- Gender and Relationships
Stigma of the One Night Stand
This article serves two purposes: 1) I want to deter those who think they can rely on one night stands for fulfilling intimate relationships. 2) I want to remove the stigma our culture has about the one night stand. Readers should look at this phenomenon non-judgmentally and understand the physical and mental health benefits and risks.
A One Night Stand (ONS) is a sexual encounter with someone you met for the first time that day. Furthermore, you don't see that person after that one encounter with one exception: You accidentally run into them in public at a later time! Occasionally they will occur in the day time but most incidents are reported to occur at night time. There also seems to be a connection to night clubs, alcohol, parties, bars, raves and of course the list goes on.
From a biological stand point it seems pretty obvious why we have ONSs, our bodies have their own natural desires to create offspring as well as feel pleasure. What makes the ONS so interesting is that in some ways it goes against other biological urges such as the desire to have a loyal partner that will care for you and protect you. However the regular occurrence of a ONS may fit better into certain peoples lifestyles better then a stable partner. If you are someone that likes a lot of autonomy and independence you will likely not be happy with the same boring old partner. Movers and shakers tend to prefer much more spice in their sex life and the ONS can be a great way to find that if done safely.
Communication is very important to avoid misleading someone. Based on my experience I believe this is rare and that most people seem to instinctively understand the arrangement. To protect yourself simply don't have sex with them that night. Exchange contact information and go on a few dates with them later. The downside of regular ONS is that they are not as fulfilling in the long term sense as a more steady relationship. In other words individuals who have many encounters with ONS will eventually get over the novelty of many different partners and will feel a need for a sense of intimacy. Intimacy can be obtained through communication, trust and time. When couples obtain a level of intimacy the sex will become more and more passionate.
Many doctors, therapists and self-helpers have already scientifically proven the benefits of having sex so we won't really get into that here. Just to name a few though: increased self-confidence, reduced stress, higher immunity, etc. For people that are always on the run, a regular boy friend or girlfriend just won't fit in the schedule. These people may need some sort of regular sex but find it challenging given their life style. This includes travelers, performers, etc. Sometimes these people may have “Friends With Benefits” but maybe that doesn't always work either. A safe, deliberate ONS once or twice a month may be just the fix.
You don't need me to tell you all the horrors of STDs or worse, show you the pictures that are out there... eewwwwwwww! It is highly recommended that you wear a condom and to curtail the amount and intensity of sexual acts performed. This will decrease your chances of exchanging STDs. Keeping yourself clean and healthy is priority #1 so don't take too many chances. Also, people lie about getting tested. I know it's sad but it's true. If you feel unsure at any point during a ONS you should stop immediately. Seek professional help if you feel your body has been compromised. Likewise, if you know you have an STD it is your responsibility to be upfront and honest with your potential partner before you go too far.
Have you had a one night stand?
Are one night stands bad?
Society still has quite a stigma about this phenomenon in spite of how regularly it occurs. I wrote this hub to hopefully raise each others awareness on the subject. In 2012 there is no reason why we shouldn't discuss these things openly. Pretending like they don't happen or shunning those that participate is sooooooo 1990s people! People that have ONS are not necessarily slutty or sex addicts. They are everyday people like you and me! Help end the stigma by raising your awareness of the one night stand.
Our society still views respected relationships in the committed sense putting ONS in the taboo category. Everyone expresses their affection differently and should be able to redefine relationships in the way we feel most comfortable. Everyone goes through phases in order to obtain happiness such as the dependency of needing someone there at all times and getting into relationships and commitments they aren't prepared for. Beyond the stigma set, people are becoming more open to loving many rather than putting all your emotions into one sole person. It is healthy to express your affection and desires with more than one partner. It is important to understand the intention of your actions as well as being humble with encounters in an absolute respecting and loving way.