I have been fascinated with sex for as long as I can remember. I played doctor from when I was 5, 6 years old. A sex game I happily picked up as an adult.
And when I was in my early teens and my father got rid of his collection of nude magazines, I quickly curated them from the paper recycle bin.
I loved going through those glossy pages that so openly discussed what already fascinated me most in life, even though I barely had my first period;
Together with the nude models came Xaviera Hollander, who had a column in Penthouse, with a penis shaped lipstick. I didn’t understand the meaning of the shape, or the image. But I liked it either way, and spelled out her columns.
I think Xaviera’s page was Q&A, but I can’t remember.
Nor do I know when (or why!!) I eventually got rid of the stack of magazines, especially because I didn’t buy new ones. They were all I had until I got a boyfriend who was as open about owning them as my father had been.
Despite the promising start, I almost never came into contact with the sex industry, nor did I watch or own pornography.
I visited the Sex Museum in Amsterdam last weekend.
It was founded in 1985 by a woman who was 20 at the time. Her father had owned an arcade at a premium location; right at the route every train passenger and tourist walks.
But the arcade had to shut down because of a rise in crime, and that’s when his daughter stepped in.
She bought an eclectic collection of sex magazines, toys, and paraphernalia. She later referred to it as “rubbish” but part of her original collection maintains to this day!
Just check out the back; a small dark room, where you can see about twenty large frames with cut and paste crafting work featuring anal sex, fisting, BDSM – all dating from 1985.
I like that they kept that little touch of nostalgia – of the humble beginnings – even though the museum is much bigger now, and the young owner all grown up.
I met her at an antiquarian book auction in the nineties.
I was bidding for my father, and she was the only other woman there. She was beautifully dressed, and very friendly to me. I ll never forgot the excitement when she told me who she was, and what she was buying there.
Maybe we also connected because we were both daddy’s girls, I don’t know.
Either way, what I meant to say by not having a lot to do with the sex industry, was that contrary to for example that intriguing woman who had founded the sex museum, I had a boring career and love life too.
I became an academic, just like my father. I had long term relationships. No one cheated. It was absolutely boring.
I know what kept me from pursuing what I really wanted – or even what kept me from finding out what it was I wanted.
So I can forgive myself. Because it takes a lot of nerve and strength to figure out your sexuality, and I didn’t have that as a teen, nor did I have it in my twenties.
But I did know I wasn’t interested in sex the way others were; as relationship glue.
I found sex with the secondary interest of establishing or maintaining a shared life outside the bedroom, severely limiting.
It’s like saying; “Let’s see who can jump the furthest,” facing a brick wall at 2 meters.
For a long time I thought my faithfulness was fake and that deep down I wanted other partners. That it was monogamy that was killing my lust. That’s what you get if you don’t figure things out; you assume.
But in hindsight I didn’t mind having sex with the same person.
I just disliked having a relationship with him at the same time. This epiphany took me ten years of being single to figure out. So that’s a long time.
But yes, I am monogamous.
I call it; My kink.
Things get more exciting for me, if I can focus on one man, and one man only.
Having more of them, would be hugely straining. I dread the day I am in love with two men, and they would both want to date me.
I would have to step up my game, get out of my comfort zone of monogamy, and love them both.
But outside of the relationship component- there was a second reason my previous monogamous “affairs” aka long term relationships never worked;
Because I desire a man to be non-monogamous.
Maybe that’s evidence of the sexually rich and exciting start I had.
But I get bored at the idea of him being devoted to me, and not wanting to bother go chase other women.
It’s not that I need to know the specifics, or that I want to be part of a threesome (maybe I could- I don’t know).
But I just want him to totally own his sexuality and his autonomy.
And if I would ask him about other women, I would want him hug me close and answer;
“That excites you, doesn’t it?”
It may look like a docile ending, with me all monogamous even though I was into sex at such an early age.
But ultimately what it comes down to, is that I simply refuse to settle for any man who doesn’t arouse me, surprise me, and lure me in with the same seductive power as that stack of nude magazines had on a thirteen year old girl.
An Unexamined Life is Not Worth Living
extra Dutch/ Nederlands
2020 interview Gaykrant met Xaviera Hollander
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