Why do they insist you dock stern in? I think you should dock whatever way is the easiest and safest. In my boat (and my understanding is most sailboats are similar) I have very little control moving slowly in reverse so I park her bow-in.
I'm still trying to understand the insistence some people have with backing into the slip ... I've seen several people in my marina this year try again and again and again to back in, failing and getting damn close to running into something when it seems to me they could just go bow-first and save a lot of trouble.
If I came in bow first I'd have a very hard time getting off my boat. Aside from moving the lifeline gates I'd have to jump except when the tide was out. Problem is that the finger pier is only about a third of my boat length.
But, to be honest, even if this weren't the case, we like being stern-to where we can sit in our cockpit and socialize with the rest of our dockmates. When you're bow-to you really are cut off from every one