Who Enjoys Casual Sex?

Lots has been written about casual sex and the hookup culture – to the point where it has to be very confusing for people to navigate the booty call waters themselves. But a new study points out what most of us could have probably figured out for ourselves:

“A new study published in the journal Social Psychological & Personality Science suggests that the potential positive and negative outcomes of casual sex are not mutually exclusive: If you’re the type of person who enjoys engaging in casual sex, then hooking up can boost your self-esteem and life satisfaction. But if you’re not that kind of person, then it won’t.”

In other words, do whatever the hell you want. Whatever makes you feel good. Amen to that.

If you’re a woman who sleeps with a guy and thinks that it means he likes you, wants to see you again, or that he’s going to be your boyfriend, you’re playing a dangerous game of Russian Roulette with your emotions.

Because I have repeatedly cautioned women to not have sex outside of a committed relationship, I have been accused of being anti-sex or a slut-shamer. Couldn’t be farther from the truth. I am many things, but a hypocrite isn’t one of them. If a woman wants to sleep with a guy on the first date just because it’s fun and she has  no attachment to whether she sees him again, well, let’s just say I would have loved to have met her ten years ago. No judgment here.

My only point – now backed up by the above study – is that random sex may be fun for some people (often extroverted men) but it isn’t fun for others – and those are the women to whom I’m offering my advice. If you’re a woman who sleeps with a guy and thinks that it means he likes you, wants to see you again, or that he’s going to be your boyfriend, you’re playing a dangerous game of Russian Roulette with your emotions. If you are going to stare at your phone for his next text, check his Facebook page, browse his dating profile to see if he’s online, and stop seeing all other men because you like the guy you slept with casually, maybe casual sex is not for you.

But, “with sexually permissive students, those who successfully engaged in casual sex reported higher rates of self-esteem and lower rates of depression and anxiety than those who failed to seal the deal.” Basically, hook-up culture is good for people who like hook-up culture, just like marriage is good for people who want monogamy and steak is good to people who like steak. Full article can be seen here:

Can you handle the consequences of casual sex? Or did you try it and found that it hurt too much?

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Comments:

  1. 1
    starthrower68

    Sometimes I wish it worked for me.  But I have learned it does not and I no longer try to convince myself it will.  My set of values and beliefs also will not allow me to engage.  My view is not that of the majority, nor am I here to tell the majority to change.  I believe my behavior here has eternal consequences, but I’m well aware not everyone does.  

    1. 1.1
      jessy

      thanks for this courageous comment. There is a way that seem right to a man but the end thereof is death.

      1. 1.1.1
        starthrower68

        It’s not Thank you for that, but I can’t lie and say I never succumbed to temptation.  The spirit is will but the flesh is week. I just try to stay built up in faith. But I’m nothing special. ☺

        1. The Gullible Me

          maybe we went through the same thing starthrower68 …

  2. 2
    Karl S

    I think you’re right about it only working for certain kinds of people. I’m still learning through my experiences and discussions with others about how much monogamy/non monogamy is hardwired into certain kinds of people and how much is socially constructed. Perhaps everyone has a default, but new in studies in brain plasticity also show that you can rewire your neural connections through focused effort or traumatic events. 

    Regarding happiness, I’ve found whether in a monogamous or casuasl style it comes down to effort expended vs reward. If you invest time and energy into things and see some return on your investment you get a general lift to your psyche. For instance, I’m overseas at the Edinburgh fringe and I can tell you, between flyering and performing my show I’m not seeing many plays. ;-)
    This massive event is a great time to meet people from everywhere who aren’t staying very long, so casual flings abound and I’m getting more results than I normally would.

    I think it also helps if you do it with the right people. I try to be conscientious and communicative at all times, so if I hook up with someone and realize afterwards that I don’t feel like seeing them again, I gently let them know. Always give closure. Nothing sucks more than the slow fade. I think anyone interested in hookup culture or unconventional relationships should read The Ethical Slut for pointers on etiquette and emotional negotiation. You can have some wonderfully affirming experiences, however brief, if you do it with the right mindset. Just last night I met a 32 year old science fiction editor from New York (I’m 25) who was about to fly out the next day. We were a 99% match on Okcupid, and though though the matching system can be flawed, if you’ve both answered a lot of questions it gives a better reading. Anyway, it was a spectacular evening of conversation and sex. Even though I’ll never see her again, that one night was well worth it. 

    Interestingly, I think online dating sites are a boon for more introverted types like myself who enjoy casual sex, but crumble in the enviroments where hookups generally occur and the more extroverted type thrives.  Through Okcupid, I’ve met wonderfully intelligent, socially progressive women who are conscientious, ethical sluts like me. 

  3. 3
    Sunflower

    Not for me.  Doesn’t make me feel good about myself and have never felt satisfied afterwards.   

  4. 4
    Julia

    Shocker: I’ve enjoyed every casual sex encounter I’ve had, I also enjoy monogamy. People like us exist, Evan is one of us. I agree that women who are uncomfortable having casual sex should not have it, same with men! 

    Here’s the kicker though: I had sex with my boyfriend on our second date but the fact was I did want to see him again. He showed through all his actions up to that point that he wasn’t going to bail but I also was confident that if he did I wouldn’t be crushed because there are plenty of men out there. It took a couple of years of really aware dating to get to that point. I don’t regret sleeping with him right away, 7 months later he’s the best boyfriend I’ve ever had.  

  5. 5
    Keri C Cam

    I didn’t have casual sex with men I could see as potential boyfriends. I always enjoyed it without getting too involved emotionally. 

  6. 6
    JB

    Well I certainly think different age groups look at this quite differently. Younger people 21-35 will feel differently about it than the 35-50 and so on. Of course a larger percentage of men will be down with it than women etc….. (no shock there!) I once said on this blog in another thread “I don’t know anything about women but I do know this…….. MOST of them hate the word casual unless you’re talking about dress code” which is what I truly believe in my dating age range (45-60).
    When I was younger up until about 45 I had a lot of “casual” which for the most part I enjoyed probably more than the women did. In the last 5-7 years the casual thing has been rare mainly because I just choose not to partake in it with the particular women that have been basically offering it to me. In other words I’m not going to have sex with a woman I’m not attracted to enough to actually put forth an effort to date them just to not be celibate. That’s what I would be doing, and might still have to do it in the future if I want to have sex again in this lifetime.
    Most men unlike women still think casual sex is better than no sex. Sometimes it is. :-)

  7. 7
    Shepherd

    I have never had casual sex and I’ve always known that I never, ever wanted to. I don’t think I could enjoy sex unless I deeply trusted the person and knew that they cared for me very much and wanted to date exclusively on a long term basis. It’s weird because I’m not at all religious and was not raised in a conservative environment or anything. I’m not at all anti sex. When it comes down to doing it, I’m pretty much game for whatever my lover is interested in even if it’s different. My sister, though, is the exact opposite. She has had lots and lots of sex with random people, but she’s very vanilla with what she’s willing to do. She started in her early teens, while I was nineteen when I lost my virginity to my first boyfriend. Sometimes we laugh and wonder how we’re from the same family.  She’s had dozens of partners and I’ve had a whopping two. 

  8. 8
    shelly

    I freakin love casual sex. I also love monogamy, as long as the sex doesn’t fade or get boring. If I meet a man and I’m attracted and there’s chemistry, heck yeah I’ll sleep with him, I’m doing it for my enjoyment, not theirs (although they always enjoy it too, ha ha). I’m not thinking about if I want a relationship with them or not, at that point, I’m not even thinking about if I ever want to see them again.
     
    One of the best times in my life was having 4 men on my booty call list….yes, that’s right, I had my little black book of booty calls, that’s how I roll. It’s a little funny to see the shocked reaction I get from men when it comes to my attitude towards this topic.

  9. 9
    Garret

    I wonder how this would tie into a woman having the propensity to cheat, or having the propensity to withhold sex. In my experience, women come in two varieties. Those who see sex as personal to her and her body, in other words, regardless of what she tells a man, she will still see having sex with others as her right. It’s her body and thus her right to share with whom ever she wants. I agree with that to a point. I agree with it when you are just hooking up, and that goes for both men and women. However, when you are in a committed or mutually exclusive relationship, it is no longer your right because it is no longer just your body. That is on several level but the main two are the simple fact that you have made an agreement with the other person that your body is for them only. Second, beyond the emotional aspect is the health concern. If you are in a committed exclusive relationship, it is likely that you will be less careful about disease prevention. In other words, it is a good bet that condoms will no longer be used, or not used all of the time. So there is always a risk of bringing something home to your partner, even if you use condoms with other people.

    The other side is that she may not like sex as much and thus will have a sex drive that is much lower than the man’s. Or, she may view sex as this extremely precious gift she bestows on a man and thus she can only do so when she is pleased as punch with him. In short, the man ends up feeling like he’s a circus dog, constantly having to jump through hoops, in order to feel loved.

    I think it’s important because every friend I know who has cheated, did so because one of the above reasons. 1. She was cheating. 2. She was withholding sex. 3. She made him feel like sex was a dog treat. He had to perform tricks to get it, which caused resentment. It’s like living with a prostitute.

    Regarding that last one, I have a bit of a theory. I think most men believe that in a committed and exclusive relationship, the physical things are just supposed to be there. No conditions. I think most women would agree that if they began to feel like they had to “perform” to get any affection at all, they would begin to feel resentment. Like, if you came home from work and wanted a hug and a kiss, but he brushed you off and said, “You didn’t sew that button on my shirt that I’ve asked you for 3 weeks to do.” I am sure most women would get a very bad feeling from that, and probably would not stay in the relationship for long. Yet many women do just that. Or what if he refused to be affectionate with you because he was thinking about all of the stuff he had to do the next day? Or, maybe nearly every night he was working on stuff for work and never made time each day to be affectionate with you. After a while, I am sure you would feel taken for granted.

    I think many men feel short term relationships are better because women are often more willing to be very sexual and affectionate in the early part of a relationship. It’s like getting the best of both worlds. You get the fun of casual sex, but also the benefits of sex in a relationship.

    1. 9.1
      Julia

      I’ve enjoyed casual sex and have never ever cheated in my life, not even a kiss. I believe trust is the foundation of all relationships and would never do anything to break that trust. I can’t speak for all women but it sounds like you are trying to put women into Madonna or whore.

      1. 9.1.1
        Lau_ra

        It goes the same for me! Like it casual and never cheated on any of my bfs. It just surprises me how men somehow think of themselves as completely able to lead a life of a good bf/boyfriend, who is all so faithful and etc etc, though they don’t mind casual before they decide to settle down, and yet they see same type of women as more likely to cheat and etc., which leads to choosing “madonna” type of women (which, I think is more prone to use sex as a tool to reward/punish, et.c) and eventually-to complaints about women who withold sex or even dislike it.

        1. Tom10

          Laura #9.1.1
          “It just surprises me how men somehow think of themselves as completely able to lead a life of a good bf/boyfriend, who is all so faithful and etc etc, though they don’t mind casual before they decide to settle down, and yet they see same type of women as more likely to cheat and etc., which leads to choosing “madonna” type of women”
           
          You shouldn’t be surprised as there is a reason for this.
           
          On balance, more men than women want casual sex (there are studies and data to prove this). Therefore, women who partake in casual sex are in high demand and can pick who they want (within reason). Being human, they will obviously pick the best they can and go for the best guys they can.
           
          As guys are in less demand they will be forced to drop their standards and date “down” (in their minds) if they want to have regular casual sex. So more often than not, the dynamic of a casual relationship is where the guy feels that he is dating “down” (if he didn’t feel that way he would step up pronto and ask her to be in a relationship).
           
          The opposite dynamic works for settling down. If we assume that more women want to get married and at a younger age than men (as can be inferred from the necessity for blogs for women looking for marriage), then it follows that men will be in more demand and so women will be forced to drop their standards from the type of guys they could have casual sex with.
           
          So one of the reasons guys sometimes worry about marrying a woman who formerly indulged in casual sex is because they worry that she might feel she is “settling” or dropping her standards to secure commitment; and is therefore more likely to cheat should she meet a better guy. However, the guy will/should be marrying a far-better woman than he could normally have casual with; therefore, he has a lot to lose should he cheat, which lowers his odds of cheating.
           
          That said, I agree with you and Julia that the character of the individual is actually what matters when guessing someone’s propensity to cheat.

        2. julia

          @Tom10

          You’ve had 2 women tell you that enjoying casual sex is not indicative of cheating. Maybe you should listen. As far as “settling” in a relationship? Well I think my boyfriend is a 10. He is handsome, great in bed and the kindest and most thoughtful man I’ve ever been with. So no, I’m not settling, neither is he. Relationships are much more complex than your sexual market theories. 

        3. Tom10

          @ Julia
          “You’ve had 2 women tell you that enjoying casual sex is not indicative of cheating. Maybe you should listen.“
           
          My point is not that enjoying casual sex is indicative of cheating; rather it is to explain why *some* guys have a latent mistrust of women who have enjoyed casual sex (I’m not justifying that mistrust as being legitimate). Therefore your admonition – and opinion – of this point is irrelevant.
           
          Btw, I *personally* don’t consider women who have had casual sex as more likely to cheat: as I already said I agree that it comes down to the character of the individual.
           
          “As far as “settling” in a relationship? Well I think my boyfriend is a 10. He is handsome, great in bed and the kindest and most thoughtful man I’ve ever been with. So no, I’m not settling, neither is he.”
           
          You are using a specific example to discuss a broad trend; therefore, your personal anecdotes regarding your boyfriend are irrelevant when discussing these generalized concepts.
           
          Do you accept my point that many men are often willing to date “down” (often significantly) for casual sex? If you don’t accept that then I don’t know what to tell you…
           
          If you do accept this then it leads to the obvious conclusion that many women get to date significantly “up” for casual sex.
           
          “Relationships are much more complex than your sexual market theories.”
           
          Agreed. On an individualized basis. But it can be useful to discuss trends on a broad societal basis, otherwise, we would have to discuss billions of individual examples and, er, that would take a lot time and blog space.
           
          On a side note, I’ve probably spent too much time reading about the “dating market”, leagues and so on, so point taken.

        4. Julia

          You are using a specific example to discuss a broad trend; therefore, your personal anecdotes regarding your boyfriend are irrelevant when discussing these generalized concepts. Do you accept my point that many men are often willing to date “down” (often significantly) for casual sex? If you don’t accept that then I don’t know what to tell you… If you do accept this then it leads to the obvious conclusion that many women get to date significantly “up” for casual sex.

           I don’t believe there is a trend, at least, I’ve yet to see any data to support it. My guess is because the concept of “league” is largely subjective, as is attraction. If there is an academic or scientific study on how men sleep down, please share with me because I’d be interested to read it.

          As for your other points: I think that a very small percentage of men, who have casual sex constantly, sex addicts, will likely sleep with anyone. Aside from those outliers people tend to sleep within and date within their range. I know plenty of ugly men who sleep with lots of equally ugly women. I know attractive men who sleep with attractive women. My own personal history would show men mostly within my range, aside from 1.

          Likewise, the married people I do know all seem to be on par with one another physically/intellectually. So I don’t buy that men are sleeping with lots of women below them while women are constantly settling on husbands below them. Again, as you point out, this is based on my personal experiences and observations. If there is real scientific data to support your theory, I’m sure my mind could be changed.

          On a side note, I’ve probably spent too much time reading about the “dating market”, leagues and so on, so point taken.

          God, me too. Its pretty exhausting isn’t it? 

        5. Tom10

           @ Julia
          “If there is an academic or scientific study on how men sleep down, please share with me because I’d be interested to read it.”

          Before I get to that does the relative ubiquity of men paying women for sex (relative to the scarcity of women paying men for sex) not lead you to conclude that men will frequently “sleep down”? (unless you reckon men who pay for sex think of their sexual partners as potential relationship options?)

          And does your own observation in regular clubs and bars not support my hypothesis?

          Anyway, some research (I personally find posting studies and evidence a bit boring as discussions then descend into arguing the veracity of the research; but in this case I’m happy to oblige as it is necessary to support my point):

          Men, Women, and Interplanetary Promiscuity
          http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/sexual-personalities/201202/men-women-and-interplanetary-promiscuity

          “the adaptive design of women’s and men’s short-term strategies is in many ways psychologically distinct (Jonason & Buss, 2012). Women can especially benefit in short-term mating from things like access to high quality genes (genes from men they couldn’t access as long-term mates), access to protection and provisioning for herself and her offspring (such as in partible paternity cultures), using short-term mating to achieve long-term mating goals, and many other functions. Predictably, women who actively pursue short-term mating strategies tend to be somewhat choosy about the mate value qualities of their brief sexual partners, preferring to mate with men who are physically symmetrical, possess facial masculinity, and give off other cues to high testosterone levels (see Gangestad & Simpson, 2000)”.

          Men’s short-term strategy is more indiscriminate than this, and appears to be designed to obtain larger numbers of partners…all else equal, evolutionary scientists expect men will, on average, seek and consent to casual sexual encounters more than women will”

          …Men generally relax their level of selectivity when short-term mating, whereas women’s standards, especially for “sexiness,” go up when short-term mating…

          Julia said:
          “Aside from those outliers people tend to sleep within and date within their range.”

          Just outliers?

          (from the same study)
          “Some of these findings have been replicated across dozens of samples in very large international studies, in representative samples of entire national populations, and in large scale meta-analyses, such as the robust sex differences reliably-observed in studies of extramarital sexual behavior and permissive attitudes toward casual sex (Lippa, 2009; Petersen & Hyde, 2010).”

          Some more research:

          Sexual Economics: Sex as Female Resource for Social Exchange in Heterosexual Interactions
          http://www.carlsonschool.umn.edu/assets/71503.pdf

          “Research like this consistently demonstrates that men have a greater and far less discriminating appetite for it [casual sex]

          More?

          What Do Women Really Want?http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/insight-therapy/201308/what-do-women-really-want

          “During their fertile days, women tend to fancy high-testosterone men who are not good candidates for monogamy but have healthy male genes”

          Julia said:
          “So I don’t buy that men are sleeping with lots of women below them while women are constantly settling on husbands below them…”

          Do Women Make More Romantic Compromises Than Men Do?http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/in-the-name-love/201204/do-women-make-more-romantic-compromises-men-do

          “It seems that at younger age, women are generally more afraid to be left alone than men are

          “When people choose their marital partner, the issue of what kind of parent they will be is important. It is of greater significance to women; as they typically have a greater responsibility in raising the children, the type of father that these children will have has substantial ramifications for them. When a woman finds a man she likes, she often believes that if he is likely to be a good father, he might also be a wonderful romantic partner. Women are usually more willing than men to compromise in order to make their children happier. Compromising on love and on demanding careers are examples of compromises that women commonly make in order not to miss the “perfect father.”If indeed raising children is typically of greater relative significance for women than for men, then they will be more willing to compromise on love if they think it will provide a better future for their children”.

          “Accordingly, when young men choose a wife, they are less prepared than women are to compromise on romantic aspects

          I will accept that I could only find research to support my theory for marriage amongst younger people (i.e. marriages where the prospect of children could be expected): the effect seems to flip for older people).

          Julia said:
          “If there is real scientific data to support your theory, I’m sure my mind could be changed”

          So have I changed your mind Julia? :)

          Julia said
          “God, me too. Its pretty exhausting isn’t it?”

          It is exhausting! Lol.

        6. Lau_ra

          @Tom
          Knowing all types of theories is OK, however I suggest not to indulge in them too much, or it may turn into constant thinking if a woman settles if she is with you and other wrong assumptions. And btw, how would men know if a woman engaged into casual at all? They wouldn’t, unless they start asking questions themselves.  

  10. 10
    faded jade

    I don’t think it really matters if someone does or does not enjoy casual sex due to nature/nurture or some inexplicable interplay of both.  Just be aware of your heart’s (and body’s) desire and act accordingly.  Be honest with the people you interact with.  Accept that others have different needs, wants & desires, and they may change over their lifetime.  (The player at age 20, may want to settle down and raise a family at 28–this goes for either gender)  No slut shaming, no prude shaming.  Different folk for different strokes.  Just my opinion, YMMV.
    I don’t want to participate in casual sex at all, but I’m fine with casual making out.  I’ve been un-coupled a while now, I miss sex, but can live without it, but living without cuddling and affection is unbearable.  Would it be terribly wrong to become a “make out slut ” ???  (rhetorical question here, no need to answer, and not trying to use the word “slut” in a shaming way) 
    I can’t become attracted to someone I’m not attracted to, no matter how nice he is, how well he treats me, even when, on paper we are the perfect match.  I’ve tried to give guys I’m moderately attracted to “a chance” in hopes that it would grow, and it doesn’t work, I only end up causing hard feelings.  (Happened to me just recently, and I feel terrible)
    I’m not attractive enough to hold the interest of guys I’m attracted to.  (Guys who are roughly as attractive to me, seem to want to date up, guys way better looking than me, will only consider me as a source of easy booty, and I don’t want that )
    I really think I’ll just go online, and favorite every guy who is waaaaaaaaaay out of my league, and see who bites.  Just keep things at wild making out and maybe some dry humping.  Don’t let it go any further,  have a bit of fun, until he finally figures out that his downline easy booty girl, isnt’ letting him past first base, and then he’ll either do the slow fade or the fast disappearing act.   Heck, I might even give EMK’s canned “no sex unless your my boyfriend” spiel, and go back online looking for my next major league casual make out buddy, after he makes a bee line for the door.
    OK, I guess that would make me a tease, but so what ?  He was looking for hump & dump, not a real relationship (well maybe, but with anyone but me, so who cares ?)  so there will no real hard feelings on his end, and I know my place in the dating game jungle, so I have no fantasies of a real relationship with these major league players anyway.  And by stopping it at making out, I get my cuddling/hugging/kissing needs met, without the crazy-glue effects of oxytocin.  And he can go online and get his next hump and dump to hold him over until he finds a super model to fall in love with.
    Either that, or I can just start paying for a massage my a licensed massage therapist once a month.  Male or female, it seems to fill my need for the human touch.  And at least it’s a strictly business proposition. 
    But I think a string of casual make out buddies would be more fun.  :)
     
     

    1. 10.1
      Henriette

      @Sp/Faded Jade/ Sparkling Emerald:  I enjoyed a few years of being a makeout slut and, gosh!, it was fun.  I would highly recommend it. 

    2. 10.2
      Lashawn little

      Wow you just hit it on the nail for me. I’ve been with three men my whole life at 39 I think I’m doing well but there was a 27 year old I was quite attracted to we so some messing around but there’s no sex involved yet cause I couldnt decide if I would be able to have casual sex and not become attached. 

  11. 11
    Stacy

    Not for me AT ALL.  And I will go out on a limb here and say that it doesn’t work for most women. Sex bonds a woman to a man and not vice versa.  Obviously there are exceptions to the rules and with experience and sometimes getting hurt enough, this can change. I believe a woman leaves a piece of herself when she engages a man sexually.  A man is different.  Look at our sexual organs – a man is the giver (penis) and a woman is the receiver (through her vagina).  But hey, that’s just my philosophy.

    So if you are getting this mind blowing sex from me, best believe that it has to come with committment. 

    1. 11.1
      Alpha Female

      I totally believe this, I have a theory men are this way too because as babies they are used to having their penises touched by caregivers for diaper changes and baths.  I don’t think that care givers are going to insert their fingers into female babies.  I know this theory sounds weird but the more I tell it they become intrigues.  I think the constant handling of the male parts build disassociation, quickly.

    2. 11.2
      Garret

      I saw a speaker once state that the word marry meant to glue something together.  Then he said that if you take to pieces of wood and glue them together, than then break them apart, that they don’t break apart cleanly along the glued joint,  he said that some wood from the other piece sticks, so he said that the same thing happens when you have a sexual relationship or any sort of a very deeply intimate relationship with another person, and then it ends…you leave a piece of you with them.  Maybe this is why so many people who are older, and have had a lot of relationships, can be very bitter people.  They have nothing left to give of themselves.

      1. 11.2.1
        Lau_ra

        All the people we have intimate (not neccesarily sexual) relationships with take a piece of us if they leave at some point in our lives. And thats OK. I think, thats how we gain a chance to rebuilt ourselves – put new pieces instead of those missing, e.g. I am not sorry for those parts of me that were “carried away” with my experiences (even with the negative ones), as I became much more aware and realistic about men, choosing friends and so on, but definitely not bitter. I know I have lots to give to myself and others. Its what a person thinks of him/herself and how they see life in general that counts. Not the numbers of people you’ve been sexual with.

  12. 12
    Tom10

    Karl S #2
    “New in studies in brain plasticity also show that you can rewire your neural connections through focused effort or traumatic events.”

    This is interesting – so through effort it seems we can successfully manage to over-ride our “hard-wiring” and go from casual orientated to relationship orientated, and vice-versa. So what “focused effort” does it take to achieve this “rewiring” I wonder?

    @ faded jade #10
    “I really think I’ll just go online, and favorite every guy who is waaaaaaaaaay out of my league, and see who bites”.

    Lol. I thought you didn’t believe in leagues Sparkling? Didn’t you blast me some time ago for saying something similar? Hehe

    “I’m not attractive enough to hold the interest of guys I’m attracted to.  (Guys who are roughly as attractive to me, seem to want to date up, guys way better looking than me, will only consider me as a source of easy booty, and I don’t want that )”

    In fact your analysis of how dating and relationships work is very similar to how I see it!

    “But I think a string of casual make out buddies would be more fun.  

    Lol. It is fun! Welcome to the dark side :)

    —————

    In school I remember learning about Calvin’s theory of Predestination – that all events have been willed by God – and thinking how silly the idea was. How could my future be predetermined when I can think for myself? Lately, I’ve begun to actually think our behavior is in fact predestined – but by our genetics.

    I know when I was young that my craving for casual sex was incredibly intense. The “high” from those first few casual encounters felt like I was on drugs – it reminds me of how monogamously orientated women here describe being in love.
     
     
    I agree with this study which suggests casual sex can have positive or negative mental effects depending on an individual’s hard-wiring. In fact, if one is “wired” for casual sex but – due to life circumstances – they can’t manage to manifest this desire; their mental health will probably suffer. And conversely, those who are wired monogamously will probably suffer equally negative mental effects when not in a loving relationship.

    1. 12.1
      SparklingEmerald

      Tom10 – Good to see you back here !  Haven’t seen you in a while.   When I came up with my “make out slut” plan I actually thought of you, and thought, “My God, I’m like “Tomasina Lite” or some such thing.
      Yes, I do find talk of leagues, and SMV, distasteful, probably because there is a lot of bullying, boastfulness and cruelty that goes along with it.  I’m not saying that everyone who talks about “leagues” is this way, but there are people who think it’s perfectly acceptable to treat someone like garbage because they aren’t in the top rung of the “cool kids” crowd.  And I’m not just talking about dating in general, but life in general.  Physically attractive people get treated better, than average or homely people. (which probably explains why so many of them are arrogant jerks or snooty bitches)  I’ve also heard the argument that people can make themselves more attractive, and that’s true to a point, but just because someone doesn’t choose to obsess over their looks, is no reason to treat them poorly. (Don’t date them, but don’t treat ‘em like crap either)
      But, leagues and SMV are pretty subjective.  My ex hubby didn’t ask me out for a YEAR.  He was my secret admirer from afar.  (I actually REALLY didn’t know who he was, I wasn’t playing hard to get)  He told me the reason he took so long (beside that he is a very shy person) is because he thought that I was “out of his league”.  I actually think that on a looks wise basis, we are very equally matched.  (We have very similar looks, and were often  told we looked like brother and sister)   Neither one of us were/are ugly by any stretch, but we’re not super models either.  Just two,  kinda cute people.  Part of this feeling was socio-economic crap, I worked a hoighty-toighty corporate job and he was a carpenter at the time, but I never gave a rip about that, but I guess because so many women do, he thought I would too.  But I really found it laughable that he thought I was out of his league.  (Obviously, he no longer feels that way)
      Who knows, one of my major league boy toys, might think we’re in the same league, by some fluke, but I won’t be counting on it. 
      But since a committed, monogamous, relationship alludes me again and again and again and again and again and I am seriously suffering from some touch deficit, I might as well crawl over to the dark side.  Well, not pitch dark, but maybe just the twilight zone :)
       
      I’m not writing off the possibility of meeting someone in my league and it working out, but I’ve had to come to grips with the possiblity that I will never have another LTR.  I can live with that, but I don’t think I could live with never being held again.  
      SE aka FJ
       
       
       

      1. 12.1.1
        Tom10

        @ Sparkling #12.1
        “When I came up with my “make out slut” plan I actually thought of you, and thought, “My God, I’m like “Tomasina Lite” or some such thing.”

        Oh God, what have I done! I initially came to this blog with the intention of giving women tips on how to detect and avoid womanizers, yet somehow I seem to have done the opposite and am inadvertently converting Evan’s clients into…manizers! Lol.

        “Yes, I do find talk of leagues, and SMV, distasteful, probably because there is a lot of bullying, boastfulness and cruelty that goes along with it.”

        I agree that talk of leagues is disconcerting as it sounds elitist, snobby and judgemental. I think one of the reasons we don’t like it is; ultimately our “place” on the dating hierarchy is determined by the opposite gender, and as this is out of our control it can lead us to feeling powerless and sometimes bitter. No matter how hard we work, change our attitude etc. the opposite gender will still put us in our place.

        Like you I’m often flummoxed about all the vitriol that either gender throws at each other on this blog. I can only presume that it’s an instinctual mechanism in the face of that feeling of helplessness – to bring themselves up, by putting others down.

        @ Karl S #13.2.1
        “To be perfectly honest, I’m writing this after coming home from another great evening so I’m trying to articulate as very immediate experience”

        So is that two “great evenings” in as many days Karl? *high five* lol.

  13. 13
    Karl S

    The downside of course is that when you meet somebody you would like to continue seeing in a relaxed fashion, they usually just disappear, never to be seen again. With monogamy you get regular company and affection, but with casual you get it irregularly from multiple people. If you have enough of those people (either sticking around our new ones coming in) you can be just as content, which harks back to my investment vs reward thing earlier. If you don’t, it can be frustrating, unless you’re the type that only needs affection every once in a while.  
    Then you get the divide between people who would rather be alone than have something brief. I’m not one of those people. Too long without *something* is a killer. 

    1. 13.1
      SparklingEmerald

      Karl S @ 13 said ” Too long without *something* is a killer. “
       
      I agree.  I know there are problems with being on the rebound, but time passes and heals all wounds, and eventually you can go back out and date again, and hopefully find what you want in a short amount of time.  And sometimes, just sometimes, those rebound relationships work.
       
       
      The opposite problem of being on the rebound is having been lonely too long.  Not to much is written about that, accept for some “hang in there” pep talks, or “you must really be defective or you wouldn’t be alone” accusations.   The problem with being lonely too long vs being on the rebound is that being on the rebound, time is your friend and healer.  Time is what eventually gets you out of the rebound zone (maybe with the help of a brief fling that didn’t make you sad when it ended).  If you get out of rebound zone, but don’t find love (or whatever it is you are looking for)   in a fairly short amount of time, then you get to the point where you’ve been lonely too long and time becomes the enemy.  Instead of healing the wound of your last relationship break up, those old wounds start to re-open.  Or your heart scars over so bad that you can’t really feel anything any more.    And the ability to slap a smile on it, and pretend that everything is just rainbows and lollipops starts to fade.    I do know people who have just learned to live without it.  Perhaps it’s that brain elasticity another poster talked about.  I do see many older people, who have been widowed/divorced for years and seem to enjoy their solitude, in fact, they seem to jealously guard it. 

      1. 13.1.1
        Lau_ra

        I read somewhere that people who are used to being in a relationship usually have it easier to find another one than those who are used to be single and I find it true – the people I know and whom I would call serial monogamists are the ones who usually tell people who are usually single to “suck it up” and “be patient” (though they themselves start freaking out after a couple of months of singledom). So its not like time is a killer, its just that you get used to such state and thats your “normal”.

    2. 13.2
      Rachel

      you say too long without *something*, is the *something* sex? Or lovE n feelings? Curious to noe.

      1. 13.2.1
        Karl S

        Definitely not just sex, but not love either. I think its connection, combined with mutual desire and interest as well as that affirmation of a shared worldview. Finding someone who speaks your language and seems to think like you do. I instantly click with pragmatic types who can talk about love and sex as an ongoing experiment towards finding happiness rather than requiring a single rigid structure in their relationship style. Of course, sex then becomes involved, but the other part makes as huge difference to how I feel afterwards. To be perfectly honest, I’m writing this after coming home from another great evening so I’m trying to articulate as very immediate experience. I was feeling a bit down in my previous post. Go figure. :P

        1. Sp@rklingEmerald

          Glad to hear that you have been having some great evenings !

        2. Rachel

          Mmm yes human connection is great! No man or woman is an island even if we wish to be. And lyke SparklingEmerald am happy that your having happy evenings! ^^

      2. 13.2.2
        SparklingEmerald

        The something is a whole, complete, multi-dimensional relationship, with a physical and emotional connection. And a relationship where I feel safe.  (which to me just means, I know where I stand, it’s not a limbo relationship)    But yeah, sex is one the best parts of it, but it’s not the only part of it, it is just a small part of it.
        I never took that “love languages” test, but I am positive my “love language” would primarily be touch.  Yes, I enjoy sex, but in between I need to touch and be touched a lot.  I’m a very cuddly person.  Petting my room mates dog just doesn’t cut it for me.  The occasional hug from girlfriends or family members doesn’t completely fill that need for me.  Hugging my body pillow at night doesn’t do it for me.  I need a man’s touch, not just in the bedroom, but outside of it as well, and not just as a form of foreplay.  I need some lovin’ touch, even when there is no immediate opportunity for sex. 

  14. 14
    Karl S

    *or new ones coming in (typo earlier)

  15. 15
    cindy

    I think that casual sex provides women with the opportunity to be with men who are a lot more attractive than themselves. For instance, an average looking woman can easily hook up or have casual sex with highly attractive men. So if a woman is ok with it it can be very advantageous for her – enjoying sexual relationships with men who are way more attractive than herself and wouldnt be available to her for long term relationships.
     

    1. 15.1
      Garret

      I totally agree, but as a man, if she were in my league, it would make me very leery of a LTR with her.  I don’t think she would ever appreciate me enough if she is always thinking about how awesome those guys were, and I think she would also carry some bitterness that none of those awesome guys wanted her long term.
       

      1. 15.1.1
        Julia

        Do you know the sexual history of every woman you date? Man, I operate on a strict Don’t Ask Don’t Tell principle. I suggest everyone else do the same.

      2. 15.1.2
        Lau_ra

        What? But how do you know? Unless the woman takes pics with every guy she has fling with and puts them into a special album on FB or smth:) I wonder what woman would be so silly to tell such stuff.

      3. 15.1.3
        tracey

        no definitely not once shes actually spent time with you im sure she’ll realise that those guys were nothing more than a phase in part of the story of her life and you are probably the rest of a beautiful story together.

      4. 15.1.4
        Karmic Equation

         

        Garret,
        Here’s the lowdown on hot men and sexual ability… The hottest men I’ve been with, e.g., most handsome, most fit, biggest endowment, etc., were the laziest lovers (except for two guys, they were total aberrations lol). These “hot-in-looks guys” could get away with that for a bit because their hotness is an aphrodisiac of sorts. But it seemed the hotter they were OUT of bed, the worst they were IN bed.
         
        So once the “familiarity breeds contempt” phenomena hits the relationship, those hot-looking men are found sorely lacking and the woman (me, in this case) starts wondering why the heck she’s with this guy when he’s not a good lover. Then we start looking for other deficiencies, which their hotness can’t overcome, e.g., a little too selfish, a little too thoughtless, etc. And if the guy doesn’t shape up his out-of-bed skills to make up for his in-bed deficiencies, he’s going to be history, no matter how hot he is.
         
        Point is, don’t worry about women who’ve dated out of their league finding you lacking if YOU are a good person OUT of bed, and masculine IN bed (e.g., don’t keep asking “is this good for you?” — TELL her in your most demanding male tone, “Tell me what you want” then kiss her senseless or do something else to make her senseless) — It won’t matter how hot her former lovers were OUT of bed. YOUR hotness IN bed will override that, because you’re the current one making her senseless. Hot IN bed is better. HOWEVER, you’ve gotta be attractive enough to get her there in the first place. But you don’t need to super hot, just hot enough for HER (being a good person OUT of bed raises your league a bit if you’re in her league to start with, but probably won’t do much for those in the leagues +2 above you). Then let your bedroom skills hook her and keep her :) But you can’t ever forget about treating her well OUT of bed. When you stop that, then a lot of other good stuff stops and troubles begin.
         
         
        When I was in my 20’s there was this mousy-looking balding, no-neck guy, who I’d rate as a 5 in looks. His GF was about a 6-7. She was very jealous about him. I gathered through overhearing a few conversations that he was great in bed. Hence her jealousy.

         

    2. 15.2
      Wendy

      Casual sex provides women with the opportunity to be with men who are a lot more attractive than themselves? Wow, I must be ugly as sin because men don’t ever look at me for casual sex. What do you have to do to get this casual sex if you’re ugly?

  16. 16
    Tim

    I’ve always wondered how the easy availability of casual sex with men above their leagues, affects womens perception about their own attractiveness and the men they can get for LTR’s.

     

    1. 16.1
      Garret

      Probably depends on how honest she is with herself.  I used to think it didn’t have a bad effect so long as she were honest with herself, and one day realized that guys of a certain SMV were only in it for the sex.  But these days I question how honest people are with themselves.  For instance, you and I both know, being men, that the vast majority of men are more than willing to have sex with older women, and if we can turn that into a short term relationship to get it on a more regular basis, even better, but we aren’t interested in marriage if she is older.  Yet because of the endless supply of younger guys hitting on her, the woman will think that marriage with a younger guy is a very real possibility, but while possible, it is also very unlikely.  When it doesn’t happen, they don’t seem to just accept reality, but instead become bitter, or just remain in denial.
      I have known some women who at one point dated and had sex with men you of their league, some of them famous people, and they are forever unhappy.  They can only see what they didn’t get.  They do get into relationships but to me it seems they resent these guys for not being as awesome as those guys they thought they had a shot at.  The irony is that it is like a 7 being irritated at another 7 for being a 7 and not an 8 or above.
      I’m beginning to think that happiness is about perspective.  It seems that American women have a sense of entitlement.  This makes it very very hard for regular guys to make them happy.
      I was in the military but never went overseas.  I was stationed in the states and then got out after my first enlistment.  But I do remember how most guys talked about foreign women having a very different attitude.  Less entitlement mentality.  I don’t know since I have never actually known or dated a foreign woman.
       
      I will say that I think it would be great if we could all figure out how we are wired early in life, and then just go with that from the beginning, because I don’t think that having tons of sex partners is very good for people who are hard wired for long term relationships.
      And, I do think that it does negatively affect women when they have one or more very high SMV sex partners because it fools her into thinking that this is what is available to her for a LTR.

      1. 16.1.1
        JB

        “American women have a sense of entitlement”  YOU’RE RIGHT!
        It’s so pervasive it’s unbelievable. Not only that, the divorced one’s that are getting an unbelievable amount of child support that clouds their perception of a future man’s income/net worth and dating/relationship value to them.

      2. 16.1.2
        Rachel

        …am noticing quite many comments putting down American women on this blog…funny how none of the gurls i noe have “entitlement mentality”, they work so hard for wat they want! independent and fearless. ^^ Sumtimes people see wat they wanna see.

        1. Gabri'el

          Rachel I agree completely. As a American who is currently studying and has been living in Europe for the past few months, it just amazes me how so many guys on this site will quickly say foreign women are better than American women, yet they have never lived in another country or dated a foreign woman. HUMANS ARE HUMANS, regardless of what country they are from, treat them right and they will treat you right.
           
          I always wonder what these guy envision will happen when they date a foreign woman. I’m not saying that “some” American woman don’t have the entitlement mentality (you can just read some of the responses to many of Evan’s pervious post to see this), what I am saying is that you will find that same mentality with many foreign women as well… Hmmm.. to be fair, I’ve noticed that both men and women think like this, it just takes a different form to fit what each gender feels entitled to

      3. 16.1.3
        Lau_ra

        Sorry to say that yet many american guys need to step up in their style, seriously. Good character is a great thing and even greater when wrapped into a nice package. I meet lots of travellers and american men over 30 seem to look the worst, just because they dress wrong. I’ve had one canadian telling me that whats normal here in Europe is considered gay-looking in North America. Abandon your khaki pants+sweater+sneakers looks, groom your facial hair and hair and nails right, get inspiration for dressing from scandinavian and italian men and you won”t notice how you go from 5 to 8. I get plain irritated how guys who don’t really put enough effort into how they present themselves keep on rambling how women are entitled and how they want model-like men. The same happens where I live-women all nice looking and most men are plain lazy at this point (and all of my foreign friends always ask me how is that possible), and instead of thinking if they do everything to look well, those men start scolding women and resent them for not looking at them. The truth is that gold might shine in ashes, but thats not the right place for it.

        1. Gabri'el

          Lau_ra I agree completely, that is a good example of the male version of entitlement, wanting a model without putting the work in to get her, though to be fair, European men have their slobs also, all European men don’t dress like models. I think if we all became more realist about life in foreign countries then we would appreciate dating in our own country more, same with casual sex, some foreigners are okay with it and some are not

    2. 16.2
      JB

      Well Tim it’s just like all the women on the online dating website’s who are a “5” think they deserve a guy who’s a “9” for a relationship because they slept with one once or twice casually. Or even worse when they met their “9” husband (now ex-) 17 years &  40 pounds ago when they themselves were much more attractive they still think they’re in THAT league even after having 3 kids! And some are!! But most aren’t. That’s how it affects their own perception.

      1. 16.2.1
        Julia

        According to the newest OKCupid date, this is true for everyone. Believe me, I’ve received messages from men well below my league. The most attractive people will receive messages from all levels of people. I’m not say I’m the most attractive but in their hierarchy(1-5 scale, users rate other users), I was considered a highly attractive candidate (a 4.) I got messages from all levels of attractive, I would choose within what I deemed my level. I would say my boyfriend and I are highly compatible and on the same level in the market.
        So yes women think they can date higher but so do men. 

        1. Rachel

          Julia, oh.god.yes. 
          totally true! as if only women shoot for the stars! ^^ 

        2. Garret

          there is a difference though Julia. We are talking about OKCupid and people sending out emails in hopes of getting a bite. That’s very different. Men often send a quick email to petty much any woman who is attractive to him. There isn’t any emotion in it, and honestly, he doesn’t really expect anything. Think of it like this. A man simply casts as big of a net as he can, and then gathers up the fish, that he catches and then chooses the best one in the net and throws the rest back. Now keep in mind that there are far more fish that didn’t get caught in the net, but he doesn’t worry about those. He just goes with what is in the net.

          With women, it is different. This is more personal because we are talking about situations where for sometimes a few days to a week, to a month, a guy out of her league has treated her like a girlfriend. Likely sleeping with her. Inviting her to his house. Going to her house. Taking her out on dates. Having sex with her. Etc..

          At the end of the day, the man has an idea who he can date because women don’t “slum” when they date or have casual sex. So of course that top 20% of guys are very very busy bees. The point here being that because she got a taste of the good life, she may not be happy with the guys she is actually compatible with. Think of it like this. if throughout your life, from the time you started driving, you got to borrow very expensive sports cars. You’ve driven Ferrari, Porsche, Lamborghini, etc… Will you ever really be able to appreciate a Chevy Impala? Would a 6 cylinder Ford Mustang inspire passion in you after the Lamborghini. I know women who have a concept of this because I’ve known some who said that if they found out a guy had dated a Playboy Playmate, or VS/Sports Illustrated swimsuit model, etc.. they wouldn’t date the guy. These are women who while not bad looking, know there is a difference between them and those top models. They don’t want to deal with always feeling inferior to who they know he’s dated in the past. While he may be with her, the idea is that he may not have been the one to end it with the models.

        3. Julia

          I’m sorry, what is the difference? If a man hits on a woman clearly out of his league its because he’s just going with what he’s attracted to but if a woman does it its because she’s been deluded by some hypothetical sex with a George Clooney look a like? It seems to me that both are punching above their weight class because they are driven by looks and aren’t incredibly self aware.

          But if it makes you feel better, every woman who isn’t into you isn’t because she’s deluded by the sex she once had with a Bradley Cooper look alike.  

        4. Julia

          @Karl S

          I read that a few days ago. I was never on Tinder but that strategy makes sense because you can only choose from mutual matches. I know there are men who take the “message everyone” approach, they are pretty easy to sniff out. I’ve also received long, personal messages from men that were just below my league, or strangely hostile messages from men who were out of my stated age preference.  What was interesting from the OKCupid study was that the most attractive men were the most likely to message women of all types and the least attractive women were the most likely to message just the hottest guys. Definitely disconnect there.

        5. Gabri'el

          Julia I think I understand what JB is trying to explain. Since men are the ones to mainly approach/initiate contact first, and as Tom10 showed in 9.1.1.5, men will have sex with as many women as they can regardless of looks and body type (I’ve seen many men who would quickly sleep with a unattractive or fat girl but be to embarrassed to publicly date or bring her around his friends), but because he approached her, she feels that she is in a higher league than she is, so she expects to get men of a higher attraction level for a long-term relationship, but since men aren’t approached by women (sexy, average, or ugly) for random sex, then a guy who is a 5 in looks and works as a 35 year old bag boy at the grocery story never feels that he deserves or can get a sexy 9.
           
           
          Most women I see who are okay with casual sex aren’t like guys, they are actually choosy about the guys they sleep with, I don’t see women casual sleep down. But I agree with Sparkling Emerald, regardless of how a man or woman looks, why shouldn’t they try to get a guy who is a sexy brain surgeon or a woman who is the smarts lingerie model, what right do I have to judge anyone, no one chose their looks but I do believe weight is something that people can work on. 

    3. 16.3
      Karl S

      Well, there was that interesting video “The Economy of Sex”, which explained how women have the power in short term relationships\flings \casual sex for that reason, but men are in the drivers seat when it comes to marriage and settling down. 

    4. 16.4
      Karmic Equation

       
      Tim, 
       
      You’ve hit the nail on the head. I think that is the cause of bitterness and fear of “men walking away after sex” by women.
       
      They’re sleeping with men out of their league, and not accepting that fact, so when those men’s needs are satisfied (first time sex and, possibly, only-time sex) and they walk away, these women’s dreams are crushed. Those women believe because a guy sleeps with her, he’s willing to have a relationship with her. Unfortunately, that’s not reality.
       
      Women can have sex with men WAY above their league, but she really has to be brutally honest about her own league, so that she can more effectively find men to have LT relationships with.
       
      That said, I’ve just come to a new perspective that it’s really a upgrade/downgrade of criteria for the desired outcome. Not “settling” in anyway.
       
      I suggest that women looking for LTRs should start thinking that they’re UPGRADING for character and commitment when they DOWNGRADE their requirement for looks. It’s NOT settling when you look at it like this. It’s more a accurate characterization of what is going on. I know that if I did this today, I’d have a boyfriend tomorrow (well, maybe a month from tomorrow, because that downgrade in looks also means a slowdown to getting to sex — cuz the less attractive guy has to work harder for booty — reality for all women, not just me). The hotter the guy, the more difficult it is to not give in to the attraction — also reality. Getting with a hot guy before he promises sexclusivity, in reality, is downgrading commitment and upgrading on looks, whether a woman acknowledges this or not.
       
      If women embraced their power in STRs and casual relationships, she can have her moment with the hottest guys who also find her attractive. It’s when she also wants a committed relationship with this hot guy that the formula doesn’t work. She needs to accept she’s downgrading on commitment when she goes after a guy hotter than herself. But this requires the woman to be realistic about her league. And I think most women aren’t. Our league is where the men want to have relationships, not just sex, with us.
       
      So, a woman just has to be clear on what her desired outcome is. Then adapt her perspective to that goal. Nobody can have their cake and eat it too. Not men, not women.

       

  17. 17
    Stacy

    Cindy,

    I think you make a really good point.  And Tim, that’s a very interesting question.  Funny thing is, most couples that I see…the woman seems to be much more attractive than the man, especially when the couple looks over 40.  Or, maybe it’s just in my neck of the woods.

    I think it is very difficult for women to gauge her own attractiveness because of this very reason..it’s super easy to get men who will at least sleep with you no matter how attractive/unattractive you are (of course, I am talking about Western society’s concepts of general attractiveness as we know that attraction is not in absolutes).    Amd, I think men tend to be more self deluded concerning their own physical attraction because it is easier for a man to get a hotter woman if he has other advantages. 

    To add to the difficulties, it is even harder online.  I recently joined Match for the first time about a day ago and  I now have approximately 50ish responses.  But, the responses are coming from men of all lines of attractiveness and ages. I even had a 68 year old email me and I am 36. *heavy sigh*.  So, it’s hard to gauge attractiveness because if you go by the people that respond, the responses most people get are so mixed.  Not to toot my own horn but I have been told a time or two that I am ‘hot’.  However, I am also 36, divorced, and now with two kids so I am now realistic about my ‘options’.  lol  But, I think that ‘hotness’ makes up for other areas when men are involved…it’s so complicated sometimes. Sorry to go off on a tangent.:)

    1. 17.1
      Garret

      Stacy, I have heard many women say this over and over on this site, always talking about how women over 40 look good and men over 40 don’t, but I think there is something else at work here because I an other men I know completely disagree with you. When we look at the over 40 crowd, we see a lot of guys who look good, but very few women who do. So maybe what is at work here is that you don’t see the women as potential sex partners or spouses, so you are more forgiving of them on a subconscious level, while for us men, it is the opposite. We don’t see the men as a sex partner or spouse so we are more forgiving of their looks. It’s the only thing that makes sense to explain why women seem to think the women look better, while the men think that the men look better.

      Another friend has a different theory so take your pick. he says that what is going on also ties into the OKCupid thing where 80% of the men were deemed to be below average.

      He told me to think about how even in high school, so many girls were already starting to get fat, and shortly after high school, even more did. He commented about how we had talked about girls we would run into just a few years out of high school who had packed on the pounds, or how as they matured their formerly cute faces weren’t very cute anymore. He said that on the other hand, most guys stayed in shape in their 20s, and many still did so into their early 30s, but marriage makes a man soft and so many of them changed, and also partying hard also makes guys gain weight, so where many guys in their teens and 20s looked good, they don’t into their 30s and especially 40s. He siad it is a matter of perception. Men rated the women on a more normal bell curve because we have had more time to adjust see most women as average. Women on the other hand when from a sea of above average looking guys to far far fewer of them, so they notice it more. For them, for many years, the average guys was still pretty good looking, where for guys, the average women wasn’t really that great. So again, he says it is perspective, because for us, not much has changed. Most are still just average, with a minority being very hot, and a minority being very not hot. For women, a gar larger group used to be pretty decent looking, but by the age of forty, they notice that most are no longer decent looking.

      he said he also thinks this plays into how when they are younger, women will claim that looks don’t matter as much…while they do matter, there are other things they are after. Maybe it is because there are more than enough decent looking guys that they can put more emphasis on other things.

      And I have one more alternate theory. Make-up. Women can hide many flaws behind make-up. I’ve seen many women who I thought had a pretty face, but then soon after, had a chance to see them without make-up and I realized that they were actually very plain looking.

      What I do know is that when I look online, or when I am anywhere in real life and see women who are 30s and up, the first thing I notice is that most of the women are fat, where as most of the men are not nearly so fat. Then I will notice the blemishes on the skin, that women seem to get more/faster than men. Varicose vanes, sun spots, bumps and dimples in the skin, etc… Then I notice this lack of cuteness to the face where younger women still have a softness to their features. Older women seem to start looking more manly.

      Anyway, just my opinion. Something has to be at the root of why women here claim that 40+ women look better than their male counterparts and yet we men see it completely different.

    2. 17.2
      tracey

      I think everyone is hot in their own way Stacy so get out there and shake your stuff!

  18. 18
    L

    Isn’t it interesting how we women are so often feeling like we need to apologize for NOT being into casual sex nowadays?  As though we’re automatically going to be labeled a repressed, ultra-uptight, anti-sex, straight from the Bible Belt conservative.  Crazy how we feel shamed now for wanting to protect our emotions.  I think that some people can detach emotionally, that others tell themselves that they can but truly can’t, and then there are those of us who are wary of developing an emotional attachment to someone if we have sex with them and they don’t truly care about us; we’re the ones who are now considered strange…  I went through this dilemma recently, caught between the insanely strong desire to have sex with someone that I really feel an attraction to, but knowing that I would develop an emotional attachment to him that he’s not capable of returning because he fears emotional intimacy like the plague and also engages in casual sex all the time like it means nothing to him anymore.  I can’t read his mind obviously, but it seems like engaging in casual sex for so long has actually made his calloused and he’ll have a hard time actually feeling again if he ever does want to be with someone long term.    

    1. 18.1
      starthrower68

      L, I hear ya. One thing I have learned is, the world is going to say what it’s going to say and people will think about you what they’re going to think.  You can’t internalize it.  I heard a phrase once that said, “what somebody else thinks about you is not your business”.  I liked that.  😊

      1. 18.1.1
        JennLee

        Agree.  If you want casual NSA sex, fine.  More power to you.  But if a woman doesn’t want that, if she wants an exclusive relationship before having sex, then that is what she should insist on.  How can a woman claim to be a strong independent woman who makes up her own mind when she is jumping in bed with men when she really doesn’t want to, as if she has to do it or suffer disapproving peer pressure?  A woman who really wants an exclusive relationship is better off insisting on that from the beginning.  When the guy makes it known he wants sex, simply say no.  Let him know that you don’t just sleep with people just to sleep with them.  Tell him that you only sleep with a man once you are in an exclusive relationship.  Tell him that a man must first make it verbally known that he wants an exclusive relationship.  If he throws a temper tantrum, ditch him.  If he is mature and respects your wishes, then go on more dates.  Initially just say it is too early to talk about sex since you are both just getting to know each other.  I would wait until after at least a few dates.  Then have the talk.

  19. 19
    j

    This discussion as a woman makes me feel sad even though I’m married. I guess this kind of brutal calculated approach to these issues of who gets who and who gets used and for what is so cold blooded to hear . I think people should care more about other peoples feelings and be careful as I believe men are very aware of women’s attachments to them and often capitalize on this. I know women should guard themselves more but really I believe the person who is doing the using and seeing the damage its doing to the woman in love has the responsibility to treat this person with care and compassion and gently set them free to find someone who wants what they’re giving. Guys who treat women care about them casually are bottom feeders and low life’s in my opinion. I know this isn’t how life is these days but it should be and I think karma comes around to those who treat others who’ve treated them good like all they’re good for is an orgasim. If both people are casual and want to keep it that way well that’s a different story and as long as they’re not hurting anyone who cares. To each his own.

    1. 19.1
      Tom10

       moderator: that comment was meant in reply to j #19
      @ j #19
      ” I believe the person who is doing the using and seeing the damage its doing to the woman in love has the responsibility to treat this person with care and compassion and gently set them free to find someone who wants what they’re giving. “
       
      So basically, you are advocating for men to assume that women are incapable of controlling themselves, therefore, men should assume the responsibility for who women should date and how they should live their lives?



      “Guys who treat women care about them casually are bottom feeders and low life’s in my opinion.”
       
       
       

      So when women have casual sex they’re modern, independent women, but when men have casual sex they’re bottom feeders?
       
       
      J, instead of trying to shame the behavior of men, it might be more worthwhile for you to ask women in these situations why do they debase themselves for certain guys whilst simultaneously ignoring the guys who want to treat them well?
       
       
      Because, well, the nice guys aren’t the exciting hot guys. Because of *chemistry*. Because of that “you just know” feeling. Because, because of….”love” of course.
       
       
      Sigh.



      “If both people are casual and want to keep it that way well that’s a different story and as long as they’re not hurting anyone who cares. To each his own.”
       
       

      Agreed.

  20. 20
    Tom10

     
    ” I believe the person who is doing the using and seeing the damage its doing to the woman in love has the responsibility to treat this person with care and compassion and gently set them free to find someone who wants what they’re giving. “
     
     
    So basically, you are advocating for men to assume that women are incapable of controlling themselves, therefore, men should assume the responsibility for who women should date and how they should live their lives?




    “Guys who treat women care about them casually are bottom feeders and low life’s in my opinion.”


    So when women have casual sex they’re modern, independent women, but when men have casual sex they’re bottom feeders?
     
     
    J, instead of trying to shame the behavior of men, it might be more worthwhile for you to ask women in these situations why do they debase themselves for certain guys whilst simultaneously ignoring the guys who want to treat them well?
     
     
    Because, well, the nice guys aren’t the exciting hot guys. Because of *chemistry*. Because of that “you just know” feeling. Because, because of….”love” of course.
     
     
    Sigh.




    “If both people are casual and want to keep it that way well that’s a different story and as long as they’re not hurting anyone who cares. To each his own.”


    Agreed.
     

  21. 21
    j

    I guess I’m thinking of the situations of the couples who start seeing eachother and the guy switches it to a friends with benefits arrangement and now the woman is bonded  and stuck with hurt and pain. Obviously we women have to have our own back but I believe the guy has a moral responsibility as well. What ever happened to people being decent and kind? There’s alot of trickery out there now where the lines are blurred. Yes women shouldnt let themselves be debased but the one that’s doing the debasing is the ultimate maximum douche bag!

    1. 21.1
      Tom10

      On second thoughts perhaps the tone of my original response to you was a bit harsh. I agree with you that everyone needs to treat others with respect and care.

      I guess I’ve just witnessed this situation so often that sometimes I just get exasperated.

      I guess this scenario will probably just continue to repeat itself as long as men and women exist.

  22. 22
    j

    Some guys who are not particularly hot act like this too. The guy isn’t responsible for her dating life but he doesn’t need to string someone along for sex . Just because someone lets you treat them badly doesn’t mean you should. Frankly I think some guys should feel sone shame. But I doubt they’re capable of it anymore the ones who act like this. I have no issue with guys who are upfront with their intentions but alot aren’t as most of us women wouldn’t stay around if we knew the truth. Yes women can control themselves butwe get lonely and want love and sex and companionship so badly.

    1. 22.1
      Karmic Equation

      J,
      You’re perpetuating the “women are victims” mentality. We women know when we feel bad in a relationship, when the relationship isn’t meeting our needs. It is OUR responsibility to exit unhappy/dissatisfying relationships. To claim we “can’t unbond after sex” is total B.S. Any woman who stays in a relationship where she isn’t happy is stringing HERSELF along. The man is irrelevant. What he does or doesn’t do is irrelevant. Why he does or doesn’t do what she thinks he should do is irrelevant. Until a woman accepts that her happiness is HER OWN responsibility, she will NEVER find happiness. Stop giving men that power over your happiness. Go out and search for it. And keep dumping the guys who can’t or won’t make you happy, no matter how much sex you’ve had. No matter how hot the guy. No matter how much money. Dump him if the relationship isn’t making you happy. It’s simple. It’s within your power.

  23. 23
    j

    No offense taken. I know some women are shallow and get caught up in chemistry, looks, material possessions and swag. The women who sabotage relationships with well meaning men to chase a bad boy time and time again. I dont pity them as I think they are not appreciating the good guys and eventually dont really deserve it. The women my heart goes out to are maybe not saints but are loving people trying to find love or had sex and fell in love and got played. Sometimes these women cant trust anymore and just withdraw from the whole scene period. In my neighborhood I saw a newly divorced guy go through a string of women that all thought they meant something to him because he made them feel that way but really they were all bed warmers so he wouldn’t be alone. He wasn’t some hot guy. I thought he looked like a little mouse. One was too old for him he felt but he didn’t tell her that. He hosted parties with her introduced his kids to her and practically lived with her. But when she pressed for commitment in 6 months she found out she meant nothing. Next was a single mother with teenage son who fell for his flowers and promises. She was dumped a year later. And then he told everyone he had never been that attracted to her. And on and on it goes.

    1. 23.1
      faded jade

      It sounds like he played the role of “nice guy”.  You describe him as “looking like a mouse”, so perhaps because he wasn’t a “hot” looking guy, he knew he had to bring more to the table than just his awesome good looks. And despite his mousy appearance he was able to win women’s hearts, then break them, with his “nice guy” act.  So here is an example  of  women who can and do fall for the average looking guys who INTIALLY treat them well, and then it turns out that he is a a wolf in sheep’s clothing.
      I will say this; in this incarnation of dating,  I’ve had 2 men bolt for the door when I gave them my version of the EMK, “no sex unless your my boyfriend” speech, and I must say that as graceless as their exit was, I RESPECT the fact that they didn’t bullshit me by pretending to want a relationship with me that they really didn’t want, just to get into my bedroom. 
      I RESPECT men who say “I’m not looking for anything serious now” UPFRONT and give the woman the opportunity to say “I’m not looking for anything casual – buh-bye”. 
      I prefer the straight up “wolf” over the “wolf in sheep’s clothing”. 
      Of course my number 1 choice is the genuine good man, who is straightforward with his intentions, his intention is to find a relationship,  and he wants that relationship with ME, and there is enough MUTUAL attraction and comfort to make it work.  No excessive cat and mouse games, no extended limbo period, etc.   I also like purple unicorns :)
       

    2. 23.2
      JoeK

      j – how about reversing the “he’s” and “she’s” and think about how silly that all sounds?

      Both men and women make mistakes, change their mind, hide their agenda, don’t even KNOW their agenda, are confused and make poor decisions, react out of hand, etc etc.

      Just because a person had a hookup or dated someone, and the other person did the fade or treated them badly, does NOT mean the second person intended to harm the first person, and certainly doesn’t put the onus of protecting  the first person on the second, regardless of gender.

      All you’re saying is “men should do this”.  As Evan has always said, good luck with that approach.

      Karmic said it all much better than I could. 

  24. 24
    j

    This guy has actually become single because he had done a tiger woods thing and his wife found his phone. I believe he operated this way because he was used to having a spouse not because he couldnt get away with it. And believe me this is only one example I’ve got a ton more. I believe your approach to being up front about not having sex till in a relationshio is wise and brave. 

  25. 25
    j

    Yes totally agree with you that women need the man to be honest so she can make the decision if she wants to be treated casually for sex. Its the bait and switch that I believe is deplorable and predatory. I’ve seen plenty of guys do this with big bellies and average looks and below average incomes because they can and maybe the women think he is more likely to be a nice guy because he’s not gorgeous flashy or well off. But nope. And I’m not talking about someone who changes their mind or finds an incompatibility I’m talking about guys that bull shitted a woman for the sexual perks. I think while there are never guarantees the approach of being very up front and candid would surely weed alot of them out. If a man is really interested in something with a woman hell respect her and be content to have the chance with her. Most women afraid to do that and its more tempting to hope she grows on him in time.

  26. 26
    j

    We do have more power than we think but no one is an island. Im married myself and my husband is a loyal good man. But I have observed the coarseness and roughness in the male female dynamic through a divorced sister friends and co workers. Ive heard over and over that things are different and people dont care as much andeverything is disposable or discarded more readily. My brother was widowed a few years ago and he tried online dating for awile and was kind of bewieldered by it. But he had a different experience with a widows online support group and met a nice lady on there and is very content. In fact I thought it was interesting that all if the couples who got together in relationships were still together several years later. I dont want to perpetuate anything iI’m just calling it as I see it. I wouldn’t want to be single for anything. 

  27. 27
    Josie

    I think it is all about intention and making emotionally sound choices. I have had casual sex, but never with a man who I was interested in  serious relationship with.  If I am at all interested in potentially pursuing something longer term, I will try to proceed to sex only after there is an emotional bond and a committed relationship.  
    Sometimes this is easier said that done, but if a man is not able to wait a couple months to establish a relationship before becoming physical, my experience has been that he is not into a relationship with me.   Unfortunately, there are so few men who I find to be relationship material, and who reciprocate this.  

     

    1. 27.1
      J

      When I was single I made them wait sometimes and other times I didnt. I found that some guys will just wait it out and still be a jerk and try to give you the whore treatment later on. One guy I remember made him wait a few months then after he got what he wanted for awhile he became disrespectful to me. Instead of breaking ng my heart I calmly told him I didnt know what he expected from our relationship but I was dating two other guys and would continue. The look on his face was priceless and his eyes teared up as I said goodbye. My husband I must confess I didnt make wait and he fell in love with me right away so go figure! That being said I do think its probably wise to make the person wait but maybe mire important to ask what theyre looking for and hold out on giving trust too soon. The playing field is so rough now with all the liars and stringers and the technology with the internet and sexting taking the place of real relationships. And also the laws that make marriage a risky buisness financially.

  28. 28
    J

    I think maybe I dont care for the man who would judge me with his double standard of me having sex with him too soon as he also had the sex too and Im not holding it against him. I find those type of guys are allways fault finding and holier than thou while man whitening around town. Also I think if someone really really likes you they just cant help themselves and will just be happy to be with you. If they dont like you all that much it ends up not mastering what ypu do its doomed. In other words if the guy is really into you he will be much more forgiving of you. Its not something we can control.

  29. 29
    Kamilla

    I think if you have a connection with the person then the sex can be way better. And then if the girl gets pregnant it’s better obviously because the people love each other and wouldn’t be ashamed of having a child together.

  30. 30
    J

    Its awful when women have a child with someone who does not want to be with them. Some women try to force a relationship on a guy by intentionally getting pregnent. Then when it doesn’t work as it doesn’t as much now its a mess because the child becomes a pawn to punish and manipulate. I witnessed this first hand with a neighbor. If two people allready adore eachother then its all good. But when only one person is in love bringing a baby into the mix is so hard because they still have to interact and one person is heartbroken and the other is resentful and mistrustfuln

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