How I got to be me: An aversion to sex
Written by
Rachael Bliss
October 2010
Written by
Rachael Bliss
October 2010
Simultaneously I was introduced to sex by watching the animals in the barnyard and listening to my drunk dad try to coerce my mom into having sex with him in the middle of the night while I tried to sleep in a room that separated me from them with only a window. I heard everything. I saw and heard the power, the drive, the obsession with sex, that the whole idea of it frightened me, while at the same time, I was drawn into the need to experience it more and more as a third a voyeur. I hated hearing Mom and Dad squabble about sex. I wanted Mom to just pack us kids up and leave Dad during those times. I was also smart enough to know that with sex came pregnancy, and in our family's case, another death. Mom was a carrier of the Rh Factor, which in those days before shots to counteract it were available, meant that the more children she had, the more of them would be born nameless, laid in a common grave with no tombstone in Pleasant Hill Cemetery. At least in the barnyard, calves were most often born full of life. Dad treated my mom worse than most of his heifers in heat. Nevertheless, the subject of sex permeated most of my thinking and daydreaming moments. I got a certain kind of thrill seeing the bull approach the cow in heat. He would not even consider leaving her alone until he had bred her. Then after the chase and conquest, it was as though she accounted for nothing. Some males would even kill their offspring later so the mothers would come back into heat sooner. Day in and day out sex, the power of the male was shown to me, as well as the conquest of the female, who in turn would have to carry a fetus for months, experience morning sickness, grow huge, experience cramping and swelling legs, have to endure painful and dangerous labor and delivery, and then go on to breastfeed and constantly care for a baby (if it lived) for 18 years or more. I began to resent being a woman, a female, whose body would have to accommodate a huge penis, whenever a male decided he wanted sex, which was usually about as often as he wanted a beer. Why? Why? And then to top all that off, the male would get the most and best food. He would be the boss and the woman and kids would be his fiefdom. If the woman didn't submit to the man, no wonder if he went looking for sex elsewhere. It would always be her fault. All that said, I was still obsessed the the whys and hows of sex. It was like an earthly god, more powerful than any other drive. I abhorred it, cowered in fear of it, yet wanted to see just why it was supposedly so marvelous. Then along comes my lover, an Iowa boy raised on the mentality that a healthy sex life was more important than God Himself. I was chosen to experience sex with him and only him. Later I married him. He seemed to get a lot out of sex, but for me, it was not anywhere near the hype others had given it. Sometimes I had orgasms; most of the time not. Sometimes I was awake; sometimes not. I calculated how many times in my lifetime I would have to be manhandled, conquered like this before one of us died. The answer was overwhelming! The only way I could enjoy sex was if I fantasized myself as that cow in the barnyard being bred by the bull, or as a daughter being raped by her father, or as a slave woman or conquered Vietnamese peasant being raped by a soldier. This was sick! I had to leave! And I did --- five kids and 42 years later.

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