I was raised by a fanatically Christian mother. She was very smart and very determined that I be a “good girl”. She used a whole arsenal of emotional manipulation to make sure that I turned out the way that she wanted me to. She thought that sex was disgusting, and I would not be surprised to find out that my parents never actually had sex. (My brother and I were both adopted.)
From the time that I was a very small child up until I left for college, any time my mother saw any kind of image that was remotely sexual, she would talk about how disgusting it was. Only bad people engaged in sex and she could not possibly love or feel affection towards anyone who was bad. Being a child and wanting my mother to love me, I tried very, very hard to be the perfect little girl that she wanted me to be.
Of course, it simply isn't humanly possible to be that perfect. And when I went “bad”, I really went bad. I figured I'd already lost her love, so what was the point of even trying to be good any more. I became wildly promiscuous. I slept with more men than I care to admit. I slept with a few women as well, which, in my mother's opinion, made me a completely perverse creature. I did not practice safe sex in any sense of the word. Frankly, I'm rather surprised that I survived all the risky behavior that I engaged in. But somehow I did, and I eventually settled down, fell in love and got married.
Now, I'm in sort of a confused position. When I was having sex out of wedlock, I was free to do whatever felt good and enjoy the hell out of it. In my mind, because I was having sex out of wedlock, I was being bad, and since I was already being bad, I might as well be really bad and actually enjoy sex to the fullest. I could be completely wild and free because I was already a bad person and it didn't make any difference. Now that I'm married, I find that I'm actually very self-conscious about having sex. I don't want to be wild in the bedroom, because good girls don't enjoy sex that way. In my mind, since I'm married, it's okay to have sex, but since it's okay, that means that I'm still a good girl, and since I'm a good girl, I should not enjoy sex. It frustrates the hell out of my husband. And I'm not too thrilled with myself either.
Of course there are a lot of other issues at play as well, since until fairly recently I had a cyst in my abdomen that made sex painful. But aside from the physical problems there are still a lot of psychological problems as well. My mother's been dead for almost 20 years now and I still can't get her fear and negativity out of my head completely. So even though I no longer consider myself a Christian or religious in any normal sense of the word (I do have a sort of vague spiritual belief system), I still have a problem with religion screwing up my sex life. That remnant of my mother's fanatical Christianity that lingers in the back of my mind insists that I can't be a “good girl” and still have the wild and wonderful sex that I had when I was bad.