Jump to content
  • Sky
  • Blueberry
  • Slate
  • Blackcurrant
  • Watermelon
  • Strawberry
  • Orange
  • Banana
  • Apple
  • Emerald
  • Chocolate
  • Charcoal

Paradigm Lost

Sign in to follow this  
  • entries
  • comments
  • views

Close Your Eyes and Think of Jesus

Sign in to follow this  


This blog post may be a little more vague than my others, as I'm not sure exactly how much detail I want to get into regarding my personal experience of sexuality as I grew up fundie Calvinist. But I do think it's an important subject, and I've seen so many questions on FJ about different fundies and how they understand and experience sex. I can't speak to each family, of course, but I'm reasonably certain that my upbringing was not far from the fundie norm.

So to start: sex education. We didn't have any. Or, more accurately, when I was 11 years old I was given a pamphlet called Almost 12 by Kenneth Taylor, which is still available on Amazon. It had very minimal information, and my mother glued black construction paper over the two-page illustration that, I assume, was of naked people. I had no discussion of the book with my parents: I think my mother asked if I had any questions, and I said no. Of course I said no; I was mortified. 

So I had some idea that "sex" involved putting a penis inside a vagina (no idea of any actual mechanics, positions, etc.). Also "petting" and kissing before marriage was bad and wrong, and that courtship was the God-approved way to find a marriage partner. I read so many books on courtship, although I blessedly escaped Josh Harris' semenal work (yes, I made a pun, sue me). Josh Harris was actually a second wave for us; my younger siblings read his book, I think. I remember some of the books I read: Jeff McLean: His Courtship (Castleberry), Dear Princess (Landis), and some crap by Doug Wilson. 

The church I grew up in had no position on courtship or dating. Premarital sex was taboo, of course. The pastor and his wife taught abstinence courses in the local schools, so they were pretty adamant about waiting until marriage. It was my parents who pushed the idea that daughters should submit to their fathers in everything, including choice of marriage partner. They had a lot of books on Dominionism and Reconstructionism, which are so anti-women's rights it's not even funny. I devoured those books; I'm not sure what that says about my self-esteem at the time. 

When I started getting periods, I told my mother that I was bleeding. I knew what it was, but I was embarrassed to tell her. She said "Oh, you must be getting your..." and trailed off, and my idea that menstruation was embarrassing was reinforced. I knew where the pads were: we didn't use tampons as that might break your hymen, which was your proof of virginity. 

Some of my younger sisters ended up coming to me for their periods/problems with their periods, and I helped them as best I could. I studied enough science to have a pretty good idea about what was going on during a woman's cycle during my teen years. I still had no real understanding of sex. My doctor suggested putting me on birth control for my irregular, painful periods, and I wouldn't take birth control because it "could cause abortions." (I knew I couldn't get pregnant without having sex, but I still saw BC as evil). 

From a very young age, I had realized that rubbing myself in certain areas felt good, and I did that for years. I had a sense that it was not an approved activity, so I did it privately, with feelings of guilt that I did not understand. I did not know there was a word for it, or that it was a sexual activity, or what an orgasm was when I first had one. But when I was 16 I came across the word "masturbation" and looked it up secretly in the dictionary. I was horrified to find that I had been engaging in a sexual activity outside of marriage. I wasn't sure that I could be considered a virgin anymore, and I was afraid that no good Christian man would want me after what I had done. I went cold turkey off the masturbation for years, riddled with secret shame. 

Even after I started becoming less fundie, it took years for me to let go of the sex guilt that I had grown up with. Now I embrace my sexuality. I've gone from thinking "penis" is a bad word to writing erotic stories and selling them online, and I definitely know how the Legos fit together, haha. And I'm happy to say that my siblings, for the most part, also refused to stay repressed. 

If there's a moral to this story, it's probably that if you have kids, you need to help them understand sex and sexuality. Make sure they know about consent, protection, STDs, pregnancy, anatomy, periods, masturbation, nocturnal emissions, same-sex attraction, bisexuality, asexuality, porn, and whatever else they might need to know to be safe, sane, consenting, kind, knowledgeable people in their sex lives. I look back at my lack of education and the sexual taboos I grew up with, and wonder how I got out of it without even more significant damage. (I do have some issues that I'm not comfortable sharing on a public forum, but I've read things about other people's difficulties that are much worse). 

I know that sexual repression can occur without fundamentalist Christian beliefs. I think my family would have been secretive and embarrassed about these subjects even without the fundamentalism. But the fundamentalism added a huge dose of guilt and shame to everything, along with homophobic religious beliefs and forbidding any sexual outlet outside of marriage. It's more difficult to let go of certain teachings when you're afraid of God and Hell. 

I hope this was helpful, or informative, or mildly interesting. Fundamentalist Christianity can go fuck itself. 



  • Upvote 6
  • Love 2
Sign in to follow this  


Recommended Comments

There are no comments to display.

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Posts

    • I wonder if Asher is part of the reason Tom is moving to fewer lives with the kids.

      Asher has not wanted to participate in quite a few of them. Last night Tom said Asher didn't feel well, but Thomas said twice that Asher did not want to participate.

      I watched a video from 2 years ago. The family took a mini vacation, so Tom could play his games. Andrea and the kids hung around the hotel. (Rolling my eyes here, because how fun is that?).

      They ended up leaving a day early because Asher wanted to go home. He was upset, had his head down, and just had had enough of hanging out at the hotel.

      Asher has common sense the others (meaning his parents) dont have. Andrea, and now Tom, need his help and Tom relies on him so much. I truly think it's Asher's displeasure and not feeling comfortable with the lives with the kids that is making Tom reduce them.

      Tom is definitely tired of the criticism, but he has such a thick skin (and thick head) that I doubt it truly bothers him all that much. But if Asher, the one true adult in the household, is saying no, I do think that's something Tom would consider.

      • Upvote 1
    • Coconut Flan


      I believe it's called Rufus bless MacArthur favoritism.  His capricious benevolence has been well documented.

    • Queen Of Hearts


      I am not so worried where Tom and family is concerned with Creepy Rachel Day, but God help any woman Tom might show an interest in now or in the future... I feel she could be in real danger from Tom's creepy stalker.

      • Upvote 1
    • melon


      On 11/4/2019 at 3:51 PM, Gobsmacked said:

      Born in 1960 I came down with chicken pox at 4 years old. My siblings both caught it. Sister was a baby. My two caught it aged 3 and 4 years, thankfully before staring school. When I was a child chicken pox parties were a thing. No vaccines then. Much better to catch it as a younger child. During my first year at high school aged 11 several folk succumbed. They were all really quite ill and ended up with some scarring. It's a horrible illness but seems to be worse if caught at an older age. My two can't remember having it. That's a good thing. My little great nephews have all been innoculated. 

      I was also born in 1960.I was about 3 years old when I had chicken pox,my older brothers had it,too.

      My oldest son was going to 4K,and almost every child in that school got chicken pox,that year,almost all,except him.He's never had it.My middles son got it at this time.My youngest son had it when he was 3,and I had not had him around anyone that had chicken pox,at this time.

    • nolongerIFBx


      On 11/7/2019 at 2:38 PM, Jana814 said:

      I know someone who named her youngest daughter Noa. Her older daughter has an unusual first name (ILA) she needed in “I” name her honor their mother who’s name was Irene. 

      I've never heard of another Ila! It was my grandmother and great-grandmothers' name. If I would have had children, it was a high consideration. My cousin almost used it but had a son. 


Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.