What's innocence?

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I lost my virginity when I was thirteen years old; the man who 'took' it was twenty, or twenty-one. Years later, I wasn't too sure whether my decision to have sex with him was sound, but I am damned sure that it was my decision at the time. What's more: I was hell-bent on having sex with him.. Weeks in advance, I had restless dreams, tossing and turning at night. I was much more ready than I myself could handle. Did I throw myself at him? Yes. Did he take advantage of me? Yes. Would he have fucked me if I hadn't made all the moves? No. Do I regret the experience? No. Could my first sexual encounter have been better, in retrospect? Yes, definitely. Do I regret it? No. The experience taught me that I could own my sexuality - even as a kid.

Children are not asexual, and thus, not necessary 'innocents'. We'd all be better off once we realize that. Only when we acknowledge that (some) children actually - positively, and sometimes even aggressively - crave for sex, we can hope to enable them to distinguish between 'yes' and 'no'. Assuming that 'no' is the only possible answer that children could give, is not helping them at all.

source: 'What's innocence?' bu Karin Spaink; Original title: 'Wat is onschuld'; Translated by Erica van Loon; www.spaink.net/1996/12/16/whats-innocence/; Original Dutch column in: Het Parool; 16 December 1996