"Countless Nights I Woke Up Next To A Different Guy"

Anonymous, Sophomore

May 12, 2022

I Know You Weren't Aware Of How Your Words Would Impact My Actions

Dear mom,
Did you know that if you drink alcohol that consent to have sex is not granted? I didn’t. Not until I took my college Sexual Citizenship class. There have been countless nights that I have gone downtown with my friends and woke up next to a different guy. Every morning I had anxiety because I could not remember what led me to this point. I would try to think back to the beginning of the night and retrace my steps. It is recurring that my memory is lost right about the time I start talking to a guy.

I remember you told me once that you “didn't look like the other hot girls” and that you “felt like you had to sleep with them to get them to like you” and that you “needed liquid courage.” You told me this at a really young age, but I didn't completely understand. If you would have told me that now I would have broken down crying. I know exactly how you felt. I guess my problem is also that it isn't that I even feel like I am not hot enough for them. I feel like it is expected of me. Trying to text all of my friends asking if they knew what happened last night is not exactly an easy task either. All I know is I am unable to say exactly what I may feel the morning after. Maybe I could reduce the amount of alcohol intake on the weekends. Or maybe you could have taught me to do the opposite of what you had to experience.

I wish you had told me that it's okay to drink socially AND say no to guys that I am not interested in. When I was a little younger, I could have really used that advice. It would have prevented me from feeling obligated to do something with them. It would have saved me from the hanxiety I went through every Sunday morning. I know that you weren't aware of how your words would impact my actions.

From my Sexual Citizenship class, I realize that in a healthy relationship there is trust and most importantly communication. Being able to take a step back and evaluate the things I have learned in this class, such as consent laws, communication skills, and the steps that lead to a healthier relationship, it has prevented a plethora of terrible decisions. I now know that there has to be mutual respect in order to build a relationship. In fact, I was just talking to a guy that I fully expected to start dating. He was perfect, until there was a lack of communication and respect. He was living a double life full of lies. During our last the argument, I referred back to everything I had learned in this class. There’s no way in hell I could have shown up to class Tuesday, as his girlfriend, after knowing how toxic his behavior and lies were for our relationship.

I just want to share what I know now with you. I want to be able to teach my daughter that she never needs to feel like she needs a man’s validation.

Love,
Your Daughter