When it comes to dating, honesty and communication are considered the two biggest tools in creating and maintaining a successful relationship. And relationships, as we know, come in all different flavors. Casual sex is of course one of them.
So why is it that when the relationship doesn't necessarily appear to be headed down the aisle, and instead just toward the bedroom, sometimes people can freak out? Well, sex is delicate and personal for a lot of people, and it’s important to tread thoughtfully when you’re seeking something casual.
If you're honest and directly ask a girl for sex, you might turn her off — or worse, offend her. But if you lie and put on a big show with dinner dates and flowers, then completely drop the other person after you hook up, you run the risk of hurting them.
So what's a good way of telling someone, "I'm not looking for anything serious, just a sexual relationship," without being offensive? How do you ask a girl for sex without being creepy? How do you tell a guy you just want casual sex? It all comes back to communication: how and what you say, and when you say it, matters. We spoke to Miss Couple, Bedroom and Sexual Empowerment Coach, to learn about developing more casual relationships. Here are a few ways to get to the point without resorting to trickery.
Understand What Kind Of Casual Sex You Want
“Something casual” can mean a lot of different things to different people, so make sure not only that your potential bedmate knows what you mean, but that you know what you mean. “Casual dating is often but not always non-exclusive, however it does not automatically imply non-monogamy — many polyamorous people have both casual and more emotionally attached partners,” Couple says. “Typically, casual dating is a connection that you pursue for fun, not commitment. Relationship labels like ‘partner’ or ‘girlfriend/boyfriend’ are absent from these dynamics.” You can also casually date someone without having sex with them. “Relationships are all about the art of giving and receiving,” Couple says, and this includes casual sex.
So when you want to know how to ask a girl to hook up or ask a guy to hook up, you need to pinpoint your own desires first. This involves asking yourself some questions. “What are you willing to give and what do you want to receive?” Couple asks. “Do you feel that the dynamic that you're setting up is fair and balanced?”
You should also know why you’re seeking casual sex. If it’s for fun and pleasure, great! If it’s to heal yourself in some way, it’s better to take a step back. “If you are having casual sex because you are trying to get rid of some negative emotions, or you are wanting to feel some positive emotion, it probably won’t turn out good for you,” wrote Dr. Ryan Anderson in Psychology Today.
“I think that if you're interested in a casual relationship, you should be upfront about that as soon as possible,” Couple says. “Casual dating means different things to different people, so getting very clear about what your needs, desires, and boundaries are is imperative.”
Couple details how you can figure these out for yourself in three steps. The first, she says, is determining what you need emotionally. “Emotional needs such as affection, acceptance, autonomy, empathy, trust, prioritization...etc. are really important to consider and clarify for yourself,” she says. “What are you truly looking for? What bar does someone have to reach in order for you to feel emotionally cared for and satisfied?”
Next, understand your desires — “What things would make the dynamic more enjoyable for you, but aren't deal breakers?” she asks — as well as your boundaries. “What boundaries do you want to set? In addition to personal boundaries about your body and personal space, boundaries around friends, family, and especially social media are very important in casual dynamics.”
Talk Frankly About Casual Sex
When you know what you need, a discussion is necessary. To do this, Couple says, “Use ‘I’ statements to communicate what you're looking for, and ask the other person if what you're describing is a dynamic they might be interested in participating in.” Be clear, and know that they might say no. “If someone says no to a casual sexual dynamic, it's probably because they're looking for a more serious commitment or they feel like it will be too painful for them to engage in a sexual dynamic without that type of commitment,” Couple says. “Respect their boundary and wish them the best on their search for a more committed relationship!”
Fear of rejection is natural. Who wants to get shot down? But the reality is, there are going to be people who aren't going to be down for what you're offering. It sucks, but eventually there will be someone out there who wants what you want.
And If You’re Being Asked For Casual Sex...
An important part of this dynamic to note is when you’re the person being approached for casual sex. If this is not something that you want, simply say no. You’ll save both yourself and the asker a lot of trouble and drama. “I think the biggest mistake that people make with casual sexual dynamics is agreeing to them even though they want something more serious, thinking the other party will eventually come around,” Couple says. “This is manipulative and unfair. If you want something that the other person isn't offering, then the dynamic isn't for you.” And it’s OK to walk away and find something you do want.
Miss Couple, Bedroom and Sexual Empowerment Coach
“Gender Differences in Casual Sex,” by Dr. Ryan Anderson, Psychology Today
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