I remember the first time I masturbated like it was yesterday. I was 12 years old; it was a Saturday in mid April. The night before, I had stubbed my toe, and I was lying on my parents' bed waiting for it to stop bleeding, when some church visitors came over and my parents had to go downstairs and visit with them. My parents had just purchased satellite TV, with all of the movie channels.
It all started 10 years ago, when I was 9. I was always embarrassed to admit that, but in some way, I've always felt I accomplished something. I know people who hadn't masturbated until they were 13, and some who claim to have never done it. (Liars!) Well, all I have to say is that they don't know what they're missing.
I was never told about masturbation as a child. My parents do not openly talk about such things, and I had no siblings to explain it to me. I guess I discovered masturbation at quite an early age, although at the time I didn't know what it was. I have memories of being 6 or 7 and playing with my penis under the sheets while the babysitter was downstairs. I didn't know what I was doing; all I knew was that it felt good. It didn't develop into anything more than just playing — until I reached age 12 and a friend introduced me into the world of masturbation.
Growing up in a Baptist family in the Midwest was not the easiest way to learn about sex. Fortunately, it was at a time when the media was progressing just fast enough to make sure that a clever kid would get a chance to peek at a pair of breasts on cable now and then if he was sneaky enough. No matter how my parents tried, I was going to figure out what this sex stuff was all about.
My nearly 9 years of masturbation have been plagued with misinformation. I keenly recall one of my early experiences: I was watching Saturday Night Live, and Dr. Joycelyn Elders was being portrayed, just after all the hoopla over her now-infamous remarks. At that time, I had just turned 12 and had been getting erections for some time, but was still uncertain exactly what they were good for other than embarrassment. Speaking with my parents on anything sex-related was, and still is, difficult.