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V-Card Diaries: Keith "Not every first time for men is positive"

Writing from: Queens, New York

Age: Early 40s

How I define virginity: Not having had penetrated or been penetrated by another person sexually.

I can't remember which New Year's Eve, but it was either 95 or 96. We had been dating on and off for nine months. She had said she was seeing others. I hadn't. I later realized I was depressed the whole time, because things had changed at home over my senior year of college. However, that didn't matter much, as Tracey and I prepared to see comedy, and then stay over that night. She would drive to the Howard Johnson's, and take me back to my car in the city where we saw the comedy.

I never saw her again. She contacted my family's house later, when I was dating my now wife. I told her that I was dating somebody else when I spoke to her again, and said I'd meet her, but she never agreed to those terms.

I like that she eventually realized that we could've spent our lives together, but it was too late for her. I, however, am not without blame here. After I lost my virginity to her on New Year's Eve, which was very short for me, as I'm sure it is for many men, I asked her if I was good. I don't remember if she said yes or no, but after that she said, "You'll get better."

Because of the depression I referred to earlier, I didn't realize I was in love with her for a few days. By then, all I wanted to do was write to her, and I wrote too many letters, so I may have seemed creepy, though none of my letters had threatening content. I was sure of something; it turns out I was right. Her father, a very unassuming man, had to tell me to leave her alone. That's when I stopped writing.

Because of how women must be careful around men, I totally understand what she did. My childhood was too long in some ways, so I just expected to be trusted. Luckily I found my wife, who instantly trusted me, but maybe that's how love is. Either way, I'm still glad that she did get back in touch with me. I remember the message she left for my father: "I'm sorry our relationship ended badly." Some of that was my fault, of course, because I didn't know how to express my feelings. However, she could've realized them sooner.

I have tried to locate Tracey, to find out how her life is going, not because I want to leave my wife, but because I still wish Tracey the best. I was never angry at her. I just was certain that at some point she would look at the picture I was in with her and her family, and say, "I really did love him, or, maybe I should give him another chance." I think either was the motivation of her contacting me again, while I was in grad school, and dating the woman to whom I'm now married.

I guess the morals of this story are: men should be aware of how their behavior is interpreted by women, and not every first time for men is positive. Thank you for asking for this story. I don't tell it often.

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