Sex and the University: All I want for Christmas is…


Tis’ the season of giving and we must selflessly put the desires of others before our own. Naturally, we have to acknowledge that our own pleasures will have to wait another month. But does this act of giving not come with slight pressure? I cannot help but wonder if the only real hope for anything to ignite at University is the classic or not so classic one-night stand. We are all entitled to use and abuse our bodies in whatever way we see fit but do we forget that what we have is a gift? The need for a little token of appreciation or the general itch from essay writing frustration, can make us forget that our bodies and who we give them to, can be, significant. Truthfully then, any act of giving, inevitably brings about a degree of pressure.

During this time of advent, it’s no wonder everyone appreciates a gift or two. We were all impatiently waiting for essays and exams to finish, desperate to crack open the bottle of red- preferably Buckfast and mulled- to stay out until the sun decides to wake up. During this period of time between freedom and Christmas, we are all in advent of the birthday of Jesus, who gave us our life and our chance to have choice. Coupled with the desire to spend money on our loved ones, this period is also a time of reflection for many of us and amongst the numerous questions that Christmas time brings, one can think of another: when is the right time to give ourselves? We are all sexual human beings and in order to create an all round healthy relationship, you must give as much as you take. However, when you’ve given yourself to someone only to be disappointed by certain areas that might have been lacking or having overly high expectations of the opposite sex, it can make thick ice appear between you and your new flame. It really is a question of whether you are willing to get that bit closer and release yourself from your own past storms to open yourself up to a new setting.

On the other hand, we might be disappointed, like we sometimes are on Christmas morning, that we did not open a gift, selectively chosen on our endless list of desires. Simultaneously, we may be surprised by something that we hadn’t even considered; I encounter so many people that, when listing their new flame, describe them as having numerous attributes, that they can tick of their list of prerequisites but really is that how we decide if someone is right for us? Should we only give ourselves to someone if they wear a certain brand of clothing, study a certain subject and have friends in high places? While being adventurous and getting to know someone new helps us develop a taste of what we like and who we are as people, I wonder if we have forgotten that giving our bodies away should not only be fun (and exhilarating) but considered carefully. Perhaps we should strive to remember this fact in our drunken haze: we can easily give our body to anyone.

However, we sometimes feel the need to withhold ourselves purely on the basis of who we feel deserves us, when actually it could be the uncertainty of what someone else can give us back, if anything at all. To be scared to explore a possibility and give every part of yourself, to potentially not be given anything in return, is what builds the mountain of fear in the beginning. Taking that leap into the unknown could prove to be lucky and lead to an insightful discovery: you do not need to be with a specific type of person, but rather, someone who feels right for you. We are all evolving as we age so who might seem more suitable at one point in our lives will certainly change over time. We should remember to open ourselves up to new experiences: making out in the library at two in the morning and attending club nights with different social groups can lead to a myriad of possibilities.

Our chimneys need to be swept regularly, not just in time for Christmas. While certain people in the past may have let you go, it does not mean you aren’t able to give yourself again and it could be to someone more special. So truthfully, all I want for Christmas isn’t just anyone and most importantly, if someone is not giving us what you deserve, then we must remember that we can still rely on ourselves during the Christmas holidays.

Charlotte Dean


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