The HP: Why Your Girl is a Pretty Little Liar

Every wife, girlfriend, fiancé, future ex-wife, and “Wow, what a sweetheart!” type of girl, has gone through the rite of passage that’s been kept fiercely secretive in the girls’ club. It’s like Fight Club, and we all know the first rule. NEVER TALK ABOUT THE HP.

What is the HP you ask? (At this point, I’m sure you’ve figured out that it ain’t a computer.)

It’s that, “hush-hush,” elusive, yet not so exclusive, Ho phase in every girl’s life.

While it may be disturbing to most men, I can guarantee the innocent, angelic creature lying next to you, RIGHT now, saying: “I can count all the men I’ve slept with on one hand” is telling you the truth. KIND OF.

Mostly because she’s also utilizing her toes, ears, eyebrows, hell, maybe even her hair follicles to calculate her full count. Much like going to see a magician, the info being withheld from you is for your own benefit.  Go ahead and high-five your (Criss) angel right now, because she’s a master Ho-lusionist.

In my 30-something years of life, I’ve picked up a few observations along the journey to full blown “lady wokeness.” It’s a straight up fact that men place a much greater importance on past sexual behavior than women.

For women, we actually WANT To know, to the point where we’ll put our CSI hats on and treat your pussy past like an episode of Forensic Files.

Call it morbid curiosity – a glimpse into the relics of our man’s past (Were his past ladies all brunettes? Fit? Smart? Dog-lovers? Damn she dresses nice, where did she shop?!). It’s a cutesy way to solidify ourselves as the “special one” and to also ensure that we’re in good company.  For example, if dating strippers and IG models with “booking info” was his primary thing, it may raise some questions, but won’t necessarily be a deal breaker (Unless he’s still all up in the DM’s. Ick).

For men, the archaeological dig into the era of “penis B.B” (before boyfriend), seems to be an act that’s much less desired. For most of my ex’s, the common theme has been: “The less I know, the better.”

The question begs to be asked- But, why? Why should the past, a mystical concept of time/space where we didn’t even exist to one another, hold any relevance to the present perception of the relationship?

Let’s keep it real. For men, their women’s past plays into their feelings ownership, and her “purchasing power,” of whether he’s willing to sign on for the long-term.

The internal dialogue may go something like this: “Has this car I’m about to buy been smashed a bunch of times? Were the “accidents” in a questionable part of town? I’m a little sick knowing my car was at one point driven by a guy who wears Affliction shirts and publicly does Jager bombs. I can rent, but I don’t think I can commit to this car.”

I think the art of the female “HP” is lost on most men.  I’m fully aware gender differences can’t always be neatly categorized into a Mars vs Venus type of spiel. There will always be exceptions/quirky differences to the traditional hetero relationship. (I hear the husbands in Sedona actually like watching other guys drive their whip.)

A common belief that has been ingrained in most heterosexual men, is that women who’ve had casual sex tend to be “flawed in character.”

Let me offer an alternative outlook, and yes I’m using ALL CAPS because it may take a little shouting to overcome decades of patriarchal brain washing.


Yeah, I’m going there. I’m actually embracing that women and men have differences in their sexual motivation.

In no way am I claiming that pleasure is not a motivating factor for women, but I don’t delude myself into ignoring the different factors at play. This is especially true for the average woman choosing to “fuck freely” without any promise of commitment. When the pain from past love is still raw, women tend to shut off their “emotional valve” which, in turn, opens them up to the potential of a random hookup situation.

When I moved out to Vegas a few years ago, I was coming off a painful breakup, and I was ready to shake things up.

“New city, new start, new man buffet.” (I already got the copyright for the t-shirt).

Until this point in my life, I had played things pretty safe, and my “body count” was still pretty much in one hand territory.

I spent my formative years (early 20’s) with a college sweetheart (a cliché sitch of growing older and apart); then a fiance/failed engagement in my mid-late 20’s (THAT one totally toxic/disastrous relationship); then a rebound that lasted for a couple of years, because I (shocker) jumped in with fresh wounds that weren’t even close to being healed.

When I got out to Vegas, I had a case of the “fuck its” (not literally), but I did feel exasperated by my relationship failures. I was ready to let loose a little (I’ll stop with the puns). While I didn’t go “full throttle” with my HP, and indulge in countless random hookups, I did something I never expected to do:

I met a “moderately famous musician/rapper” and “hung out” with him, at his home, over the course of a few months. Some may even say I was a (gasp) groupie.

To a lot of women, there IS something captivating about a man who has achieved success on a larger scale. I fell for the classic: “I’m just a misunderstood artist and a regular guy on the inside!” which is what all famous/semi-famous dudes use to snag chicks.

In this HP stage of my life, I didn’t really question things all that deeply. Instead, I thought “this is fun, flighty, exciting.” I was down for a wild ride, which was a welcome reprieve from typical relationship and dating B.S.

But, “moderately famous musician” was one of those guys who started buying into his own hype, even referring to himself in the third person during the majority of our “dates.” Celebrity is a hell of a drug, and I’m glad I came down from the high.

I value monogamy too much to ever dabble in that world ever again, and it did reinforce for me that I, like 98% of most women, want that earth shattering, swept off your feet, “give me the whole door so I don’t drown” kind of romance. (Yes, I had to throw in a cheesy-ass Titanic reference).

So my HP ended fairly quickly, but I learned a valuable lesson during the process – a woman’s sexual expression is complex and can’t always fit neatly into a Good Girls vs Bad Girls type of rhetoric.

Photo by @dennismagati.

So guys, next time you put your judge-y hats on and shame a woman for going through her HP, take a good hard look at your own body count, gender biases and any patriarchal BS you may have been force fed since your days with toy trains (at least I didn’t say swallowed).

Embrace your woman for the passionate, fiery, complicated creature that her past helped to shape. Otherwise, it may be time to explore YOUR HP, but we ain’t got time for all that.

(The 90’s called and you got a lot of man-splaining to do.)

This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. “past pain” hit the nail on the head. Common theme through my game days years ago. Well written gem Melissa!

    1. Thanks so much for reading!

    1. Thanks so much for the support!

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