It was my night to make dinner, and I did some simple fish thing. Allison had changed from her swimsuit into a spring dress. I gave her one, ONE, glass of wine with dinner, not enough to get her tipsy. After we cleaned up the kitchen, we adjourned to the living room. It was still pretty early. "All right, Allison, this afternoon you learned some skills that should help you get noticed, help you get first dates with guys in your classes. What happens at the end of the first date?" "He brings me home?" "Well, we can hope so. And you're standing on your doorstep. What does he expect?" "Oh. The goodnight kiss." "Right. Without which, will there be a second date?" "Probably not." "So here we have another essential skill, and we're going to spend the next hour on it." I turned down the lights, and we did, delightfully. We had to get beyond the peck on the cheek, and the tongue thing, but after twenty minutes or so she really started to get into it. I won't claim to be an Olympic Medallist in kissing, but she didn't have much to compare me with. The smell of feminine musk became noticeable, and she wasn't paying a lot of attention to where I was putting my hands. At the end of the hour, I broke the clinch, and waited for our breathing to return to normal. "Oh, daddy, I never knew..." "Allison, you're a gifted student and a delightful lab partner." She blushed. "We'll do a lot of that this summer. But you remember what I said about needing to deal with your own arousal, so you wouldn't lose track of what was going on and do something you'd regret? Look down at your dress." "Aack! Daddy, you...." And she hurriedly buttoned up, and pulled down the hem of her dress. Her blush, impossibly, had become deeper. "Right. Have I made my case?" "Yes, but geez, daddy, you shouldn't be touching my..." she paused, searching for another word "...knockers. You're my stepfather!" "We'll talk a lot about relationships and their limits this summer, Allison. But I had to shock you, because if you didn't believe in the power of your hormones, you wouldn't do what had to be done to deal with them." "OK, OK, I'm shocked. I believe. But geez. So what is this magic antidote? Cold showers?" I smiled. "Nope, just the opposite. Cold showers sounds like 'mortification of the flesh,' good Catholic doctrine, but not very good for relationship management or mental health, And not effective in the long run. No, the strategy here is to permit yourself to be aroused, knowing that you can release the frustration at a time and place of your own choosing." "That sounds suspiciously like, well, masturbation." She made it four distinct syllables, and it was clear that each of the four distinct syllables of the word tasted bad on her tongue. "Yes, Allison, that's..." "But the Sisters say that's a sin! Touching yourself 'down there' is self-abuse, it makes you want to have sex, it...!" "Allison, down!" She stopped, and deflated. "Let me show you why the good Sisters have it all backwards. The object of the exercise here is to /avoid/ intercourse, not to pave the way to it." Well, that was half the truth. And maybe not all of a lie. "If you find yourself on a date feeling like you did a moment ago, thinking that if you don't do something you'll explode, with no relief in sight, isn't the natural impulse to "go all the way?" But if you know that you can provide yourself with relief in just a few minutes, isn't it more likely that you can use that to hold on to your principles just a little longer?" "Well, if you put it that way." "I do put it that way. And there's more." OK, the other half of the truth. "The time will come as a relationship develops that you will want your boyfriend, or lover, or husband to bring you to orgasm. The female body is a wonderful thing, because the more often a girl comes, the easier it is for her to come. Your lover will feel pleased and proud of himself if he can bring you off quickly. And you can make that easier for both of you by practicing your orgasm, frequently." A tiny nod. She was mortified to be discussing this. Too bad. I told her she'd have that feeling when she signed up for this. "Finally, 'playing with yourself' provides a good tool for evaluating possible relationships." I'd lost her again. "Look, you have fantasies, daydreams about guys, right?" More blushing, just visible in the dim light. "I'll take that as a 'yes.' You imagine different situations, sometimes he's a strong adventurer, sometimes a nurturing homebody, sometimes he sweeps you off your feet, sometimes he pursues you on bended knee...." An anatomical mixed metaphor there, I realized. Oh well. "You have the opportunity to find out whether a kind of relationship really lights your fire. If you find yourself masturbating with one particular image more often than others, that may be a sign that that's the kind of relationship you seek at that point in your life. You can 'try on' a lot of different relationships, keep the ones that work, discard the ones that don't, and no one needs to know. It's a lot cheaper than divorce." "But..." "Allison, masturbation is one of the essential skills you need to demonstrate to get to Central High. What's it to be?" A long pause, stretching into minutes. She studied her lap. Then, very quietly, "OK, what do I do?" I silently let out a breath I didn't know I'd been holding. That had been the Rubicon. After this, it would all be easier. "Tonight, we'll go back to kissing. It should be obvious, but the rules of posture don't apply. Take off your panties--look, dammit, it's not as though I didn't get well acquainted with that end of you yesterday!" She remembered the spanking with chagrin, and swallowed her objection. "When you begin to feel aroused, go ahead and touch yourself in any way that feels good. And I'll offer direction as best I can. I'm just a guy, but I have some experience with female anatomy." "OK, but don't look." "Oh, come on. How can I tell you how to get better if I can't see what you're doing?" "Humph." And then we were back at the kissing game, in each other's arms. Actually, she was in my arms. After a little while, hers were otherwise occupied. "Allison." Her head came up and she tried to focus. "Eyes open. You'll want to watch your lover, and he will want to watch you. Don't close your eyes." After that I didn't really need to do much to help things along, the occasional caress, a word of direction now and then, a kiss on an earlobe, and in a while she was bucking and shuddering against me. And she dissolved into tears. Good, I thought, almost certainly her first orgasm, looking into my face, and with my arms around her, with my hands on her skin. If there's anything to "imprinting," we should be well on our way. "Shh, baby, wasn't that good?" Her reply was inaudible. Slowly she returned to reality, and pulled down her dress. "I...need to pee." "Of course, baby. But come back." She reappeared in a few minutes. It looked as though she'd splashed some water on her face. "Allison, look at me." She dragged her eyes up off the carpet, and I took her hands in mine and looked into her eyes. "You can't know how honored I am to have been here for that." A little half-smile from her. "You'll do that at least twice a day, once each day in front of me." Her eyes got wide, but I bulldozed ahead. "As I said, part of the value of masturbation is that it let's you 'try out' relationships. Here's a stack of stories, each of which is an example of some relationship." Wonderful thing, ASSTR.ORG. "Read one each time you play with yourself, and sort them into folders I'll give you--one each for 'Ugh!', or 'Nice', or 'Oh, wow!'" Over time, you may begin to see a pattern in the ones that light your fire. Review the folders now and then. Again, Allison, thank you. It's been a wonderful evening." And I meant it. And so to bed. I had a date with my hand.