One night stands: yay or nay?

12 Dec

(Alternate title: I (Think I) Don’t Support That (Anymore) – My Turbulent Relationship with the Institution of the One Night Stand)

I said, “Can I take you home with me?”
She said, “Never in your wildest dreams.”

Loyal readers, Brownout Betty has decided to start New Years’ Resolutions a month early. After my Thanksgiving binge, I came back to The District determined to give up bad habits, including eating too much cheese and watching Netflix late at night, and to swap them out for some good ones, like doing some actual exercise and eating more fruit.

There’s one other bad habit that I’ve been trying to kick – not just for the past few weeks, but in fact since last Thanksgiving. It was around then that I decided that I wasn’t going to bring home random guys anymore. This lasted about 2 months – which I maintain is a pretty solid run. I only broke the streak because I had an opportunity to spend a beautiful night in bed with the man of my dreams – but that’s a post for another time. At any rate, I don’t believe I broke any rules because the point is to sleep with guys you actually like. The spirit of the law, not the letter, amirite?

Anyway, I broke the rule a few more times in 2013, and now I’m back to my vow of pseudo-celibacy. This time, I feel like I really might stick to it. However, I regret to confess that it is not because I have somehow gained willpower to resist boys (unless, of course, they do one of these things).

Nope, it’s because I have sold out my youth. Worse, I have sold it to the rigid expectations that society has for Upstanding Young Adult Ladiez.

Allow me to explain. In my view, there are three reasons to have a one-night stand. One is that you’re bored and drunk. And that will never go away as a motivating factor, so let’s just put that aside for now. Two is that you enjoy the attention and three is that you just really want the D. Let’s not mince words here. Oh, and 2.5 is somewhere in between those, which is that you meet a genuinely (seemingly) great guy and you feel like you will never see him again if you don’t go home with him that night so you just go for it.

But I had a realization as my last one-night stand was developing. I initially made the signal that I would go home with this guy, but then abruptly changed my mind. I gave the dude a “haha, nah” smile and said that I was changing my mind and leaving. As he followed me out of the Brixton, clearly surprised and miffed at my change of heart, he said “Well, can I at least get your number?

That was Betty’s realization, folks. If I had just given him my number and walked away, he probably would have called. Then we might have grabbed a drink or dinner if it was that kind of thing, or whatever, and then we would have had the sex I had chosen to withhold. I had nothing to lose by giving him the digits and bouncing.

So then you ask: didn’t you lose the sex? Why is it a good thing to incentivize him to call instead of just banging him that night?

Well that, my friends, is where the selling out comes in. Now that we’re in our mid-early-twenties, the expectations of society have started to bear down on us. Those expectations are, essentially, to Start A Relationship and Settle Down. I feel these expectations strongly, which is why I find it less and less fun to have a fling with a rando I’ve never met, and increasingly would prefer to give the guy my number and have it be all civilized and normal. Ew, I know. I disgust myself.

On the guys’ side, I think there is also a bias towards starting something that will last more than 8 hours. The ‘hit it and quit it’ mindset is still there, for SURE, but it’s diminishing in tandem with guys’ receding hairlines. Moreover, even if they are still in college-guy mindset, the fact that it’s so hard to meet people in the city means that if they meet a prospect who at the last minute decides she’s not going home with you, they will follow up. That’s the revelation – contrary to reason 2.5, which says you have to sleep with him that night to bag him, girls have nothing to lose by forgoing that one-night stand. Just go home and sleep in your own bed in your ratty pajamas that no one will see — you’ll feel more dignified the next morning, and you’ll win a victory for  Nice Domesticated 20 Something Ladiez if you actually get a guy to call and maybe start a little courtship. Which in all likelihood, he will, for the reasons aforementioned. Did I mention you won’t give up your dignity?

I’m such a mature adult I can’t even handle myself. Ugh.

In other words, reasons 2, 2.5 and 3 to have a one-night stand are starting to evaporate. Reason 1, however – sheer drunken boredom – will never go away. Which is why I’m not giving up on my friend the #onenightstand juuust yet.

What do you think, ladies?

Brownout, out.


2 Responses to “One night stands: yay or nay?”


  1. Turning a Corner | STOP REQUESTED - December 16, 2013

    […] because I feel like this is the time of my life when I should be flirting, having one night stands (or should I?), and dating my little ass off. And I’m not sure when I stopped trying, but I did. I […]

  2. … And A Happy New Year | STOP REQUESTED - December 31, 2013

    […] of 5 years which still leaves me crying in the shower. I’ve dealt with pushy co-workers, painful and regrettable hookups, (un?)explainable weight gain, and a serious knee injury that will carry repercussions well into […]

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