You might remember me from my college days as HC's Real Live College Guy, where I advised on picking up college guys, detecting cheaters, and what never to talk about with a guy among many other pressing college guy-related issues. Well now I'm a grad student—a law school student. Though love and law are feared by everyone, I'll put down the memo pad for a moment to continue sharing my wisdom to help collegiettes™ everywhere with slightly older guys and their love life (not legal) dilemmas.
1. Is it sketchy for a grad student to date an undergrad? Like how do grad school guys feel about it? If they like the girl, are they still sort of embarrassed that she's an undergrad, or do they not care? And is he embarrassed for his friends to meet the girl if she's an undergrad?
-Curious at Colorado
Grad School Guys (GSGs) love you. By grad school, the sketchiness and mockery previously attached to dating a younger girl has finally worn off. Guys all used to question that guy in college dating a 17-year-old and even rip holes in that college senior dating a mere freshman. Now it’s all changed. Once guys break into grad school, all undergraduates are not only fair game, but highly sought after. As far as the pecking order plays out, undergradies (undergraduate girls) are at the top of the list. So the answer is no; he will not be embarrassed to “show you off” to his friends, and other people will think nothing of it. It gets a little sketchy if he was your teacher or you didn’t meet him on legitimate terms, but otherwise there is no stigma whatsoever.
If you’re not 21 though, you’re out of luck. Unless you have some means of getting in (hint, hint), you really can’t date a GSG. Some GSGs have been going to bars and clubs for years. No GSG will ever show up at a frat or dorm party without feeling uncomfortable. A room of swarming 19-year-olds all steaming with drunk sexual tension is not going to win his heart. With overwhelming confidence, dreams of success, and/or an academic prescription, GSGs prefer simpler less immature scenes. So expect him to prefer bars or clubs to court their ladies, not college parties. Even on the first few dinner dates, a glass of wine (or a bottle if you’re lucky) is typically even an expectation. Thus, you need to be 21. Sorry girls.
Immaturity is the only other factor that could immediately get you on the GSG blacklist. If you’re still acting like you just finished pre-teen cheerleading camp, then stop—because no grad school guys want that. You need to act older. No more baby talk, no more all-nighters at the frats, and no more games or desperate cries for attention. If you’re not ready to mature, you are not ready for a GSG. He won’t find it attractive, and may even be ashamed to show you to his friends if he feels like you act way too young. Win him over with your conversation and composure, not your flirty eyes or fake stupidity. A new law school friend of mine once said, “This ‘undie’ (undergraduate) once spent the whole night whining about her sorority. Does she have a real life?”
2. I just started dating a guy who's in grad school and I don't know what the expectations are for sex and hooking up. I feel like with college guys, it's perfectly ok to hook up for a while without having sex or even never having sex, but I feel like with older guys it might be more expected that if you hook up, you have sex? Will it seem weird if I don't have sex with him (I'm not saying I don't want to, I'm just trying to understand the situation)? Or will I seem immature?
-Dater at Delaware
Don’t have sex with him. If you followed my RLCollegeG articles, I have always been a firm believer in reeling in the sex just a bit. Undergraduate males are animals seeking to explore all means of sexuality before it’s semi-illegal, so you need to reel in the sex to ensure the guy remembers you. GSGs think very differently than college guys though. Most have had sex. Most have had long relationships. Most have had one-night stands. Most have had threesomes. With GSGs however, they expect a less aggressive approach to relationships. During college the “3 Date Rule” sounds dumb and clichéd; sadly many college girls believe that three texts and two parties are the go-ahead for sex. GSGs think of themselves as adults, real adults. While they may still be in their twenties, proper courting rules now apply.
Thus, you certainly don’t need to sleep with him right away. In fact, it’s not actually advisable. After the first few dinner dates, it is even appropriate to just make out. WHAT! REALLY?! Yes, really. As you leave the college sexuality battlefield, things revert to their proper norm. Unless they are simply looking for a hook up buddy through their graduate years, GSGs will not want some dirty undergradie all over them. Like before, show them your maturity and your interest on a deeper level. During a heated law school argument over this, many points were flung around including: “I like sex, but not with random chicks. I need more dates.” “I had my fun years ago, I hate hooking up with girls I barely know.” “If she sleeps with me on the first date, there isn’t going to be a second. But hey, I am not going to stop her that first night.” “I wouldn’t mind if she was a virgin and wanted to wait ‘til marriage!” The last one was an extreme case, but you all get the idea.