Article written by: Nev Schulman
I don’t like casual sex anymore.
That’s right. I’ll even go as far to admit that if I’m hooking up with a girl I don’t care about, I have a hard time, well, you know…
So what gives? Like most men and women of the Millennial generation, I’ve had my fair share of one night stands and hookups, and all went down without a hitch.
So why the sudden change in sex drive? What do these failure-to-launch scenarios have in common?
It might sound cliché, but it can be boiled down to this: I need more than a physical attraction. I need to experience an emotional and intellectual connection to a woman in order to get really turned on.
Unfortunately, all the tips, Esquire articles, and technique in the world can’t help you have really great sex if it’s casual. Most of your sexual encounters will be short, disappointing, and complicated, leaving you feeling empty inside. Don’t just take my word for it; look at the statistics. Both men and women report feeling regretful, confused, and embarrassed after casual sex.
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A 2007 study in the Archives of Sex Behavior proved this: 73.6 percent of women reported a negative or ambivalent reaction to their hookups while 49.6 percent of men reported the same.
So maybe we should rethink our constant glamorizing of hookup culture. Thanks to the media, we all have this idealized, Hollywood version of what passionate, spontaneous, mutually satisfying sex looks like, but your average sexual encounter between acquaintances rarely pans out that way.
Dream sex: Lots of foreplay, a striptease, great music and perfectly dim lighting, bubble baths, candles, silky sheets.
Reality sex: Watching Netflix on a dirty couch, a few minutes of kissing, stumbling to an unmade bed, the tinny sound of your laptop speakers, fumbling to put on a condom and it’s all over.
CASUAL SEX ISN’T ALWAYS THAT GREAT.
If you’re a woman, you may have the added bonus of feeling shamed by society because as shitty as it is, the slut/player double standard still exists.
So what do I want you to take away from reading this article?
Examine your motives behind casual sex, so you won’t just blindly throw your body at someone in the hopes that it might make you happy.
Most of us don’t stop to question our motives before pursuing an act of intercourse because we take the impulse for granted as a biological need. We are conditioned to have a knee-jerk reaction: You experience physical attraction/desire/loneliness/insecurity/boredom, then you have sex.
Here’s my advice. Take it or leave it.
I’m not advocating you be a Puritan. This is my experience and regardless of who you’re having sex with, it should be safe and consensual.
If you’re attracted to someone, ask yourself if sleeping with them is something you really want to do, or if you just want to know that you could. All too often, the satisfaction of knowing that a certain girl or guy wants to have sex with you is the best part and it’s all downhill from there.
Next, ask yourself this: Is it the thrill of the conquest? Is it the flirting and the foreplay, the build up of sexual attraction, that I want? In that case, the sex act itself is the anti-climatic end to your passionate longing, the extinguishing of desire. Stop right there.
No, you say, pushing onward, it’s neither of those. I really want to have sex.
OK, what part of sex are you looking forward to most?
Is it waking up in bed and not being alone? If you’re craving affection and company, there are so many adorable dogs and cats in need of a good home. In fact, a friend recently told me that adopting a dog was the best post-break-up thing she did… and it saved her from hooking up with gross guys left and right, guys that she would never date otherwise.
Or do you just want an orgasm? If so, that’s great. Have safe, casual sex. (Or ladies, I know you can give yourself an orgasm better than most guys can. And gentlemen, we all know your hand is a hell of a lot cheaper than a few drinks at a bar and a cab ride home– in these tight times I know we’re all trying to save.)
Whatever your decision, occasionally examine your motives, make sure you enjoy sex, and always respect your partner.