writing

Challenging expectations

Start Writing Fiction | Week 5

Note: this is an exercise for the online course, listed above. Some material may be inappropriate for younger ages, I have rated it PG-13 due to sex talk.


“You can’t just–give in and have sex with any guy–ever!” My mom went through her whole hand motion routine too, as she was pacing back and forth in my bedroom. I was sitting on my bed with my notebooks scattered around my bedspread.

I pulled my knees into my chest and hugged them with my arms, “Would you just leave me alone? I don’t need to hear about your teenage problems and not knowing about safe sex and committing the dirty deed with a guy on the first date.”

She got stern and started pointing, “my parents did not have this, very uncomfortable, sex conversation with me until I was too old to hear it, and you know what?” She stopped in her pointing-tracks and looked right at me.

I knew the answer to her question, her pain and agony, so I sounded snarky, “you were pregnant with me and you didn’t know it yet.”

There was a dead silence that hung in the air and crept over my words. My feelings are usually hidden within a notebook, so saying this out loud is uncharted territory.

“Why would you say it like that?” Asked my anxious mother, now-turned soft and weepy. 

As I fumble for the words to say, “Yo-ou have had this conversation with me a million times.”

“I know, but I never want you to make the same mistake as me. I lost out on so much, I didn’t go to highschool or prom or anything that normal people my age were doing,” she was holding back tears.

I pushed my face into my knees and gave a muffled response, “I know. No sex is better than safe sex.”

“That’s right.” She walked over to my bed, kissed the top of my head, and exited quickly to sulk down the hallway as she walked to her own room.

I quickly grabbed a notebook and opened it up to a fresh page. After scribbling a date at the top, I started writing:

I should be doing my homework, but my mom sidetracked me…again.
She’s going on another first date…will he be the chosen one?
My dad was not the one…

I slammed the notebook shut and tried to fight the tears that were finding their way out. My mind was racing like wildfire: visions of my mom being my age and having sex and visions of my mom going out on first dates throughout my whole childhood.

I had a list in one of these notebooks with names of men–guys who came around the house. Some stayed longer than others, but no one has stayed forever. There’s only one guy I feel like he could be a good father figure, if he ever came back.

I started to think about the chant my mom ingrained in my brain: “No sex is better than safe sex.” But, my mom doesn’t follow the no sex rule, why should I? As long as I’m safe, I won’t get pregnant the first time like her...

Meet the Main Characters HERE

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