My last summer before I entered high school, I met a really nice guy at camp.
We became friends, would reconnect every summer at camp, and then would talk off and on throughout the year until we met back up again.
The summer before my sophomore year in college he expressed to me that he wanted to be more than “just friends.” We met up a few times to actually go on formal dates. He held the door open for me, offered to do whatever I wanted to do, eat wherever I wanted to eat, and refused to let me pay for anything. I wasn’t in love with him yet, but he was the kind of guy who I wanted to marry: kind and respectful.
Our colleges were on opposite sides of the country, so I knew our relationship would be based in texts, Skype, and phone calls. And I was prepared for that.
During one of our Skype calls, he asked me to “go to the bathroom” with my computer. This seemed a little weird, but we both had roommates, so I assumed he just wanted to tell me something and didn’t want everyone to hear.
As soon as I shut the door, he just started being really sexual. He started saying things like “I wish you were here” and “I miss you” but I quickly realized he meant in a sexual way. He flipped his camera to himself—nude. I was beyond shocked.
I was frozen—I didn’t know who this guy was. I didn’t say a word; I just tried my hardest to just get off that Skype call without causing a scene.
But he kept going, saying things like, “Oh, don’t you want this?” And he was touching himself while talking too. I didn’t know what to say; all I know is that my face was bright red.
I thought he just liked me so much he couldn’t help but want to be as close to me as possible. The problem was, this was not me. This wasn’t something that I wanted to do so early on in a relationship. He was escalating things way faster than I was ready for, without taking much time to see what I needed or wanted.
I told myself that that surely this would never happen again. But the opposite was true. He would send me texts and pictures often. He’d frequently ask me, “Are your roommates home?” After I would tell him they weren’t, he’d ask me insistently to Skype.
Not only did he become super sexual out of nowhere, but he also started to get very persistent in pressuring me to participate too. I felt cripplingly uncomfortable this whole time. But I felt torn too; because although I felt pressured to do things I didn’t want to do, I thought it showed he just really liked me!
Then one day he texted me, “I feel really bad for how I have been acting. I know it’s not right, and I shouldn’t be acting this way or asking you to participate in this too.” I instantly thought this was the start to getting our great, respectful, sweet relationship we had had back on track.
But then he ripped that hope from my hands. He said, “I want to marry someone who doesn’t do stuff like this. I know I messed up, but when I get married I want her to be wholesome and pure, and you aren’t. I don’t want to be with someone who would even tolerate someone sexting her.”
He made me feel worse about myself than I had ever felt. He was acting like this was my problem, not his. I was not a consensual participant—I would just sit there, shocked. Still he made me feel like it was my fault. Not only was he saying he didn’t want to date me, he was saying I wasn’t good enough for him. I was heartbroken.
I learned that just because a guy is being sexual does not mean he is interested in you. Especially if it’s at your expense. That’s not a good guy. Sure he may have been attracted to me, but he never really considered my feelings. A truly great and loving guy will not pressure you to do anything. He’ll want you to feel loved, not used.