Loose Girl is Kerry Cohen‘s own captivating memoir of loosing her self-esteem, careless and innocent youth and her ever growing promiscuity since her early teenage years. From first teen sex experiences, quickly giving up virginity and a craving hunger for boys and their bodies and actively seeking to be wanted. Addiction to sex and drugs are peeled out in confronting details. If statistics don’t lie, many more women must have had same experiences, but Cohen wrote them down. As the years go by, the risk for getting a STD is rising and really no ability to establish a relationship beyond the sexual aspects, as a reader you’re wondering what the end of the story will be. Parents that go through a divorce, but can’t keep their second relationships healthy and lasting. A father that not only wears a gun, actively is a cocaine addict, never asks questions, joins Kerry’s friends at their parties, somehow always has enough money to pay clothes by credit card and even dares to step into the same bed as Kerry’s. A mother that’s mostly absent in the book. Sisters and friends that at some point always seem to fail up to their role. Who’s going to save this lost Jewish girl from herself? A disease? Therapist? A boy? High School. All of a sudden the book reaches an end. The way to enter this addication is the way to leave it to according to a therapist.
And so the author concludes in her introduction to this memoir: “Proof, I think again and again, of being worthwhile. Proof of being loved. I slept with close to forty boys and men before I figured out doing so was not serving me well. There were many more with whom I did other sexual acts, like oral sex and petting. To some this may seem like a lot. Others will think it not very many at all. There are girls with lists much longer than mine. In truth, I don’t really know the length of my list. After twenty-five I lost count. Sometime in my late twenties I tried to name them all, starting with my first, but I found out quickly I had forgotten a host of names.” Nope, nothing to be proud of here, fortunately Kerry ultimately found a way to overcome her addiction and start a meaningful life as writer.
This ain’t a typical novel with some romantic episodes, neither it’s a glorification of sex or drugs. If you’re seriously offended by explicit language, you will be challenged on every single page. And if you’re still honest about your own youth and think this will not or cannot happen to your daughter, please first read the book and then have honest talks with your spouse and child.
About the author
Kerry Cohen is a psychotherapist who works with teens and their families. She received her MFA in creative writing from the University of Oregon and an MA in counseling psychology. A mother of two, she is a native of New Jersey but makes her home in Portland, Oregon.