As I was driving home from work the other day I realize that I was about 5 miles away from the last time that I remembered being awake. This could be problematic! Now, I have to acknowledge that this isn’t the first time that I have been on “auto-pilot“ but it did make me remember a conversation I had with one of my friends back when I was in high school.
As high school kids conversations often turned a little bit “off-color.” My friend was brought up in a Christian, home that was predominantly run by his mother; his mother, often overpowering, made it very clear that boys were not naughty and that they did not have bad thoughts. Our High School conversation turned to the first time that he remembered “becoming stimulated.” For him, the first time that he saw anything sexual was a deck of playing cards. In the center instead of bicycles or shapes were sketched sexual acts being carried out. I mention this not because I remembered the conversation about his first erection, but because of his feeling of shame that came through these actions based upon his mother’s opinion and religious control and how it related to him falling asleep while driving.
My friend worked very hard at his family‘s business throughout high school and even into college. Not only did he work 80 hours a week for his family‘s business but he also attended school. This experience of burning the candle at both ends certainly caused much tiredness.
His recollection of why is that he hadn’t slept in days was because of studying for final exams as well as it was a busy time at the family business. On his way home, tired intellectually, emotionally, and physically he fell asleep while driving. He jostled awake as his truck wedged into a small hill and a ditch. To the right was a large tree, to the left behind him was another large tree. Thankful that he was still alive he recalled much of his mother’s upbringing. Thankful, perhaps to God that he didn’t hit either large tree.
One of the things his mother insisted upon and raised her children to firmly believe was that sex should not occur until marriage. Evil and dirty thoughts such as about sex were not to occur, furthermore, sex was completely out of the question. “Nice boys do not have sex before marriage,” would be the preaching of his mother. At 19 years old my friend realized that he had labored his whole life and it appeared there was an opportunity for him to have died without ever having experienced sex. To hell with what she thinks.
Now, I don’t quite know what his feelings are on religion and I don’t know how he feels about heaven or hell. I do understand that this experience, where he almost died, started him questioning the no sex edict of his mother.
Although In ever had an experience where I felt my parents were controlling I cannot understand how he might’ve felt at 19 years old and being a virgin. I also cannot connect with him on having fallen asleep and driven my car off the road, fortunately for me. I have, however, had experiences where I felt very fortunate to come out of them alive. My motivation for sex as an adolescent had nothing to do with religion or a near-death experience. Simply stated, I feel fortunate that I came to sex in a natural way. Lust, love, consenting and willingly and with passion, these emotions are more natural than the control of religion.