Hook Up Culture Burn Out

I am an early riser and I go to bed early, many times even on weekends. Although it was much more common during my Penn State days, I occasionally will wake up to a text sent by a person that probably had a little too much alcohol in their veins, insinuating that we get together, even though it’s 12 a.m. on a Tuesday night. In short: “booty call.”

Now, it’s not incredibly common for me to receive these lately, as I am nearing 25 and many people have grown up… or maybe just picked up on the fact that I’m not that type of person. Apparently, this person did not pick up on it.

So, this morning I woke up to this gem. In the past, I’ve usually chosen to let it go, ignore it, or laugh it off. However, I’m a little tired of that. Maybe it’s because I find myself actually “growing up” and learning how to respect myself, but I have such little tolerance for this type of disrespect anymore.

As you can see, I let it fly. I was hesitant to post this entry because I know it can be perceived a few different ways. It can be perceived as attention-seeking and it can be perceived as a ‘bitchy’ thing to do. However, I started to realize as the day went on that anyone who thinks that this type of text message is okay can think whatever the hell they want about me.

I want to say that while I haven’t lived a life full of amazing choices when it comes to getting together with the opposite sex—we all make mistakes—I was disgusted when I read this.

I am no stranger to the hook-up culture of today’s generation. I lived it. I went to Penn State. I am a single girl in my 20s. As I near the quarter-century benchmark of my life, I’m really just over it. Let this be a public service announcement – I’M OVER IT. My guess is that I’m not the only one.

Now, this is not me saying that I do not support exploration of sexuality in females, because I definitely do. I just feel that in my life right now, I can make my own choice on how I choose to deal with these types of matters. This is not an invite for exploration of sexuality, this text was a straight-up “Let me use you for sex and make you think it was your idea.” If the person did not want me to perceive it that way, they should have thought it out a little more.

The name that is blacked out is a female I have had not one conversation with in my life. The sender of the text message is an acquaintance that I have been flirty with in the past, but never once have I given the impression that this was an activity I was interested in. For Christ sakes, we have never even hung out.

As a smart, talented and sometimes naïve individual, it made me a little sad to be reduced to a sleazy text message at 11 p.m. I am a complete feminist, and if you cannot even pick up on that very important detail about me than you probably should not think that this is going to happen for you.

I questioned my reaction for a little bit – was it too harsh? Maybe I should have just blown it off, knowing in my mind that this is just an asshole that has no impact on my life. I agree with that last statement—this particular individual has no bearing on the outcome of my life whatsoever. I still felt the need to speak up for myself as well as share this experience because I think it’s something females go through too often.

I’d be lying if I said I never initiated a hook-up with someone. I have. The only thing that saves me from feeling contradictory is the fact that this person was so blatantly disrespectful in their initiation: “I heard you want to get with me.” Yikes. Naw, bro, I don’t. Your overbearing ego thinks that. In fact, it may be that you want to get with me and you just did not have the guts to come out and say it. That would have been at least a little bit less grimy and pathetic.

Speaking out about this is important to me, because I’m burned out by our hook-up culture. I’m burned out from the feeling that the only way to get to know someone is to casually hook up with them first. I’m burned out from pretending I do not feel things, because I do. My morals and beliefs match up better with people who believe in committing to long term relationships rather than people who only believe in sex. I’m so tired of pretending this behavior is okay because not doing so will cause people to dislike me or think negatively about me.

If hooking up is your thing, for all means go for it. Just try not to send me a sleazy-ass text for me to wake up to before my morning run. Don’t get me wrong, I’ll be happy that you gave me negative energy to burn off as I work out and you nurse your hangover, but I probably won’t continue to respect someone who does not respect me.

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An Ugly Oxymoron I Call Eating

Not so long ago, I was talking to someone I didn’t know very well via text messages. I’m not sure what you call a person you drunkenly give your number to at a bar… but whatever the term for that is, that’s who I was talking to. He asked me all the normal, get-to-know-you questions and I painfully made my way through them, as I hate this type of awkward, superficial banter. There was one question in particular that I found quite hard to answer, though; “I love to cook, and I love food. Do you?”

(I mean, that sounds pretty cheesy. I’d love to say it wasn’t, but it was. Oh, single life.)

I had a hard time answering this, though, because the truth is that I do not love food. I merely coexist with food and that’s about as good as it gets. This tolerance took so long and required so much work on my end that I would say I am more exhausted with food than anything. But how do you tell someone you just met that you don’t love food? Also, what’s with all the conversation about food, anyway?

My recent “diet” consists of “intuitive eating,” which is a nice way of saying you do what your body is supposed to do; you get hungry, you eat until you are satisfied, you stop. Plain and simple.

Unfortunately, over the last 12 months I’ve trained myself not to respond to hunger, so this simple instinct that should be built into my own physiology has been lost. Therefore, for about a month or two, I had to eat when I was not hungry, which that very last thing I wanted to do but also the thing I needed to do for myself and for my life. So I did.

This type of eating meant that all of my food rules – no sugar, no fried food, no ice cream, no Chinese food, nothing processed, no bread other than wheat, no cereal other than Special K, no wings, no French fries, no stopping at just a half a sandwich, no stopping after I ate the calories I thought were acceptable (under 900/day at one point in time…) – were thrown in the garbage. I asked my nutritionist about all my specific, “safe” little rules and she ordered me just to eat, stop when I was full (“Actually full, Monica”) and go about my day.

Anyway, it’s not until you’ve been ordered that the only “diet” you need is to simply eat like a normal human being, that you notice how much people talk about eating. It becomes apparent that eating like a normal human being is confusing because humanity seems to forget what normal eating is. You start to notice how clueless we actually are about how we are supposed to treat our bodies.

When I first saw my nutritionist, I had been eating what I thought was a full three meals a day. She begged to differ, looking more than a little bit amused. I was completely confused – see, I was actually better now; I was eating more than I had in months! Why was that still not enough?

However, it wasn’t enough, which makes me really scared for those months that I ate much, much less, but we just won’t go there. I know that it wasn’t enough not because she told me, but because now my body works correctly and I can feel that it’s not enough.

So, as she listed the things I could add to my meals to make them more substantial, I looked at her in horror.

“But, I’ve already gained weight since I started eating three meals again, and I’d prefer not to gain anymore.”

“You won’t, not if you listen to your body and what it’s telling you.”

(I should probably say that I’ve since stopped weighing myself, so I really don’t know if I have gained weight and I cannot afford to care.)

It’s funny, though, since I’ve been following these quite basic steps to eating – intuitive steps ­­­– I have found that the obsessions and constant worries about food have faded away, because I actually feel satisfied and trust my body to do what it’s supposed to. Running is also a shit ton easier since my body actually has energy to burn off.

Now that I have my shit together, it has made me realize how I was not alone in my struggle. Although my struggle spun out of control, it seems other people are just as confused when it comes to their own food rules and caloric intake. It makes me wonder why we spend so much time learning about a war that happened over 200 years ago, but we cannot take the time to learn how to feed ourselves correctly.

So many people are dieting. So many people are over-eating. So many people hate their bodies. Therefore, as I struggle to increase by food intake, I watch other people struggle to lower theirs. It’s a damn ugly oxymoron.

The thing is, it’s not single individuals who find themselves so confused; it’s the conflicting messages given to us from society as a whole. In the 50’s, fast food was the best thing to happen to mankind; 40 years later, people argue that it was the worst. In the 90’s the government pushed a low-fat diet, which in time lead to processed foods labeled “Low Fat!” to surge in popularity, even though the chemicals used to make it so low fat were not naturally and certainly not good for our bodies. Now, we understand that the processed foods are bad, but people are convinced that carbohydrates are the devil, which isn’t true – carbs actually fuel brain power. They are essential. It’s just the portion control that we all need to work on.

I wish we would; I really do. I wish it for the overweight* person who feels bad about their body and the underweight person who feels bad about their body. I wish it for everyone. Sometimes, I wish we could just stop the conversation about food altogether; that we all just knew internally when to start and when to stop. Until then…I’m going to keep going. My tolerance for food will once again turn into love.

*Just a side note, this is not to say over-eating and diet is the only reason for weight gain. I understand there are more factors that go into a person’s make-up.

The Death of Blogspot

As I become more and more interested in writing about all things important to me, I also find it increasingly important to write in style. Blogspot was cramping it, so I moved over here. However, Blogspot and I shared a ton of great memories and coming-of-age moments that I would never want you to miss. Feel free to check out my past entries by clicking here.