Leading up to the start of my freshmen year, I was willing to listen to any and all advice about college life.
When my best friend suggested listening to Barstool Sports’ Call Her Daddy podcast episode about college, to say I was a little skeptical is a great understatement.
Unlike my friend who listens to the show religiously, I had never been particularly interested. The title itself, “College Life: Being Hot vs. Not,” didn’t seem up my alley in the slightest. I did know the hosts of the podcast, Alexander Cooper and Sofia Franklin, had a notorious reputation of pushing the envelope with their risqué content surrounding modern relationships, the art of blowjobs, and frequently advising listeners to cheat on their boyfriends.
To discover the episode was not only insightful but also empowering, which was an unexpected surprise.
The hosts’ advice included topics like which room hookups should happen in to keep the peace with your roommate, being strategic when making female friends and how to take back the power in sex with upperclassmen.
However, there was one piece of relationship advice that stood out amongst the rest: absolutely do not hook up with anyone the first semester. Cooper goes on to explain, “Lineup your roster [of potential partners]. Go to parties. Be the biggest fucking flirt you can be, but don’t let anyone know what your vagina smells like the first semester.”
Ironically, this wasn’t the first time this very advice was given to me.
My dear mother, who my friends refer to as the older version of Alex Cooper, gave me this advice when I was only thirteen. Much like Cooper, my mother has always taken a very honest approach to life advice and is never one to sugarcoat the truth.
I distinctly remember her telling me her college chronicles and always emphasizing, “Don’t sleep with lots of people in the first semester. You can do whatever you want after the first semester, but in the first semester you’re still dealing with immature teenagers and rumors will spread if you’re easy. Then you’ll be left questioning just how genuine the intentions of every guy offering friendship really is.”
Now that the advice was doubled down, I decided it was worth a try.
Waiting an entire semester seemed a bit aggressive, so I started with the goal of going the entire first-month hook-up free. By following this rule, my mentality shifted entirely. I found that when you don’t try to force things to fit a certain expectation, everything falls into place.
By removing potential sex from the equation, the relationships formed with both other girls and guys were more meaningful and outlasted the first weekend of college.
My focus was getting to know individuals on a deeper level and not just fulfilling the narrative of college life. Now, I don’t want this to be misconstrued as monogamy propaganda or an attack against sexual freedom.
At the end of the day, you should do absolutely whatever you want or what feels right. That’s the entire point: by trying to force yourself to hook up with a random person just so you can check it off some mental bucket list, you’re almost ensuring an awkward, unenjoyable experience.
I’ll leave you with one last piece of advice from the wise Alex Cooper, “College is amazing, but you also have to take it in stride.”