I run into my house and slam the door. The lock turns with a definitive click. Safety.
“Hi honey how was your day?” Asks my mom sitting at the kitchen counter, her perfectly manicured fingers flipping through the latest issue of Vogue.
“Fine.” I lied. I could’ve told her about the red paint on my locker today. How it had stained my hands as I tried to wipe away the dripping “SLUT”.
Or I could’ve told her about the anti-slut rally held in the courtyard during lunch last week as my fellow classmates waved signs displaying my face, screaming profanity as I walked past. But that would mean telling her what I had done. And I couldn’t do that.
I tried convincing my parents to let me switch schools but they kept pressing me for the reason why. There were many reasons. The first was the loss of my friends. The second was the whispers. The third was the relentless name calling, the constant hate. But that would mean telling them. And I couldn’t.
I slip past my mother into the oasis of my bedroom. My laptop is lying open on my desk, the screen blinking with life. I have a Facebook message. I open my inbox with caution, remembering the embarrassing heat of the last time I had a message waiting. My heart drops into my stomach. It’s from Andrew.
“Hey. Wanna come over tonight? Parents will be out.” I shut my laptop with a bang, not even bothering to answer.
Let me start from the beginning.
It was the first day of 9th grade and I sat in my first period History, anxiously waiting for my teacher to enter. A boy sauntered in only a minute to spare, his bright blue eyes glinting with mischief. He sat in the very back greeted by a round of high fives from the cluster of seniors. He saw me watching and smiled. I felt like the luckiest girl in the world.
He caught me after class and introduced himself as Andrew. I had heard about him before. He was a senior, captain of the varsity football team, and a notorious player to say the least.
Things moved quickly after that. I began lying to my parents, sneaking out after dark. I would’ve done anything to see him. And I just about did. One night, after just three weeks of knowing him, we had sex. He told me he loved me. He told me he would never leave me. I remember sneaking into my house that night feeling invincible.
The next day was a Monday and I walked through the halls with a whole new confidence. I walked up to my group of friends who were huddled in a tight circle around something I couldn’t see. They looked up as I approached them and they all gave me the same disgusted sneer.
I saw what they were all looking at. It was a phone and on it a video was playing- A video of me and Andrew- of us having sex.
My whole world collapsed after that. I had no friends. I had no respect. I felt violated and betrayed. Andrew never tried to talk to me again. I received hate messages of all sorts- in letters, online, on my locker, on bathroom stalls.
Looking back, I should have never trusted Andrew. He kept pushing and pushing for sex and I was too wrapped up in the moment to realize that I didn’t want it. I just wish I had waited, not just because the whole school has now seen my most intimate moment, but also because I wasn’t ready.
People say that, “sex is so cool” and “you’re a loser if you wait” but I don’t believe that’s true- at least I don’t anymore. Being ready is more than a certain age or a certain relationship level. It’s about being ready for the consequences that come with sex.