Every now and then, one of us will take a few minutes of the show to “get up on a soapbox”, going off for a little bit on something we really care about. The following is a lightly trimmed transcript from our show on 9/21, “Chef Sluts: Who Comes Out on Top”, where I spoke about our need to empower women to talk about sex without shame, both so that we can keep ourselves safe and so that we can enjoy the joys of sex to their fullest.
Listen to the SoapBox Segment by clicking here.
Or check out the full episode on Heritage Radio.
I’m a woman. I have sex. And I don’t find a need to apologize for it.
I’ve had sex with guys who I am friends with. I had sex with one guy for ten years – I was in a ten-year relationship. I’ve had a few one-night stands, where if I know the guy well or I don’t we have sex once and that’s it, and the next day we go back to being friends. I’ve had amazing sex, I’ve had mind-blowing sex, I’ve had bad sex, I’ve had in the middle sex, where if I could go back in time maybe I wouldn’t add that name to my list. I’ve had sex that’s felt spiritual and really connected me with a person in a way that I never could have expected possible. I’ve had sex that’s been purely physical; going through a bad breakup when I just needed to be touched and held. I’ve had sex because I have a weird chronic illness I’ve had since I was little and my body hurts a lot, and having sex feels really good. Those endorphins do good things for us!
This doesn’t make me a bad person.
On top of that, I’m a very responsible adult. I have a job I manage, and an apartment, and a car, and a dog, and that illness thing. I try to be a really good person. I work hard every day at being kind and good to people, and to honor myself and move forward. To really be a good human being and know my place on this earth.
I do all of that, and I have sex, and that’s okay. I think as long as sex is safe and mutually desired, go for it.
The problem is, we shame women like me for having sex. We call them sluts, we call them whores, we say that they’re not respecting their bodies if they have sex outside of marriage. We like to judge women very quickly. Obviously there’s a huge spectrum with circumstances – I’m not saying this is black and white – but we shame women for doing that.
I was talking the other day with a cousin of mine, one of the best men in the entire world, and he said that sometimes men can be called whores and sluts. Obviously that’s true. But a second later he noted that it’s usually a compliment if you call a guy a womanizer or a player or a man-whore or a slut. We credit men for being sexual and virile, and we shame women for being easy, or have the audacity to judge her, saying that she’s not respecting her body by having sex.
This makes women embarrassed or ashamed to talk about sex with others, especially young women coming into their first few years of sexuality. We’re afraid of what others may think of us. I’m a tiny bit (maybe 2%) nervous about talking about this on the radio.
We don’t ask the important questions. Young women, on top of wanting to know how to keep ourselves safe with condoms and diaphragms and birth control, don’t get to talk about the kinds of relationships we want to be in, or if we’re comfortable sexually. I lost my virginity to that ten-year boyfriend; that took, in my mind, a little bit of chutzpa.
We need to own that. We need to be empowered to talk about things. Because if we don’t, we don’t stand up for ourselves. Men like to have sex without a condom all the time. You have to be strong and insist on certain things. You have to be strong and empowered to protect yourself from shitty things like rape. Rape is horrible! We need to be able to talk about that. And about things like abortion and being called things like a slut or a whore. I had a guy once, in the middle of having sex, call me his little whore, which was the least sexy thing he could have said. I had to stop him and put him in his place, and he apologized and we kept going. But somehow down the line this very respectful person who had been nothing but kind to me before had been taught that it’s okay, the first time you’re having sex with a woman, to say that. He thought it was going to be sexy.
I think all of this is bullshit.
We need to be able to talk about these things. We need to not pretend that if we don’t talk about issues like women having sex, kids having sex, women being called words like slut and whore, then we can’t offend anybody and they’ll go away.
Women who do are considered extremists or crazy feminists. I’m a pretty middle, down the line person. I’m somewhat boring. I’m pretty responsible. It took a long time to own my sexually and even longer to be comfortable talking about it. We need to be able to have these conversations. We need to empower women to talk about sex without having to get on a soapbox to do it.
I respect my body. I respect myself. I’m very happy with my place in the world. And I don’t apologize for having sex.
So ladies, I’m here if you need me.