Can Sex and Spirituality Coexist at College? | BU Today

Cover of "Sex and the Soul: Juggling Sexu...
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Trust me, this girl has something to say. Last night at Dominican U’s Siena Center (a most rewarding venue), for instance:

* Hooking up is hard to do. That is, most girls and boys find it stressful and unrewarding, as even boys admitted to her as a sort of mother confessor on her way to surveying sex on campus. They do it because it’s de rigueur. It’s also efficient, as it gets sex out of the way in the middle of a student’s busy day.

* Her “most painful” interviews, of the hundreds she did face to face after getting thousands of takers for online q&a about students’ personal experiences, were with the boys (men) who spoke of the social pressure they feel to have lots to brag about.

* She acquires info not as bloodless sociologist but as an apparently exceedingly well put-together young woman — Catholic out of Georgetown and (Ph.D.) Catholic U — who refs easily to her mother in her grave and father who had or have usual queasiness about candor in the sex area who has in mind some sort of solution to students’ problems.

* As neither priest nor male nor bloodless sociologist — at the podium she is a boffo performer — she can learn things and say things that no priest could say, except maybe while bending the rules as a pastoral performer. Such as: Catholic Church has three things to say about sex that students know about: don’t do it, no condoms, no being gay. Wherefore she says, to get a “conversation” going, leave that out of it and get to the extreme discomfort most are feeling, who know self-destructive behavior when they experience it and feel awful about it.

Her book is Sex and the Soul: Juggling Sexuality, Spirituality, Romance, and Religion on America’s College Campuses (Oxford).

And do not hold it against her that she is good-looking. Handsome is as handsome does here: she does handsomely.

Donna Freitas

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