Dear Ty

Illustration: Rame Abdulkader.

Dear Ty,

My whole floor went on our weekly trip to the Gatineau bars last Friday, and everything was going well until I ended up in bed the next morning with one of my floormates. Any advice?

—Floorcest navigator

Dear FN,

There’s a bit of an unwritten rule on university and college campuses when it comes to hooking up with people on your residence floor: simply put, you don’t. There’s even an official name for this residence conundrum: floorcest.

Academically defined (kudos to Urban Dictionary), floorcest refers to sexual and/or romantic relations between two or more individuals on the same floor in a residence building. These relationships are most commonly casual, connected to the obscure and nuanced term, ‘fuck buddy.’

Let’s start by approaching some of the reasons why the act of floorcest has gotten itself such a bad name, and whether any of these criticisms have merit.

The most basic point of criticism when it comes to floorcest is usually that you’ll be stuck seeing your ex-fuck buddy daily (if not more frequently) if things do go sour. Yes, I’m talking about those awkward elevator encounters where your phone suddenly becomes the most interesting device you’ve ever laid your eyes on, or those side-eye glances you make in coffee lines to confirm that yes, that is indeed one of your kills.

But honestly, this criticism shouldn’t be of concern to anyone with the slightest sense of maturity. We’re no longer in elementary school struggling with pre-pubescent crushes and the cooties—we’re adults now, sex happens, and is nothing to be ashamed or embarrassed of.

Another common issue for those entering into floorcest relations is privacy in the relationship. To put it bluntly, the chances of keeping your relationship a secret are miniscule at best and virtually non-existent at worst. When you live in tight quarters with over 20 other first-years, gossip flies. If you’re a private person, then floorcest may not be for you.

Linked to this, a final critique is exclusivity—something especially hard to define with floorcest and fuck buddies in general. If you do enter into a floorcest relationship, be prepared to see your special friend sleeping with people other than you. And if it’s another person on your floor? Good luck Charlie.

On the flipside, committing to floorcest does have quite a few terrific benefits to it, most of which seem to lack acknowledgement.

For starters, you can’t ask for a more convenient way to get your sexual fix in any time you feel horny. Let’s face it, nobody likes trekking across campus or even the city to get some, especially in the middle of a brutal snowstorm or violent downpour. With floorcest, you don’t even have to worry about putting on pants, let alone full on weather gear, to make it to your ‘appointment.’ In the middle of exam season, this emergency option for sexual release could come especially in handy.

Another major benefit of floorcest we don’t talk about enough is the fact that you’ll likely know this person well before you hookup. This means you’ll be able to pick a partner who is best for you, and you’ll have at least some idea of what you’re getting yourself into.

So yes, floorcest does come with its fair share of both positive and negative aspects. While staying away from floorcest is a bit of an unwritten rule in residence, it may be one that’s meant to be broken. My best advice is to test out the waters and see if it’s is for you—if not, there’s hundreds of different floors in residence to prowl for your new fuck buddy.

Love,

Ty