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Davis, California

Monday, September 20, 2021

Column: Stride with pride

I’d like to wish everyone a happy hump day and a happy Cinco de Mayo! If you find me downtown, say hi. Margaritas will be gladly accepted.

Now, on to more important things.

We’ve all been there. We’ve woken up in someone else’s bed, and all we could think about is how we got there and how to get out of there – ASAP. For some, this happens weekly. For others, it may have happened once. But most of you know what I’m talking about.

It’s Saturday morning and you wake up in someone else’s bed. You had a great Friday night gallivanting downtown with your friends, drank until you got your drunk on and had your beer goggles on in full focus.

You are staring at the person you went home with only an inkling of how you got there. You must face the day – in your fabulous heels and skintight dress.

Whether you planned on doing this walk of shame or not, just know you’re not alone.

For me, it was the morning after a fraternity’s cocktail party. I was under the influence of alcohol and had a great night with a new friend. Luckily, he drove me home the next morning. I don’t think walking across Davis in a dress and heels would have been much fun.

I don’t regret my decision at all. You’re not supposed to regret things that made you happy – or so I’ve been told. And guess what? That night led to the last two years of our happy lives.

Sometimes, though, these sleepovers don’t work out so well.

One of my best friends who recently graduated from UC Santa Barbara shared her story with me.

“One time I woke up naked in my neighbor’s bed and I wanted to get the hell out fast, but I could not find my dress for the life of me,” she said. “So I had to text my friend to bring me clothes. … I never saw that cute black dress again.”

Although she lost her dress, she did not lose her dignity. It’s important to feel good about yourself and make choices you’ll be proud of.

Another friend of mine who lives in San Diego told me she spent the night in a hotel room and had to walk 10 blocks at 7:30 in the morning to retrieve her car. (At least she got some exercise.)

At a recent sexual awareness talk hosted by the Davis Collegiate Panhellenic Association, two women came to speak about how college females need to become more sexually empowered. I was inspired.

I’ve heard about and seen way too many girls walking through the streets of Davis on weekend mornings with evidence of the night prior written all over their faces. It’s okay to leave your sexual inhibitions to the wind, but try to use your best judgment when going home with the lucky guy.

I spoke to a fellow Aggie about this situation, and she said, “I think a lot of women do it for some sort of validation and to prove to themselves that they are attractive or try to get over another guy.”

She’s all for sexual empowerment, as am I. So try not to go home with a guy for any other reason than for yourself.

My dear readers, we must change the way we think of these drunken debaucheries. We must not feel ashamed of waking up in a bed we have never been in before. Instead, we should feel proud of the decisions we make and stop walking with shame. We must stride with pride.

ERICA BETNUN wants you to have a fun and safe Cinco de Mayo. If you want to treat her to a margarita, let her know at elbetnun@ucdavis.edu.

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