By Michael A. Kowaleski ‘14 & Sabrina Mastronardo ‘15 | Collaborative Writers
Photos by Hana Isihara ‘17, Nicole Maselli ’14 and Ally Hill ‘15
How do students maneuver the tricky alleys of hookups at a small college? The Lafayette talked to four seniors to hear their stories. To protect their identities, pseudonyms have been assigned to each individual. Statistics have been limited to hookups on campus.
How many people have you hooked up with, and how many of those people have you had sex with?
Hugo Stiglitz: Ten to 15 hookups. Sex with five to ten.
Nice Guy Eddie: 18 hookups. Sex with seven.
Beatrice Kiddo: 7 hookups. Sex with three.
Mia Wallace: 12 hookups. Sex with six.
How many of these people have you dated?
HS: Two or three.
NGE: One. It was only a couple weeks.
BK: Two. Both for about a year, and the second one I’m still dating.
MW: Three. One for seven months, one for two months, and one that I’m currently dating and have been for about seven months.
How many people have you been “friends with benefits” with?
HS: Four or five.
BK: None. That was never something I was looking for.
MW: I don’t know how to answer this question. I’ve always thought of “friends with benefits” pretty vague. I’ll say no.
How did that relationship start?
HS: Definitely casual hookups. There was no dating and then being like “we should be friends with benefits.” It’s like that one drunken night where you hook up and the next morning you’re like, “that was fun, why haven’t we done that before?” We can keep the relationship bullshit out of it by just being friends.
NGE: I was a junior and she was a senior. Kind of had her life already set out. She had a job already, and it just wasn’t going to work out as much as I wanted it to work out. So we would just hook up a lot and it just didn’t get too much past that.
BK: With one boyfriend, we went to a party. I wouldn’t consider it a hook up because we both knew we liked each other. So it wasn’t just random, but I wouldn’t call it a date, either. Another one asked me on a date first.
MW: They all started with drunken hookups.
Have you have any awkward stories of intersecting social circles?
HS: I’ve done that before and didn’t realize that the person had a boyfriend, because we were just friends with benefits. I found out later that she was dating a kid I knew casually. So that was really awkward – really, really awkward, because then you’re just sitting there like, ‘shit, I don’t know what to say.’
NGE: I would say the vast majority [of hookups] know each other in some capacity.
MW: [Two boys I hooked up with] lived together after graduation and didn’t even know at first. I was dating one at the time, and it was awkward when they found out.
Have you ever had any awkward encounters with a one-night stand?
HS: I hooked up with this girl and I didn’t remember, because I was really drunk, but I woke up the next morning in bed with her. I was a sophomore, and my pledge master called me and he told me I had to go to the house and that he had a crush on her. They ended up dating for like a year after that.
How do you feel your sexual activity compares to your peers?
HS: Normal. Definitely more than some but less than some.
NGE: I would say I’m pretty average.
BK: I think I’m in the middle. I feel like I have a balance.
MW: I feel like I probably hook up with more people. I think if you’re in a sorority, you’re surrounded by girls all the time and it’s probably harder to hook up with people. Or if you do, you meet at a frat party and go and have a one night stand, whereas my best friends on this campus are male so it’s easier to date.
Would you say that you know a lot about your friends’ hookups?
HS: Yeah, especially when you go to a party, you see who leaves with who and the next morning you see them walking out of the room, and you put two and two together. You’re just like, ‘what happened?’ and then details follow. Piecing together the night.
NGE: Yeah definitely. Usually that turns into jokes between guy friends. It’ll become an order thing. We’ll be like, ‘who hooked up with her first?’ ‘Who planted the flag?’ ‘Who went to try and retrieve the flag?’ ‘Who went and put the flag back?’
Do you feel you have to meet stereotypes?
HS: In a fraternity, there’s always going to be some sort of judgment. There have been so many stories of guys being like ‘oh, I got so drunk last night and I hooked up with this chick that I would never have hooked up with if I was sober.’ So it’s a lot of judgment not like ‘oh you haven’t had sex in three days, what’s wrong with you?’ but more of who [you hook up with]. And then there’s a lot of justification. Like, ‘oh, I hooked up with that girl because I had a really rough day, or I was really drunk.’ You have to defend yourself. It’s weird to sit there and be criticized for it. Maybe in your eyes, she’s attractive, but if ten guys were like, ‘she’s not attractive,’ you have to be like ‘yeah, I took ten shots before I left last night, so…’
NGE: I would say there definitely was pressure when I was younger. Now, there’s not really that much pressure. You’re just put in situations more often where it could occur, and you can let it happen if you want to let it happen.
BK: You think that I’d be a typical catholic girl to wait until marriage to have sex.
How has your view changed of the hookup and dating culture since freshman year?
HS: I think it’s stupid.
NGE: It’s become much more jaded. Freshman and sophomore year I was kind of looking to maybe get into a relationship. This goes it phases, but I would say freshman and sophomore year I would more often be looking to get into a relationship. But junior year not as much, and now, not even at all.
BK: I think my attitude towards dating has matured a lot. When I came here my freshman year, I wanted to be a good girl like I’ve always been. There are still things that I regret but I’m coming to terms with those. But there’s a part of you that wants to be wanted. When you see that people are interested in you, it’s hard to say no.
MW: I think a lot of freshman are not as emotional stable as they are in later years of college. They aren’t in a place where they can maintain a stable relationship but they want that comfort of having someone who supports them. So I felt like my freshman hookups were usually wreckless. As I’ve gotten older, my decisions have been more thought through. I’m at a place where my hookups are more likely to turn into a relationship.
Do you have hookup horror stories?
NGE: I brought this one girl back and we had sex. My roommate kind of announced it in Farinon. He made it known that we had hooked up and I was fine with it, but I wasn’t fine with it from her perspective. That’s her own business. It’s not for anyone else to tell. And that just made it awkward between me and her, it kind of fizzled out because of that whole thing.
What do you think the dating scene is like at Lafayette?
NGE: I think it’s much more hookup-based in my experience. I know a lot of people who do date and stay with the significant other for an extended period of time, but it’s less consistent than people going out and meeting up with someone and hooking up.
MW: I think more underclassmen are less likely to commit to someone. I think by senior year there are a lot more guys who are looking to settle down into more serious relationships.
What hookup or dating advice would you give to freshmen?
NGE: Don’t kiss and tell. If you can avoid it, don’t hookup with people who your friends have feelings for. Keep it light, keep it easy, and have fun.
MW: Freshmen feel a lot more pressure to have sex than seniors do. I would say to freshman that less people are expecting that than you think. Take your time with it.