I Was A Slut, But It Turned Out Alright

Gianni Cumbo
Gianni Cumbo

On my 17th birthday I made it my goal to lose my virginity.

This was mainly because everyone in my high school already thought I had – I had recently taken the first steps toward creating a tragic party girl image by taking three pulls from an ecstasy-laced joint at a rave in midtown Manhattan and announcing that I would be moving to London alone for university, and before I could stop myself I began telling lies about being on top of older, handsome men I’d met in dangerous dark bars. My imagination was so vivid that I began to believe my own lies and that is how I formed The Grand Virginity Plan.

I got the phone number of a boy I’d met a few times at track meets, who now attended university in Washington D.C., was nationally ranked in the 1500 metre run, deeply depressed, heavily medicated by his psychiatrist mother and hilariously entranced by my tales of drug misuse and world travels. Somehow I convinced my parents to go on holiday to Boston for three days during Christmas break so I could invite the boy to my house and begin my sexual career. On the 28th of December, 2011, I ran 6.5 miles, ate 850 calories and drank two bottles of white wine in preparation for his arrival. He knocked on my door at 9:27pm and the last thing I remember is sitting on his lap at my kitchen table, leaning in to kiss him. His eyes were very blue.

At 4:53am I woke up naked and alone in my bed. There was a lot of blood and vomit on my carpet and my clothes were strewn all around the room. I found two empty condom wrappers and a text message on my phone saying that he was sorry and he wished I was different. Downstairs I found two broken wine glasses in my sink and the vacuum cleaner plugged in to a socket in the kitchen, suggesting he had cleaned up the whole mess. We did not speak again. It was then that I realized my sexual career would not come as easily as I thought.

The second boy I slept with was six months later and had the same name as the first. It was a relationship of convenience because my best friend was sleeping with his best friend and we were 17 and thus found it emotionally impossible to meet with boys alone. The boy was chubby, insecure, constantly stoned and had a rocky relationship with his mother, who was a heroin addict and only loved him sporadically. Sometimes he called me crying to tell me he felt lonely, and I would laugh and hang up the phone.

When we had sex it was very uneventful, hurt a lot and lasted less than a minute. He was on top of me on his best friend’s living room sofa and there was a painting of a tree next to a pond on the adjacent wall from which I did not break eye contact. Roughly 45 seconds in my best friend beeped her car horn, signaling that we needed to leave because it was 1:30am and we were way past curfew. “Can you finish please?” I shouted in a whisper, and he came, collapsing against me. I groaned and pushed him off me, pulled up my shorts (things like this always seem to happen in the summertime) and walked out the door. I did not answer his calls after that.

A few weeks later I was at a house party and I drank seven vodka shots and showed several 16-year-old boys how to roll a joint. They were in awe and called their friend over to watch. He was blonde, skinny, awkward, and clearly a virgin. He was also so drunk he could not stand. I kissed him and led him to the master bedroom. He was too drunk to get hard and kept spanking me and calling me a dirty little slut. It was then that I realized just how much porn 16-year-old boys actually watch.

I didn’t feel like fucking a soft dick anymore so I began to get dressed. At that point the girl whose party it was dramatically kicked the door open and screamed, “OH MY FUCKING GOD YOU’RE HAVING SEX IN MY PARENTS’ BED YOU FUCKING WHORE I SWEAR TO GOD I WILL FUCKING END YOU.” This was very funny to me. I shrugged, picked up my shoes and walked home. The next morning the boy texted me that he didn’t want to speak to me again because I had made him miss curfew and as punishment his parents were making him repaint their entire garage and basement. He has me blocked on Facebook now.

At the end of the summer my best friend and I decided to go to a rave in Bed Stuy, Brooklyn as our last hurrah before parting ways for university. She is very beautiful, intelligent and has hair the color of a banana. I wore a skintight black dress and five inch high heels.

At the party we used our fake IDs to buy jungle juice, which is an alliterative phrase used to describe drinks that are approximately twelve different types of alcohol in one, and soon began talking to two Colombian men at the bar, who beckoned us back to their hotel with the promise of MDMA. The next morning my best friend and I woke up in a motel in Coney Island, the southernmost tip of New York and about a 45 minute drive from the warehouse we had started the night in. The boys were still asleep and using our eyes and wild gesticulating my friend and I plotted our getaway. We tiptoed to the door only to find a chair had been placed in front of it to prevent our leaving. It was then that I realized that men who offer 17-year-old girls free MDMA and hotel rooms do not mention that their offer comes with a side of date rape drugs and psychopathy. We threw the chair to the side, ran down seven flights of stairs and did not stop running until we found the Q train back to Manhattan. It took us almost three hours to get home and I was hungover for three days. We decided not to go back to that warehouse again.

I turned 18 in London, very lost and very confused with a strong illusion of self-assurance, and went to a club called Café du Paris in Leicester Square to celebrate. I wore a tight red velvet dress without underwear, with black Dr Marten boots to show how edgy I was. The table next to mine was full of very rich, very stupid white boys in Ralph Lauren shirts who went to university in Winchester. One of them was very handsome, with a boyish face, jet black hair and green eyes. I talked to him for five minutes and then cut to the chase, slipping his hand up my thigh. Outside there were no cabs willing to drive us back to my flat in Farringdon so we took one of those little chairs with a bicycle driver in front. This was the most romantic thing that had ever happened to me at that point. In my bedroom he fucked me very, very well and then told me about his banker father and alcoholic mother until 3am. The next morning he pulled on his cashmere jumper and referred to the night as “smashing.” After he left I spent the day smoking a lot of weed, admiring my hickeys and feeling very proud and confident. He still messages me a lot but I don’t think I am the housewife he is looking for.

Before going home for Christmas holidays my flatmate and I went clubbing at Movida in Oxford Circus. I was so drunk that I kissed boys and girls and men and women.

Eventually I found myself in a cab with a Spanish financial analyst. He was 25 and handsome and I was 18 and slutty. I told him my name was Summer, that I was 17 and lived in Los Angeles. The next morning I woke up alone in his bed and could only see suburban brick mansions out the window. I overheard him telling his flatmate in Spanish that he fucked me in the ass, which was entirely untrue. This is when I realized that boys lie. I left his house (not flat – house. With two floors, three bathrooms, and a marble countertop in the kitchen), scoffing at the Audi parked in his driveway and began the two hour journey from Heathrow to London. On the tube I realized I had left my flatmate alone in the club without telling her where I was going. I decided to stop going out in central London.

By February I had found my niche, and it involved doing cocaine off toilet seats in east London club bathrooms.

Somewhere in Dalston I found myself at an afterparty with ten black cokeheads and a very large bulldog, who I suspected was on cocaine himself. When I went to the toilet one of the boys, the one I found the most charming, offered me a line. As I bent over to take it he ripped my tights and entered me. To anyone with half a brain this would serve as a warning, but to white girls from Connecticut such things are so disgusting they’re actually glamorous.

I did not leave. I spent every weekend at his flat for the next six months. It was the first time I slept with a boy more than once and it was the first time I did not sleep alone. I was 18 years old and he was 26 and so I thought his word was God; he kept a running list of things I needed to fix about myself to become “the perfect girl,” and he said I was the biggest girl he had ever slept with, as if this meant he was being generous. I was 5’6, 130 pounds and a UK size 8.

I stared at the ceiling and I did not let him see me cry. I did not leave.

After five months I asked him if he loved me and he said he didn’t want to lie to me. He emphasized that what we were doing was casual. I did not leave. I left when he, after much prodding by my flatmate, admitted he had slept with six other girls. Also, he gave me chlamydia, of which I had no symptoms and was told about during a routine checkup at the gynecologist. The doctor said the sentence so calmly it sounded like it didn’t even matter, but I began to cry so hard it sounded like I was dry heaving. “I’m dirty, I’m dirty, I’m dirty,” I repeated over and over again, and she took my hands in hers and said, “No, honey. Men are the dirty ones. They are pigs.” It was then that I realized that sex and love are two very different things, and when you don’t know much about either it’s easy to get them mixed up.

By August I had not cut myself, made myself throw up, or ingested marijuana, cocaine, MDMA, or alcohol in five months.

I also did not trust any men. At a music festival I met a boy who was the first person I’d ever known who saw the good in everyone, but when he tried to kiss me I laughed in his face and said “in your dreams.” The next weekend we went on a walk by the Regent’s Canal. Every word he said was colors and sparkles in the air and he interested me so much that I pretended not to listen and I told him to shut up.

In my room I did not let him touch me under my clothes but his hands and mouth made me see stars, and when I came I put my face in my pillow so he wouldn’t notice.

When he left I took out my notebook and tried to write a list of reasons to hate him. It was very short and it said:

  • He crosses the street even when the light is red.
  • He is exactly as smart as I am.

He kept trying and I was merciless, I was the worst girl I could be, I changed my personality so he wouldn’t realize how well he understood me and still he did not give up. This is important because I realized I didn’t know how to be my worst anymore when he was around.

I listened to his heart beat when he slept and I loved him for every fingernail, eyelash and scar. He is so talented I can feel it when I touch him and intelligent without needing to prove it by talking just to hear the sound of his own voice, he is quick and funny and brave enough to love a girl who is a 1,000 piece jigsaw puzzle that only comes with 999 pieces. Sometimes I think he could be the 1000th.

He is hard to write about because he is beyond any word I could ever say and he is the first and only boy I can see a future with; I don’t know where to begin and sentences and paragraphs have an end, and I don’t want him to. That is when I realized that not everything can be written down. TC mark

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