When it comes to desires and guilt, something that strikes me is that not only is there a lot of guilt floating around – that guilt seems to often land in the wrong places. I don’t believe that all desires are ok in an absolute sense. I think society is twisted, and we end up with some twisted desires, from being exposed to patriarchy all our lives. However, I also think that a dark pit of guilt and shame is not the best place to be addressing that from. But back to the question of who it is that ends up with the guilt.
The thing is, I found that guilt stuck to me at strange times. There was a boy, the first boy I ever kissed, who went a bit further than I wanted him to, then made up some lies on top, and told my whole school about it. He was the one that was boasting, and I was the one that was in a dark pit of guilt. I kept it a secret, loudly denying anything ever happened. I got lucky, in that people chose to believe me. But out of the two of us, I don’t understand why it was that the guilt and weirdness landed on me.
I remember another time, which was different. I was older, and it was a happy one night stand. Cheerfully mutually desired. Sadly, it was no longer that cheerful when people heard about it and the teasing started. Yet I remember really clearly, people teasing both of us, with him beaming with pride, and me burning with shame at the time. Guilt is gendered, people! We’re raised with guilt being gendered.