Let's Talk About Sex: Girl, booze ain't no excuse

Originally published on August 30, 2011 by The Eastern Echo

Like most college students, I’m a ‘stay up until 6 a.m., sleep until noon then run to my class which starts at 12:15 p.m.’ sort of guy. Normally I wake during the night, find myself browsing Tumblr and StumbleUpon to find interesting things. Last week I was stumbling around the web when I found an article from USA Today entitled, “College drinking is liberating, and a good excuse.” I was intrigued.

The article discussed the findings of some new psychological studies on the drinking habits and motives of college students. The article focused on the fact that we drink to get drunk and enjoy the social support and comradery that comes from drinking. Neither of those facts was too shocking to this third-year college student. However, about half way through the article I reached a quote from one of the researchers explaining how female students used booze as an excuse for their sexual activity and I nearly died from instant on-set depression.

“If you have sex, you’re a slut, and if you don’t, you’re a prude — but drinking allows you to do both. You can go out, get drunk, have sex and the next day say, ‘I’m still a good girl.’”

Drunk chick say what?

I wouldn’t dare to pretend I was completely unaware of how some people use alcohol to excuse their sexual behavior, but I would not have figured that in the sexually-liberated year of 2011, those people would be in numbers significant enough to warrant a mention. It was my assumption that this sort of shame driven behavior was limited to only the most religious among us. Sadly, I was wrong.

I find it strange that so many of my collegiate counterparts feel like they need to use alcohol as an excuse to satisfy their sexual urges.

You do not need an excuse to have sex. If you feel like you do, blame it on the fact that orgasms are free and feel grrrrrreat! If that doesn’t work, blame it on the fact that today is a day that ends with the letter “y.” If that doesn’t work for you either, then why not try my personal favorite: because I feel like it.

Folks, I know sex can be scary and there are a lot of social pressures on all of us to behave in a sexually conservative manner. But using alcohol because you think it absolves you of responsibility simply does not work.

I dare you to take the “I was so drunk! Lulz!” defense to a judge and see how quickly you get kicked out of court. Being drunk is not an excuse for your sexual behavior, especially if you’re getting drunk with the intention of having sex.

That’s like saying ‘OMG! I toats wanna have sex with you but like you’re going to think I’m a slut if I do. So I’m going to go over here and drink until I can’t feel feelings anymore instead of handling my guilt like an adult. LOL ;) XOXO.’

Don’t misunderstand me — as long as you’re of age, it’s cool. You can even drink with the intention of having a slutty good time and not be violating the 10 Let’s Talk About Sex commandments. But when you start hiding your true intentions behind the guise of intoxication, you violate commandment number 1, thou shalt love thy sexuality, and 2, thou shalt be honest about one’s desires and needs.

It’s sad, but in our culture, sexually liberated people are looked down upon and labeled with the scarlet letters S-L-U-T. No matter what you do, you will always have people who feel like they can pass judgment on you. Getting drunk is not going to make them go away.

If you want to get your rocks off, you will have to deal with a few cross looks from people who would definitely benefit from a few good orgasms. You cannot let those people make you feel like your sexuality is something to be ashamed of.

Just because you choose to exercise your free will with Will, Mark, Brandon and Jason doesn’t make you dirty, less desirable or a bad person. It does, however, mean that your milkshake is bringing all the boys to the yard. Since when is that a bad thing?

Let me step down from my sexpert pedestal and be real with you.

When you buy into to our culture’s sex negative rhetoric, you are playing a game you can’t win.

You think you’re beating the system by blaming it on the a-aaa-a-alcohol but really you’re making bigger problems for yourself. If you think a guy doesn’t respect you enough to not call you a slut when you’re sober, what do you think he’s going to call you at 4 a.m. once he’s had his way with you?

Your little alcoholic ruse is not cute or clever. Guys know the game.

It’s cool if a beer or two will take the edge off and help you be more social, but if you are relying on alcohol as a cure-all to prevent social scorn, you’re clearly insane. By being just another dumb drunk girl you’re simply proving to these boys you’re as disposable as a Kleenex.

I know you’re worth more than that. I know all of the things you’re doing are just symptoms of our slut-shaming, sex-negative, hypocritical culture. You’re worth much more than your behavior suggests, but no one else will know that unless you start having respect for yourself.

Having respect for yourself doesn’t mean you have to refrain from having sex or drinking. But it does mean that you embody the strength and courage needed to hold your head high when the world calls you a slut. It means you don’t buy into the shame. Most of all, it means you can be honest about what you want, when you want and how you want it, without the need to become just another dumb drunk girl at the party.