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The Sex Post! May 25, 2009

Posted by Onely in Dating, Food for Thought, Just Saying., Secret Lives of the Happily Single, sex, single and happy, Your Responses Requested!.
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So, dear readers, as the title of this post suggests, I am going to write about being single, having sex, and remaining unattached. Some (like Australian blogger Brian at Fitzroyalty, who mentioned us in this provoking post a couple of months ago) might say that this post is long overdue, but I was waiting for inspiration, and I finally got it — in the form of a surprising hookup this last weekend with a guy I have known, through friends, for some time and who is recently single.

You see, I have not had sex for almost a year — not because I didn’t want to, but because I have been a) really busy with school, and b) unable to meet guys who were not only attractive, interesting to be around, and funny, but who also seemed like they would not assume that having sex meant we were dating seriously (yes, I realize how strange that sentence sounds — but trust me, guys over age 25 in my part of the world — especially academia — are surprisingly conservative in this regard).

So this last weekend’s adventure was a pleasant surprise, and although I like him, I am not interested in dating him (we were out with mutual friends, not on a date, this weekend). I am only interested in having a fun/casual relationship, and I am hoping that’s all he’s interested in too. Honestly, though, I have no idea how to find out, because, like a gentleman, my new friend has already been in touch and wants to see me again.In the past, of course, I would be thrilled that this guy is clearly following the “rules” of dating (call within two days, set up a date, etc.) — but instead, I find myself concerned that he might actually be into me.

And isn’t that a horrible response to good behavior!

I think, given the circumstances (he is recently single, we hooked up without going on a single date, etc.), that there is a good chance that this guy merely wants to ensure future sex (because, truthfully, if he acted like an a-hole, there’d be a good chance that I wouldn’t give him another opportunity). But my question — which I’m hoping you, Copious Readers, will help me answer — is this: How do I explain that I intend to remain single but that I want to have a sexual relationship with him — without being completely rude about it?

Or am I just overthinking this… After all, this doesn’t seem like such a bad situation for him to be in, does it?

Thanks in advance for any and all advice!

— L


1. bobby - May 25, 2009

You may have read my “Why I don’t date post.” I find this situation for you to be fantastic, and this is kind of the way I like things to happen-no pressure!

“How do I explain that I intend to remain single but that I want to have a sexual relationship with him — without being completely rude about it?”

I would highly suggest asking Simone from http://www.sex-lies-dating.com/
Not that this type of relationship is what she’s looking for, but because she deals with a lot of guy types and personalities and seems to know how to communicate with flair 🙂

“Or am I just overthinking this… After all, this doesn’t seem like such a bad situation for him to be in, does it?”

Personally, I don’t think you’re overthinking this, but that’s probably because each new relationship to me is very exciting.
However, although it may be a good deal for him, let’s play pretend and use the above sentence using the pronoun “she.” I think this may bring in the perspective of feelings better. (I’m just trying to de-stereotype my answer).
1. Ask advice from those who have experience and common sense, like Simone.
2. Use the tenants from my post: The-diagnosis-of-relationships:
1. Know who you are and what you want for yourself

2. Know who they are and what they want for themselves

3. Communicate openly and honestly with each other.

I guess in a nutshell, be honest about what you want. (geeez, I could have just said this, right?) lol
Good luck with the relationship (whatever kind you decide to make it!)

onely - May 25, 2009

Thanks, Bobby, for the thoughtful response, and for the links! Yes, I’m definitely going to take the honesty route no matter what, because, quite simply, I can’t do anything but be honest. I have no desire to be in a committed relationship right now, and so why would I pretend otherwise? And I certainly wouldn’t want to mislead him, especially since he seems like a nice person and, perhaps more practically, we run in the same circle of friends.

I’ll keep you posted on how it goes 🙂


2. Singlutionary - May 26, 2009


Thank you for being brave and writing about this! I am not sure if I am the writer that pissed Brian off but I am glad that he wrote his article because it needs to be said! I haven’t written about sex (although I have tried) because I haven’t figured it out yet. Sex and affection and intimacy are things that we all miss and need and figuring out how to have them without being in a relationship while still being respectful and considerate of the other person’s emotions can be tricky, like you very wonderfully illustrate.

I think that I will try and write about this (again) although I might not be as brave as you are.

Anyways, in regards to your situation: I don’t think you’re over thinking it because there is potential hurtfulness involved and none of us want to hurt a friend.

I think that the term “friends with benefits” gets a really bad wrap. Because having a friendship with someone is wonderful. Getting to enjoy sex with that friend is even better. So maybe, you can just be super upfront with him and say “I really want to stay friends and I also want to continue to have sex with you cause it was lots of fun. But I need to tell you that I’m not interested in anything more. I don’t know how you feel but I just want to be honest because you ARE my friend and I value your friendship.”

Or something less cheesy and in your own words. If someone said that to me, I would totally jump their bones!

onely - May 26, 2009

Ha — thanks for this advice. Upfront I will be, when and as the timing seems right! As for the Fitzroyalty comment, I think he was talking about the writer of the article that featured our blogs.

— L

3. Lauri - May 26, 2009

Lisa, interestingly I went through a very similar situation the past few months- the weird thing is, I never really found out what he was thinking about all this. I can’t tell if I was being “mean” by not really calling him in between “dates” etc. I suspect that he was on the same page that I was, but since I’m “the girl” he probably assumed that I wanted a relationship of sorts and feel bad that *he* didn’t really follow up. I don’t know, I saw him this weekend and he was very awkward around me, and I don’t see a reason for any awkwardness.

I have met a lot men that don’t believe that we girls are physically capable of this type of thing. If I had a nickle for every guy who said something like, “you’ll get too attached” I’d have over a dollar! It is such a huge myth that girls are obsessed with long-term relationships, marriage, etc, and guys are the opposite. Especially guys who have always been serial monogamists, they don’t seem to understand the “casual” dating thing.

onely - May 26, 2009

YES, I am inclined to completely agree with your v. eloquent summary of the kinds of assumptions that men and women make about each other. Which is why clarity/honesty in communication seems extremely important, especially in a situation like the one I find myself in.


4. trauma queen - May 26, 2009

doesn’t the term ‘friends with benefits’ answer this question?

onely - May 26, 2009

Hopefully! The complicated thing is whether or not my potential friend-with-benefits will actually WANT to be in this position, or whether he will want more. That’s what I have to figure out 🙂

— L

5. The Sex Post, Part Deux: Dealbreakers « Onely: Single and Happy - May 26, 2009

[…] you for the many thoughtful and thought-provoking responses to my most recent post about the possibilities of having a sexual partner but making it clear that I want to remain […]

6. stephanie - May 26, 2009

I’ll take an opposing viewpoint here. If you like someone, set parameters for how much/how often you will see them but don’t automatically push someone away just because you don’t want to “date” or have a “relationship.” I’m not saying you should have a serious relationship. But just be open. There are many forms of relationship. Oprah and Steadman, for example. You don’t have to get married, shack up, or give each other promise rings. But to just be anti-relationship because you aren’t looking for it is maybe being too anti. People come into our lives as gifts quite often. I say, accept the gift. See what happens.

And don’t presume that just because someone appears to like you that you have the all-encompassing power of hurting their feelings to the point where they can’t go on if you dump them. I hate it when guys assume that of me, it’s like, really, you must think a lot of yourself to think I can’t possibly get over you. 🙂

onely - May 27, 2009

Stephanie — these are truly excellent points! I myself am pretty sure that I don’t want to be in a serious relationship, now or anytime in the near future — but I would not push away a relationship if I really enjoyed being in it and did not feel pressured to become serious (by which I mean cohabitation and/or marriage). I completely agree that being open is important. But knowing what I want (to stay functionally single) is also very important to me personally.

— L

Lauri - May 27, 2009

Stephanie, I completely agree with you! I wish, however, that it were easier to just like/love someone without all the external issues that force you to “define” your relationship at predetermined points (diamond rings, timelines, biological clocks, nagging relatives, mortgages, etc etc). I like to just roll with things and see how they go- if we end up just hooking up a few times, great. If we end up moving in together, great. The problem is that it is so hard to find other people who don’t give in to the pressure! Most people I date either want a “relationship” or they want “just friends with benefits” or they want X, Y, or Z. Why not just be with people and find out what was meant to be?

In Lisa’s situation, the guy seems to want to (or thinks he should) follow a prescribed path, so I think honesty is definitely the best policy, and the only way to let it all flow and evolve the way it naturally should.

7. trauma queen - May 27, 2009

most interesting them comments. gives me a new perspective a cross-border culture as well 🙂

an yes i do agree that men these days tend to be the new women- they r the ones who seem to want to get married and all that. I’ve noticed it among me friends.

8. Fitzroyalty - May 28, 2009

The men who doubt women can want sexual relationships without all the traditional committment have usually been burned by women who said they could then changed their minds. For me the thing is to talk and talk some more, because most people just don’t talk about what they want and then are surprised when their wants are not magically met by their partner. But then I’m apparently another rarity – a man who talks about his feelings 😉

9. Animal Sex: What it can teach us about heteronormativity « Onely: Single and Happy - June 2, 2009

[…] people when they have so-called “abnormal” sexual desires or lifestyles (ranging from wanting to have sex but not a relationship, for example, to feeling indifferent about sex altogether). The thing is, most of us probably grew […]

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