Our contributor Kristine deGuzman, a junior at UC Berkeley, has a confession to make:
When I was a sophomore in college, I drooled over the idea of writing the “Sex On Tuesdays” column in the The Daily Cal, UC Berkeley’s main newspaper. I applied for the job at the end of my sophomore year and was fortunate enough to score the coveted weekly column for the fall semester of my junior year.
When one of my friends from back home found out about my new gig, he sent me samples from his school’s sex column in the Cal Poly Pomona newspaper . It was penned by a Christian virgin who “hates” dating, is waiting until marriage to have sex, and believes most relationships (outside of marriage) are better off without sex.
At first, I couldn’t understand how someone who’s never hooked up or even had any experience with romantic relationships could have the audacity to pen a “sex” column. I found his attempts to dissuade readers from having premarital sex to be completely inappropriate, considering the fact that he had no idea what he was trying to talk them out of. I thought it was completely irresponsible for him, as the school “sex” columnist, to withhold facts and relevant information about actual sex and sexuality from his readers that a more experienced writer, in every sense of the word, would have probably included. And I didn’t think his column should have been used as his own personal pulpit. Now, if he’d had a Christianity column, then okay.
Eventually, though, I realized it was hypocritical of me to judge and dismiss the expression of his opinions. After all, when I wrote the sex column for my school newspaper, I certainly received my fair share of criticisms, critiques, and hate mail (mostly from anonymous people on the Daily Cal website and forums). I wrote frankly about roleplay, cunnilingus and sex toys — and many people were not pleased. I even heard that a friend of a friend didn’t like my columns because I didn’t use euphemisms when I could have. People accused me of trying to be “edgy” and “controversial” when I was really only talking about sex in the way that I understand it. And the way that I understand it doesn’t include roundabout euphemisms and flashy metaphors.
The last column I read of my Christian colleague made me a little more sympathetic, as he acknowledged his weaknesses when it comes to dispensing information on sex — which is something I never really did in my columns. Ultimately, if I thought it was my prerogative to discuss my relationship with my vibrator in a widely read publication, then I should have understood his prerogative to discuss his relationship with Christianity (even if that’s the only relationship he’s ever had). We sex writers need to stick together, because no matter which side of lovin’ we’re on, there will always be people hating what we do.