How to Turn Your Walk Of Shame Into a Stride of Pride

4 years ago
I never understood the "walk of shame" concept.

Apparently, you're supposed to feel embarrassed to walk home past strangers, neighbors, or peers in the morning after a night of partying and sex still wearing last night's clothes.

But I've been walking home past strangers, neighbors, or peers after a night of sex and partying wearing last night's clothes at all hours of the day for almost 20 years now, and I've never ever felt ashamed.

Why would I feel ashamed of having an awesome night and getting laid?!

If there are any self-conscious emotions to be felt, then they should be of the positive type - i.e., pride. But I often don't feel any self-conscious emotions on the walk home, I simply feel satisified, or satiated, or tired, or in a post-sex afterglow blissfully unaware of the world around me.

So how do you turn the dreaded walk of shame into a stride of pride, (or into a simple slightly tired, but satisfied post-party/sex walk home)? Here are 9 pieces of advice from a seasoned slut with more post-party/sex walks home than most will ever experience.

1. Own your sexual experience.
In other words, don't do anything you don't want to do, and do the things you want to do.

2. Don't get wasted.
I know most hookups happen while wasted, but I'm a strong opponent of drunken sex. A little buzz is OK, but getting smashed before hooking up with someone will seriously impair your ability to make smart decisions about #1. If you or your partner-to-be cross the line from buzzed to wasted, leave the hooking up part for some other time. Please. And if you need to get shit-faced in order to hook up, then you probably shouldn't be hooking up at all.

3. Have realistic expectations of what the hookup is and what it will lead to.
Sometimes hookups lead to something more; often they don't. Don't have unrealistic hopes about what this one will be about. Go into it for the sex and the pleasure that sex will give you. Don't go into it hoping it will lead to the marriage altar.

4. Carry condoms on you. 
Even if you don't think you'll end up needing them; no harm in carrying a couple with you - they really don't take up that much space in your purse. Having used protection will definitely help keep your head up high on the walk home. If you wanna come really well-prepared, bring lube too. There are really tiny, single-use packets of lube.

5. Try to have an orgasm. Or at least enjoy yourself as much as you possibly can.
I know for some women orgasms are not as easy as for this lucky lady, but put in some effort to try and get one. In hookups, especially with people you don't know very well, you can't rely on the guy to know what you want and then give it to you. It's great when that happens and the orgasms just flow without much effort on your part. But for the many occasions when that doesn't happen, you need to know your body and what it needs to enjoy yourself (e.g, touching yourself while he plays with your boobs). And then do it or ask the guy to do it. If he doesn't seem too concerned about your orgasm, demand it from him. Most guys will try to please you, but you have to take the initiative on that one and let them know how they can do that. Walking home after getting an orgasm is so much better than walking home after only giving an orgasm.

6. Carry a toothbrush on you.
There are tiny toothbrushes (single- or multi-use) you can stash in your purse. After condoms, they're the single best preparatory purchase you can make to keep a smile on your face and the shame at bay the next morning. Passersby may not be able to see that you've brushed your teeth, but trust me, walking home with a fresh breath will make you feel clean and oh so much better about yourself.

7. Bring a pair of sunglasses.
Smudged last night's eye make-up looks far worse than (hopefully) intact last night's clothes.

8. Keep your head high, look people in the eye, and smile.
Whatever you do, do not look down and away in embarrassment! Even if you don't feel that way: Science has shown that faking emotions actually leads to feeling those emotions. Plus, it's harder for people to judge a smiling, happy, scantily-clad woman at 10 AM than a self-loathing, gaze-avoiding, scantily-clad woman at 10 AM. Let the post-sex afterglow wash over your face.

9. If shame creeps up on you, remember: You got laid, and they didn't.
They're probably going to work (yawn) where they're going to be miserable all day (ugh). Or going grocery shopping (yawn). Or walking their dogs (yawn) and picking up poop (ugh). At best, they're going jogging. You, on the other hand, partied like a rock star. And then you got laid. And it was glorious. And if it wasn't, so what? What's it to them?

Ultimately, you shouldn't give a damn about what others think. Your life is your life and their life is their life. If you hook up and walk back in the morning wearing yesterday's clothes, some people will judge you. That's a given. But if hooking up and partying til the wee hours of the night is what you like doing and you own your sexual experiences, you shouldn't care about the judgment of those people. They hold a different value set than you do, and they are not 'your people'. Surround yourself with people who share your values. They exist. They may be more difficult to find if you're a sex-loving slut than if you're more of a prude, but they are out there. Go find them. You really don't need everyone to love you. Do you love everyone? No? That's what I thought.

There are situations where you can end up a victim regardless what you do. This is not one of these situations. In this case, you can only be a victim if you let yourself be a victim.

Need some help shaking off some slut shame? Check out The Unslut Project.

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