Editor’s Note: Today’s post is anonymous by request of the author.
It started in my head, and the image was only there for just a split second. He laid over me, looking down into my eyes. I hardly knew him aside from a few short conversations about building houses and being a musician. That made him more attractive to me; the less you know about a man, the less you have to feel bad when you don’t respect him. I am four years older than he, which makes me more attractive to him just by age alone. I closed my eyes and he bent his arms to lean down and kiss my lips. And then it was over. The fantasy, that is.
Fast-forward three weeks and despite the numerous times we have been around each other now he still calls me by a name that is not mine. I shake my head about how I ever could have thought I was attracted to him – even if it was only long enough for a short fantasy. I know nothing about him, and he knows nothing about me.
To me, he is just a silly boy with a poor memory. He is fit, quiet, and cocky, young and surprisingly irritable. He is not my type at all, but I know nothing about him. And about me – my heartache, my brokenness, my struggles – he knows nothing. My conquests, my achievements, and the battles I have won: nothing. He does not know how gently to hold my heart. He does not know when to push and challenge me past what I think I can endure. He does not know what a far way I have come from the mess of a girl I once was, to the woman of God I have fought so hard to become. He does not know me. To him, I am just un-sunned skin covering bones to a medium set frame with a mess of long, graying-black hair on my head and a pair of blue eyes.
To him, I am just breasts and a nice butt, a little less fit than I ought to be and a tiny bit shorter than most girls. He knows nothing about me.
So why is my fantasy a problem?
Well, I’ve realized it is a little bit like the culture of pornography. It allows me to create an ‘other’ in my mind that is completely suited to my desires (in this case sexual) and nothing else. He caters to my needs and politely goes away when I am distracted by something else. But I have a connection with him. And this particular fantasy, ‘him’ represents a real man. With real characteristics and a real personality, real struggles and a real heart. And now I have mucked up the reality of who he is – a creation of of the Most High God, made in the image of the Lord – and I have made him into something he was not created to be.
“You have heard that it was said, ‘Do not commit adultery,’ But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” (Matthew 5:27-28)
Ladies, these words apply to us as well. So I ought to have repented for my lustful thoughts and adultery, and leaned into the Holy Spirit for strength to hold this man to the respect he deserves as a child of God. But instead I ignored it, assuming nothing would come of only a few desire-filled thoughts.
“…but each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death. Don’t be deceived, my dear brothers.” (James 1:14-16)
Rewind to last night. I just wanted to flirt. I just wanted a little attention. And those desires, those silly thoughts, those fantasies…still lingered. The maturity I have found in the four years since I was his age told me that I shouldn’t have anything to do with this. Everything started innocently, moving slowly enough that I could stop before anything went too far. Just a foot rub, from a man who is not mine. Just a lean on his shoulder. No need to drag me away, I had already been enticed. And suddenly the exact image I had created of this boy in my mind had become my reality.I closed my eyes and he bent his arms to lean down and kiss my lips.
As he did so, the most peculiar thought popped into my head: “This is the problem with culture of pornography.”
I played the thought over and over in my mind, wanting to shout it out, but the boy I barely knew filled the space that was meant for those words with his tongue. Like every other time with other boys, I catered to his needs and desires just to the point of making me uncomfortable and then distracted him elsewhere. Like every other time, I became a slave to this man’s fantasies and images that he has collected of sexy women. I am still working through why I did not stand up, smack him in the face for taking a foot rub to a butt grab and go inside, but that is not the point I am making.
This is the point: my random thought about the culture of pornography came from the realization that this boy has never and will never love me. I am nothing to him. Just a face he will see for the next month or so, and then likely never again this side of Heaven. I was his live porn, of sorts. The kind you get to touch, except when she asks you to stop for a bit. An even better way to get off, and still not have any emotional ties.
It teaches a man that he can satisfy the nagging erection without ever having to listen to the girl bitch about picking up his socks or putting down the toilet seat. It teaches a woman that men like her sexy, and after that, she’s useless. And it teaches us to come together and use each other’s bodies for our own selfish pleasure without any care or concern about how the other is doing. The culture of pornography creates sexual disunity between men and women.
I looked the boy in the eyes and shook my head. “You don’t know anything about me,” I finally mustered up the courage to say to him. His response? “Is that such a bad thing?”
It is easier to use the girl next door to satisfy your needs if you do not know anything about her life, just as you do not know anything about the girl on the screen. And real life is better isn’t it? And it is easier to use the boy down the street to satisfy your unmet desire for just one kiss if you know nothing more about him than you know about the boy inside your mind.
I walked away from this with a new understanding of my sexual sin and the struggles of my past. By God’s grace, I have grown so far away from a lifestyle filled with hook ups and late night make outs that I forgot how long I would need to shower until I stopped feeling dirty. By God’s grace, I hope never to return to a place where love is absent and sexual immorality is abundant.
I still haven’t figured out a nice way to tell him that my name is not Kim.