I have often wondered as I have read your first time stories how we ever get over that first experience of sexual love? Whichever way you look at it, when it comes to ‘the first time’, it’s pretty hard to escape the experience unscathed.
We are young for a start and this is our first big disadvantage. We have no idea that there are actually a gazillion great experiences out there just waiting for us. That no matter how great – or terrible – that first time is, that it is just that. The first time.
Adults try to make us feel better by trotting out pointless lines like ‘There are plenty more fish in the sea dear’ whilst we lie there wondering if eight other words in the dictionary could be any harder to swallow than those.
We can’t win. Because whatever way you look at it, even if you had great first time, in fact, especially if you had a great first time, where does that leave you? Not just broken hearted but constantly seeking those heart stopping highs and those gut wrenching lows….that first tingling thrill and simultaneous disappointment of first love that we then spend the next gawd knows how long trying to replicate…
In an awful twist of irony, this fact was confirmed to me in a recent report in the Observer newspaper. ‘‘Remarkably, it seems that the secret to long-term happiness in a relationship is to skip a first relationship’ said Dr Malcolm Brynin, the editor and principle research officer at the Institute for Social and Economic Research at Essex University.
‘In an ideal world’, he continued, ‘you would wake up already in your second relationship’.
I knew it! Time travel is a necessity in order to survive modern life.
The article goes on: ‘while researching the components of successful long-term partnerships, Brynin found intense first loves could set unrealistic benchmarks, against which we judge future relationships. If you had a very passionate first relationship and allow that feeling to become your benchmark for a relationship dynamic, then it becomes inevitable that future, more adult partnerships will seem boring and a disappointment.
First love literally does your head in. Its official. But in the end, it’s all part and parcel of the growing up experience. You can’t actually teach this stuff to people. They have to learn it for themselves. Some get it quite quickly and others take a little longer. This must be one of the hardest parts of being a parent, to stand back and watch your child get his heart broken for the first time.
Suffice it to say, I have a story to illustrate this point. Actually I could have used this story to demonstrate the understandable attachment that people have to certain pieces of music in their lives but we’ll come back to that another day.
And don’t worry, there is redemption in the form of Professor Helen Fisher, a woman who has written widely and researched the concept of romantic love. She finishes up the Observer article by saying the following:
‘I have found incontrovertible, physiological evidence that romantic love can last’, she said. ‘It appears that romantic love exists not only to initiate pair-bonding but to maintain and enhance long term relationships.’
Here’s to that.
Matthew Rock, California, US. Born 1990. Lost virginity aged 17
My story is more likely the type of story you don't hear about anymore. I remember the first day we had hung out. I had taken her to get some food after we had both been let off the clock at work. After spending the rest of the early evening with her, I started to get a feeling. I drove her home later that night and I sang songs to her making her laugh and appreciate the way I softly sang her countless love songs. After I dropped her off, I talked to her until 4:30 am on the phone.
I remember two days later we watched a movie at her house alone...then as Neyo and Plies sang ‘Bust it Baby’ on the radio.... we kissed for the first time. I edged to take her top off but I came to realize I wasn't even ready.
Eleven days of dating later, we had both came to the realization she was leaving for out of state, permanently. We thought that maybe what would happen would be something that would only be special between us and symbolize what we meant to each other.
The next day I felt chills up and down my spine as I wondered to find the perfect spot. I valued this experience way more than most guys do and I wanted what was to come to be special. I had rented out a room at a nice hotel for later on that night. Room 108.
I rushed home and thought I should set the mood, so I made a CD I’d make love to. These are the songs I would become a man to:
‘This woman's work’ by Maxwell, ‘Love’ by Musiq Soulchild, ‘Do I Ever Cross your mind?’ by Brian McKnight, ‘If this world were mine’ by Luther Vandross, ‘Still in love with you’ by Brian McKnight, ‘You made a fool of me’ by India Arie and ‘Holding back the years’ Angie Stone.
I'll tell you....it was just like a movie. Her colours matched mine and I felt so ready for this night to be the most special one of my life. We ate Chinese food on the couch in the hotel watching some cheesy TV show because the DVD player wouldn't work. As she jokingly fell asleep on the bed saying she'd fall asleep and see me in the morning....I turned the lights off and nervously pressed play on the CD player........the song I’m listening to right now is the song I became a man to....’This woman's work’.
I slowly edged up the bed and worked my way on top of her. As we passionately kissed, we slowly started to take each other's clothes off. This really was a movie. It couldn't have happened any more perfectly. Except for the part where it took 2 minutes for my penis to get hard ha ha. After that frustrating battle, I put on the condom and got on top of her. I hadn't changed yet, but I took her bra off, as she covered them, nervously.
This wasn't her first time, but my nervousness had made her tremble, though in a good way. I knew I loved this girl and I felt my way inside and became a man. It lasted eighteen minutes (I know this because I counted the time elapsed over the songs played on the CD :D).
It was the most memorable moment of my life and I think about it almost every day since it had happened. She left and nothing has hurt my heart more or made it ache in such a way, but deep down I think I still love her.
That special night was the 17th of June, six days after my high school graduation. That was six months and fifteen nights ago. I don't think she knows it but she has been the love of my life since she made that one night the most incredible and special night of my whole life.
The CD I made, I listen to in my car almost every day when I’m alone and perhaps just think about her. I miss her a lot, but for my own good, I feel I can't see her because I need to let go of my past and create a future.....She's on my mind and the songs bring back every tender moment from that night.