photo by Destiny Robb
Do you fear aging? Death? Hyper-fixate on nasolabial lines? Need a lip flip? Do you have racing thoughts about your physical imperfections, and consider adding more expenses to what may already be a dense upkeep? Well, if you’re not just suffering from dysmorphia, you may be encountering a quarter (or mid) life crisis at head; and dear reader, I, Anya, will tell you exactly what not to do in a three prong story filled with misadventure, bondage, oral fixation, and legally distributed methamphetamines.
Like any bad or suspicious thing that has happened to me at any point in time, it began with apps: convenience is a trap. As your standard horny internet addicted purple-haired Queer, I resolve and fuel all of my emotional conflicts with unspecified dating apps in which miscellaneous men compete to disappoint me sexually. A few hours into conversation with a completely average white man who didn’t appear to have any psychosexual violent tendencies, I decided it was time to invite him into my home to promptly kick him out in about 20 minutes.
He met all of my qualifiers for attraction — taller than me, extremely stupid, and in a band or something. As I guided him to my room and began forming into my usual sexual persona, I realized I closely examined his face, features… Attire. A quick reminder — as Zendaya’s character on Euphoria once said, a dick pic is a window into the soul: you can infer many things from a dick pic, including but not limited to marital status, hygiene, class, and age. A veteran hoe can size up (pun intended) a man’s complete psychology from a single set of lewds.
I distinctly recalled the appearance of energy drinks, gaming keyboard…and paired with his youthful face, I was beginning to doubt the age of 25 in his bio, which, as a 28 year old, was absolutely my hard limit for sex partners. Not to be skeptical, I just genuinely don’t think anyone my age has anything for anyone younger than that besides trauma and the vague aura of grooming usually presented by men who say “film” instead of movies.
He responds with the same age, and my brows furrow. However, he is much too tall for me to resist. At some point during me sucking away my worries of this secretly being an adult youth (™), his hand finds his way to my throat.
So, what do we know about younger men and their consumption of porn? It’s almost generational that men above the age of 25 are skeptical about choking, and men under will ring your neck without hesitation thanks to years of brutal porn conditioning that was developed as a social norm. A huge red flag, actually. I immediately become suspect again. I had not invited his hand to my throat. I did not beckon. This was not quite a sex crime, but I felt the tinge to ask yet again. “Ok, really, how old are you?”
“22. It’s okay, I think cougars are hot.”
My expression soured. I was a sex kitten gorged on milk, not a cougar. Something immediately took over in me as my mind began factoring in numbers. If he was born in x and I was born then, that means he was x when I was x, and….
The thoughts did not cease. As we moved past the sexual part of our experience and he did not take the hint to get out of my apartment hastily, I began psychoanalyzing him. Because, why not? I found myself giving him (unsolicited) advice, feeling awkward with myself. Why all the emphasis on age and immediate slip into boomer behavior? There had to be some deep subconscious reason as to why I felt such a strong attachment to this concept, what was going on:
As I would continue to dig into my thoughts, my own looming mortality was confronted. Trans women statistically don’t live long. I had few examples of trans women my own age, and as someone who’s only value to men was my sexual currency, the horror show that would begin in my life over the next few months was starting.
Was I… Old?
I once was the person who spent their time with older partners, slipping into bad habits and bad places just to gain the validation that it only seemed could be obtained with sex. As a person with a clinically bad personality, any aspect of myself that wasn’t linked to my sexuality always seemed repulsive. It was easy to use my looks to charm people, even briefly, into thinking I was someone worth their time investment. The years of honing my sexual experience… Were years. I had no longer had the juvenile thrill of practicing expressions, sounds, touches and techniques. They were innate at this point, and boring. Like clockwork—
And it had hit me. My clock was ticking. Something deep in me, a primal, existential fear began ticking. If I was old, would I matter? If I was old, would I find love that evaded me? Affirmation? Care? Tenderness? Would I still be worth those things if my beauty faded, and my currency was no longer valuable? I caressed my face in the mirror, applying skincare. I stared into my face, my mouth lines, my eye lines — the definition and suppleness of my face had begun to weigh, my neck… inelegant.
I pressured myself to push forward, to combat the inevitable as much as I could. But the ticking wouldn’t stop. So, it was time to make a few… impulsive decisions.