Friday, April 17, 2009

I have an idea. It involves you.

Let's talk about sex. Rather, let's write about it.
The thing is this. I think about sex a lot. I don't mean that I think about the act of having sex, though I'm still youngish and there is that too, I mean that I think about sex in the context of how does my sexuality define me, how do I live out my sexuality and, mostly, what happens when my sexuality and faith make out.

Now, sex is tricky to talk about because, obviously, it's intimate, it's full of vulnerability, guarded secrets, desires, naked people. It is sacred and holy and thick in mystery. And for Christians, it also has a history of being chock full of guilt and worry and flaws and stress and failure and loneliness and repression and hurt. And, of course... SIN.

Weird things happen when women hang out together and talk about sex. Really weird things happen when those women are women who are trying to work out where their faith fits into their sexuality. There's lots of laughing and confessing and, "Really!? Every time?!" and, "Oh, I'm so glad to hear that." But there's also a lot of nervousness and quiet and things that can't be said in certain circles. I remember once, a girl I hardly knew confessed to me in a rush of fear that she was the only "impure" person in the small Christian college we went to, even while I knew that couples were sneaking off to sweat and moan together in the library stacks after supper. Now, there have also been the odd times when I've been able to have these same sorts of talks with men, but, uh, mostly they've been with men I've seen naked, or the desire to get naked together creeps in, or the inherent awkwardness of men and women talking about sex while trying not to giggle like twelve year olds and imagine the other person naked comes in and colours it all impossible. But, I don't want a one sided conversation about sex. What good would that do? We need all sorts of voices on this one. Writing helps.

So, here's this idea. I'm sitting on the couch this morning trying to study/pray/read and I keep thinking about sex and all our real thoughts and questions and ideas and secrets about it and how, if we could just get together and talk about sex without freaking out and damning all the "impure" people to hell, then maybe some good things would happen. Maybe we could be honest instead of self-righteous.

If you're up for it, and I know you may not be, write me something about sex. Tell me how you feel about it, or what you grew up thinking about it and how that's changed, or how it blesses you, or curses you, teaches you about love, or takes you from it. Tell me that you think God hates it, adores it, couldn't really care less about it. Tell me a story, your story, anyone's story. I'm not asking to be your confessor, I just want to hear what you've learned, or seen, or thought. That's all. It doesn't have to include, "And God forgave me and now everything is good." It doesn't have to conclude with towing the Christian line. It really doesn't.

Sign your name or don't, use a fake name or the name you wish you had. What do I care? Send me your address with it if you want, and in awhile, let's say some months down the road, I'll gather up the stories and sew them up into a little book and send them to you. It'll be good.

This is my address.

526 Alder Ave
Sherwood Park, Alberta
T8A 1T2
CANADA

I'll be here until the beginning of August, after which point you can reach me in Iowa and I'll post that address, too, once I know it.

Or you can email it to me. I'm easy. Heh. (acs3@ualberta.ca)
Maybe we'll get two, maybe will get tons. Whatever.

So come on. Get it on. Screw fear. Spread the word. Tell the truth.

This is me saying thank you, and, I love you.

3 comments:

Mama K said...

I am going to try and get my thoughts together and share them ...but hopefully not till after I get some sleep... it is late here and I am dead tired. I just wanted you to know that I like your idea - an honest discussion that we can learn from without getting weird. I will see what I can do. Sex was God's idea, therefore it must be a good idea - and we can learn from His thoughts on it, too. Hopefully without being judgemental, but honest.

Janna said...

Angela,

Of course I have lots of thoughts on this topic. Of course, my husband might find that hard to believe - ha! Not sure what will come of it all, but I am thinking about it and plan to send you something . . . someday!
I will talk with John about it too, but I'm not sure he's going to want in on this. We'll see.

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