The other night I was sitting around with some of my girlfriends having dinner. As always, we were catching each other up on our personal lives or lack thereof. We have all been friends since we were teenagers, and are essentially sisters at this point. There is nothing we will not discuss. Naturally, the conversation turned to sex (yes guys, we discuss this too- probably more than you do), when the topic of how many partners we have had came up.
Juliette, one of my more…well, let's say, experienced friends was the first to answer.
“I have only had sex with 8 guys.” She says, rolling her eyes back and to the right as though she is trying to recall the lot from her memory. “That isn't so many.” She said, as she shrugged her shoulders.
We all furrowed our brows a bit. I cocked my head and watched Juliette speak as visions of her on stage in Cancun during a spring break bikini contest, and another of her doing a keg stand one summer in the Hamptons being held upside down by 6 guys, danced through my head. In all of those situations, let's just say she didn't return until the following morning. Wearing her clothes from the night before. Juliette was always the girl to disappear into the master bedroom at high school parties, and well, let's just say…we all knew her number was higher than 8.
One of my friends let out a belly laugh.
“Eight??? Come on.”
“Maybe eight this week?” Another chimed in. All in good fun.
“Are you remembering to factor in the Bartender from Righty's?” I asked, unsure of how she missed that one. She made me stalk him with her for nearly 6 months.
“No. He doesn't count.”
“Um…Juliette, just wondering…why didn't he count?”
“Because he never called me again. It was a one night stand.”
There you have it. Juliette was doing sex math. Everyone does it. A weighting system, if you will, as to what actually counts as sex and what does not. Everyone's formula is different. Even our own President had his formula when he uttered the words, “I did not have sexual relations with that woman.” Going on to claim he didn't know how to define sex. Of course, his sex math was based not so much on lying to himself, but lying to the nation to save his own ass.
It's similar to the “calories don't count if you only lick the spoon” philosophy. It's about helping yourself get through whatever pain or discomfort you have when faced with your own choices.
This wasn't the first time I had heard someone do convenient sex math. One friend told me one guy didn't count because he wasn't able to finish, one guy told me a girl didn't count because he really liked her roommate (Ouch). Whether you are playing “Just The Tip” like Vince Vaughns character in Wedding Crashers or decide to never acknowledge it happened at all, sex math is for you and you alone. Why? Because your sex life is your business. It's whatever you feel comfortable with. As long as you are being safe, and you are comfortable with the decisions you make, you are an adult. You want to leave out that jerk that never called the next day? The one that never told you he really had a girlfriend? Then leave him out you shall. It's not lying. It's conveniently adding the numbers in a way to spare you heartache and discomfort.
What is your sex math formula?