The fling, the affair, the one-night stand, the friend with benefits: no strings attached sex has a certain thrill to it. For the sake of clarity, all the sex that will be referred to in this piece will be the kind that singles have rather than monogamous, regular intercourse with one relationship partner. While the latter is most people’s end goal, there’s nothing wrong with having some fun along the way.
Sexy time with a new date doesn’t have as many expectations as it does when it comes to getting it on in a relationship, and plus you get that electric, heart-pounding feeling that comes with the newness of the experience. However, for as many perks that there are, there’s also a lot that you have to look out for if you plan on adding a few notches to your bedpost. Obviously, your safety needs have to be paramount, so you should get regular STD screenings and always use a condom or other form of birth control. Keep your wits about you, and if you’re intoxicated in any way, hopping into bed may not be the best idea.
There’s also a pretty major blunder that you have to be careful of, women. No, it’s not forgetting to shave your legs, pits, or downstairs, although that can be pretty embarrassing, too. It’s what you say. As Anna Hodgekiss of Daily Mail notes, the oxytocin released during sex “lowers our defenses and makes us trust people more.” If you’ve ever caught feelings for a guy after you have sex, this is why. While that’s a whole other can of worms, next time you’re turning down the lights, make sure you don’t ever repeat these phrases to your sexual partner.
10. “Thank you.”
On its surface, this one may seem pretty innocuous, and it’s definitely not the worst thing that you can ever say after resurfacing from under the covers. However, unless the guy is paying you for your services (and let’s sincerely hope that’s not what’s going on here), there’s no reason for you to thank him or for him to express his gratitude. Sex should be a mutual occurrence between two willing participants and not a favor that one grants to the other.
Now, if you accidentally say this one after sleeping with someone for the first time, you can just laugh it off or change the meaning, clarifying that you were thanking them for a good evening. That’s much more appropriate. We get it, though. Sometimes after really awesome sex, it’s hard to say much of anything at all.
One little word can mean so much. Yes, any man is going to want you to say “oh” a whole lot during the actual deed, if you utter it any time before or after, it typically doesn’t mean anything good. If the clothes have come off, it sounds like you’re not impressed with his body but you’re trying not to say anything outwardly mean. If you say it after sex, again, it comes off like you just had a terrible time but you’re pretending that you didn’t.
Two people may sexually connect and it happens to be a dud. That’s fine. If you’re planning to have regular sex with this man, it may be worthwhile to express your needs and desires to him and see if the sparks fly. However, if it was just a one-night thing, there’s no reason to give the guy a play-by-play of how he can do better. It’ll just deeply shake his confidence.
8. “What did you say your name was again?”
Sex, in a way, is a lot like dating. You may be seeing a handful of people at the same time, but your ultimate goal is for the other men to never become savvy to that fact. Yes, that means being vague about your plans and availability, but it also means that you have to take care of your due diligence and keep the men organized, recalling each of their names.
It’s not very flattering for a guy to get intimate with you only for you to ask what his name is. Some men may wonder if you’re drunk and may not want to have sex with you at all in case there’s a consent issue. If you find that you’re sober as a bird and you legitimately just cannot remember your conquest’s name, this is one great reason why pet names exist. Just rely on honey, baby, and sweetie until the night’s over.
7. “I forgot my birth control.”
As mentioned above, being sexually responsible encompasses a handful of duties. You can’t just rely on men to have condoms at all times (women can buy a box too and have them ready). If you’re on birth control like the pill, it’s important that you take it at the same time every day if you want to avoid disrupting your cycle or experiencing a pregnancy scare.
If you do get a guy back to your place and suddenly have a eureka moment and realize that you did indeed forget to take the pill today, you may want to abstain from sex entirely or make sure that you have a condom handy. If you do decide to have sex though, keep this birth control freak-out news to yourself. It’ll scare any man and he’ll take off running.
6. “Don’t wake up my parents.”
Chalk this one up to something that no man wants to hear ever. Look, times are tough, and although you wish you had that studio apartment, you’re still living with your parents while you clean up your financials. It’s understandable and it happens. As long as you’re actively looking for a way out, most men probably won’t begrudge you for this.
However, you have to be upfront about it ahead of time. Don’t wait until you get in the door and you two are hot and heavy to reveal that your folks are sleeping in the room down the hall. That will make any man uncomfortable. If your dude is in the know, you two can figure out a workaround and maybe even continue things at his place.
5. “That was better than with my ex!”
Remember what we just said about how sex is a lot like dating? It really is. Just like you really shouldn’t talk about your ex for more than a few moments on a first or second date (just give the basic information about how long you two were together and when you broke up and then be done with it), the same goes for sex. In fact, for a safe rule of thumb, don’t mention your ex ever, even if you’re only entertaining a one-night stand.
You may be nursing a broken heart, and truly, that sucks. You may also be listening to that advice that says that “the best way to get over someone is to get under someone else.” If you need to, make mental comparisons between your ex and this new dude. Just please, please, please keep them in your head or save them for girls’ night out.
4. “Are you done yet?”
Intercourse may be wonderful, but some women have a hard time getting off on doing the dirty alone. Plus, even gals that totally love the nookie may start to get fatigued or vaginally irritated if it goes on for too long. If you’re sleeping with a new man for the first time, you have no idea how long that he’ll last in bed. You may end up in a situation then when it goes on for more time than you’re comfortable.
Trust us though, asking “are you done yet?” is not going to make matters better, especially if you want this arrangement to continue in the future. Instead, switch your thinking to asking him if he’s getting close. That’s a much sexier question, and a little bit of dirty talk may wrap things up just in time.
3. “That’s it?!”
Of course, don’t be surprised if a girlfriend is jealous that you have a problem where a man lasts too long. For some, that sounds like an awfully great problem to have. Other men are a little speedier or they may have let nerves influence them and so they finish up a lot sooner than they normally do. While you may be a bit disappointed by that, blurting out “that’s it?!” will just lead to hurt feelings that could stick around for a long time to come.
Also, sometimes you may find that your new partner isn’t packing quite as much as you had hoped. You may again feel inclined to use this exclamation. It’s just as bad to insult a guy’s sexual prowess as it is his manhood; both can be very damaging verbal wounds. As long as your conquest knows what he’s doing, size doesn’t necessarily matter.
2. “Let’s get married.”
Okay, so this one is a little farfetched, that’s for sure. However, remember that whole oxytocin hormone that we mentioned earlier? It makes you feel bonded to that man you just had sex with, even if you met him at the bar only a few hours before. For some women, they may even feel like they’re falling in love. You know how crazy that being in love can make you. It could lead to some proclamations or even some urgent mutterings about marriage.
Commitment-phobes, who are prime candidates for flings, don’t even want you to think about the M-word let alone ever speak it aloud. If you talk about weddings and how this guy could be your future hubby, he will head for the hills. Sleep on your newfound excitement, and if in the morning you still have strong feelings, maybe talk to the guy about it. Just don’t bring up wedding rings yet.
1. “I love you.”
Oh no. No no no. It’s one thing if you’re in a relationship and you roll over and tell your sweetie that you love them after sex. That’s expected. Your friend with benefits though? The word “love” is so loaded that you’ll lose all the benefits ASAP. Again, it’s the whole commitment-phobe thing. A man that’s agreed to enter a sex-only arrangement with you probably just wants to hang without anything serious. Love is very, very serious.
Of course, most friends with benefits situations end because one of the two parties develops feelings. These almost always end with heartbreak. Oxytocin may make you think that you really do love this man, but again, it’s better for you to re-evaluate matters in the stark and sobering morning light and not say something that you may regret.