The 24-Year-Old Whose Go-To Date Outfit Is All About Confidence2 Min Read
BTBz is dedicated to talking about sexual health and self-discovery — and our community’s voices are critical in these conversations. Welcome to the BTBz Column: a weekly reflection by our community members about their own sexual identities. Want to contribute anonymously? Get in touch.
What’s your current relationship status? How do you feel about it?
I’ve been in a relationship for a little over four and a half years now, and I am very content. I’m really lucky to have my current partner.
What’s one thing you wish you knew about dating or relationships when you first started?
So much. I wish I knew I didn’t have to make myself palatable for men. I wish I had realized that if you don’t share fundamental values, it will never work. Most of all I wish I had been less afraid to end a relationship after I realized it wasn’t working.
How could your high school sex ed experience have been better?
I went to a Catholic school, so I remember sex ed being very severe and abstinence-only. They made it seem like all sexual experiences ended in contracting a STD or unwanted pregnancy. There was no focus on pleasure or resources if you wanted to have safe sex. It wasn’t at all realistic. The message was that sex was immoral, and so if you were willing to do it you should just accept the consequences. I would have loved an education that normalized sex, gave advice about pregnancy and STD prevention outside of abstinence, and even focused on some of the benefits of sex. I wasn’t at all prepared to have sex based on my education.
What does sex positivity mean to you?
Sex positivity means understanding two seemingly paradoxical things: (1) sex is normal, but (2) there’s no “normal” when it comes to sex. Do what makes you feel good without passing judgment on yourself or others!
What is your best breakup advice?
Don’t try to keep talking immediately after the breakup. It’s too emotionally fraught.
How do you know when a relationship is right?
When that person fully knows you and fully loves you. And when you can simply do nothing together.
How do you focus on your relationship with yourself?
I’ve been trying to be kinder to myself. I’m an anxious person, and I frequently rehash embarrassing things I’ve said or done at the end of each day. Lately I’ve been trying to think of what I’d say to a friend if they told me that they were embarrassed about these things — and I think I would likely say, ‘don’t worry, none of that stuff really matters.’ That’s been a good way to get some perspective.
Do you have a go-to date outfit?
Whatever I feel most confident in at the time — it’s usually something thrifted. I actually love an edgier, more casual date look.
What is your favorite pop culture relationship?
When do you feel most in tune with your body?
When I exercise, when I dance alone in my room, and when I’m in nature.