Campus Confidential: Slumber Parties, Tila Tequila, and College Lesbians
Remember Tila Tequila? As MTV’s A Shot at Love serves up a second round, I’m reflecting on season one, when I first fell for Tila. A bisexual bachelorette sitting pretty on the fence? So my thing. And you know what? I believed in Tila Tequila. Right up until the finale, when she gushed to the winner, “In the end, I chose a man…I can be your wifey!” Wait…wifey?! We’re supposed to be progressing here. Bicurious experimentation is practically a right of passage for college women – and that’s ballin’ for sexual liberation. In fact, according to a study by the CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics, same-sex sexual encounters between women have nearly tripled in the last decade. What’s the full scoop? Campus Confidential takes you undercover(s)!
Girls Just Wanna Have Fun
Many college women I spoke to about this trend reported experimenting or “practicing” on their close girlfriends growing up. One of them concluded that “it’s normal to experiment sexually with the people you feel most comfortable with.” But once these ladies leave home and fall down the rabbit hole of college life, things just get curiouser and curiouser.
When a friend of mine left her Catholic high school and started partying at fashion school, she soon discovered that “it was easy and comfortable to tell another girl she was attractive, and a few drinks later, end up making out with her!” And that’s how it starts, bi and bi.
At a Militant Queer-themed party, I hooked up with a straight girl… well, “90% straight,” as she put it. She likens her sampling of vajayjay to “trying a new flavor of ice cream or something.” You know, I scream, you scream? A recent graduate, she says “college was the perfect place for experimentation because most of the people I was around were very open-minded and I wasn’t afraid of my friends judging me. Also, without parents, it’s a lot easier to set your own boundaries and explore things you were formerly shielded from.” So basically the breakdown looks like this:
Hot girls + raging hormones + kegs – hovering parents = lesbian sex
So, Truth Or Dare?
Some of the students I talked to said that nobody is entirely straight, just like how everybody – even Beyoncé – poops. Alfred Kinsey suggested a scale from 0 to 6 (0 being too straight to function, 6 being that guy who works at Banana Republic). I agree that sexuality is fluid. Quite a bit. And yet one bi gal was quick to comment that “most people don’t believe in bisexuality at all.” Whoa, hold up… Don’t believe in bisexuality? C’mon now, don’t question a lady when she says, “I will indiscriminately make out with both. I will fall in love with both.”
But admittedly, it can be confusing. It’s trendy, even a little punk rock to swing both ways. And because of the fad factor, queer women often feel they must constantly assert their gayness. One friend confided, “I feel a lot more confident identifying as a bisexual person now that I’ve been dating a girl for two years.” After all, nobody wants to be labeled a Tila Tequila, claiming to see double only to sober up straight in the end.
On the other hand, the environment of sexual opportunity presented by college allows many women to examine a sexuality they were taught to take for granted. Upon recent reflection of past slumber party intimacies, a college senior from a conservative Asian family became a born-again lesbian. While she had no prior sexual experience with women, her Facebook was promptly updated. When I first met her, she explained how she always found women more attractive than men. I mean, yeah, even straight girls know that. In the beginning, I’ll admit, I was a little skeptical: Is she really a lesbian or just a LUG (lesbian until graduation)?
If it hadn’t been for her freshman roommates getting together – followed by her pledge to a sorority, she’s unsure of whether or not she ever would have paused to question her orientation at all. Having figured it out, she says, “is really, really exciting.”
“But now what?” she asked.
“Uh, now you have like five seasons of The L Word to catch up on?”
We’ve come a long way, baby. When my mom was in college, while “Free Love” was the well-chanted universal alma mater, “heterosexual” went without saying. And when her mom was a coed, college was all about scoring your “MRS degree.” Clearly, you can chart the trend — even predict what the trend will be next. So here’s to the future! Go ahead, girlfriend, spin the bottle…