It's hard not to love Judy Blume. And thanks to a new wave of interviews the iconic author has been giving to promote "Tiger Eyes," a film based on Judy Blume's 1981 novel of the same name and directed by her son, we have even more reason to adore her.
A month ago, we learned from a Reddit AMA that Blume based her infamous character Margaret from "Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret" on herself and that writing helped her survive a miserable marriage. In a July 8th interview with Jamia Wilson of Rookie Magazine, Blume opened up more about her past and offered some thoughtful observations about porn and sex.
Sex has changed for young women today, Blume told Wilson:
In my day, the rules were there for us. Back then there was no abortion and no pill, and my friends and I knew that what we called “going all the way” could ruin our lives. It is not that we didn’t have physical sexual longing, but we went out with guys who understood that there were ways to satisfy -- and it wasn’t oral sex. We kind of could be satisfied through touching; we could be physically satisfied with what we called petting. I went out with a lot of guys, and there was an understanding. I was never pushed to go all the way.
Although Blume is generally sex-positive, she told Rookie that young women (and men) may lose out on something in an age where Internet porn is ubiquitous:
I think today’s kids miss out on being sexual without having intercourse. There are a lot of sexual expectations today. Everyone is watching porn now. It turns you on, sure. I’m not saying don’t watch it. But what you see in porn is not what real love and sexuality within a long-term relationship are. Just like kids have to learn that the toy they see on TV is different from different from what it does in real life, I’d like to see the same thing taught about sex. I hate to see girls feeling like they have to emulate what they see in porn, with breast implants and pole dancing ... What would I do if I was 16 now?
But one experience that remains untouched by time and generational differences, according to Blume? Longing:
There are so many kinds of longing. The longing to fit in, the longing to figure it out, the emotional longing for friendship and being accepted -- these are all as important as physical longing. Before all the hormones start raging, it’s the emotional longing that is most important, and boy, you have to learn to figure it out.
For more sage advice, check out Rookie's full interview with the Queen of YA.