Men Look for Sex and Find Love. Women Look for Love and Find Sex.

Men Look for Sex and Find Love. Women Look for Love and Find Sex.
Hi Evan,

I’ve been online dating for a while now, and I’ve started to notice a trend with a lot of the men who have contacted me. By way of background, I just ended a three month relationship with a man whom I met online because he did not want to be exclusive. He claimed that he didn’t want to date other people but he was hurt several times in the past by cheating girlfriends and didn’t want me to go thru the hurt again. For my part, I realize I’m at fault for waiting three months before asking for some type of commitment.

Hindsight has pointed out that on his profile he listed he wanted a “casual relationship” as opposite to my listing of wanting a “serious relationship”. So now I’m back on the online dating scene and I’m paying better attention to what guys are saying they are looking for in their profile. Several guys put in their profile that they are looking for “friends” only, one guy even put that he’s too busy for a relationship right now.

Is this a case of semantics? Are these guys really just wanting to take it slow and be friends first? If they are really just looking for friends, why don’t they go on a free site like MySpace, Facebook, or Friendster? If it’s just a clever way to find booty calls, why don’t they go on Adultfriendfinder or Craigslist? If I want a bona fide relationship, should I just ignore these men when they contact me? Has looking for a relationship on a dating website become taboo?

Thanks for your insight,

Laura

Brace yourself for a shocking revelation!

Men very often don’t know what they want.

Just because he has fun with you doesn’t mean he wants you as his girlfriend

This shouldn’t come as a surprise to you. You could probably tell from our actions. But it’s true. Most men can tell a story about how they weren’t looking for anything serious and then fell in love. And most men can tell a story about how they were looking for love, but discovered they had a lot of fun being single. (Most women could probably say the same.)

Therefore, you have to take any information in an online dating profile with a grain of salt. It’s not that he DOESN’T mean what he wrote; it just means he meant it AT THAT MOMENT. This is in accordance with the way we act on a date as well. Just because we think you’re attractive and we show you a good time doesn’t mean we’re actually INTERESTED. It just means we’re being “in the moment”. Unfortunately, most women aren’t familiar with this concept until it’s much too late. That’s why half of my questions are versions of: “He sleeps with me, but-“, “He says he loves me, but-“, “We had an amazing date, but-“. One of the most important – and frustrating – concepts that women need to get about men is that most things have NO meaning, beyond what’s being conveyed in the moment. Just because he wants a serious relationship doesn’t mean he wants one with YOU. Just because he has fun with you doesn’t mean he wants you as his girlfriend. Just because he thinks you’re sexy doesn’t mean he wants to commit to only you. Each time you think this is the case, you’re setting yourself up for heartbreak.

And so we go back to Laura’s insightful question – what does it all MEAN?

Well, I can only speak for myself here by pretending to be a guy dating online (I know, it’s a reach. Bear with me).

So let’s say I’m serious about falling in love. I go onto a dating site and list that I’m looking for marriage or a relationship. So, week after week, I date a lot of attractive women, none of whom feel like they will be my future wife. Which leaves me a number of questions that I’d like you to consider:

  • 1) Am I supposed to NEVER hook up with them? No kissing, no foreplay, no sex with anyone that I don’t think I want to marry? Do you think the standard should be: heavy petting is only in exclusive relationships, or not at all?
  • 2) If I DO hook up, but have no intention of committing to an individual woman, does that make me a bad guy?
  • 3) How should I notify a woman that I am not serious about her before we start a physical relationship? What’s better? A written warning? Or perhaps a canned speech that while I find my date attractive and will gladly sleep with her for a few weeks, I’m actively continuing to pursue other women in the meantime? How’s that gonna go over?
  • 4) Finally, if I do, in fact, want to hook up from time to time, does that, in any way, mean that I’m NOT looking for a serious relationship?

These are real considerations that go through the heads of real guys who want real relationships. But just because a man aspires to love doesn’t mean he’s above the lust and passion that comes from short-term flings.

So how are men supposed to navigate this space with any integrity?

Men look for sex and find love. Women look for love and find sex.

That’s right. We can’t. We’re damned if we do and damned if we don’t.

You may feel that: “I just want a guy to be honest with me. Believe me, I sometimes want to have sex, too, but I just want to know where I stand. I don’t want to get hurt. He should be man enough to tell me the truth.”

Men look for sex and find love women look for love and find sexSorry. We’ve got a different truth.

The truth is that we’re attracted to you in this moment.

The truth is that we’re not sure if we want a relationship with you.

The truth is that if we tell you that we don’t know what’s going to happen in the morning, nothing will ever happen.

So we say nothing. And hope that you don’t get too attached.

Why don’t we go to Adultfriendfinder for easy, no-strings-attached sex? Because it’s kind of skeezy. Because there’s no challenge and no human connection. Because we actually want someone that we can talk to, vent to, and hang out with.

So understand, Laura: while it might work for YOU if commitment-confused men restricted themselves exclusively to the “adult” personals, it doesn’t actually work for MEN.

Men look for sex and find love. Women look for love and find sex.

The exceptions don’t disprove the rule.

If you find this confusing and want to learn how to navigate this emotional minefield, I am here to help. There ARE good men out there. There are relationship-oriented men out there. And often the difference between the players and the committers is YOU. The right woman at the right time can make a man want to stop playing. I know. It happened to me.

So if you’re done spinning your wheels on the wrong men and want to get an edge with the right men, click here to learn more.

Warmest wishes,

Your friend,

Evan

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Comments:

  1. 151
    Michael

    And this: Many men want to sleep around with as many women as possible, because that seems to be man-ego-uplifting. But when it comes to LTR they prefer women who are virgin or practically virgin.
    Theoretically, I would not have a problem with an LTR with a virgin.

    In practice though, I do not go after the 14-year-old crowd (I am 31) , so the issue is absolutely hypothetical.

  2. 152
    Justin

    Brace yourself for a shocking revelation!

    Interesting post, I believe there are alot of men in the online dating world who say they are looking for just friendship but if these men are single it usually turns out they want more of a commitment to the girl they meet. You are right, if a man is just looking for friends they should join a social networking site, dating sites should only be aimed toward finding a date otherwise i’d personally ignore men who send you a pm that have, “looking for friendship”.

  3. 153
    mm

    The truth is that if we tell you that we don’t know what’s going to happen in the morning, nothing will ever happen.

    So we say nothing. And hope that you don’t get too attached.

    If that doesn’t scream flake!, I don’t know what does. Perhaps most men feel this way; but it doesn’t change the truth that it’s immature, ego-centric, and immoral behavior. For a guy to withhold information that someone else could use to keep herself from getting emotionally hurt just so that he can get his knob polished, it just doesn’t make his species look very worthy of much of anything.

    Let me translate this article into a well-known secret: when it comes to familial, romantic, and sexual relationships, most people are nuts. That includes men and women. Just as men have their ways of behaving destructively towards women, women have they’re ways of behaving destructively towards men.

    The truth is, there are very good, honorable people out there (men and women) who won’t just use you for the moment (or for sex, money, attention, or anything else). I believe the secret to finding romantic peace is to (1) learn to stop being one of the majority of flakes and (2) learn how to become more attracted to the good and honorable people. Flakes are attracted to flakes. Stop being one, and stop being attracted to them.

  4. 154
    susan

    I have to laugh when I read these articles, I am a woman, and you cannot generalise an entire sex, I have had casual relationships where I absolutely did not get attached whatsoever, I am now married and my husband told me on our first proper date that he thought he was in love with me, nine years later we are crazy about each other, this is a true story, in the past, guys have fallen for me and I was not in love with them, I really think some women are in love with love and not with the guy himself. Maybe I am the exception but ever human being on the planet is different not all men think exactly the same.

    1. 154.1
      Rosie

      Anecdote does not equal data. 

  5. 155
    StaceyM

    I would like to say that while the oxycotin revelation (or what ever it is that is put off when a woman orgasms with a man) is good to know about, but you can't blame that solely on your desire to continue to be with a man (going off some earlier posts by some women).
    I have been with a man for seven months (the first six were we spent a lot of time together and now we are away from each other) and we have never had sex (I absolutely want to though, but due to circumstances we can't right now and no he isn't married or anything like that). After month five, he told me loved me and wanted to marry me, have kids, etc. And, Ugh.. I have fallen so in love with him too (no oxycotin going on here jeez what if there was, I almost hate to think how I would feel). 
    I kind of wonder though that his professing of love and stuff to me wasn't just an in the moment thing, an emotional moment on his part -especially because we couldn't have sex or really even touch each other for that matter, although he says it isn't just emotional as he has had time to think about it and it is what he wants. Unfortuantely, his actions lately came to complete halt for a bit (over the course of this last month he has pulled away – way back and first time in my life I did nothing and waited, I stopped talking to him and after about  10 days he eventualy contacted me to tell me he still felt the same way but was feeling stressed out due to the circumstances).
    It is all just super hard! I have never played games with anyone, but every circumstance is different. Although, Evan's post did sicken me with the idea that a man can do or say what ever he wants and he shouldn't be held accountable because that is how he made. Huh? I guess the idea being that a woman should just control herself ( but a man doesn't have to how fair is that). I wonder if he still thinks the same way on this issue, now that it has been quite a while since the original post. Based on what he is saying, my boyfriend was only teling me he loved me because it was how he felt at the moment, but I shouldn't trust that he loves me at any other moment and that being said, at any moment he might just drop me like a hot potato when he feels satisfied. How am I supposed to ever feel secure in a relationship? It just won't ever work then.

  6. 156
    Karl R

    StaceyM said: (#155)
    "I kind of wonder though that his professing of love and stuff to me wasn't just an in the moment thing, an emotional moment on his part"
     
    If he just said it once, then he was probably just in the moment. If continues to say it, then it's more than just that. Especially if his actions reflect it.
     
    StaceyM said: (#155)
    "this last month he has pulled away – way back"
     
    This is not a good sign. However, it sounds like there is some kind of external stressor on your relationship. It sounds like dealing with this external stressor (for him) is taking priority over you. If this is a temporary, extreme situation, that may be perfectly reasonable. If it's going to be something you would have to deal with all the time in a long-term relationship, then it's probably not.
     
    StaceyM asked: (#155)
    "Based on what he is saying, my boyfriend was only teling me he loved me because it was how he felt at the moment, but I shouldn't trust that he loves me at any other moment and that being said, [...] How am I supposed to ever feel secure in a relationship? "
     
    Look for consistent patterns of behavior. Does he consistently act like he loves you? Then he does. Does his behavior usually indicate that you're a low priority in his life? Then that's the case, even if he told you that he loved you.
     
    In this situation, Evan is talking about how you should treat the situation when you're basing on as man's behavior for one evening. That's never going to be enough information. After being in a relationship for seven months, you should have a clear picture about how he behaves on a regular basis.
     
    StaceyM said: (#155)
    "Evan's post did sicken me with the idea that a man can do or say what ever he wants and he shouldn't be held accountable because that is how he made."
     
    I think you're misunderstanding Evan's point. If you don't like the way your boyfriend pulls away from you, you can hold him accountable … by leaving him. What you can't do is force him to change in the way you would like him to.
     
    The same holds true for men. If I don't like the way that my girlfriend treats me, then I can leave. If I don't like the way that women (in general) behave, then I can either learn to accept it -OR- spend a long time searching for someone who is an exception to the rule. But I don't get the option to change my girlfriend's behavior or women's behavior.

  7. 157
    StaceyM

    Hey thanks Karl. My boyfriend had been very consistent with telling me loved me, continued to say he wanted a future with me, etc. until that last month, then he pulled way back (and behaved in a way he hadn't ever behaved in the past), so I didn't talk to him. Now he is back on, but it just happened, so I will have to wait. A lot of people seem to think his love isn't real (they are telling me that he wouldn't have acted the way he did if he loved me), but I know what I have seen. Yes, his situation is making it harder for both of us. It is not a forever thing, but long enough to make some people walk away.
    I can agree that if we are talking about one evening (or one date or a few), then if a guy is professing his love at that point, then it is too soon. If a woman thinks it is the right time to sleep with him because she thinks it will add to a longer term committment, then I don't agree with that. If she is interested and doesn't care where it goes, then sleep with him (if you/she wants), but don't buy into "words" only.

    That said, I will be looking out for "action."

  8. 158
    starthrower68

    Oh God, how I love this particular topic!  I don’t know why it makes me laugh, it just does.  It’s a lot more fun to be a member of the Greek chorus than a player in the drama….

  9. 159
    Susan

    God, I’m glad I’m married!!!
    I hated being single, & mostly because of crap like this.
    God forbid I end up widowed, I’m staying that way (It’s not like anyone could measure up to my husband, anyway, but that’s beside the point).

  10. 160
    Gazelle

    It makes sense to back-off from a guy if his behaviour shows that he is not that into you. It also makes sense to assume everyone you meet is not immediately interested in a serious relationship even if they say they are – they don’t know you so how can they possibly decide they want to be serious with you as opposed to the next girl? People get divorced after having sex for years with the same person – so why would having sex mean that a person won’t lose interest and leave you?

    On the dating front, I am only impressed by a self-aware guy who has the integrity and confidence to discuss what our respective intentions might be because he is concerned that neither he nor I get hurt due to mistaken assumptions or expectations. If he wants sex more than he wants to have a conversation to avoid potentially hurting someone, albeit a relative stranger, that tells me all I need to know about his character – i.e. he can’t see the point of controlling his natural sexual instincts or having a difficult conversation simply because it is the right thing to do to avoid hurting someone. I would wonder in what other areas of his life he chooses not to control his actions and is ok with inflicting pain simply because it is easier for him. if I initiate the conversation with him it is not because I feel needy or clingy but because I have the balls to overcome my fear of an uncomfortable conversation in order to lessen potential future pain to him or me. Because if we don’t have the conversation then there is no relationship and we could be missing out on something potentially great …that might hurt too…or not LOL. And yes if his words say one thing but his actions say another I’ll go with the actions. 

    If he is a genuine guy with integrity he may be honest about his interest level, and we could wind up friends because guys can be fun to hang out with as friends. Or if he is the other type it may be easier for him to just move onto playing with some other girl’s emotions for his amusement than try to convince me he is into me just to have sex (I’m pretty hard to convince being a natural cynic) and it’s not like he’d be missing the best sex he ever had if he moved on LOL. 

    Based on what Evan says, society is not going to censure an individual – man or woman – for suddenly changing their mind about their level of interest at any point in a relationship and leaving without an explanation or effort to fix a problem  (they may censure privately or anonymously on a forum but no one is going to come out and call their friend a jerk) so until society changes, men and women would be wise to be VERY VERY cautious before they invest their feelings in any new relationship. Evan has told us men find it easier to be detached – IMO parents and society have always had 2 choices – teach their daughters to fight their natural instincts and become detached like men or raise their sons and daughters to behave in a way that puts honesty and integrity and kindness above their natural instincts including the natural instinct for sex. I know which one I’ll be teaching my kids.

    1. 160.1
      Evan Marc Katz

      @Gazelle: Well said, until this line: “IMO parents and society have always had 2 choices – teach their daughters to fight their natural instincts and become detached like men or raise their sons and daughters to behave in a way that puts honesty and integrity and kindness above their natural instincts including the natural instinct for sex.”

      As if a) parents are actually teaching their daughters the emotions around sex and intimacy. They’re not. Frankly, most don’t even know how to handle sex themselves; you can be sure that they’re not even bringing it up with their own daughters.

      And b) As if honesty and integrity are on the flip side of detachment. A man doesn’t lack integrity because he has the desire and ability to have unattached sex. Nor does a woman, for that matter. All you can do as a parent is teach your kid the Golden Rule, be a good role model, and keep your fingers crossed. By the time he/she is 17 years old, their decisions are out of your hands. As a guy who actually PRIDES himself on his integrity AND had a decent amount of unattached sex, you really missed the mark on this one. It’s not an either/or. If women can’t successfully separate sex from love, they shouldn’t have unattached sex. Men don’t need much effort in doing so; as such, sex doesn’t violate their own integrity. Plus, he’s not responsible for her feelings. She is.

  11. 161
    Gazelle

    @Evan. I meant we should teach our kids to choose integrity over their  natural instinct to have sex, lots of sex, without regard for people’s feelings. I didn’t mean choose integrity over a man’s natural instinct to be detached when having sex – I agree integrity is not the flip side of detachment – didn’t mean to make you think I was doubting your integrity. And maybe my mother was the only one then – she drummed it into me to be detached by telling me that excessive emotion and dependency were weaknesses and I should have the education to be able to walk away from any relationship if I needed to and be self-sufficient rather than stay out of fear of the unknown.  She also taught me that to walk away from a good relationship because I lost interest was pure self-indulgence, emotional and weak. Maybe she was wrong but it has helped me avoid a whole ot of drama that I see my friends go through. 

  12. 162
    starthrower68

    I will make up for my other post and wholeheartely agree with you on this one, Evan.  We parents can teach our children until we’re blue in the face about these things, but in the heat of the moment, our lectures are probably not on their minds.  I’ve seen lots of good kids have babies as teen-agers.  It happened to me and my parents swear up and down I was one of the good kids.  But I digress.

    I know that not everyone on this forum puts much stock in Christianity or what the Bible says, but I always go back to Proverbs 4:23: “keep thy heart with all dilligence, for out of it are the issues of life”.  God is basically telling us we are responsible for not getting ourselves hurt and we’d better make wise choices or we will.

  13. 163
    Gazelle

    And Evan, although I agree factually you are correct – he is solely responsible for his feelings, and she is solely responsible for hers since it is impossible for either party to control somone else’s feelings, I still think that if you are aware of what somone’s feelings might be if you behaved a certain way, you are responsible for your choice to act in a way you know will cause pain. You could choose to act in a different way to mitigate the pain. So for the choice you make with deliberate intent or recklessness as to the consequences –  morally you are responsible for that. 

  14. 164
    Selena

    I’m not sure the concept of sex and detachment can be taught, it’s usually the result of “hands on” training. Young women often assume that having sex automatically makes them a girlfriend and painfully find out that’s not true. And sometimes they assume they will be cool with no strings attached sex, but discover they were wrong. Or lying to themselves. And for both genders doing sex seems easier than talking about it beforehand. 

    If someone wants exclusivity in a sexual relationship they have to get that card on the table before agreeing to sex. If they want attachment in a sexual relationship they are going to have to wait until the attachment has formed, instead of hoping it will form after having sex. This is individual responsiblity – not the other person’s, not society’s and not the parent’s.

  15. 165
    Gazelle

    What is Evan’s mirroring technique if it is not a way to teach us to be detached rather than act emotionally. Evan seems to think detachment can be taught and I agree with him.

    If he can teach it, then so can parents – sorry Evan to potentially put you out of a lucrative source of income. In my case my mother was lovingly sarcastic :-). I have felt attraction, lust, love, infatuation, low self-esteem and have often manged to talk myself out of acting on them to mitigate someone else’s pain, in the same way that Evan is trying to teach us to not act emotionally to mitigate our own pain. I can extend Evan’s worthy principle externally, not because I am exceptionally clever but because my mother could articulate why it was the right thing to do in a way that appealed to my ego. My father was a lot more touchy-feely and displayed his affection but he was away working a lot so I wanted my mother’s approval and reined in my emotions and have carried that habit ever since. It doesn’t mean I am not naturally emotional – I cry watching movies all the time – I just try not to act on my emotions if I am going to cause avoidable pain to someone who has shown some faith or trust in me by making themselves even a little bit vulnerable to me. If acting on my emotions causes me pain then that’s my individual choice and my individual responsibility as Selena says, but I disagree that other people, society and parents don’t have a responsibility to act in a way that will mitigate another individual’s pain just as much as we each have a responsibility for our own pain. I was taught to look out for other people’s feelings and if I failed to do this I was taught to apologise, attempt to make amends and try harder to not repeat my mistake. My mother’s unemotional view protected me from pain today although I might have missed out on some hugs and kisses and indulgence when I was a child. Maybe I’m in the minority by thinking society should look out for each other and stop being so self-indulgent about their emotional needs – but like I said it certainly has saved me from excessive drama. If someone treats me badly I call them on it and walk away until they change their behaviour. If they change their behaviour I will be in their life but still remain detached since I assume there is no reason to think they will not get weak and self-indulgent again and I want to protect myself from their self-indulgence. I will also try my hardest to protect others from my own weak self-indulgence, by acknowledging my motivations openly – why not – I haven’t met a single person who wasn’t weak and self-indulgent in some aspect of their life so why worry about someone else’s hypocritical judgment of me when I admit my own weaknesses to them. At least they will have the knowledge to protect themselves from me. I can teach that level of awareness to my children – it will stay with them even if they are sometimes too weak to act on it. It’s seems a lot more pro-active than the defeatist comments of why bother, children won’t listen, people have no responsibility to each other so don’t even try. Children will listen to some of it and practise some of it, which is better than nothing.

  16. 166
    Gazelle

    By the way – since when does exclusivity and attachment protect you from getting hurt when you have sex? Marriage is a display of exclusivity and attachment but married people still leave or abuse you or whatever after having sex…but if you say in today’s society we are only responsible for our own feelings and not the feelings of others this shouldn’t be a problem for anyone or indicate a need for social change or better parenting so we treat each other better. Sex is a red-herring in this scenario – when we have attached sex we all know we could get hurt at any point in our life.

  17. 167
    Selena

    @#167

    I don’t know that there is anything, including practiced detachment, that prevents anyone from getting hurt as they go through life.

    Being clear on wanting exclusivity and attachment in a sexual relationship and walking your talk, can however prevent you from deluding yourself because you want to have sex with someone. And then turning around and blaming them for not having the same feelings as you. 

  18. 168
    starthrower68

    Well let’s put it this way, Gazelle: if you think that people are capable of being taught sex (or whatever) while remaining emotionally detached and you feel comfortable engaging in that behavior and accepting the consequences, then more power to you.  Nobody is telling you or anyone else not to do it.  Some people recognize that it will not work for them so they decide not to try it.  More power to them also for recognizing their limits and not trying to push it. 

  19. 169
    Gazelle

    @168

    I agree – you’re going to get hurt in life and so why do women stress so much about getting hurt after sex in particular? It’s a given that the more you let someone in the more they have the ability to hurt you.

    And yes I also agree that we should all be clear about what we want so we don’t delude ourselves.  As you say you can’t achieve anything positive by blaming a person for not feeling what you feel – they are entitled to feel whatever they feel. I just think this self-indulgent need to act on feelings is an over-rated concept. It’s similar to a soldier feeling fear in the face of battle and then choosing to act on his feelings and turning tail and running.      

  20. 170
    Gazelle

    @169

    I’m confused. I thought that that was what Evan was selling here – how to suppress your feelings i.e. detach yourself from your emotional impulses and conform to a certain pattern of behaviour in order to get your prize – a man.

    The only problem is it appears that while women can be trained to detach themselves, men aren’t required to detach themselves – if they feel like running or not calling they apparently don’t have the strength to overcome their feelings and are hard-wired to be emotional creatures who can’t be coaxed to conform to any externally-set behaviour pattern in relation to sex. Funny how some men can be trained to go against every natural instinct and sacrifice their lives to protect or defend the physical well-being of the vulnerable but your average man or woman is apparently unable to be trained to act in a way that will protect the vulnerable feelings of the person they are dating. But hey – despite this apparently we all still feel the need to love them….

  21. 171
    Selena

    @170

      I don’t consider it about detachment from feelings, but rather detaching from expectations. Dating is essentially just getting to know another person after all. I think sometimes people forget that and get caught up in projecting a relationship before one has had time to develop.

    I totally don’t get your comparisons and it sounds as though you’ve been hurt badly. I’m sorry for that and I hope you find a way to heal soon.

  22. 172
    starthrower68

    @Gazelle #169,

    I think I understand your point, and what Evan says to that is, it’s usually the women writing in to find out how to have a successful dating/relationship experience.  It’s not that men (and there are many who are active posters here) shouldn’t act decently toward women; they generally don’t ask the relationship questions. 

    @Selena #170,

    Some have a greater abilty than others to compartmentalize; they can separate sex from emotions.  I would think it’s a wise idea to not have sex with someone with whom one has no expectations unless one has this ability. 

  23. 173
    Gazelle

    I guess what I’m saying is that I don’t need to have a significant relationship with people before I start being considerate of their feelings. My analogy is to demonstrate that I think people can be trained to choose to be considerate even if their instincts prompt different impulses, the same way they can be trained to choose to run towards enemy fire rather than running away as their instincts would tell them to do. I don’t see why people let themselves off the hook so much by shifting all the responsibility for hurt feelings to the person they are hurting. Well, actually I do see why – it’s easier than sharing the responsibility because then you might have to deny yourself something you want in order to be considerate. i’m not talking about BLAME here – just responsibility.

    But I’m with you on the fact that it is my responsibility to not make any assumptions about someone else’s feelings regardless of what they tell me they feel and regardless of their actions – because their actions only reflect their present feelings and give no indication of their future feelings. So if they love me today I will love them today and if they stop loving me tomorrow I will stop loving them tomorrow. To me that is remaining detached to some degree i.e. while I am busy feeling love I keep in mind they’re just feelings and feelings could change.

    I haven’t been hurt (much) – I actually feel bad as I have recently become close to someone that I now realise may have loved me and been hurt by me in the past. I have a strong connection (infatuation?) with him now and I think he feels the same way but obviously I have no idea as I have never discussed these feelings –  I am not going to act on these feelings because I have no intention of doing anything that would hurt my husband. Evan’s website has helped me feel more detached from my infatuation by making me realise how detached men are. Thanks Evan.

  24. 174
    Selena

    Star,
    I agree with you that some people are better able to comparmentalize sex and emotion than others. What I meant from detaching from expectations is approaching dating with the idea that it is an opportunity to get to know someone. Sometimes within the first few dates, if they’ve gone well, someone will start projecting about a relationship existing when for the other person there isn’t- yet – it’s just a few dates that have gone well. And having sex can influence this set of expectations.

    Here’s a common scenario: Woman has an enjoyable couple dates with a man and starts fantasizing about him as her boyfriend. She sleeps with him within the first few weeks of knowing him and her mind, that makes them a couple. In his mind, they are just dating – they don’t have “a relationship” yet. If he decides she’s not the one for him and breaks it off, that’s all it is to him. To her, he’s a heartless jerk who used her for sex. What’s the reality?

    Sex can be part of getting to know someone, but one would have to view it in that way. The problem I see is when both people don’t. If a woman believes dating someone automatically makes him her boyfriend, and having sex with him means they are in a committed relationship without it ever being discussed then she is operating on her own set of expectations and may be in for a letdown.

    If one views dating as simply a way of getting to know someone else, without expectations, then they proceed accordingly. The questions with sex become, “Do I want to have sex with someone I don’t know very well yet?” “Do I want to have sex without a committment?” That puts the responsibility on the individual (where it belongs) and not on the other person.

  25. 175
    Janice T

    There is NO way an ethical man who understood oxytocin’s role in women’s bonding through sex could rationalize having casual sex with anyone not already on an adult hookup site.  Oxytocin forces women to bond when they have sex – sex releases this bonding hormone.
     
    Men don’t like adult hook up sites, they prefer to sully the psyches of women looking for love, instead?  Really?  Tough luck boys.   Get a conscience.  Grow up and read the newspapers.  Once you school yourself on oxytocin, you have NO MORE excuses to play the field for casual sex.  It doesn’t work for women because they are *biochemically engineered* to bond over sex.  We women have TOLD you this for eons, but you never believed us, blithely going on about the “possibilties” of casual sex – there are NONE for women!  That is just a male fantasy!
     
    Be honest – if you want casual sex – find someone from an adult sex site or have casual sex with other MEN.  Adult sites are skeezy for a reason!  Normal women DON’T WANT casual sex!
     
    The truth will set you free – and hopefully, injure fewer women.
     
    Google it: Oxytocin.
     
    Peace out.

  26. 176
    Karl R

    Janice T said: (#176)
    “Normal women DON’T WANT casual sex!”

    Really?
    http://www.alternet.org/sex/146631/women_have_lots_of_casual_sex_–_get_over_it

    About half of my sex partners have been casual partners. Half of them told me that they weren’t interested in a long-term relationship (or an exclusive relationship). With the other half, I explicitly told them that I didn’t want a long-term / monogamous / serious / committed relationship, but they decided they wanted to have sex anyway.

    I’ve never been on an adult hookup site. I met these women through friends, at bars, at dance class, even at church.

    Janice T said: (#176)
    “There is NO way an ethical man who understood oxytocin’s role in women’s bonding through sex could rationalize having casual sex with anyone not already on an adult hookup site.”

    You know the effects of oxytocin on women. More importantly, you know the effects of oxytocin on you (since the effects vary from one woman to another). If I explicitly tell you that I’m not interested in a long-term relationship, why can’t you make the choice whether or not you want to have casual sex?

    You’re an adult. If you want to ride a motorcycle, you can do it. If you want to skydive, you can do it. If you want to have casual sex, it’s not ethical for me to tell you that you can’t. If you want someone to forbid you from doing things that might be risky, talk to your parents.

    Part of being an adult is taking responsibility for your own choices. If I have given you the information you needed to make an informed decision, then I have acted ethically. (If a man knowingly misleads you, then he has acted unethically.)

    And if you made an informed decision that you later regret, it is neither ethical nor mature for you to blame the other party for your own choices.

  27. 177
    Goldie

    #176-177 As a mother of two teenage boys, I find Janice’s comment very helpful. It would certainly help for my sons to know that many women are chemically wired to bond with a man over sex, so they’re prepared for it and keep the lines of communications open in their own relationships in the future, to know what each side’s expectations are. That said, I’m having a really hard time trying to apply Janice’s comment to myself. I really don’t think I work this way.
     
    My guess is, women and people in general are a lot more complicated than their stereotypical genetic makeup. Everyone has their own personality, their own reactions to different things. We’re not programmed to all produce the same output given the same data. Life in general, and dating especially, would be pretty boring otherwise!

  28. 178
    Ruby

    Karl #177
     
    The women in the study were between the ages of 20-30. That’s a pretty young sample, and not all that surprising given the age range. 
     
    You may have been explicit, but I don’t think that’s the norm. In my experience with men wanting to be casual, they have almost NEVER that clear-cut about what they wanted. And I always had friends who thought they were okay with a casual relationship, who later discovered that they wanted more once they began seeing someone.

  29. 179
    Helen

    All: let’s not be egalitarian to the point of absurdity, to ignore the differences in what sexual intercourse means to each gender.
     
    I don’t deny that women can (not all the time) enjoy casual sex. But there’s far less reason for women to engage in it than men. We have no reproductive imperative to mate with as many men as possible. We are the ones who disproportionately suffer from STIs – not to say that men do not at all (witness the recent news story about HIV transmission from the German singer to a man), but the health risks are far greater to women. And we are the ones who risk getting pregnant, with all the life-changing ramifications that entails.
     
    Add to this that society hasn’t yet wrapped its head around the notion that men and women are equals in morality and status when it comes to casual sex. The more notches he has on his belt, the more studly he is. The more notches she has, the more slutty she is. So on top of all the health concerns, we have our reputations to risk.
     
    It’s not about oxytocin, which is produced in both men and women. It’s about risk and reward. Men and women are different in this particular activity, no matter how much we may wish it to be otherwise.

  30. 180
    Ruby

    Helen #180
     
    Good points, I agree with you. I disagree about oxytocin, though. Yes, both men and women produce it, but its effects in men are largely cancelled out by the male hormone testosterone.

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