One time casual sex is great, but only if you do it right. Don’t commit these downright embarrassing mistakes when the time comes! By Eli Walton
A one night, no strings attached sexual encounter can be a great thing. While it’s usually not the best sex you’ll ever have, it can be a good release, especially during those stressful periods in your life. One night stands are also a great way to end a dry spell. Sometimes when it’s been a while, this is the best way to dive right back into things and get your groove back.
But as great as one-and-done sex can be, it can also be terrible. Horror stories abound, from bad sex, to stalkers, to terrible decisions made. But it doesn’t have to happen like that. You’ve got to use your best judgment to keep things fun, and more importantly, safe.
The typical one night stand mistakes
To avoid the uncomfortable or awkward things that sometimes come as a result of one night stands, these are the mistakes to be avoided:
#1 Great expectations. It’s not impossible for a one night stand to lead to something more, but it can only happen if both people want it. You should approach a one night stand as a one-time thing only. If you feel like there’s chemistry, there’s nothing wrong with asking for a second date, but you can’t be angry if you are turned down.
#2 Singles only. Please, please, please only go looking for a one night stand if you’re single. It’s not cool to cheat, and you’re putting the person you go home with in a very bad position that they probably don’t know they’re getting into. It’s only okay to have one-off sex when you’re free to do it. If someone’s going to get hurt when you sleep with your one night stand, you should probably double check your priorities.
#3 Proper precautions. Here’s a huge mistake for a one night stand: Not using protection. Think about it. You’ve gone home with someone you’ve only just met. The odds are that they’ve done the same thing recently with someone else, possibly multiple times. And they’re willing to have sex with you without a condom, so you should assume they didn’t use one last time either.
Unprotected sex on a one night stand, or in general outside of a monogamous relationship, is just a terrible idea. There are plenty of nasty diseases you can get from unsafe sex, some that last a lifetime. And besides that, next time you’re taking someone home from the bar, look at them and ask yourself if you want them to be the mother or father of your child… Yeah, didn’t think so. Wrap it up. [Read: 10 worst people to have a one night stand with]
#4 Poor preparation. It’s only possible to use a condom if you actually have one. And no, ladies, it’s not always the guy’s job to provide the rubber. Everybody’s nightstand should have condoms and water-based lubricant in it. Women sometimes worry that they’ll seem slutty if they have condoms at home, but come on, you already took home a guy that you just met. And he’s in a woman’s room who he just met as well. Nobody has any right to judge.
#5 Fools rush in. An all too common occurrence, especially among one night stand newbies, is falling in love. Actually, you don’t really fall in love, you just think that you have in a moment of emotional weakness. But it’s weird, and creepy, and nobody wants to hear those three words at any time during a one night stand.
Even if you’re overcome by the urge to profess your love, drunkenly, to the person you just met at a bar an hour earlier, control yourself. You don’t love them, and even if you did, telling them will send them running for the hills. [Read: 10 casual relationship rules to just keep it casual]
#6 You never know… While one night stands have no automatic expectation of a second date, that doesn’t mean it’s wrong to ask for one. If you feel like the two of you clicked, then by all means go for it, just be prepared for rejection. It probably happens all the time that the feeling is mutual after a one night stand, but neither person is comfortable asking for more. Plenty of relationships, and even marriages, start with what seems like a one night stand. If you don’t ask, you’ll never know.
#7 You don’t owe anyone breakfast. A one night stand is a one-time thing, unless both people want more. You should never feel obligated to give any more than the one night. That means no second dates if you don’t want one. You can sneak out when the sun is just peeking in through the blinds, and if they wake up, you owe them nothing more than an “I have to go.” Don’t be guilt-tripped into anything you don’t want to do. [Read: 25 booty call rules you should remember]
#8 No scarf left behind. Forgetting something at someone’s home is more common than you might think. People sometimes do this on purpose, hoping to set up a second meeting. So if you’re feeling devious, you might try it if you liked the person. If the item is left at your place and you don’t want to see the person again, don’t be bullied into an unwanted meeting. Ask for their address and mail it to them.
#9 One too many. Booze is probably the reason behind most bad one night stand decisions, including having one in the first place. If you’re too drunk, it’s really better to just pass. Drink too much and you could wake up staring at a hideous monster, wondering how you ever went home with someone like that.
Too much alcohol can also put you in a dangerous situation, especially for women. And it can lead anyone to make some highly questionable decisions. A night of sloppy, not-very-good sex just isn’t worth a disease or an unwanted pregnancy.
#10 Walk of shame. If you don’t know what it is, the walk of shame is the morning commute home where you’re obviously coming off of a one night stand. This one is much worse for women, both because of the way society judges them, and because the outfits they wore the night before tend to stand out in broad daylight.
If you think you might have a walk of shame in your near future, you might think about how you’re dressed, or bringing something to cover up slightly. Women can ask to borrow a sweatshirt from a man, but that can be awkward. If you’ve got to make a walk of shame, the best advice is to just own it. Hold your head high and know that you just got some, and everyone around you most likely did not. [Read: A guide to owning the walk of shame]
One night stands can be hot, passionate affairs or experiences you’re better off forgetting forever. Whatever kind of one nighter you get yourself into, just make sure to avoid the common pitfalls.
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I'm a freelance writer dividing my time between the beaches of Thailand and my hometown of Chicago....