Lovemaking + Relationships
To cast a broader net into the dating pool, Christan Marashio opted to list “casual sex” under her OKCupid preferences. She shares the (sometimes funny, sometimes helpful) findings of that experiment.
I have used OKCupid off and on for about three years. After a six-month relationship with a man I met on OKCupid ended, I took a brief break. When I came back I determined to jiggle things up a bit.
I updated my relationship preferences to include casual lovemaking.
The messages I received ranged from genuine to overly complimentary to graphic. I got invites to gang bangs, 7am face sitting requests, and the occasional suggest to eat my calves. I told a close masculine friend of my practice and he said that, with the casual hook-up option checked, some fellows see no point in playing the game and just get right to it.
The effusive if not disingenuous compliments about my &ldquo,hot mouth&rdquo, and &ldquo,sexy gams&rdquo, didn&rsquo,t indeed work on me. I know that some studs can have lovemaking with a woman and it doesn&rsquo,t necessarily mean he finds her attractive. The main objective is just to get laid. Attraction is secondary. Who I might be able to attract for a casual hookup is not indicative of the type of man with whom I could have anything more consistent and substantive. I also knew that it wasn&rsquo,t a good thing if a man told me he wasn&rsquo,t looking for anything serious at the moment but thought that I&rsquo,d be ideal hookup material. I don&rsquo,t give dudes credit for &ldquo,refreshing honesty.&rdquo, In fact, I trim points off for revelations like that. That&rsquo,s an insult disguised as a compliment.
Another masculine friend said that it was better to just choose long-term/short-term dating and fresh friends. That way, he explained, I wouldn&rsquo,t be on the radar of guys who think invites to pull a train are welcome. He also warned that a woman who selected casual hookup might set off a warning bell in the minds of many boys.
&ldquo,I&rsquo,d say there are two assumptions: one is that a woman, no matter what she says, is always ‘,looking’ for a more-than-sexual relationship should one present itself, and two is that a woman can get ‘,just hookup’ pretty much anytime she wants, without much effort. So, a woman who seeks ‘,causal hook-up’ or selects it on her profile is suspect.&rdquo, &ndash, G., Masculine, 37, NYC
In my three years of using OKCupid off and on, I&rsquo,ve never had any of those bad dates we often hear about. Because of how I screen profiles, I don&rsquo,t accept invitations from anybody who asks. Since I have a good idea of my typical OKCupid audience, I&rsquo,d be on alert when a stud who was above my typical pull would contact or react to me.
I didn&rsquo,t judge a man if he selected casual hookup as an option. As long as he made an effort to finish his profile and post pictures that didn&rsquo,t show up to be from some ’80s era Playgirl shoot, I didn&rsquo,t care. (Side note: Naked chest shots. Why? Discuss.)
There were a number of take-aways from this practice.
Very first, just because someone chooses casual hookup doesn&rsquo,t mean they&rsquo,re looking for a one-night stand. A person&rsquo,s readiness to be open about that interest should not be held against them or get them labeled a player or bi-atch. I ended up dating three studs during this time for 3-6 months each. We did &ldquo,couple-y&rdquo, things like go to the movies, make dinner, and spend weekends together. We weren&rsquo,t meeting up for quickies as some people might assume. There was proximity and affection and collective confidences. There just wasn&rsquo,t exclusivity or voiced commitment. I wasn&rsquo,t seeking &ldquo,just&rdquo, hookup, so adding casual hookup as a relationship choice actually worked to my advantage. It exposed me&mdash,in various ways&mdash,to a broader audience. One that I may not have been exposed to had I been a &ldquo,good female&rdquo, and listened to my well-meaning masculine friends and only selected brief and long-term dating.
Another lesson? That About Us section with all the questions is a gold mine! That&rsquo,s where someone&rsquo,s real personality comes out. For example, if a fellow answered questions like, &ldquo,Do you want your playmate to be kinkier than you?&rdquo, with &ldquo,Not possible!&rdquo, I bailed. In my practice, people who go out of their way to broadcast how much hookup they have are attempting to overcompensate for something.
Next, some studs select casual hook-up to convey another message. I polled a few studs as to why they checked off casual hookup. One man said he did so to make clear that sexual compatibility was significant to him. Another said he did it so that women would understand that he would not date someone for too long without hook-up being part of the equation. A different man not only selected casual lovemaking but clipped his profile by telling readers he was presently dating other women. When I asked him about that he told me he wished to avoid meeting women who might develop other expectations. There&rsquo,s another example of &ldquo,refreshing honesty&rdquo, that I find questionable. That admission was the equivalent of engaging in a pleasant conversation with someone and having them randomly poke you in the eye without warning. It&rsquo,s rude and unnecessary. My analogy proved accurate when, after we met, he told me he knew &ldquo,instantaneously&rdquo, that he wasn&rsquo,t physically attracted to me. Um…,thanks for your honesty, I guess?
Another observation I had was that a lot of the fellows contacting me during this time were in transitional phases of their lives. There were a number of couch surfers, recently divorced/separated guys and freshly single types seeking women who might be, as the kids say, “DTF.” I didn&rsquo,t want to be anybody&rsquo,s &ldquo,get over the hump&rdquo, hump. If they admitted in their profile or in messages that they were freshly single I didn&rsquo,t engage further. I made sure I traded enough emails to discern what their relationship/living situation was. I was not interested in being a rest stop for some OKCupid hobo.
I also learned that some guys send messages of the &ldquo,I want to adore your butt&rdquo, diversity with the intention of shocking a woman into a response. The point is to engage her by any means possible, even if it means offending or harassing her.
The thickest lesson I learned was that, even in 2013, a woman&rsquo,s choice to pursue a non-monogamous relationship is met with a superb deal of skepticism and judgment. It is assumed by many boys that a woman can get hookup lightly. Therefore, why would she even need to check that box? Something is either wrong with her or it&rsquo,s a trap. Then there&rsquo,s the harassment factor, which almost drove me off OKCupid altogether.
Sometimes I get bored with OKCupid and want to mix it up a bit. In those moments I go back and check that box. The upside is that I widen my pool of potential matches. Yes, many of them are cubs looking for a cougar or guys in Joey Buttafuoco pants doing their best Joey Tribbiani impersonation. There are also many sex-positive and emotionally evolved boys on there who don&rsquo,t ascribe to the Madonna/Whore philosophy. Those are the boys I&rsquo,ve met. It takes a little longer to find them but they are there.
I&rsquo,ve accepted that some dudes will see that decision as a crimson flag and reject me. They likely would have eventually rejected me anyway. I also accept that I have to screen studs more stringently who showcase interest when I have that option selected. Nothing is fail proof, of course. But at least I get to do it on my terms.