I have been remembering so much about my childhood and girlhood. So I will continue to tell about that. Later, I will talk about my life as a young adult, even though I never have truly felt like an full-fledged ‘adult’ – and even now, I still don’t quite feel convinced that I am ‘all grown up’!
Oh, I know my body is – for sure; but my emotions and my ways of thinking – those are not essentially much different than when I was very young. I know we say there is a ‘child’ within us, and all that – yes, yes, that’s true for everyone I guess. And most people do behave like adults! But I really am still a child in so many ways. I am silly, highly emotional, I just blurt out comments in an impulsive and spontaneous way, I laugh at the oddest things, I break rules, I do stuff like a kid!
I cannot recount every single thing that ever happened in the areas of sexual encounters, and no-one needs or wants to hear everything in every detail – that would become idiotic. And most people have had their own experiences – from assorted and ordinary ‘surprises’ like exhibitionists, or someone’s pants being undone, or seeing someone by accident in the toilet, or watching a sex movie when they were not supposed to, or coming upon someone making love – parents or whomever! Some of that – I think – happens to pretty much everyone. So much for that.
And I surely do realize that many people have had some ghastly and horrific experiences of abuse in many ways, both as children and also as adults. And most have survived as sane and good people. People who have done this are without doubt paragons of courage and perseverance. They are heroes and she-roes – I salute them! I honor their struggles and I admire their triumphs – with all my heart.
I am humbled by what others have accomplished and I make no claims of such grandeur. I also recognize that my own writing is purely about various events that I feel were, and still are, relevant for me. The simple fact that these individual incidents and periods of my life are so easily recalled in so much detail (even though all through my life I have essentially tried to keep them away from surfacing and though I have relegated them to the farthest, darkest closets of my soul) speaks to their personal importance for me, as well as to my belief that these things have shaped who I am, and further still, to the premise that I have somehow contributed to making them happen, or at least to having made them possible – by certain inherent traits and elements of my own being.
So – is it my ‘fault’? In some ways, maybe …
But there were so many men – from boys to adolescents, to full grown young men, and old men – males of all shapes and sizes and colors and ethnicities, of various national origins, and a few girls and several women… who seemed to be particularly interested in me from the time I was four or five and onward – to this very day.
When I was at school and going to other houses of people we knew, or old enough to be going to the store or a walk by myself, it was often enough when something happened that involved sexual activity. Nowadays, of course, no-one typically allows children so young to be ‘on their own’ on an errand or just off to some play area alone. But when I was a child, no one worried much or at all about the many possible dangers as we do today.
Actually, throughout my childhood and youth and early adulthood – I feel like I was pretty much living in a sort of dream world most of the time. Things happened; but almost always, I was entirely surprised by the actions of others and, frankly, also of myself. I don’t recall ever making ‘plans’ or ever feeling in control of anything. What is also true is that I STILL feel that I am living in a dream world. And I am!
First school experience
I was put into Kindergarten very early – I was only four years old… I guess they thought I was precocious. I had been read to in at least two or three languages, and I had been sung to in several languages. I was always spoken to in conversations rich with gestures and descriptive and expressive vocabulary, and I was always encouraged to respond in like fashion, so I knew quite a lot of words ‘above my age level’. While – as a child – I had a slight speech impediment (I repeated syllables of some words) I still spoke impressively well and was easily able to recite long poems and ballads by heart; and so the principal of the parochial school was impressed.
However, I ended up spending two years in Kindergarten as I apparently was not ‘emotionally mature’ enough, and therefore not ready to go to the first grade … But that first year, where all of the children did nothing but get ‘socialized’ and paint pictures, build with blocks, and do puzzles, sing songs and play outdoors, I was once sent to the principal’s office (yes, at that young age!) for slightly raising my hand – which looked to the teacher as if I was somehow being aggressive or pushing a boy. The fact is that he had just spit on my hair. Of course she did not see the spitting, but she saw me raise my hand towards him, so I was the ‘guilty party’ and I was told I had to go to the principal’s office. Needless to say, I never even attempted to say even a single word in my own defense. (I am still struggling with that problem!!) And looking back, all I did, since all I could do at the time, was stare at the teacher – wide-eyed and in complete dumb shock.
Now, I know that what the teacher had decided really was a severe consequence for no good reason, but that’s what happened. And when I was so little, I did not have a clue as to her reasons, but now, being ‘grown up’ – well, I am quite sure I know why! She knew that I was a favorite of the other teacher!
There were two teachers for the Kindergarten class and the one I loved, Teacher Lola, the pretty, sweet and kind one, had left the room for a few moments, or else I am sure she would have stopped the ‘punishment’. There was the one who was mean, Miss Bindah, and she was simply jealous (I now realize) of the younger teacher, Miss Lola, who liked me so much.
So, when Bindah had a chance to get back at Lola, just ‘because’ it was possible, she did so, and I became the scapegoat. She did not dare to do something openly to Lola. Therefore when Lola was not around to ‘protect’ me, the nasty teacher, Bindah, saw a way that she could get ‘even’ with her by being mean to me. Yes, in retrospect, that’s something I am quite certain of; but it didn’t help me back then!
Going to the ‘office’ seemed to any child in those days to be tantamount to a death sentence! But we were all very obedient to the higher authority of any adult and would never think to question or resist! So, though it made no sense to send me – a four year old – off alone in the maze of doors and halls at the school, I had no choice, as I just been ordered to find the dreaded principal’s office on my own.
So I wandered along, having no notion of where to go. There was a boy walking in the hall, and I just started following him. He was in a much higher grade, so he was perhaps 10 or so. He kept walking and looked back at me once or twice. Suddenly he stopped and pulled me near a door that was shut, and pinched my nipples and put his hand on my hand and clutched it hard, pressing it against his penis! He rubbed my little hand on his penis, which was under his trousers, for a few rushed moments. It seemed like a bunch of lumpy stuff in his pants to me. Then he let me go and I just stood there, as he walked away, quickly disappearing down the hallway.
I was simply confused at that incident – but what could I do? Not a thing. I began to wander along again and turned a corner and suddenly, I saw a vision of joy – it was Teacher Lola, right in front of me. There she was, like a sweet angel to my rescue!
I was so incredibly happy to see her, I clearly remember running to her, dramatically falling on my knees and clasping her legs. I never said a word about the boy in the hallway, but I was in tears, sobbing hysterically, begging her not to make me go to the dreaded ‘office’. Of course, she put her arms around me, comforted me, and took me back to the Kindergarten room and of course she somehow made it all right. The hallway boy was never mentioned at all.
The next thing that comes to mind:
Another series of incidents, which really were consensual, happened when I was perhaps seven or eight years old. This was in what we all called the ‘country’, the beautiful Northeastern countryside, where each summer the farmers rented houses to the city folks.
Those were some of the sweetest times I remember as a child. The wild beauty of the Laurentian countryside, the pastoral places – the lush lovely woods, the tranquil ponds, the rushing streams, the rivers, the rolling hills and meadows full of glorious wildflowers, alive with the buzzing of bees, the profusion of butterflies, birds and the infinite abundance of wild raspberries, blackberries, gooseberries and blueberries – the farms, all the animals, the dusty country roads… the huge bonfires and groups of people singing songs together in the evenings on weekends when all the men came out from the city … it was a wonderful time in my memory.
There were lots of other children of various ages and backgrounds and we all played together. It was really wonderful, because there were families from several countries, who spoke different languages, and all the parents were immigrants, who spoke heavily accented English, they also naturally spoke one or more of their native land languages: Russian, Polish, Ukrainian, Romanian, French, German, Italian, Lithuanian … there were even some families from East India and the West Indies! It was a genuine taste of diversity, and we integrated into it and became somewhat familiar and accepting and often quite comfortable with other traditions and beliefs of different cultures. I do not recall any of our parents condemning or disrespecting any of the traditions or practices of others, ever.
Some of us kids got to be very ‘good friends’, so we chose to go off on adventures just with a select few. I was only eight that year. There were two male cousins, ten and twelve years old, David N. and Jonah G. They lived in one house that their parents had rented, as their mothers were sisters and the boys were always together. They both liked me and I liked them and we all went off every day, just following streams down to the rivers, wandering through the meadows and woods, picking wild berries, gathering wildflowers, and once in a great while, in a hidden spot, finding the deliciously sweet tiny wild strawberries, a rare treat!
The cousins were very close. They had their secrets and they had their silly private little games and jokes – a kind of comedy team! It seemed they did things in unison, almost like twins – they would talk and whisper to each other and kind of giggle and then they’d ask me to do something. Always, I was supposed to pull down my panties and they would show me what was inside theirs… these games were kind of fun – just natural activity, curious children exploring each other’s bodies and so on. We did this anywhere and everywhere – just never in the house where any adults were around! We went to any farmer’s barn, a meadow, the woods, waterfalls, ponds and streams and riversides. I do recall that we all wanted to see each other pee. They would bend down and watch closely when I peed. They always turned toward each other and grinned and giggled. Then they pulled their pants down and peed but they never would touch their penises. They always clasped their hands behind their backs!! Funny! I was baffled by that.
They did touch my labia though and opened up the folds – just exploring… I was always fascinated by their little erections, which happened quite easily when we touched each other. None of us ever told our parents – never ever. That sort of thing went on for a couple of years. The next summers they weren’t around. When I was ten, I made a new friend – Patty McC– I will say more – oh, very much more, about Patty later….