Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The Fictional Hymen

I've been reading a lot of historical romances over the last six months. At the risk of being ostracized by non-romance reading higher literary connoisseurs, I have to say: I love, love, love me some big brawny Scots in kilts.

There is one similarity, however, in nearly every single one of the historical romances I've read that drives me crazy, The Fictional Hymen. Or, rather, the breaking of said hymen.

Why is it, in historical fiction, losing one's virginity is so painful and terrible it always reads like the heroine is having an appendectomy sans sedation?

Okay, so the hero's wang is always of fictional proportions but still, why is it always the most painful thing in the entire world? I remember my first time clearly. Disappointing, uncomfortable, embarrassing maybe, but not the end of the freaking world. Of course, "he" was no where near "fictional proportions", still, I don't buy the scene where the heroine describes losing her virginity as being "ripped in half". WTH

Now, like I said, I still love historical romances. I'm just wondering what the deal is with this theme? I understand the nuances of the times may have left the woman with little to no knowledge of sex prior to marriage but I'm wondering how that translates to being "ripped in half" while losing one's virginity.

In none of the contemporary romances I've read have the heroines felt this way while losing their virginity. In contemporary romance, the heroine usually feels a twinge, a short spike of pain maybe, then she realizes she's having sex for the first time with a man who's cut like a Greek statue and she stops worrying about her stupid hymen.

I'm thinking maybe I'll make my daughter read only historical romances as a teen--and only to the first sexual encounter--so she'll never want to have sex. Hahaha On her 18th birthday, I'll gift her the last half of all those novels.