By Nick Anstett and Kaitlyn Fowler
Elm Staff Writers
Nick says… College opens up a lot of freedoms. You now have time for things you never may have had before. More opportunities at your fingertips. And let’s be honest, lots of time to spend doing…well you know.
For many of us this is likely the first time a hookup with a sexual partner was truly a possibility. It’s tempting to jump head on into contemporary hookup culture. Hell, look at Yik Yak or even walk around campus during the weekend; it seems to be the main hit on a lot of people’s to do lists. (No pun intended). That being said, there are some issues with your traditional college “hook up” that need to be kept in mind.
The most obvious and important thing to keep in mind is that a hook up by colloquial definition is a one and done type deal. That doesn’t mean that larger things couldn’t come from it farther down the line, but it’s more than likely that both sides went into it not anticipating or wanting anything more than a night of fun. The issue than becomes how does one handle the morning after.
Handling post hook up interactions poorly is a nightmare. Washington College is a small campus both in size and community. Your hook up is likely going to be common knowledge to at least your close friends within a few days and depending on how you handle yourself even more of the campus as the weeks go on. While it’s understandable that you might want to brag or talk about your exciting night, doing so, even in moderation, is inviting more people into an event that was likely only agreed upon by two. It will affect your reputation as time goes on and it’s important to remember that when you talk about your hookup you are involving the other party without his or her permission. This is a very quick way to sour your relationship, whatever it may be, with your one-time partner.
Another downside to WC’s small campus is that as much as you may wish otherwise, you will bump into your partner between classes, at the dining hall, or at parties. Ideally, it would be nice for these interactions to be handled as civilly and least awkwardly as possible. The easiest way to avoid this is to have clear communication, before, during, and after the “hook up”. Make it clear what both sides want and how things will be handled going out. Also, respect each other’s privacy. If one side wants it to be a onetime deal, respect that from the start. Don’t go looking for something more.
Kaitlyn says…Everyone knows that with every hookup, there is always the dreaded morning after. How long does that feeling of awkwardness last? Well that depends on the two of you. Some people are fine after their hookup and return to whatever it was they were before-friends, acquaintances, two people who bumped into each other at a party. Others have a huge rift between them, those who avoid eye contact when they pass each other on the Cater Walk or who whisper something to their friends when you walk by. The difference between these two scenarios is respect. If you two respect each other, whether that means being friends or just not talking about each other to everyone, then hopefully, your post-hookup world won’t be too awkward. We all like to talk to our friends about our lives and everything that’s going on with us. Telling your friends all the dirty little secrets about your hookups is not fair to whoever you were with. No one wants the intimate details of their life and relationships to be the talk of campus, and so if you wouldn’t want that for yourself, respect your partner enough not to do that to him or her. It’s the golden rule folks, and it tends to ring true for most occasions. I’m not saying that you have to lock your lips and throw away the key, but use some discretion. Every person wants to be with a great partner, and you showing her a little respect, whether it’s before, during, or after your hookup, she’s going to remember that and appreciate it. Maybe she will talk to her friends about you. Wouldn’t you rather her call you a gentleman than a jerk? A relationship doesn’t end when you walk out their door the next morning. There’s always going to be a connection between the two of you, whether it’s a strong one or not. So respect it and them, and maybe that relationship will become something you remember with happiness and not just an awkward encounter you wish you could take back.