When I got on the phone with Debby Herbenick, former sex columnist for TimeOut Chicago and always sex expert (she’s also a Research Scientist at Indiana University and a sexual health educator at The Kinsey Institute), one of the first questions I asked her was if the internet has changed the questions she gets. I already knew the answer; as a long-time reader of her column, the last of which was published on January 11, I’d often found the questions she gets funny. Not for their sexual nature, but because some people just asked questions that seemed, well, obvious — or easily searchable (questioners also get points for specificity, like with this post).
Listen to Debby Herbenick on Afternoon Shift with Steve Edwards
“There’s always moments where I’m like, c’mon, google it,” said Herbenick, laughing a bit when I asked her if some of the questions frustrate her. But she’s far more sympathetic of readers than I would be, because she’s found that the Kinsey name makes people trust her. If you Google any random question, you’ll sometimes find hundreds of answers online. To Herbenick, if she’s the final say, she’s delivering just a little more peace of mind to confused Chicago readers.
Herbenick will be on the Afternoon Shift talking about her years writing the column today, and in honor of her visit, here’s a list of some of my favorite of her columns. And of course, depending on your workplace, some of these posts may or may not be suitable for consumption.