Thankfully, my parents never sat me down for ‘The Birds and The Bees’ chat. Instead, they wimped out and let a motley crew of Gym teachers do the dirty work for them.
Little did they know, I was waaay ahead of the game. Everything I wanted to know (and some stuff I didn’t!) about sex was gleaned through reading. It started innocently enough with fellow New Jersey-ite and famed YA author, Judy Blume.
Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret was a rite of passage for girls in my fourth grade class back in 1983. The book made breasts and monthly visits from the ‘period fairy’ seem like the hottest commodities in town. Looking back, I just laugh darkly, thinking how little we knew.
By 6th grade, someone had purloined a copy of Blume’s Forever from an older sister and the book made the rounds. Entire sections were highlighted and notes were written into the margins in girlish scrawl. We learned that boys name their packages! Eeek! Worse yet–we were supposed to touch said packages! Would the horrors never end?!
By 8th grade, I was on to the big leagues. Judy Blume was for amateurs–I was reading Jackie Collins and certain sections of The Godfather. V.C. Andrews did her best to introduce me to incest and other heinous acts, while Collins provided such graphic detail when it came to sex-scapades that my cheeks are turning pink just thinking back on Hollywood Wives.
So, am I alone in my literary sex education or are there more of you out there? It would make me feel better to learn I’m not a freak, so lie if you must.