Friends tease me for this, but I openly admit that I had some strange misconceptions of sex when I was younger. The biggest misconception concerned the act of sex itself. See, for some reason, I thought that a man and a woman had sex by lying very still next to each other with the man inside the woman. I understood the biological part, but I entirely missed the whole "sex act" part.
I've had several people ask where this misconception may have arisen. I wasn't 100% sure until tonight.
I got to my parents' house. Sitting in the bathroom (yes, we read books in the bathroom here. Magazines and newspapers too) was "Where do babies come from?" by Margaret Sheffield. It's a children's book from my childhood (and apparently out of print, so I'm going to encourage my parents to keep it). I remember reading this often as a small child.
Each page explains something about sex/babies and has a drawing accompanied by text. It was this page in particular that stood out:
The only way for the sperm to get to an egg is through the woman's vagina. This is how babies are begun, with the man lying so close to the woman that his penis can fit into her vagina. If one of his sperms can get to one of her eggs, a baby will begin to grow.
Maybe it is because the book doesn't mention passion, thrusting, or even how the sperm leaves the penis. I think I may have once imagined that men could control the flow of sperm (ha!). I suppose I thought the book covered everything about sex rather than just explaining the baby part.
In any case, it was an interesting memory lane type find. I'm sure they'll be many more in my next few days at home as I sort through old books and continue cleaning out the dregs of what I've left at my parents' house.