By Tashinga Wazara, Zimbabwe:
Hello. My name is Kate and I have been having a pretty drama free life until a few months ago. You see, I have been dating Johnnie for the past three years and our relationship has been great. Well, it was great until a few months ago when I made possibly the biggest mistake of my life.
Johnnie, my boyfriend, used to live with his brother Mark and we would always hang out at their house. On some weekends a few of his friends would come over and we would have drinks and listen to music from the afternoon through to the evening. Mark would never join in though. He was a bit of a nerd and would always be in his room reading comic books or reading weird books on astrology. On the rare occasions that he would join us, Johnnie and his friends would make fun of him because he was a 30 year old virgin. He would just smile shyly and tell them that he was waiting for the right girl. Johnnie and his friends thought it was stupid. I thought it was really sweet.
I don't know when it started, or how, but at some point I started becoming curious about what it would be like to be Mark's first. I had never been with a virgin before and I wondered how a man's body reacted as he entered a woman for the first time. I imagined that it must be magical and intense; the first and only time that a woman would see a man at his most vulnerable and at the height of his sensuality. Part of me was curious about that. Basically I was curious about what it would be like if I slept with Mark.
Before you start getting the wrong idea, I'm not saying that my curiosity made me want to be with Mark, or that it meant that I didn't want to be with Johnnie. Neither does it mean that I thought about it all the time because I didn't. I would only really ever think about it whenever Johnnie and his friends made fun of him. But somewhere along the lines, I guess as it always happens, thoughts often turn into actions and that's what happened with Mark and me.
I know I messed up but I blame Johnnie for it. About two years into our relationship, Johnnie changed. It happened suddenly. So suddenly that it caught me off-guard and I didn't know how to deal with it. Johnnie's father is one of the leaders at his church and he invited Johnnie to his church's yearly Men's Conference. Johnnie had gone there before in previous years and he did so more to please his father than any kind of pursuit of spirituality.
This time though, when Johnnie came back he wasn't the same. I could see it in his countenance and even his demeanor had changed. Usually when I saw him the first thing he would do is hold me and give me a long, sloppy kiss and tell me he missed me. This time he gave me a cold, tentative hug. He then looked at me and greeted me then he said to me, 'Baby, we need to stop having sex.' I looked at him shocked and I said 'Whaat?!' He repeated his statement. I felt outraged. How dare he just take sex away from me without talking to me about it first? Who did he think he was?! He then went on to tell me that he wanted us to have a pure relationship and that he had given his life to the Lord. I found that really rich from someone who only went to church on Easter and at Christmas.
I figured that he was just going through a phase and he would be over it soon and so I consented to this crazy idea of no sex. I waited one week, then a month, and then two months and soon we hadn't had sex for eight months. I was DYING! I would try and wear something sexy when I went to his house. Sometimes we would get close to having sex but he would always stop when things got too heaty and he'd say, 'When we get married we'll make love baby. Just not now.' It caused a lot of strain in our relationship and we would fight a lot about it but I loved him and I did want to get married to him so I tried to be patient. Tried.
Three months ago though, I messed up. I turned my curiosity about sleeping with Mark into a reality and it changed everything. I had been thinking about it for a while and one day while Johnnie was at work I went over to their house and Mark was there. He let me into the house awkwardly and I could tell that he was wondering what I was doing there when I knew that Johnnie wasn't there. I told him that I was bored and had decided to just pass by. We sat and had idle chat for about fifteen minutes until Mark couldn't take it anymore and he excused himself and went to his room.
I waited for a while then I followed him to his room. As I got in I started taking off my top and he looked at me horrified and said, 'What are you doing?' I put my finger over my mouth motioning him to keep quiet and I walked over to him and leaned in to kiss him. He pushed me away and I tried again and again he pushed me away. The third time I took his hand and put it on my breast and tried again. This time he didn't push me away. As we kissed I could feel his heart beating fast and hard. I then started taking off his clothes until we were both naked on his bed. Once he realized what was about to happen he said, 'We can't do this.' I looked at him and said, 'Yes we can, and we will. Just relax Mark.' I don't know what had come over me. I then lay down and he came on top of me and I guided him on what to do. My fantasy was wrong. I was expecting magic, intensity and passion. All I got was clumsiness, a nervous man and ten seconds. Yes, in ten seconds he was done. He tried to apologise and I told him it was ok. 'It happens, don't worry.' I said as I put on my clothes and I left. Things were a bit awkward between Mark and I after that. He started avoiding me and he couldn't look me in the eye ever since then.
The real drama came when a month later I started getting nauseous in the morning and I would vomit at the smell of certain food and perfumes. I went to the doctor. 'Have you had a pregnancy test?' he asked. 'No' I said. 'Well I think you should get one' he said back. On my way home I passed by the pharmacy and got a pregnancy test. I got home and peed on the stick: two lines. Positive: I was pregnant. I couldn't believe it. I took the test again. Positive. I nearly lost my mind. I had had sex with Johnnie multiple times and sometimes we never used protection and I didn't get pregnant. But then ten seconds with Mark and boom! Unbelievable.
I wanted to tell Johnnie so badly but I couldn't. Sooner or later I had to tell him but I was scared. I loved him and I had made a mistake. That's when he decided to invite me to a picnic and asked me to marry him. Did I want to get married to him? Hell yes. But not like this. I said no so I could go get an abortion and then I would say yes. I hoped he would understand that my 'no' was just a 'not yet' so I could get my house in order but I couldn't tell him that because he would want an explanation, and so that's why I just said no. That's when he decided to come to my house later that day and force me to marry him at knife point. Apparently he had organized a surprise engagement party for me with all our family and friends and I had to show up so he wouldn't be embarrassed if they found out I had said no.
I was in total shock when he held a knife to my neck and literally forced me to go with him. How could he threaten me like that and make me do things against my will? That wasn't the Johnnie I knew and it scared me to see that side of him. In that moment I began to resent him. What the heck was he thinking? I would make him regret this for the rest of his life. I just needed to figure out how…then I remembered: I hadn't had the abortion yet.
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