“He says ‘I don’t get it, why are you still a virgin at 24?’
He says ‘I don’t believe you, I’ve seen you walk, virgins don’t walk like that’
He says, ‘That ain’t natural, people are supposed to fuck.’
Asks ‘Why though? No offense though.’
I ask ‘When was your first time?’
He says ‘I was 12’
He says ‘I know what you’re thinking, that’s too young.’
I look at his knuckles, he has two good hands.
He says ‘She was older than me.’
I ask ‘How old?’
And he says ‘It’s better that the girl is older, that’s how I learnt all things I know’
He licks his lips.
I ask again ‘How old?’
He says ‘I could use one finger to make you sob’
I think of my brother in prison and I can’t remember his face.
I ask again ‘How old?’
He says ‘Boys become men in the laps of women, you know?’
I think of my mother’s face lined with her bad choices in men.
He says ‘If you were mine you wouldn’t get away with this shit, I’d eat you for hours, I’d gut you like fruit.’
I think of my cousin’s circumcision, how she feels like a mermaid, not human from the waist down.
He says ‘I’d look after you, you know?’
I laugh, I ask for the last time ‘How old?’
He says ’34.’
He says ‘She was beautiful though and I know what you’re thinking but it’s not like that, I’m a man, I’m a man, I’m a man. No one could ever hurt me.”

— “Crude Conversations with Boys Who Fake Laughter Often" by Warsan Shire


So many damaged men walking around believing those things.  Believing they couldn’t be hurt.  Believing the other, older men who just chuckle and say “well, he got an early start.”  And the older women who lightly slap their shoulders and tisk “you shouldn’t say that!”

Such boys aren’t wrong because of the consensus they’re raised in… that I was raised in!  But they’re very badly mistaken to imagine they weren’t hurt.

Instead they grow up with the sex and relationship equivalent of “a man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing.”

Sure.  You can learn a great deal at the hands of someone who sees you as a toy.  

Though if you learn from a peer who’s as young and inexperienced as you?  You learn something else.  You learn how to listen! You learn how to give as well receive.  You learn that your partners are more than toys to be played with.  No matter how masterfully you yourself were taught to play when you were the toy.