In class we talked about the trend of earlier menarche in industrialized societies. I was one of those girls who started her period when she was only 10 years old. In our society, getting your period indicates adolescence, yet I wasn’t even out of elementary school yet. I was still too young to need the sex talk, but by the time I had my first real boyfriend in 8th grade, I had been identifying myself as an adolescent for years. So, in 8th grade when girls start sending out naked pictures of themselves and you hear stories of couples having sex, I thought all couples did more than just kiss. I was smart enough not to give my virginity to a boy in 8th grade, but I did give him more of my firsts than appropriate for a young teenage girl in this culture. There is a harsh contrast between what is culturally acceptable and what is encouraged by age group peers. This creates a lose-lose situation for a lot of teenage girls. Guilt for giving in to a boyfriend, guilt for not doing what that boyfriend wants, guilt for maybe even liking what that boyfriend wants to do. The circumstances of early menarche, and peer influences transitioned me into an adult sexuality before I was emotionally ready. However, that transition wasn’t complete because I regressed quite a bit after that. I wasn’t ready for adult sexuality and so I kept myself from what I saw as adult sexual actions until I was eighteen years old. Even though I know it is a cultural construct, I still feel shame and regret about beginning my transition into adult sexuality so early.