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THE OLDER YOU get, the more likely it is you’ve slept with someone and seen each other naked. At some point afterward, you will run into these people and be forced to hold a proper conversation, all the while knowing they can picture you accurately without your clothes on. This is a rather unnerving experience, but if handled correctly, does not need to be a soul-destroying one. The next time you run into a person who knows what every square inch of your body looks like, employ the following methods and you’ll find yourself walking away from the situation unscathed.

Do everything in your power to avoid the person
If your friends often refer to you as “the most socially awkward person of all time,” this option is for you. When actually forced to speak with former bedmates, socially inept people will likely be incapable of doing anything other than turning red, stuttering, and experiencing explosive verbal diarrhea. Save yourself the embarrassment of blurting out, “So, is that mole still there?” by avoiding the person at all costs.

Pretend it never happened
So you tried your best to not make eye contact, but of course you did, and now you’re on the sidewalk exchanging small talk. In no way should you even imply that you remember sleeping together. Inquire after where the person is living these days, even though you slept over three weeks ago. Ask who his or her roommates are even though you ate breakfast with them the morning after. Say something to the effect of, “Yea, this past month has been a total blur! I barely remember anything because I’ve been so busy.” Follow this with a chuckle and then exit stage right.

Imply that your body has greatly improved since the last time the person saw it.
If your former flame has an odd smirk on their face that reads, “I’ve been intimate with your thighs before,” make them think they haven’t seen the best of you. Mention you’re sore from the gym, but are on your way to yoga anyways (“It’s been doing wonders for my core!”). When your hook-up asks you to go for coffee the next morning, politely decline because that’s the time you go for a five-kilometre run. That marathon won’t train for itself, you know.

Interact with the person like a normal, functioning human being would
If you’re a socially awkward 20-something, it’s likely you occasionally feel like vomiting when put in a situation a real person would handle with dignity and grace. If you’re someone who has mastered the art of functioning properly in society, then look your one-night stand in the eye and hold a conversation with them. That is what normal people do, right? If you are one such person, I’d like to offer you both my congratulations and my phone number, so that we can grab coffee sometime and you can show me your ways. But don’t count on seeing me naked.

—Darren Sharp