It’s late, and you’re at a party. It’s gone from being a loud, gyrating dance mob to a scattered stumble fest. Someone’s made the bad call of turning on the lights and you notice just how disgusting the floors actually are. That thong is riding a little high, and those stilettos, so hot at the beginning of the evening, are slowly rubbing your skin off. You save your complaining for when you are in the bathroom with your friends. On the dance floor you are a seductress, and such goddesses do not feel unattractive things, at least not while Mr. Pectoral and Señor Biceps over there are appreciating the view.
Let’s face it, nobody wears stilettos because they’re comfortable. That is just a lie we girls tell ourselves.
These aren’t that bad.
I look hot.
These aren’t that bad.
My legs look toned.
Briefly blinded by pain, mind buzzing with two vodka cranberry, one white Russian, and said stiletto mantra, you miss the perfectly aloof strut of Mr. Pectoral as he zeros in on you and approaches.
You slide all of your weight onto your left leg and dazzle him with a mischievous grin (you’ve practiced it in the mirror many times). You hope he doesn’t notice the wet vodka stain on your shirt. He keeps glancing at your boobs and you send out a silent thank you for the borrowed push-up bra from your best friend Nicole. He reaches out to place a hand on your waist, and you suck in and flex right before he makes contact. He takes a sip from his red Solo cup with a grin; he seems to like the curve of you (thanks, Pilates!). You get a whiff of cigarettes as he pulls you closer, and you hide a gag with your ‘come hither’ smile. He will never know you are holding your breath. He leans in to kiss you and you present your mouth like an offering to the sex gods.
It is the moment of truth, the outcome of your sexual destiny for the night. You see your friends gathering their things; they shoot you a look from across the room. You hold up a finger to signal you need a moment, and you turn back to that gorgeous, green-eyed devil checking you out.
What are you going to do? What is it that you really want?
It is choices like these that have inspired me to write and speak about the world of college hookups. My ebook and my talks are for college students. This work has evolved over four years of intensive research and interviewing college students about their thoughts, feelings, experiences, and choices. I’ve also spent a lot of time talking to women out of college about their choices and what they might have done differently if they could go back.
So, to all you ladies out there wading through the endless tide of hookup culture, let me throw you a rope.
But, first, let me introduce myself—I’m Stephanie Amada, and I’m a professor at Michigan State University. More importantly, though, I’m a woman, and I remember being in college and trying to sort out my own confusing feelings about navigating the crazy social scene.
So, let’s talk about sex. Does the topic make you uncomfortable? Or curious? Do you feel like you’re being pushed into something you may not be ready for?
There is no cookie cutter answer to these questions, because everyone is unique. The key is to find out what kind of different you are and to have the confidence to support your own decisions. Sounds simple enough, right?
Choice is one of those concepts in hookup culture that is multifaceted.
It’s not pro- or anti-sex here; consider it more of an advice book and guideline for confidence milestones. You are the leading lady in your own life, so quit allowing your choices to revolve around what society or friends (or guys you meet at parties) tell you. For more about the complicated matter of choice, check out my ebook, Hooking Up: A Sexy Encounter with choice.