Rethinking Virginity?

Christine Whelan | Posted on 05/17/10

Reader bigredphil wrote in to alert me to a Slate piece I'd missed last week on young women who are starting to regret their former sexual exhibitionism. 

Jessica Grose asks "Why Is a Former Sex Blogger ‘Rethinking Virginity'?" 

Short answer: Because she's growing up.

But as bigredphil noted in his email

Strangely, [Grose] almost seems to regard embracing abstinence as a dangerous thing.

Case in point, Grose's description of a Harvard University panel discussion where former sex blogger Lena Chen seems to promote a discussion -- at least-about delaying sexual activity

While the one middle-aged sex educator on the panel seemed horrified by that idea ("I wouldn't presume to teach abstinence to adults," she said), Chen was intrigued. "What if an 18-year-old virgin needs to learn how to talk to his partner about how he's never had sex before?" Chen inquired. It was striking to hear young adults call for a government-mandated safe area to save a hypothetical virgin from the risks -- and the joys -- of youthful trial and error. That abstinence was even being considered as a solution to the young adult sexual minefield is a surprisingly conservative shift.

In her own blog, Chen is horrified at the idea that she would be linked in any way to the abstinence movement. She might even applaud the Australian filmmaker who is hosting a reality television show auctioning off the virginity of a handful of men and women.

She remains very much pro-sex, she insists.

Don't hate me. I don't care what you do in your bedroom. Really. I have no regrets about what I've done in mine.

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