SEX ON THURSDAY | Reflecting on My Slut Era

SEX ON THURSDAY | Reflecting on My Slut Era

Even as I try to avoid the dreaded senior spring waves of self-reflection, no period of my college life has stood out to me more than my self-proclaimed slut era. The online discourse surrounding “slut eras” highlights their intentionality: the choice to lean into an aura of sluttiness and an influx of casual sex. My own slut era began, as many do, after a breakup. Coming back from winter break and the end of my high-school-turned-long-distance relationship, my exploration of the borders of singleness would define my sophomore spring semester. I embraced my first foray into fun, meaningless sex head-on. There were a host of characters: a Swedish MBA student, a man in Ithaca for a conference, a guy visiting his friend at Cornell, two sons of professors, a boy who came over an hour after my Covid quarantine ended and my Perfect Match. 

A notes app list from that semester reminds me of some of their quirks: I outsourced memories to my phone instead of the loops of my overthinking brain. This is the point of a slut era, I think — to take what you need and move on. The hookups are stories for a rainy day, remnants of another time. 

Some of my slut era sex was bad, and some was great. Most fell somewhere in the middle. The quality of the sex didn’t define the era, however. What did was the way that my sexual spontaneity bled into my everyday posture. I felt more fun, more at ease and more confident. It’s hard to tell whether that was because I felt like I was accomplishing some classic college trope or if the slut-era mindset was shifting my whole mental state. 

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