)
Me : Tell me, K, do you have sisters?
Him: Khalas. Fihimt. Ana asif.(Enough. I understand. I'm sorry.)
Me : And really if you would prefer that we stay friends...
Him: Why would I prefer that?
Me : Ya3ni. So you can be free to see someone else who can give you what I can't give you.
Him: Inti btitlakikili ya bit inti? Howa ana talabt minik 7aga? 2oltilik ini na2isni 7aga?
Me : What does 'btitlakikili' mean?
Him: It means you're looking for an excuse to break up.
Me : K, there's nothing to break up. It's just a few dates.
Him: Bardo talakik.

Can't remember how the rest of it went. Or how he talked me out of ending it there & then. It took him most of the night so even if I could remember it, it would be too much to write here.

But yeah, that hurt.

Anyway, I guess that explains why some might be surprised that I am now more fascinated with sex than I seemed to be before. If they thought I'd been having a hectic sex life all along, then they wouldn't expect marriage to make that much difference I guess. They'd look for other reasons to explain the change. Like what? I can't help but wonder.

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3 Comments:

Blogger Leilouta said...

I noticed that the older we get the more we talk about it and the more we enjoy it :)

I love your blog and went to your archives the other day and read it all. It is such a joy to read you. Now I am reading Carmen’s archive. You are two are my favorites :)

1/06/2007 08:58:00 AM  
Blogger Alina said...

Lou, if you asked me, the only thing that could change that is starting to have sex. A friend of mine suddenly started to speak freely of sex and sexual issues when weeks ago, while she was still a virgin, it was all a little taboo to her.

Yes, people find it hard to believe such things simply because it might be hard for them to see themselves in that position and circumstances. And let's face it, we all tend to use ourselves as standards to judge others :)

1/06/2007 09:40:00 PM  
Blogger Jane said...

I wish I had waited to have sex. I was too young my first time and totally not ready. It would have been so much better had I been older and more mature. I think it's great that you waited for your husband. It's a rare thing these days.

1/07/2007 12:14:00 AM  

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