I’ve learned many things over the last year but one of the most interesting is the tie between an emotional and a physical relationship. Why is casual sex while in a relationship so frowned upon? I am not saying that I want to go out and do bunches and bunches of casual sexing but I like to talk about things.
- Hurt feelings
- What others think
- Threat to the relationship
When we hear about someone cheating, it is framed in such a way that we are led to believe that they are a bad person or did it to hurt their partner. This is rarely the reason although some partners use infidelity as revenge or tit for tat. I personally don’t see the purpose in this and would highly recommend communication as a better way of handling relationship problems.
Men and women cheat for largely the same reasons although the order is often different.
- Low Self Esteem
- Emotionally Starved
- Using Infidelity as Revenge
- Crave Excitement
- Sexually Deprived
First let’s look at the differences between casual sex and relationship sex. Sex is intimate when you are doing it with someone that you’ve got feelings for. When you don’t have a deep connection, sex can be hot and exciting but it is more about the physical attraction and lust. Having sex with a hookup is almost always awkward with awkward silences and awkward touching as you try and guess what the other person likes and dislikes. You are always on edge that one or both of you might get emotionally attached. It may seem like I am trying to talk you out of it but I’m not. Casual hookups are awesome! The passion and spontaneity are hotter than hot and it makes you feel attractive and alive. It validates that you are beautiful and this other person knows it too.
So we’ve established that casual sex is hot af. Now what about the psychological effects? Depending on your upbringing and the baggage that you bring to the table (we’ve all got it), casual sex can make you feel shame, depression and can have a negative impact on self esteem. If you find yourself enjoying the hookup and taking it at face value, then it probably works for you. If you feel like trash the next day, you need to evaluate your feelings and decide if you need something more meaningful to fully enjoy yourself. Casual sex isn’t inherently bad but the meanings that you give it can make it bad to you.
If things are still sounding relatively good, let’s ask some more questions. Does the idea of sex outside the relationship make you feel threatened? If so, why does it make you feel this way? Do you feel like sex outside the relationship could turn into feelings and jeopardize your relationship? Discuss the tough questions and recognize that we can’t expect one person to fulfill all of our emotional and physical needs. If we expect this, we will always come up short. If we recognize that some of our needs may go unfulfilled by being with one person, that may be a tradeoff that you are prepared to make and that is perfectly fine.
Casual hookups may not be the same as an open marriage. In many cases, only one partner is allowed to go out on their own and even then there can be many rules to accompany the openness. The female may have a higher sex drive and the male might be fine with her experiencing some things and watching her eyes light up as she comes home to tell him all about it. The couple may experience some of these things in the same room. Other couples may both go out on their own for separate experiences. Would a threesome suffice for what you are missing? As you can tell, there are many different options and no single option is a perfect fit for every couple.
Based on what I’ve learned about our relationship and our experiences with having a third for the past year, I think our relationship would lean toward a hot wife style relationship. Kev loves seeing my face light up during a sexual experience and loves to make eye contact while I experience pleasure. His aptitude for compersion is something that I find incredibly endearing as I know it is the most selfless level of love that he can offer.
I didn’t intend for this article to be about open relationships and non-monogamy but I suppose it is leaning that way. Depending on what is right for you and your relationship, you can do whatever the two of you decide and you are free to call it whatever you will. Whether you decide to call it open relationship, hot wife, swingers, cuckold, nonmonogamy; I just ask that you communicate and agree on a set of ground rules. I recommend that those ground rules be written down somewhere and signed so they are more impactful and tangible. You are free to discuss and amend those rules at any time but having a written set of rules will help prevent them from being bent or broken in the heat of the moment.
Does this mean that Kev and I are going to have an open relationship? Nope, it isn’t looking like that is the direction we are going for the moment but we have talked about it. I encourage you to talk about it with your significant other. Even if you aren’t interested, start a dialog and enjoy a deeply meaningful conversation with the person that you love. You might just learn something about him or her.