Wyld about sex: Getting ‘sexiled’

Liz Wyld, ’Doah Staff Writer
March 6, 2013

LizWyldOne of the many excitements of coming to college for the first time is having a roommate. Now, nobody wants to think of sharing his or her room with a complete stranger, but the thought of a built-in friend can be comforting. But in some cases, roommates are never able to figure out a way to mesh.

And if you’ve never had the talk with your roommate — the one where you lay down ground rules and boundaries — you run the risk of walking in on some not-so-pretty pictures. Yes, I’m talking about walking in on your roommate doing the deed.
During my freshman and sophomore years I was lucky enough to have two roommates who, like me, were in relationships. There was a sort of mutual agreement that when one of us was in the mood, we would simply text the other say something along the lines of, “hey, would you mind staying out of the room for a few hours?” followed by a series of winking emoticons. This prevented what would have been an inevitable walk-in, and that awkward moment where you’re forever scarred by seeing your roommate spread-eagle.

This is generally referred to as “sexiling,” which Urban Dictionary defines as “banishing a roommate from the room/dorm for the purpose of engaging in intimate relations with one’s significant other.”

Some students have not been so lucky with their roommate experiences when it comes to being sexiled. “I had a roommate my freshman year and we didn’t come up with a signal if something was going on in the room,” a friend admits. “I walk in my room, the door was unlocked, and [I saw] a lot of butt. So I just closed the door and walked away and they continued — I waited another hour outside of the room.”

I have been walked in on. I also have walked in on others. It’s certainly not the end of the world, and it’s probably a familiar story to a lot of you. But, this friend’s story gets more surprising. “This roommate would also have sex when I was in the room,” she continues. “There was really no ‘sexiling.’ There was this one time I was laying in bed, watching TV on my laptop and they were snuggling (in her bed) — I look over and I notice that there’s a lot of thrusting movements under the blankets. I should’ve gone over and said, ‘you know there’s a third person in the room!’”

I can’t imagine anyone who, in my friend’s situation, would not feel uncomfortable. Another friend remarked that it sucks to be sexiled when you’re not in a relationship. I admit that I have been lucky to have a companion pretty regularly since freshman year and have done my fair share of sexiling roommates. But, for the people who haven’t found that someone yet, it can be aggravating to be kicked out of your own room.

As a roommate, be conscientious about sharing your space. Communicate with your roommate. It’s uncomfortable to set ground rules for sexual encounters, but it helps avoid a lot of confrontation and tension down the line. If you’re in a relationship, keep your roommate aware — not by telling them every detail of your sex life — but by telling them ahead of time when your significant other is coming over. And if you are the roommate who risks interrupting, think about knocking before a potentially awkward walk-in.

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