Freshman year, I downloaded Tinder onto my phone. I had called a friend from high school, asking about how her college experience was going. I didn’t want to let on that although I was having some pretty incredible experiences so far, from guest lectures to orientation camping trips and so on, in general, I was pretty miserable and lonely. She seemed to be having a great time, meeting all these new people, hooking up with a new boy every weekend. The next day, I downloaded the app onto my phone.
It was the end of fall break, near midnight, and an upperclassman I had been messaging texted, “Want to meet up right now?” It was raining outside and starting to get cold. I thought back to the call I had with my friend. It was 6 weeks into college, months after my breakup with my high school ex. Should I have also been hooking up with a new boy every weekend? I was sex positive right? Here was someone who wanted me, right? If we met, we could just hang out and I could always say no. I zipped up my jacket and walked over, literally shaking with some unexplainable mix of nervousness and fear and perhaps, excitement.