Sex means different things to different people. Casual sex is anything the two parties share or do together that is not part of a committed relationship. Casual sex can include sex you have in your relationship and outside of it. Polyamory, meaning an open and loving relationship where you can have more than one romantic partner at a time, may include casual sex.
Casual sex with friends or casual sex with other people can happen to everyone throughout their lives. It’s completely normal and it’s a normal part of our lives and people’s lives. It may or may not be significant to you in your life; that’s just something that’s important to you. You may have casual sex relationships that are more important to you than others and that’s okay.
You may not want casual sex or you may want a lot of it. This is also okay. It’s a continuum. You can have any number of casual sex relationships and experiences in your life, so long as you aren’t willing to make a long-term commitment.
You may have more casual sex than you’d like or less. This is also okay. Everyone has different needs and desires.
How can casual sex be less than ideal?
Casual sex has not always been viewed as a trivial matter. From Greek mythology to Victorian novels, casual sex has often been associated with lower-class people who don’t want to make the commitment to marry. It was viewed as adulterous and morally wrong, and there were many unwritten rules about how it could and should be had. It is still something most Western societies have a lot of rules and strict moral guidelines around.
It can be difficult to find casual sex partners because there are too many rules and restrictions.
Many sexual encounters are more casual than those of the past. Casual sexual encounters used to be done more face-to-face, and people would look for ways to preserve the relationship outside of that one sexual experience.
Lately, there’s been a sense of being able to get on Grindr or on OkCupid or on any of the different apps and have really fun sexual experiences that can go beyond the one time you meet. That’s nice, but that’s not always how it works.
Just because casual sex is often seen as meaningless and not as fulfilling as more committed relationships doesn’t mean it has to be that way. It isn’t.
It’s easy to assume that casual sex is just an efficient means of procuring sex, but according to Atlanta-based psychologist Dr. Janice Willis, casual sex is actually a big part of a healthy, happy sex life. “Casual sex is not inherently a bad thing and it does provide companionship,” she tells Bustle, “but it can also be degrading or confusing to a woman if she doesn’t know a man’s intentions or what his end goal is in having sex with her.” When you’re just in the heat of the moment, you’re not thinking clearly, and you can’t always tell how someone will react, or even if they know how you feel about them. This is something to be thought out before hand. When you’re laying down good casual rules, you’ll be making sure you’re only in this type of relationship with a person you trust. Make sure you know who he is — what his intentions are, and how he truly feels about the little sex act you’re about to have. There’s nothing worse than a shallow acquaintance getting intimate with you because you’re a consenting adult, only to wake up the next morning regretting the entire encounter. Take the time to get to know a person, and if you’re getting sexually intimate with someone you barely know, then good for you. But for best results, make sure you’re both on the same page when it comes to pleasure, expectations, consent, and limits. And if you’re only after physical intimacy, there are several apps that can help you find love without strings attached — most dating apps today will let you set up a profile, and then only actually ask you to match with someone if they are keen on you as well. Like Match’s official app, which allows you to browse other users’ profiles, check out their top five things you should absolutely know before hooking up with them, as well as run a report on them. You might have to weed through a lot of profiles, but by watching the sexual behaviors and general expressions of the profiles you find, you can get a more comfortable idea of whether or not you’d like to proceed. “I am okay with people hooking up outside of my interest zone,” she says. It’s a coping mechanism, really. “When I’m not in a relationship, I’m going to limit my sexual activity so I don’t have to spend time feeling lonely, unhappy, and miserable because I don’t have a relationship, so I’ll avoid all those things,”