93 Reasons I Don’t Want to Have Sex with You

sex

You should just be able to say, “No” to things and be taken at your word. You should. You should. You should. But, for reasons unbeknownst to me, men never seem to take me at my word. Sometimes life feels like a series of men saying, “Come on,” in varying degrees- of-pressured scenarios. They say, “Come on,” as if they completely lacked empathy for me the desire to have sex with someone is an isolated impulse (spoiler alert: it’s not). Feelings and desires do not stand alone. They are webbed and sticky–intricately linked to everything that affects us (and jesus, are we affected). And though I would never suggest a woman should feel the need to explain or justify why she might not want to have sex with someone at any given moment, I do think that one of the many ways we can implore empathy in/from people is to share our motivations with them–to let them understand us better. And thus, I offer this small list of 93 possible reasons I might have for not wanting to have sex with someone*.

*Please note: this list isn’t even remotely close to exhaustive of my own personal reasons or those of other women, nor are any of the reasons mutually exclusive.

 

 

93 Reasons for Not Wanting to Have Sex with You

  1. This is a first date and I’m not ready
  2. I didn’t shave my legs
  3. I have my period
  4. I’m going to be getting my period any minute now
  5. I think my period is over but not over-enough
  6. I’m not wearing the right underwear
  7. I’m wearing my tights up to my bra like DIY Spanx (and look like the Penguin from Batman)
  8. My vagina isn’t waxed
  9. There was a waxing incident
  10. I don’t wax and don’t want to find out whether or not that’s a thing you have a problem with tonight
  11. I have an ingrown hair and it looks weird and I don’t want you to see it
  12. The sheets on my bed aren’t clean
  13. My tits are saggy
  14. My belly is floppy
  15. I’ve lost a lot of weight and I’m worried you’ll think I’m gross
  16. You’ve mentioned (several times) how big my boobs are
  17. My boobs feel too small
  18. I’m concerned you don’t know how bras work
  19. I have stretch marks everywhere and I don’t know yet know whether you’re a human being or a monster
  20. I’ve momentarily forgotten that I’m beautiful
  21. All I want right now is for someone to want to hold my hand
  22. You keep saying how sexy I am but I want to fuck someone who thinks I’m funny
  23. I just want to enjoy a first date kiss without having to be the pace car
  24. I just want to make-out on the couch and have it not go further
  25. I want to enjoy all the different bases
  26. You’re a stranger
  27. You just told me that you’re in a relationship
  28. You’ve dated someone I care about (and I don’t care enough about you to ruin that)
  29. I’m worried I might be getting a yeast infection
  30. Could it be a UTI? (what does a UTI feel like?)
  31. I think my PH is unbalanced
  32. I think my life is unbalanced
  33. I think you might be unbalanced
  34. I ate too much and feel bloated
  35. I haven’t eaten in hours just so that I could feel/pretend that I was even just a little bit thinner for our date tonight and (without admitting that that was a terrible idea) now all I want to do is get some Burger King and take off my bra (alone)
  36. You’re a terrible kisser
  37. You’re an okay kisser, and I’m not sure if being adequate is sufficient
  38. I’m worried you suck at kissing because you don’t like me enough to pay attention to what we’re doing
  39. I’m worried you will judge me for the rate at which I fuck
  40. You said you don’t like to go down on women (which makes me think you don’t like women’s bodies—which makes me think you won’t be okay with all my flaws and imperfections—which makes me think fucking you would be a terrible idea)
  41. I don’t think you could/would be willing to make me cum
  42. I don’t think my orgasm/pleasure is important to you
  43. We just met tonight
  44. We’ve only known each other for a few weeks
  45. We’ve been friends for 10 years
  46. We dated once or twice but then things faded because I moved away and now you’re in town and want to put it back together but it feels so rushed and I need a moment to readjust to you being back in my life
  47. We’ve loved each other so intensely and for so many years and it didn’t work out and now sometimes we make love and sometimes we fuck but I’m also dating other people and tonight there isn’t room enough in my heart for everybody and it’s too hard to concentrate on staying in the moment
  48. Your roommate is home and can hear us/I can hear them and it’s weirding me out
  49. I am more interested in your roommate
  50. I’m worried I’ve fucked too many ordinary men for insufficient reasons
  51. You’ve been acting distant since the last time we hung out
  52. You’ve been acting different since the last time we hung out
  53. I want someone who is certain they want me and you seem uncertain
  54. Tonight, I don’t want casual sex
  55. I need a pedicure
  56. I have a scar I don’t want you to see yet
  57. I have a mark I don’t want you to see yet
  58. I have a flaw I don’t want you to see yet
  59. I don’t trust you not to judge me
  60. I like someone else more
  61. I like someone else the same amount
  62. Dating is complicated and things get hard and I need a minute to think
  63. I just lost my job
  64. I feel sad
  65. I feel alone
  66. I feel unsafe
  67. I feel pressured
  68. I feel guilty
  69. I feel like a goddamn disappointment to everyone I’ve ever met
  70. I forgot to reapply for interest free status on my student loan and the idea of all that debt crushing me is making it hard to breathe
  71. I don’t know if you see me as a complete person
  72. I don’t know if you like me
  73. I don’t know if you like me enough
  74. I don’t know if I like you enough
  75. I’m not sure what enough is when enough is always moving around and changing on me (today’s enough is not always tomorrow’s enough)
  76. I don’t want to open all the presents at once
  77. The last guy I had sex with treated me terribly
  78. So many men that I’ve had sex with have treated me not so great at some point (often after having had sex with them and having been given no visible signs that they would treat me not so great prior to said sex and/or treatment)
  79. I had a fight with [my mom, my friend, my dentist] this afternoon
  80. A guy on the internet was shitty to me today
  81. So many men on the internet were shitty and disgusting to me today
  82. I’ve been reading too many (what is the right amount?) articles about rape and rape culture and everything that is bad in the world and now I can’t stop folding inward like an origami black hole
  83. You complimented me by insulting other women
  84. You said something slut-shamey
  85. Your bed doesn’t look sturdy enough for the both of us
  86. We have mutual friends and that makes a casual hookup with you uncomfortable
  87. I’m sweating a lot (why is it so hot in here?!?)
  88. I’m feeling really self-conscious about my body and don’t trust you not to destroy me
  89. I’m feeling fantastic about my body and don’t feel like you’re worthy of it
  90. I’m feeling some kind of way about my body and don’t feel comfortable enough with you to let you in
  91. I’m attracted to you but not turned on
  92. I’m not sure if I’m attracted to you
  93. I feel pressure to have sex with you and that’s ruining it for me

 

And the one that sums it all up, because all of these are just varying degrees of the exact same thing, which is

  1. I JUST DON’T FUCKING WANT TO RIGHT NOW

I Let This Ruin Us

*

I do not say anything.  I let this ruin us.  

I was turning 33, having finished my master’s degree and recently returned home to Vancouver, and he was 35, the only man I had ever loved.  We had broken up four years prior but so much had not changed.

When he asked me to come down to see him for my birthday, (or else he could come up and see me?), I had agreed.  He was the only one I wanted to spend my birthday with: reliable, loving, fun.

I had just been dumped by a 22 year old after only two dates for someone he “had a better connection with”.

*

We had Popeye’s Chicken and Biscuits for dinner.  When he had asked what I wanted for dinner, he added, “Whatever you want” and I thought long and hard.  I was on a diet.  I was always on a diet.  But birthdays are automatic ‘cheat days’, those are just the rules.  It took an hour to drive there, and an hour back.  When we kissed after ordering, the girl at the counter cooed.  My cheeks were starting to hurt from smiling.

We laughed till we didn’t need to do sit ups.  He kissed my neck.  We drove home with our food and our laughter and our happiness.  He shared his fries.  He gave me his biscuit.  His love was heavy with generosity.  We watched the hobbit.

“Is it better than the first one?”

“Way better!”

And it was.

*

I don’t know how to say I think this love might be hurting me.  I don’t know how to say that I might have been wrong before, that maybe my heart isn’t big enough to hold all the caring, that maybe my heart doesn’t have room for all the men.  I am a writer who is speechless.  I can’t say that I might not want him inside me, that it’s not so simple, that I’m confused about how I feel.  I think this extended love might be fucking me up.  This fucking might be damaging my good parts.  I don’t know how to say it because I let it happen.

*

“Get on top for a bit,” he says.

I don’t want to.  It hurts my knees.  I’ve told him I don’t like to be on top.  Why can’t anyone hear me?  I say things and no one sees me.  I’m spiralling.

I get on top, but I don’t want to.  I’m not in this place anymore.  It hurts because we’ve been fucking too long.  Or because my vagina is saying what I can’t.  Or because it hurts my knees.  My mouth feels dry.  Why can’t I say anything?  Why won’t you say anything?!

*

I used to write that we had duct tape love.  That our love would fix anything, hold it all together; our love was makeshift and beautiful.  But now I have stuffed my face with gauze, put duct tape across my lips; I am silencing myself for this love.  This is not love.  This is love.  I can’t see straight anymore.  It’s not so easy.

“Get on top, it feels so good,” he says and kisses me.  “You feel so amazing.”  And he means it.  It would kill him to know he was hurting me this way.  It would kill him.  It would kill him.  It would kill him.

It probably wouldn’t kill him.  I am not so special.  Why don’t I say anything?

I smile.  I try not to cry.  It’ll be over soon.  And then I almost vomit because of how much this sounds like rape.  But I haven’t said anything to him, I am the only one who knows I don’t want this.  I am the only one who knows that I am conflicted, that this doesn’t feel right anymore.  I am the only.  I am the only one.  Only one.  I am alone. My heart is tight.

Say something I scream inside my head.  Say anything.  Say no.  Say stopJust get off him.  He’ll plead; he’ll cajole.  He’ll say, “but you feel so good, you feel so great.”  He’ll try to convince me with compliments my ego doesn’t care about.  He doesn’t know that you’re falling apart inside.  He doesn’t know that you’re shedding layers with every thrust.  He doesn’t know.  He doesn’t know.  You have to tell him.  You have to say something.  But, it’s my birthday and it’ll be okay, I think.  He already made me cum and I can’t leave him hanging and I love him.  I will always love him.

I do not say anything.  I let this ruin us.

*

Later, after he finished, and we snuggled, my head on his chest, his arms cradling me, I turned over in the darkness and cried.  At first, the tears streamed slow and quiet towards the pillow, but I am an emotional volcano, and I could not control it.

I cried because I fucked him past when I wanted to.  I cried because sometimes when I’m with him I can’t help but think of other men that I am dating, have dated, will date, and that makes everything feel so very complicated.  My mind never stops.

I cried because I thought my heart was big enough to hold everybody, but my arms are getting tired, and I don’t know how to say that maybe I was wrong.  I don’t know how to say that I am terrified about what life will be like if I am horribly wrong about how much space there is in my heart.  I cried because I don’t know if I want him like this anymore.

Everything feels so cramped and crowded.  I am heavy with diamond problems.  It’s hard to complain at the bank.

*

I do not say anything.  I let this ruin us.

*

The next morning he made me breakfast in bed, having already gone shopping for all my favourites.  He made me coffee because the last time I had visited we fought over coffee.  He didn’t understand how it was an addiction.  He didn’t understand how it was important.  I had thought it meant he didn’t understand me.  My friends said coffee was not such a big deal.  I said that after 40 years, arguing over coffee might start to wear on you.

My friends said that I am lucky to have such love.

It was hard to complain about coffee when he had paid to fly me home from Montreal for a visit.  He had paid to fly me across the country and I was complaining about coffee.

Ungrateful.  Ungrateful.  Selfish selfish selfish little…

*

I don’t know how to extricate myself from this love.

The Comic: Kissing on the Docks in Old Port

Pearl Necklace

 

[dropcap]S[/dropcap]o, I had met a Montreal Comic, watched him host a show, and now we were at the docks in Old Port.

In all honesty, it was a pretty great idea for a first date-second location.  It was novel (he got to point out things because I’m new here, show me the river, there were boats – and who doesn’t love boats?!?).  It was private and one could argue romantic, but without being pressure-filled and presumptuous (like say, going to someone’s apartment might be).  And it was just kind of fun.

We walked along for awhile, hand-holding etc.  The first kiss came and went and it was pretty good (I’m starting to wonder about the science of race and kissing at this point given how few black men and how many white men suck at it).  I was wearing my magic dress (the one that makes my boobs look huge, my stomach look small, and my ass look great) and feeling good.  Things were going swimmingly.

The night wasn’t, however, without its flaws.  For example, he definitely got a bit too handsy out there on the docks.  I’m all for a secluded public makeout sesh at 2am when no one is really around but these DDs don’t make public appearances for anyone so it did kind of annoy me that he kept trying to get at ’em and even tried to put ’em on display.  Like, we’re on the docks here not out in the middle of the desert dude, people could come by.  Plus, he kept feeling all over my body, so I spent a lot of time petrified that he’d feel my spanx and it would be like that scene in Bridge Jones’ Diary.

After awhile, the night started to cool off quite a bit (my first respite from the 30+ humid heat of Montreal that had been constant since I’d moved there at the end of July) and so he took me home.  When we arrived at my apartment, I assumed that would be the end of our date.  A quick kiss goodbye and something about doing this again and I’d be off.  But, that’s not quite what happened.

Detour:  Do most men feel like only teenagers get pressured into doing things that they didn’t want to do?  Do most men think that it’s either black or white, you want to fuck immediately or not at all?  Because, I have to say I feel like that’s the case, and it’s just not true.

Because even me, this supposedly strong, bold, self-assured, take no prisoners, suffer no-bullshit no-nonsense, woman, gets pressured into shit from time to time and I’ll tell you how and why it happens.  It happens, because sexual activity can be a slippery slope.

In my experience, guys are almost always pushing for a bit more, for things to go a bit faster, and AS FUCKING IRRITATING AS IT IS THAT I HAVE TO HOLD  THE REINS AND GUIDE THE PACE, that’s usually how it happens.  It’s generally the girl trying to slow things down.  But, this isn’t to say she doesn’t want the same things to happen (as I often do), it’s that she needs more time, more connection, more whatever.  And it is this reason that she doesn’t just jump up and say fuck you and bolt.  Because she wants things to progress, just at a different speed, and so she doesn’t want to spazz out on the guy, but he keeps pushing and pushing for just a little bit more.  And he doesn’t do it in a scary way (usually), it’s mostly done in an annoying way, so that by the time I’m “making eighth grade love to him” (read: giving him a handy in the front seat of his – what I now think is his parents’ – car outside of my apartment, and letting him give me a somewhat sloppy pearl necklace, I’ve started to lose all that passion I had when we first started making out on the docks.  Suddenly, I’m thinking about how I’m almost 31 and just got pressured into giving a handjob I would’ve rather saved for our second date and cleaning his jizz off my collar bone (and silently laughing that he also got it on his mom’s upholstery).  Suddenly, I’m not so into this comic who seemed nice and fun and though he’s managing to smooth this over a bit by praising my digital skill set, I’m still mostly focused on the fact that I feel a bit icky for having been pressured at all and I’m feeling a bit sad because now I’m thinking about other girls who have really been pressured and even forced to do all kinds of things they didn’t want to do by shitty guys and how I’ll get over this but will they be able to get over the horrible things that happen to them and now I’m thinking about how I can help those women hurt by those shitty men instead of being hot and bothered for this weak guy who – and maybe it was just the way the street lighting bounced off the dashboard or the way the shadows fell but I’m pretty sure this guy – has the most terrifying O face I’ve ever seen.

So yeah.  That’s how our date ended.  A handjob in a shitty car on a brand new street under the lamps and the possibility someone might see you cum.  The lights of Montreal a little dimmer in my eyes.