In high school, serious talk about sex probably only takes place during health class, and includes a video of a woman giving birth. But in college, talking about sex is almost a daily occurrence, and usually a weekly one in the Campus Times. As your glorified sex guru, I’m here to tell you the ins and outs (no pun intended) of sex—freshman style.
Sex must be consensual.
I’m sure you’ll hear this (and Meliora used in every other sentence) a thousand times by the end of Orientation, but “no” really does mean no (in fact, anything other than “yes” means no). Not every person will be as courteous as Justin Bieber and stop to ask what you mean if you’re giving off mixed signals. So whether you’re at a party, hanging out in someone’s dorm room, or anywhere else, never feel pressured to do something that you do not want to do. As a freshman, this can seem particularly challenging for fear of being considered “prude” or “uncool,” but trust me, your decision to not engage in sexual activity is absolutely nothing to be ashamed of, and it does not hinder your social life in any way.
Ninety-nine problems, but STDs ain’t one… if you follow my advice.
Contrary to popular belief, it’s unlikely that you’ll get pregnant and die without practicing safe sex. (Thanks, Coach Carr.) But it is likely that you’ll get an STD. Don’t rely on the other person to provide protection, because if you find out mid-hookup that neither of you have any, your hormones will impair your judgement, and that’s not really the best time to be finding out whether his pull-out game is weak or strong. Thankfully, an easy way to avoid any mishaps is to always keep a condom in your wallet or purse. That way you’ll both be prepared at any given moment, and have one less thing to worry about.
Know how to put a condom on.
While on the topic of safe sex, do yourself a big favor and make sure you know how to put a condom on. Planned Parenthood has a great little infographic that gives step-by-step instructions on how to do this. Remember, practice makes perfect, so make good use out of your unlimited meal plan and grab as many bananas from Danforth or Douglass as you can until you’ve figured it out. Your partner will find your skill very ap(peel)ing.
Pee after sex.
This one is pretty self-explanatory, but peeing after sex is crucial in preventing a urinary tract infection (UTI). It flushes out any bacteria before it has the chance of entering the bladder and making your life a living hell. Seriously, there is nothing fun about sitting in class feeling like you have to pee every five seconds.
It’s all fun and games until someone is sexiled.
I get it, it’s your room too, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that you can have it to yourself every time you get an “urge.” Be upfront with your roommate from the get-go. Yeah, those roommate contracts may seem kind of lame, but use them as an excuse to seriously set boundaries. Also, be considerate. Ask, don’t tell. Ask your roommate if they’re okay with you inviting someone over before you actually make definite plans. A year is a long time to live with someone you don’t like, so try to be as fair as possible.
Hallcest—it’s bound to happen.
You’re all moved in, your parents are gone, you have nothing but free time on your hands, and you spend every waking moment with your new hall- or floor-mates. You spend hours in the lounge playing Cards Against Humanity, go on adventures to explore the unknown parts of campus, and walk around aimlessly until you find a party. And then realize you’re not allowed in unless you have the correct guy to girl ratio. While doing all of these things, you more-or-less have your eye set on someone you’re kinda, sorta into. A few weeks into the semester, and what do you know? You and said person are having, uh, relations. Maybe it wasn’t what you expected, maybe it was, but either way, you soon realize that there is no avoiding this person because you’re basically neighbors. If this sounds all too familiar, congratulations. You have just committed hallcest, and that’s okay. The best piece of advice that I can offer here is to remember that we’ve all been there, and it’s no big deal. Sure, you feel awkward, but that’s all in the fun of growing up. Embrace it—awkward looks good on you.
Do something that scares you everyday.
This isn’t exactly sex-related, but as a senior who is totally mortified of graduating, I encourage you to get out of your comfort zone and live. Take this special moment in time as an opportunity to explore yourself, make new friends, learn new things, and most importantly be confident in yourself. I know this is so 2011, but YOLO—remember that.