"How can I be cool and casual and chill at college parties and hooking up, when I'm the least cool, casual, or chill person ever?"
- Question submitted by anonymous
Let me tell you what: I am not cool or casual or chill. I won’t ever be any of those things because I have some social anxiety and also I have a lot of feelings and also mostly when I dance I just fling my arms about the room and bob my head.
Let me tell you what else: Probably at least a few of you think I am cool and casual and chill… even though I am like HAHAHAHAHA NOPE. I have scientific data on this because the other night I went to dinner with an Everyone Is Gay reader who is starting her freshman year of college and during our dinner she said she thought I was cool... And, in response, I laughed just like I did up there, in all caps, but in person because she was sitting across the table from me.
Point being: No matter how “uncool” or “not casual” or “really the opposite of chill” you are… the right people will still thing you are the fucking coolest, best, raddest person there is. You see, that is how we find each other! We see a person flinging their arms about the room and we are like OH THANK GOD ANOTHER ARM FLINGER IS HERE, and then we talk about Harry Potter or we talk about manicures or we talk about denim or we talk about Tegan & Sara or we talk about the earth orbiting through space or we talk about the X-Files or we talk about The Bachelorette. We find people who think we are cool as we are, because, well, we are cool and also “cool” is relative.
What you need, Anon, is to do all the parties you want and skip the ones you don’t, and work at being YOU. I know it sounds cliche, but it’s fucking real as shit. I am still struggling to do this, myself. Sometimes I write things here or I take a selfie for Instagram and I am frozen with all those voices saying, “You are so so so not cool, don’t you know how uncool you are?!”
Work with me to say, “Cool is relative, and I am me.”
I promise to post my pictures and write my advice as ME if you promise to kiss those babes and go to those parties as YOU.
"quick! help! my sister (who I never get to see and love very much) is coming into town for graduation and staying with me. so obvi i want to see her and hang out with her bunches BUT it’s also my last chance to have final goodbye parties with all my friends. I think I’d feel weird inviting her, she’s older and less about the college party scene, but leaving her at home while i go out sounds like the worst. HELP."
- Question submitted by Anonymous
One cool thing about parties is that they start sort of late. So, you can TOTALLY get away with leaving your house at 10pm, which is reasonable, IN MY OPINION.
I think you just have to be super real with your sister. It’s graduation weekend, i MEAN COME ON. She HAS to understand you’re going to wanna get your party on, right!? Just make a plan with her.
“Hey, PICKLES (your sister), I’m so glad you’re here and I wanna hang out every second, but also I want to spend certain seconds at parties so I can celebrate entering the real world with my friends SLASH be irresponsible, etc. I’m totally down for you to come with, BUT I know you hate this kind of thing, so I am also down to leave a little later so we get the most possible hang time before the parties starts, tell me your thoughts.”
Boom. You’ll have a conversaysh and you’ll figure out the best possible thing for the both of you. OOOORRRR wait until she falls asleep and sneak out.
YOU ARE SUCH A GOOD SISTER. I love this. Probably because I am an older sister and I know how much I care about / totally understand my younger sister, so I am picturing you being sensitive to my feelings during my visit and me being like OMG I LOVE YOU LET’S HAVE A GLASS OF WINE BEFORE I TAKE A NAP LOVE YOUUUU. You know?!
I agree with Dannielle, you can totally rock the best of both worlds in this situation. My master plan would be: Talk to your sister and let her know you are so psyched to see her. Tell her there are mad graduation parties and you know they might not be totally her scene, but she is invited to all of them HOWEVER NO PRESSURE. Ask her if there is a night you guys can have for just the two of you, maybe go to dinner, get a couple of drinks, talk about life and love and Orange Is The New Black and stuff. Go to your parties on the other nights and have a blast.
You only get that holy-shit-I-finished-college (or high school for that matter) feeling one time, and there’s nothing quite like it. It’s full of so many scary feelings and excited feelings and overwhelming feelings and holy-fuckballs-wtf-is-life feelings. Your sister will get it. We all get it. Have a blast, speak your feels, and be sure to fall asleep with your clothes on in the living room when you get home tipsy at 4am so she can make fun of you / instagram you / etc.
YOU DID IT, YOU GRADUATED. PROUDA YOU. *shoulder punch*
"Every time I get drunk a huge part of me wants to tell my friends that i’m gay. i never can and either end up getting angry or sad which really sucks. What should i do?"
- Question submitted by Anonymous and answered by Nick Barsuli as a part of Everyone Is Gay: Second Opinions
Whoo boy. Alcohol makes everything tricky. Some people will tell you that our true wants and desires will come out when we’re drunk, so anything said or done while drunk must have been fueled by some sort of subconscious desire.
I say that the people who say that are dumb. Alcohol just lowers our inhibitions. Sure, we might say or do things we wouldn’t while sober, but that doesn’t mean these are things we subconsciously WANT to say or do. A lot of stupid things are said and done while under the influence of alcohol.
Anyway, this brings me to my point: I would sit down for a second and think to yourself if you really want to tell your friends you’re gay. If it’s only when you’re drunk that you feel this desire to tell them, you might not be ready. If, while sober, you think it’s a bad idea, don’t worry about it. It’s a big part of who you are, but your sexuality doesn’t define you as a person. Your friends like you already (I’m guessing), so you’ve got that going for you. When and if you decide to share this with them, they’ll still like you, I promise. If not, there was already a problem with that friendship.
Anger, sadness, and frustration are all natural responses to this sort of situation, and they are feelings typically only made worse by alcohol. My advice to you about this is to take a deep breath, look yourself in the mirror, and remind yourself that you’re pretty damn awesome. Like, seriously. Look at you. You’re great. I love you already. Telling your friends you’re gay can be a really scary thing, but you’ve already done the scariest part, which is realizing it for yourself. After that, you can do anything.
However, do it sober. It’ll mean a lot more to your friends, and it’ll mean a lot more to you. Drunken confessions can get lost in blackouts and hazes, and who knows what. Plus, emotions get a lot more…emotional under the effects of alcohol. Let it be real. It’s scary, I know, but do it sober when you are finally comfortable, and it’ll make a world of difference, I promise.
Click through to read more about Nick and our other Second Opinions panelists!
"How do you deal with guilt and shame the day after drunkenly acting like a damned fool?"
- Question submitted by Anonymous
You own it. Right?
You guys… I don’t drink, but for the span of like six months I totally did. And I was SUCH AN IDIOT. I made out with every single human. I’m pretty sure I embarrassed myself beyond repair and I made all of the worst decisions. HOWEVER, I don’t believe in the “omg i wouldn’t have done any of that if I wasn’t drunk” philosophy, bc like.. you’re still you (mostly) and you consciously (tho stupidly) make the decisions you make.
So, accept that you are the human you are and it was your CHOICE to jump off the roof into a leaf pile. You have that broken leg because you made a dumb decision and now you won’t do it again. You slept with your ex because you wanted to, oops. You kissed your best friend bc you thought it would be fun. You totaled your car because drunk driving is fucking stupid. YOU did these things. Learn some stuff and move on. Laugh at yourself if it’s laughable, awkwardly text your friends if it’s awkward, and call a cab, you guys.. or invite me.. DD4LYFE
Yeah, first things first: drunkenly making out with your ex is something that can and does happen to many of us. Drunkenly getting in a car and driving is never okay, never okay, NEVER. OKAY. That is a very important things to say a few times. Dig? Cool.
I am going to go ahead and assume that you “acting like a damn fool” is related to you saying a bunch of things you wish you hadn’t, flirting with someone when you totally have a boo, giving everyone at the bar a hickey and not remembering until you saw the pictures, or making out with your ex. You probably made out with your ex. In most cases: you apologize one time, and, like Dannielle said, you use the experience to inform future life-decisions. There isn’t anything more you can do, and most people will understand that you had a little too much to drink and tallied up one regretful evening.
Now. If this isn’t an isolated situation, and you feel like there are many nights where you go out, drink too much, and then do things that you regret… this is a bigger problem. If you go out and you know that you can have a few drinks, have a blast, and go home unscathed, great. If you go out and you know that once you have a drink, you’ll need to have several more until you blackout – that is a problem, and you need to seek help.
Here is a first step. Many campuses also have resources available to you. Look them up and talk to someone.
If you are just like WHOOOOOO COLLLLEGGGEEE SHIT I TOTALLY BONED MY EX I AM A HORRIBLE PERSON… you are not a horrible person. We all make mistakes. If you need to apologize, do so. Then, do what the world has been doing for centuries – move past it, drink less, and forgive yourself for your occasional indiscrections.
"I have to give a speech at my bestie’s 21st and I am wondering how you tell which embarrassing/funny stories are fine for everyone’s enjoyment and which ones will be absolutely mortifying and make everyone in the room uncomfortable? I’ve seen so many people get this wrong and I DO NOT want to put her (or myself) through that!"
- Question submitted by Anonymous
guys… when did we start giving speeches at birthday parties?
Do – Tell stories everyone already knows (i.e. broken bones, drunken arrests, winning pageants, etc)
Don’t – Talk about your bffs SEXCAPADES. I don’t care how cool y’all are, talking about boners in front of a bunch of people IS WEIRD.
Do – Talk about the first time you met.
Don’t – Talk about farts, poops, vomit, or stomach pumping.
Do – Make some sort of joke about how the two of you actually made it to your 21st bday LOL WE R SUCH CRAZEE KIDS.
Don’t – Get super wasted and forget your speech.
Do – Let yourself get drunk on emotion and bust out those tears when you talk about how much you love your best friend and how you would go to the ends of the earth for her.
That’s a pretty solid list of dos and don’ts… I would also like to add that your speech should not include more than one inside joke and that it should include things about your friend that you know, appreciate, love, and admire, as well as a few things that she does that are hilarious that everyone knows about and she can laugh about.
Por ejemplo: SARAH HAS ALWAYS BEEN THE MOST HONEST, KIND, AND DARING PERSON THAT I KNOW. SHE HIKED MOUNT KILIMANJARO, BUILT HOUSES FOR PUPPIES, AND GRADUATED WITH HONORS ALL WITHIN THE PAST THREE YEARS. SHE ALSO WATCHED EVERY EPISODE OF ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK IN ONE DAY. WHAT AN ACHIEVER.
Also, my dad said that he plans to record his speech for my wedding and then lipsync to it at the reception. So… you could also do that.