So, you are at a party, or on a beach somewhere for spring break. You’re having fun, chillin’ and checkin’ out the scene. Maybe you are having some cocktails (you are legal, right?) Before you know it, you are talking to what you think is a hottie. And they are talking to you. Sweet! So, you think to yourself; “I’d really like to hook up with her (or him)” “They are hot”! Well, while your temperature is rising and you are trying to find a way to be alone with them. You probably have a case of spring fever, which can hit during any season, by the way. Still, there are some things to consider before the hookup occurs. You can decide to hookup, hang out or hang up at any moment you choose!
Here are seven factors that can you can keep in mind to have a great time while protecting yourself.
1. The beer goggle factor: The beer can cloud your judgment if you have too much of it, so if you stay within your limits you can make a better choice. If you’ve had a few too many, you may want to ask your friend (if they are more clear thinking than you are) if what you see is really what you get.
2. The health factor: Think about staying young and healthy! You can more easily prevent than treat sexually transmitted diseases by using safer sex practices such as condoms and other safer sex apparel such as dental dams or gloves as part of all sex play. You also have a right to ask someone’s health status, and to engage in safer sex activities, such as kissing or mutual masturbation. Most college health clinics have free condoms or other birth control available, if you choose to access it. Or, you can go to the nearest pharmacy or convenience store to get supplies. If you don’t know how to use condoms, practice on yourself, or on a penis-shaped sex toy. If you don’t have those, then practice on a cucumber or zuchinni until you get the hang of it.
3. The relationship factor: Are you in a relationship? (not with this hottie). If you are, do you care about this person, and what is your agreement about being exclusive? “She’ll never find out” or “he’ll never know the difference” is a lie that you can tell yourself at the time, but can you live with that? How will you feel about cheating on your partner? Alternative: If you are far away, set up a phone sex date with your partner instead. Use your imagination to drive you wild.
4. The morning after factor: How will you feel about this decision in the morning? If you are great with that, then go ahead and have fun. If you decide just to hook up for sex sake, then have at it, as long as the decision is mutual and you consider safer sex practices. You probably don’t want to create a baby from a fling. If you really like the person, though, and want to know them better, you may consider doing this first before “hitting it” to see what develops. It’s all about your mindset.
5. The backup factor: Do your friends know where you are? Do you know where you are? If the answer is no, then make sure to let someone or more than one person know where you are going. The address, etc. Have an agreement with one of your friends about where you are. You can ask for ID also so you can let them know the name and address of the person you are going somewhere with.
6. The ride home factor: How are you going to get home? If you are too buzzed to drive, then walk or cab it to wherever you are going. Better safe than dead.
7. The small world factor: It is indeed a small world. Remember, you may be seeing the person on campus again, or off campus if you met them through friends. I know it’s sometimes difficult to think about the future when you are having such a great time in the present! However, keep in mind that you will run into people around campus, and that a minute of planning now can save you a whole lot of headache in the future. Now that will give you a dose of reality on spring fever gone bad.
8. Bonus: The Red Flag Factor: If you see red flags flying, like the hottie is passed out and wasted, stalking you, telling you they want to marry you and have babies together, violating your boundaries, then run, don’t walk.