Welcome back to Sex on the WKND! We’re an anonymous YDN column dedicated to answering your burning questions about sex, love and anything in between. Last year, we had one writer, but now we are a collective of students, each with our own unique sexual and romantic experiences. We’ve had straight sex, queer sex and long, long periods without sex. We’ve been in long-term relationships, we’ve walked twenty minutes to avoid former hookups on Cross Campus and we’ve done the whole FroCo-group-cest thing. We may be different this year, but we’re still sex-positive, we’re still anti-capitalist, and we sure as hell still support the Green New Deal. 

Obsessing over sex is a Yale tradition as old as the Oldest College Daily itself. Whether you’re fucking your roommate, still yearning for your first kiss, or dealing with an unsettling skin rash, Sex on the WKND is here for you. Nothing is too personal or silly. Ask us anything 😉 

Submit your anonymous question here: https://bit.ly/sexonthewknd

Does anyone wait until marriage on campus?

I don’t personally know anyone on campus who is planning on it, but I’m going to go out on a limb and say yes, some of the 6,200 undergraduates at Yale will wait until marriage before they have sex. Most of us probably won’t, but some of us will. And there are a ton of reasons to wait. Maybe you’re particularly religious. Maybe you think waiting will make your eventual marriage stronger. Or maybe sex, to you, is so vulnerable and sacred that it should only be shared with a life-long partner, a spouse. Whatever works for you, works for you.

I’m sure you know that some people on campus will wait until marriage, but I get why you would ask the question. At Yale, it can seem like sex is everywhere. Our laundry rooms have more condoms, lube packets and dental dams than working dryers. In between learning the campus WiFi passwords and how to bluebook, part of first-year orientation involves watching CHEs slide a condom onto a wooden phallus. The school newspaper even has an entire column dedicated to sex!

Yale’s open culture about sex can be really great. For the most part — or at least in my experience — people can talk about their sexual experiences without feeling shame. We have the freedom to seek intimacy and explore our sexualities without public judgement. As a queer person who spent most of my life in the closet, Yale’s sexual climate has empowered me to accept and celebrate my sexuality. This campus has been an environment for me to explore sexual relationships I have not been able to explore in other spaces. Talking about sex is also necessary to forge a healthy sexual culture — we need CHE and CCE workshops and other public discussions about sex to prevent sexual violence and build better understandings of consent and physical intimacy. 

But this culture can still be toxic in some ways, particularly when it begins to equate sexual freedom with sexual indulgence. Looking around, it sometimes seems like the only way to liberate our sexualities is to have a lot of sex with a lot of people. For some people, frequent sex genuinely is a freeing experience. But I know people on campus who have felt pressured to have sex to meet this singular definition of sexual liberation. In reality, sexual liberation means something different to everyone. 

It might mean completely rejecting marriage as a restrictive heteronormative institution designed for men to control women. Like I said, whatever works for you, works for you. And marriage doesn’t work for everyone. The first time I had queer sex, I definitely wasn’t thinking about waiting until marriage. I was thinking of my unrealized desires I had been harboring for years, my longing for a union I had been deprived of for far too long. I was thinking of the guy in front of me. I was thinking of the space between us. I was done waiting.

But for other people, sexual liberation can definitely mean waiting for sex. Waiting might be a way to claim control over your body. Maybe you prefer other forms of physical intimacy. Maybe it’s important for you to build an emotional connection with your partner before you have sex. But if this is the case for you, please keep in mind that your partner might not actually want that emotional connection. I was once in the middle of hooking up with a girl I really liked when she told me, and I quote, “Wait, don’t catch feelings.” We should all have the freedom to define sexual liberation for ourselves. For you, that might mean waiting until marriage.

SEX ON THE WKND