Today we have Kirsten as our blogger in the spotlight. Kirsten owns the blog Chronic Sex where she talks candidly about living with a chronic illness and how that impacts her sex life. Let’s hear it from Kirsten.
What made you decide to start a sex blog?
I’ve always been a sex positive person, volunteering with Planned Parenthood and being the go-to friend to ask about sex. After high school, I moved and got busy so I stopped volunteering with PP. Because of living with chronic health issues, I began getting into activism and writing around that. Around 2010, I wrote about how my illnesses affect my sex life and got a lot of positive responses. In 2015, after talking with several others, I started a (semi)weekly Twitter chat to discuss the intersections of illness/disability, self-esteem, relationships, and sex. It just grew from there.
What, if anything, would you like your blog to achieve?
I hope that the site is able to lift up marginalized voices, improve people’s relationships (whether with themselves or each other), and brings about more discussion around sex and illness/disability. As someone pansexual and also under the trans umbrella, I want the site to serve as a space for people in the illness/disability community to learn more about the LGBTQIA+ community, too. There’s too much transmisia and cisheterosexism in the illness/disability world – and it hurts.
How much do you protect your anonymity as a sex blogger or are you quite open about writing a sex blog? And if the latter, what kind of reactions have you received?
I’m super open about it. I quit my day job in May of 2016 to take this journey full time, so even my past employers know I talk about sex… though, unless they’ve checked, they likely don’t know the extent to which I talk about my own vagina! Just about everyone has been very supportive. I don’t talk about everything about my relationship or sex life on the site, but try my hardest to be vulnerable and honest.
If readers would read only one post from your blog, which one would you recommend (i.e. which is your favourite/most important blog post)?
I feel like one of the most recent posts – Are You Tired of Cishet Studies on Relationships and Pain, Too? – helps share a lot of what Chronic Sex is all about. We have to demand better representation.
Do you have any advice for other sex bloggers?
Be honest. It can be really tempting to say you liked the same sex toy, for example, as prominent bloggers – especially when you’re starting out. It’s important to stay true to you and your mission, though. Integrity, vulnerability, and honesty are traits missing from this world – and we can bring that to our sites.
And finally, why have you decided to join Summer 100 Sex Bloggers Challenge and are you really going to write 100 posts?
I wish I was even on track to make 100, but I’m sadly not. It’s part of the fun that comes with living with unpredictable health issues. That’s okay, though! I really wanted to learn more about others, read a variety of sites, and challenge myself.