Embrace the escape.
In our culture one-night stands don't necessarily conjure up positive images or thoughts, even though one-night stands are a very common occurrence.
How common, I cannot say. But what I do know is that they're happening with quite a bit of frequency.
One-night stands are similar to having sex with no strings attached but don't necessarily have to be anonymous. One-night stands can happen with strangers, acquaintances or long time friends, colleagues. Maybe even family members (if you're into that.)
Sexual desire and curiosity is a driving force in human nature, regardless of how we wish to minimize it. Much of that desire and curiosity is robbed when we're in long-term monogamous relationships, with someone whom we love dearly and knows everything about us.
This long-term partner who once was attracted to our mystery now knows our morning routines, our strange relationships with family members, our inner fears, obscure dreams and passions, random pet peeves and so on.
We're no longer a mystery to them, and while they may still admire, respect and adore us, and want us sexually (and vice versa) — there's still a part of us who feed off the intrigue of lost connections, limited interactions and one-night stands.
One thing we don't talk much about is unrequited love, crushes and how entire fantasies of lust and romance can be built around these. This is where one-night stands come in.
If imagination will take you everywhere, as Einstein suggested, then we should not dismiss the concepts and ideas we build up in our heads, and we should embrace the romance, the fantasy and idealism, for they are the very things which fuel our reality.
Though it is important to distinguish fantasy from reality, there is a definite place in our lives for imagination, fantasy, and escape.
One night stands exist in our world. It's like going to Vegas. It's one night where we get to escape.
Escape doesn't have to mean our life is so horrible that we cannot bare to live in it, it simply means there is another side to us that may not be as expressed. Should we repress it?
Sure, we can. Many do and many don't. Either are not necessarily a bad thing. This is why sites like Ashley Madison do so well. And, why so many people hook up on business trips.
I'm not advocating for cheating nor lying. In fact, I hope to do just the opposite. I am simply saying that when we have one-night stands within the bounds of long term monogamous relationships, it might be a good thing.
Ideally we're honest and open with our partners. I'm a big proponent of ethical sluthood and being open and honest about our sexual desires and proclivities, but you know what? I love and enjoy monogamy too.
Yes, many will say this sounds like having your cake and eating it too, but I personally don't think we need to be shamed for our human nor sexual desires. Confinement never works, and though having a one night stand is by no means easy on individuals nor on relationships either, I think with a little honesty we can find a lot more happiness.
We talk about endless ways to spice up our monogamous sex lives. Well, here is an another not-so-new idea. One night stands provide us with this, moments where we can see ourselves through the eyes of a stranger can serve as a reminder of our innate sexual desire.
One night stands can emotionally cost-effective, especially if you make a very clear rule that this hook up with this person will never happen again, before doing the deed. The one-night stand can rejuvenate us not just sexually, but emotionally as well.
There should be very clear and distinct guidelines and limitations we set with our long-term partner if we have one and our one-night stand partner about the nature of the relations. Going into these situations with as much clarity as possible so there are no surprises in the end is what I suggest.
If done right, a one-night stand will (hopefully) feel good in the moment and afterwards might even leave us with some unwanted emotions such as guilt, desire, longing and confusion. This is normal and provides us with other opportunities to grow, to learn about ourselves.
And, of course, one-night stands leave us feeling sexually and emotionally fulfilled, energized and revitalized, eager to rejoin our day-to-day life with some new perspective. Now, is that such a bad thing?
Moushumi Ghose is a queer-kink-sex-positive therapist from Los Angeles and currently in New York City where she is writing her 3rd book on sex. She has an online practice and presence. Find her here: LASexTherapist and get more sex advice from her show TheSexTalkSeries