The One Night Stand
Here at 30 Dates we’ve been talking a lot about Sex when you’re not yet in a relationship. And the responses so far to my posts about Not Inviting a Guy to Stay Over (unless you plan to sleep with him), and Not Sleeping with a Guy (until you know you have the same intentions) seem to suggest most of you reading share my opinions.
Obviously there are no right or wrong answers, and I’m really not a fan of following specific Dating Rules, but as someone who is something of a hopeless romantic, I do think you need to be careful about rushing into things with a guy, if you’re looking for something more longterm. Of course there will always be exceptions – one of my closest friends married a man she had (what she thought was) a one night stand with. But that kind of scenario is far more likely to be the exception not the rule.
As I’ve mentioned before, we live in an era where there really aren’t too many rules about sex and dating. The only real guide is your own moral compass – and if you’re anything like me, that compass has changed a lot over the years.
In an ideal world, I think most of us would only sleep with someone we’re in love with. The best sex I’ve always had has been with someone I know well, and I’m comfortable around.
But if you’re particularly picky and independent, and you don’t bounce from one relationship into the next, then you can end up spending long periods of time sleeping alone at night.
Personally, I’ve always found the concept of the ‘Fuck Buddy’ too difficult. I’m a caring person. I develop feelings for people quickly, and if I’m having sex repeatedly with someone, with all the other trappings of an intimate relationship – the kissing, the cuddling, the spooning – then I know I’m just setting myself up to get hurt. I know very few women who can properly detach themselves from a Fuck Buddy situation, and treat it as nothing more than casual sex.
And so, in the past I’ve spent long periods of time ‘celibate’ for want of a less nunly phrase!
But we all have needs! And in the spirit of honesty (which underlines this entire blog!) I’d be lying if I didn’t admit to having first-hand knowledge of the majority of the topics I write about!
Up until this last year, the only time I’d ever had anything resembling a one-night stand had been holiday flings or travelling encounters. I’d make friends with the guy, spend some time getting to know him, and one thing would led to another. I guess I applied the ‘Road Trip’ movie rules to life (different postcode and all that!) and threw my normally cautious standards out the window when I was in a different country or on a different continent! But one of the reasons it worked was because when you’re on the other side of the world, about to head off to a different city the next day, all cards are already on the table. You both know exactly what you’re getting into, and there are no mixed signals, hidden agendas, or crossed wires.
The older I’ve got, the better I’ve come to understand myself, and like most girls out there, I came to realise I really rather like sex. And just because I haven’t met someone I want to settle down with shouldn’t mean I sacrifice my entire sex life. But how do you find yourself in a scenario where you don’t have any future expectations, if you only ever sleep with guys who you’re attracted to, and when you’re on home turf?
A few months ago I told you about Streetmate – the guy who tried to ask me out in the middle of the street in Chelsea, and then chickened out. If you haven’t read the post, it’s definitely worth reading – it was almost chick-flick worthy!
I trailed off at the end, telling you I’d given him my number. Which I did.
The part I didn’t tell you was that actually, Streetmate came home with me, and that I gave him my number the next morning!
Now, there’s a rather amusing tale behind this, because Streetmate is from New Zealand, and as a result, didn’t realise that Reading isn’t a borough of London … it’s a whole other town! So when Streetmate agreed to come back to mine at the end of our random evening, what he didn’t necessarily realise, was that it would involve a two hour-long commute! (Though the drink and each other’s company managed to speed the journey up somewhat! As a result I managed to score my first bonafide (should that be boner-fide 😉 ) one-night stand, AND make him do a four hour-long round trip for the pleasure!
I distinctly remember standing on the pavement outside the Beaufort Club thinking – I could either leave this here, and knowing I’d get a date out of it (after all I hadn’t had a guy hit on me so honestly or forwardly in a long time), or carry on the night, and turn it into something else. I was under no illusions that if I took him home, I would never see him again. But right there and then, still gutted by how things had worked out with Mr SC, and in need of a distraction, I wasn’t fussed about the longterm.
He was a nice guy. The sex was OK. It was nothing to write home about – but then what do you expect when you’re sleeping with a complete stranger?
The point was, right then and there, that was all either of us wanted and needed. I liked and trusted him enough to take him home, and feel safe sleeping in my flat with him, and as someone who would never go to a club with the intention of finding someone to go home with at the end of the night, it’s the first real proper one night stand I’ve ever had. The next day, after I’d dropped him off at Reading train station (!), I didn’t feel disappointed, or used, or as if wanted more from him. I was internally high-fiving myself for attracting such a hot guy, and having a really fun evening and night with him.
The reason it worked, was again because neither of us were under any illusion. All cards on the table, we both knew it wasn’t going to go anywhere. And so knowing where we both stood, we enjoyed the moment, in a fun, safe way, like adults.
But you have to be in a particular frame of mind to be able to do that. And I know from experience, that I rarely find myself in a situation with a guy where I like him enough to sleep with him, but equally I know things won’t go anywhere. Not everyone’s the same – some people can switch off more easily. But if you’re a particularly emotional, caring person, then you have to be in a certain frame of mind for a One Night Stand to work, and not simply leave you feeling rejected and lonely in the morning.
We live in 2014. We’re equals. As empowered women we should be able to make decisions about who we choose to sleep with, and who we don’t sleep with. And if we do choose to sleep with someone and never see him again, that doesn’t make us any more easy or slutty than it makes the guy.
So by all means, embrace your equality. Just make sure you’re 100% happy with what you’re doing, you understand the reality and implications of the situation, and that you’re not putting yourself in danger in the process.
We’re all big girls after all! 😉
Miss Twenty-Nine xxx
Good read. I’s important to look at both sides. Sometimes a one night stand can lead to a deep relationship, sometimes people can just turn off the emotional feelings (men more often than women but not necessarily), sometimes people unfortunately get hurt, and sometimes you learn how to just enjoy the moment and not be so anxious about the future. All kinds out there. Interesting subject matter
However, I must say the pictures on this post are very distracting!
Hahaha blame Shutterstock for that one!! 😉 xx
Firstly, I love your blog which I only just started reading a few weeks ago! I’m really glad to see such a balanced piece on one night stands because it seems that as women we always seem to attract extreme opinions on having them. I’ve never had a problem with them and spent a large part of my twenties happily dabbling. However I had rules – I never brought them back to my place, they could never be people I worked with or seriously liked and they had to be decent guys – you can tell by how handsy they’re getting early on and their chat generally. They were usually men I was very attracted to but didn’t really see a future with, and it worked fine.
But the important bit is that I could DETACH sex from emotion. And I think that’s key. A lot of my female friends have tried to do the same thing because it seems that’s what modern, independent , sexually empowered women are supposed to do. And they’ve had disastrous results simply because subconsciously they hook up with every guy thinking he just may be the One. And it’s that wee bit of hope that kills. So while women have earned the right to have sex ‘like a man’ and not be judged, it’s still very dependent on how each individual women can cope with the aftermath. And like you said, if there’s any chance you might get emotionally attached, avoid them at all costs! Better to live like a nun than deal with that misery. Co-incidentally I slept with my now long term bf on the first date (we met online) fully prepared for the possibility he might never call again. Whereas he automatically assumed that because I slept with him we were going to progress to a relationship! So really, there is just no script for these things but a bit of prudence and an understanding of your own boundaries.