There are a lot of ways you may feel after a one night stand! Some people find casual hook-ups exciting and fun, while others might not feel as good about them. There’s no wrong way to feel after having sex! That’s why it can be important to check in with yourself, especially if a sexual encounter with someone leaves you feeling bad. There are lots of reasons why you might feel that way, from hormones to having needs that may not be met.
What is a One Night Stand? And Why is Talking About it Important?
A one night stand, or casual sex, usually means consensual sex (of any kind, not just intercourse) that people take part in without any commitment or relationship beyond that.
Sometimes, not talking to the person you’re hooking up with about what you both want can lead to hurt feelings. One person may have different expectations about casual sex than the other. Talking about what you want right away and letting the other person do the same helps make things clear for everyone and avoid bad feelings afterwards.
A one night stand can also be intimidating for some people. They might feel like they can’t express what turns them on to their partner. Or they might feel like they don’t know how to tell if their partner is having fun, or how to say if they don’t like something that’s happening. This is also why it’s important to be open and communicate about what you with you partner, casual or otherwise!
One Night Stands: Myths and Facts
One reason someone may feel bad after a one night stand is because of the stigma surrounding casual sex. Maybe you’ve heard that casual sex is wrong, or that it’s only okay to have sex with someone when you’re dating them. These ideas are common, but often, peoples’ actual sex lives are very different from what they’re told they “should” be like!
How we think about casual sex is based on our own unique experiences, feelings, and needs. Just know that even if someone told you that casual sex is wrong, as long as everyone involved feels good about it, it can be a fun and healthy part of someone’s sex life!
One night stands aren’t for everyone, and that’s ok too. If you do decide to have casual sex, you can ask yourself some questions and make sure you’re being open with your partner!
Understanding Your Feelings About a One Night Stand
Being honest with yourself and asking questions might help you understand why you’re feeling bad, and how you may feel in the future about casual sex. Keep in mind there are no wrong answers! You could try asking yourself:
- Do you want to have sex that might be the only basis for your relationship with this person?
- Would you be ok if this person didn’t have to message or communicate with you again? Do you want to see them again, or would you rather not?
- Is there a chance you could see this person at school or work? How would that make you feel?
- Would you feel better if you knew more about this person, like their STI or relationship status? Is there any information about yourself that you want or don’t want to share with them?
- Is the other person telling you that this is what they also want and feel good about?
- Are you worried about other people judging you if they find out you had a one night stand?
If you’re feeling uncertain about any of these questions, it could help explain why a one night stand isn’t making you feel good. However you feel about having a one night stand, your needs and feelings are important. Understanding them better can help you find sex that you and your partner (or partners) feel good about!
How can I feel better now?
If you’re feeling down, there’s lots of things you could try to help you cope with the way you’re feeling. You can try:
- Talking about your feelings with a therapist or someone you trust, or writing them down in a private journal.
- Reminding yourself of the things you like about yourself. You can write them down if it helps!
- Doing something physical, like running or exercising. This can raise your energy levels and release chemicals in your body that help you feel good!
- Occupying yourself with a hobby or doing something you enjoy. This can be things like music, cooking, watching a good movie, or reading. Try finding an activity that makes you happy!
- Catching up on some rest and relaxation with a nap, bubble bath, or doing something low-key.