According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, 36.9 percent of 14-year-olds have had sex – more than one out of three. Among 12th graders, 66.4 percent have had sex.
I remember going through high school in the early seventies, and I never want to do it again. It was a small, rural school with only sixty-five students in my graduating class. But even in that Dutch farming community with traditional family values, my high school was already becoming a hot bed of carnality.
But there were some huge differences in the society of 1974 and the society of today, especially when it comes to sex. Back then boys flocked to girls who would “put out”. Those loose girls were seen as prizes to be conquered before moving on to the next milestone in life. Juxtapose that to deer hunting; it’s a passion of mine. One of the most important times of the hunting season is the mating season, known as “The Rut”. During that time bucks will chase female deer (does) all over the countryside looking for those who will “put out”. Finally, when a doe comes into estrous (in heat) she will stand and allow herself to be bred. And I’m starting to wonder… in regards to sex, “Are humans becoming more and more like animals?”
Did you notice back in 1974 that girls who “put out” were called “sluts”, but guys who took advantage of them were revered by other boys? That doesn’t sound right to me. I think in the interest of gender equality both promiscuous females and males should be called sluts. It only seems fair.
In 1990 I went through a divorce. It was painful; it was hard; it tore me up inside. Suddenly, at the age of thirty-three, I was thrust once again into the world of dating. But this time I was in the big city, and times had changed. I was a buck in rut, and many of the does were in heat. Through the course of dating over the next few years, I noticed a significant change in women. The line between bucks and does had become blurred. Instead of men being the sole aggressors, women had taken to the streets and were also marking out their territory, pawing at the ground and snorting, even chasing men into bars. In the ambiance of that testosterone fog, in the whirlwind of that rutting buck’s dream come true … I succumbed to its earthly pleasures.
But I did so with more than a modicum of guilt. I’d been raised in the church to wait for marriage, and had done so. What was my reward? Divorce. So, in the light of my rutting buck’s jaded reason, driven by hormones, I concluded that God was a killjoy. There’s nothing wrong with sex; it’s a good and natural thing, to be enjoyed as often as you can get it, where ever it’s available. And sex could be found in the most unsettling places.
During that time, I came home from church one day to be greeted by a phone call. The woman said, “You don’t know me, but I sat in your row at church this morning. I was the beautiful, young Swedish blonde at the end of the row.” I gulped. My heart raced. I asked, “How did you get my number?” She responded, “From the visitor’s register you signed.” I thought to myself, Wow! I love this church! God loves me again! I’d had no idea the church registry was doubling as a singles ad.
We met that night at her house. It was true. She was young, beautiful with long flowing blonde hair. We sat on the couch and talked together. Like divorced people often do, we talked about our divorce stories and got to know one another. Then she slid over closer to me, and I suddenly became a little uncomfortable. We talked more and she kept sliding in. I started to back away. Something about this woman scared me. It was true, she was a beautiful, blond Swedish woman, and most guys would have been all over her. But something inside held me back. There seemed to be something extra-wrong here.
When I backed away, she looked at me a little confused, and, just then, a little boy, about 3 years old came walking down the stairway crying. She jumped up and ran over to pick him up. She comforted him in her arms and began to talk to him softly. She was lonely, raising a child by herself, and she would do anything to make the pain go away, even sleep with a stranger.
I remember the incredible compassion I felt for her that night, but she wanted passion, not empathy. I told her that I just wanted to be her friend and to talk. She seemed very disappointed with that. When I left, she was holding her son, rocking him back and forth, with tears running down her cheeks.
One of my favorite movies is called When Peggy Sue Got Married with Kathleen Turner and Nicolas Cage, which came out in 1986. In the movie, Peggy Sue (played by Kathleen Turner) faints at a high school reunion only to wake up years earlier in her own past, just before she graduates from high school. Charlie Bodell (played by Nicolas Cage) is her high school sweetheart. In this scene they are out parking in a make-out spot.
Peggy Sue: (says tentatively) Charlie, let’s make love.
Charlie: What? You mean sex? Intercourse? You want to have intercourse? Last weekend you said … What time is it? Holy cow, it’s late!
Peggy Sue: A lot of things have happened since last weekend.
Charlie: You were the one who said we should wait and you were right. We should wait till we get married.
Peggy Sue: I know I must have believed that … when I said it, but…doesn’t Lucky Chucky want to come out?
Peggy Sue: You know, your love machine. Your throbbing thrill hammer. Your thing.
Charlie: You mean my wang? Listen, it’s running real late! Come on! What is this?
(Charlie angrily pushes her away.)
Charlie: What the hell is going on, Peggy Sue? One week you say, “If you love me, you won’t.” The next week you say, “If you love me, you will.” That’s a guy’s line!
I can’t help but think that as our society evolves (defined as “downward spiral into graft and corruption”) the men are acting more like women and the women are acting more like men. I suppose some people see that as a good thing, as in, we are becoming more equal. I see it as gender confusion and away from the natural order of things.
When I was a teenager, I rested confidently and stressfully in the knowledge that while at a movie, my date would put the brakes on any move I made. It was hormonally frustrating, but I both depended on and respected the act of forbiddance. It saved me from my own sin on multiple occasions.
But now, I wonder … are there still any differences between males and females? And, if not, then isn’t one gender unnecessary? And, if so, which one is it? Oh, how I yearn for a return to the days when men were men and women were women and all the actors knew their lines.
Image: public domain