I haven’t shared much about my sexuality on this page. I have some old conditioning that still plays out in my head, telling me that I’ll be disliked or shunned for speaking out about this. I have a fear of letting people down for sharing this part of myself. People like my family.
But as a Women’s Empowerment Coach, I know the cost of shame. Shame thrives in the dark, so I see it as my purpose to give my shame a voice. If this helps ONE person, then this post will be worth it.
I’m a truth teller. And it fucking kills me a times. Here it goes…
I’ve been remembering my own teenage self lately, and giving her lots of air time to be heard.
After watching the Netflix show, “13 Reasons Why,” a show about high school bullying, sexual assault, and suicide- I’ve remembered experiences from my teenage years that caused a lot of harm and hurt.
High school was an important time for me; it was the best of times and the worst of times. I experienced many firsts. First period. First boyfriend. First kiss.
For the most part, I felt very freed up in my sexuality. It felt healthy, pure, and innocent. I waited until I was “ready” to have sex with my high school sweetheart. A young man I loved and trusted in every way. But after a couple of minor sexual traumas in my teen years, I lost that sense of innocent sexual curiosity and expression.
Those minor traumas looked like getting caught by a cop in the back of a car, and being told that I was a whore. My very first boyfriend and I weren’t having sex, but I was caught with my clothes off, and the cop locked me in the car and shined his flashlight all over my naked body. He later let me out of the car to give me a lecture, which humiliated me even more. He assumed we were having sex, which we weren’t, as I was still a virgin and not yet ready. Did he actually tell me I was a whore? I don’t think so, but that’s the message I received from him (and his flashlight). Without going into more detail, I couldn’t process that night with anyone. I was too ashamed and scared.
Then at a high school party, my high school sweet heart and I were getting intimate in a room and I later found out that a bunch of his friends were spying on us outside. (By “intimate” I mean: awkward, teenage, ouch, this is uncomfortable, what are we doing, I’m doing this because I love you and we finally have a private room with a bed… sex.) Rumors were spread. Horrified? Embarrassed? Those words don’t come close to what I felt. To top it all off, this never got resolved. Bye bye healthy and curious expression of sexuality, hello shame.
Thanks to the show “13 Reasons Why,” I’ve had no choice but to remember those painful moments in my teenage years, and my intuition told me it was time to do the deeper work that I’ve been avoiding. As many of you know, when I was 21 I was raped, which wound up being the most intense sexual trauma I’ve ever experienced. But I’ve processed and healed that one. Those times from high school were never thought about again… Until now.
With the help of my couple’s therapist/ coach and chiropractor/ reiki master, I’ve been going back in time to reclaim parts of my sexuality that I abandoned in my teenage years due to trauma, gossip, and pain. I’ve been able to take back that healthy sense of aliveness I used to feel in my body before I got hurt. It’s been transformational.
Why is teenage healing so important for adult women?
Our teenage years are the time of new beginnings, innocence, and curiosity. This is our foundation as women; the stage of puberty where young women blossom into their potential. Unfortunately this precious time is either rushed through or completely dismissed and forgotten this day in age. There’s sadly no rite of passage welcoming a girl into her womanhood after her first menstrual cycle. This first cycle marks the end of her childhood and the beginning of womanhood. That’s a very big deal!
Without a warm welcoming and safe mentoring, many girls rush through this stage and grow up too fast, or they miss it completely and never grow up.
I have an exercise for you to welcome your inner teenager back into your heart so you can write a new story for her so she can feel safe to keep growing, expression, and exploring.
Put on a song that reminds of you your teenage innocence, close your eyes, and summon your inner teenager back. See her in your mind’s eye, and really sense her and tune in to her spirit. What does she need? In your own time, affirm her and let her know what she needs to hear so she can keep going on this path to becoming a woman. Become the mentor she perhaps never had. Let her know how beautiful she is, how accepted she is, and how proud you are of her. Really love her with your words and attention. If anyone ever hurt her, let her know that it was not her fault. Let her know how amazing it is to be a woman, and how much she has to look forward to on this journey.
Your inner teenager might have a lesson for you as well.
What can your inner teenager teach you? Get out your journal, and let her speak to you through your pen. Have a conversation with her and let yourself be loved.
At our COR Woman workshop, we do a lot of healing at this level through the archetype of The Maiden. She’s one of the 7 archetypes we explore because this is how we become whole women. When each of these 7 archetypal qualities are summoned back into our hearts, minds, and voices, we integrate into our true selves, where our whole range can be celebrated and expressed. This is where we step outside our comfortable bubbles and write new stories for ourselves.
So… I want to thank you for hearing my story. It’s vulnerable for me to share my teenage self with you, but I trust that you’ll honor my process as I will of course honor yours.
But most of all, thank you for hearing YOUR OWN TEENAGER’S story. She needs your love, attention, and affection. Thank you for honoring her. Let me know how it goes.
P.S. I’m offering Maiden Healing Intensives now. Email me at email@example.com for details with the subject line: Maiden Healing.