I am very blessed to have a loving and supportive relationship with my mother. I can talk to her about anything, and she’s let me cry on her (phone) shoulder more times than I can count. There is one thing I don’t love so much though, and that is her psychic mommy abilities.
My mom and I fought a lot when I was a teenager. You see, I was sexually precocious. I was boy crazy, and passed for much older than I was: I had D cup boobs by the time I was 14. I remember being all of 12 years old, wearing a thigh skimming 1960’s mini dress and relishing flirtatious looks I’d get from grown ass men who had no idea I was still a child. I was aware of the considerable sexual powers I possessed as an underage punk rock Marilyn Monroe with curves for days. I dressed the part in gorgeous vintage dresses that I managed to snap up in that precious era before thrifting became cool, paired with my Doc Martens, black lipstick, and a mohawk.
I had my first boyfriend at 13. Jay was a long haired, leather jacketed, switchblade toting bad boy with a heart of gold, straight out of a Shangri-Las song. Three months later I got bored with Jay, and started dating a metalhead geek named Drew. Unlike the gentlemanly Jay who would kiss me for hours without attempting to grope my chest, Drew and I got all the way to third base, often in the bushes behind the University, and I had the bug bites to prove it. Three months later I got bored with Drew and…you get the picture. I had boobs, and I knew how to use them to get the boys (and girls!) I wanted.
Of course, my mom wasn’t exactly thrilled about my short skirts and siren red lipstick and endless parade of boyfriends, and yes, we fought about it, especially when she caught me sneaking out at 3AM with my goth boyfriend Xavi at age 14. (The best part was we weren’t even having sex- we were out looking for vampires because we believed.)
As a teenager, I was seriously obsessed with Robert Smith and the Cure. I’d read somewhere that RS had lost his virginity age 15, to the woman he is still married to today! My gay best friend had also lost his virginity at age 15. Based on these independent anecdotes, I decided that 15 was an appropriate age for me to lose my virginity. Also, I was heartbroken over being dumped by Ric, a gorgeous punk girl who left me for the first girl I’d ever kissed (our high school queer scene was tiny and incestuous.) I’d heard rumors that Ric was having lots of sex with her new girl, and losing my virginity to a man seemed like the perfect revenge to my tortured adolescent brain (and crotch!)
I took the plunge two weeks before my 16th birthday with Rafael, a handsome, dreadlocked, 22 year old record store employee who had asked me out while I was shopping for a Siouxsie Sioux CD. We went on a couple dates, before Rafael unknowingly deflowered me at his man cave. I can’t say that my first time was all that great- thankfully it didn’t hurt, but it was kind of boring and unsexy. I was too young to understand that being visually attracted to a handsome dude was not the same as having genuine sexual chemistry with him. Also, we boned to Marilyn Manson’s “Smells like children.” Gross.
I confessed my sexual initiation to only two people: my best friends Shosh and aforementioned gay boy, while we ate celebratory cherry pastries. My mom had a way of “discovering” things while “cleaning” up my room, so I was waaay too paranoid to even write about it in my journal. So there was no way in hell my mom could have known I’d had the SEXXX. Of course, I was underestimating her PSYCHIC MOM POWERS.
The day after I lost my virginity, my mom woke up and told me over breakfast that she’d had a funny dream. “I walked in on you having sex in the shower with a light-skinned black man with dreadlocks. Won’t it be interesting when you actually start having sex? Hahaha!”
I blanched. Was there any way she could have found out? I couldn’t think of any. “Hahaha, that’s funny, mom.” I replied. Sex dreams about your kid. Sooo funny.
Of course, Rafael had the good sense to drop by my house unannounced that afternoon to see if I was home. I wasn’t, but my mom was!
“Oh, the funniest thing happened today! That guy from my dream stopped by today. Is he your new boyfriend? I guess mothers just has a way of knowing!”
To my mom’s credit, she never gave me a hard time about seeing Rafael, and never pried into my sex life other to remind me of the potential legal repercussions of statuatory rape. Rafael was invited to my family birthday brunch, and Mom was perfectly polite to him. I broke up with Rafael shortly after. I guess I still wasn’t over Ric.
Years later I asked my mom about her dream. “Did you really dream that, or did you somehow find out about Rafael and wanted to broach the subject in an indirect way?” Of course, my mom didn’t remember this incident at all, which leads me to think that she really just had the dream. Spooky.
16 year later, I have a new found empathy for what my mom went through raising me. My older sister didn’t start dating until college, whereas I started chasing boys when I was still practically a tween (a tween with massive boobs, no less.) She did her best to try to keep me from growing up too fast, but of course I had a mind of my own. For all our fighting, I feel incredibly lucky that she never judged me for coming out as queer, or my choice to pursue an interracial relationship. Now that I’m in my thirties she doesn’t pressure me to get married or have children, and respects my decision to live my life on my own terms, encouraging me to pursue my dreams. And she no longer has to rely on her psychic powers to figure out what I’m up to, because I’m perfectly happy to tell her all about it.