The Hookup Rollercoaster

How do you write an article on the culture of hookups and relationships? This culture deserves a book because it is one of the most complex and ambiguous topics I have ever come across. With that being said, welcome to my column of the hookup and relationship life.
Relationships help us all grow because we succumb to the idea of depending on another individual, letting them into our hearts. We have to become vulnerable, feel raw, and completely expose ourselves to the thought of having our heart and spirit broken into a million pieces. Of course there are many different types of relationships, but all help us grow and navigate ourselves as we figure out what we want, what we like, and who we want to grow with. With that being said, after many many drafts of this piece, I came up with the conclusion that a hookup is a type of relationship– the type that fascinates me most.
Hooking up. What does this phrase even entail? Just as the culture itself is confusing, the definition of the phrase is confusing as everyone’s definition is slightly different. One person can be talking about making out, while someone else is thinking sex. When using the word hookup, I have figured out that one needs to specify because if not, who knows where your listener’s imagination is going? However, if you think the definition is confusing, wait until you get to the essence and meaning of the hookup, because that is when the imagination puts on a pair of hyper jets and sets the gear to ludicrous speed. Here are a few of the many phrases that sprint through one’s mind after a hookup: Do they like me? Should I text them? No, they should text me first. But what if they are waiting for me to text them? Do I make eye contact? Do they even remember me? Was I good? I probably sucked. Maybe that’s why they didn’t text me. Should I say hi or just pretend like I don’t even know who they are. Why do I feel like trash?
Or maybe you’re thinking: Shiiiiiiiiit. That was something else. That was like tripping on acid. Sign me up for round two.
Or maybe you are even thinking: Well, that didn’t turn me on, at all. Maybe I’m into girls? Maybe I am into guys? Maybe I’m asexual?
Like I said, hyper jets on ludicrous speed. But it is that not knowing — the precise inability to pinpoint how you are feeling that occupies all of your thinking space and tends to drive you crazy.
Emma Morgan-Bennett ’20 said that the “hookup culture plays a particular role in our generation, since, as the newest generation, we have transitioned from secretive hookups and secretive sexual expressions to explicit expressions of affection and explicit expressions of sexual desire”.
In our generation, there is no hiding as we live in a time, for the most part, that accepts certain actions and feelings. Hookups are normal as we are all humans with sexual feelings and sexual wants, and there is no shame IN that.
Jordan Reyes ’19 feels that “people usually make a spectacle about it [hookups], but it should be a normalized thing”.
There exists a stigma that hookups are a dirty act, and I am here to tell you that they are not. It is an act of self-discovery and an act of growth, and I cannot stress that enough. But at the same time, there needs to be a balance of respect for yourself and respect for others.
“I think casual hookups should be casual hookups, and that’s fantastic. But you also need to know that there is another person at the end of the line and it’s all about communication,” said Morgan-Bennett.
Reyes himself approves of hookups, “as long as things proceed with consent”.
The hookup culture is a complex and intricate type of relationship, a type of relationship that no one should be ashamed of. Look at each hookup not as a mistake, but an opportunity to discover something about yourself. And if the hookup was a mistake, admit it and learn. Hookups help us all grow, as long as you respect and are respected. Hook up because you want to, not because anyone else wants you to.

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