Casual Dating: Yay or Nay?
When it comes to dating– excluding my university years- I have always been a fan of ‘commitment-only’ dating. I would enter relationship, after relationship in search of the one, only to find that the dates had been doomed for the very start. You see for one I was attracted to guys who were notoriously known as the ‘players’, B. were total arseholes and C. had no self-respect for women. But for some unknown reason I kept coming back for more, because in my childish ‘eyes’ they were ‘hot’ and therefore could make me appear more desirable, even if the guys were only using me for sex. In a sense we were both using each other; they might have been after one thing but I was using them as a ‘trophy’ to be showcased in my ‘personal collection of boyfriends’. But contrary to what you might think, I was never malicious about using guys and in reality, I had no idea that it wasn’t just the men but me who was playing a dangerous game.
During university, freshers became known as the ‘sex pit’ where friends would hook up with random guys and take them home, but for some reason I was never entirely comfortable with the idea of one night stands. After all from a young age I had been in long term and short term relationships so the concept of casual dating or hook ups scared the living s**t out of me. Besides, wouldn’t it be awkward waking up next to some random and having to do ‘the walk of shame’ as they called it? I admit, before I had one night stands myself I was a little ‘judgey’ about my friends or people I knew having sex with a lot of different people, especially when I was so used to having sex with my partner and not different people at the same time. After all how on earth were you meant to keep tabs on who was shagging who? Admittedly curiosity had got the better of me so at one point I was hooking up with random guys before I met my last ex and weirdly enough it felt kinda good. I transformed from being judgmental to someone who thought that casual dating was pretty fun and it made me feel like I was finally in the loop with my university friends.
But what are my thoughts on adult dating now? Well, being no stranger to one night stands and being a sex positive blogger, I see no harm in having fun but casual dating taught me that the ‘concept of no strings type sex or dates’ always leads to someones heart getting broken, invariably mine. I had a friend who would be ‘friends with benefits’ with this guy called R, who she liked more than he liked her. She was in love with him but he would always play the field, because he ‘just wasn’t that into her’ and was just using her for sex. What started as a casual no-strings affair became heartbreak for S (the friend) because ultimately her feelings got hurt in the long run. That being said not all casual dating turns into a relationship or friends with benefits; friends often turn to ‘adult dating hookup sites’ when they have what I like to call the ‘itch’ and feel momentarily satisfied after. In all honesty, when it comes to online dating I am not after a ‘hook-up’ and only go on dates with guys who say they are after a relationship, because that is what I am after but should you want to try a hookup and don’t fancy Tinder, there are plenty of hook-up sites available.
The main issue with online dating is often not their consensus on hookups vs non-hookups nor is its inability to filter out unwanted dick pics ( am I the only one who finds them a turn off rather than a turn on?) but the audience that it caters to. Many online dating sites, specifically the ones centered around ‘casual hook-ups’ is often targeted at an audience between 18-34, which in dating terms seems a little ironic. After all you can be dating no matter what age you are, yet online dating seems to exclude single parents and over 50’s, because they feel that they are not in the target market. For my aunty who is now in her 40’s and has been single since she was 25, she is the ‘single parent demographic’ who online dating sites often fail to target . After all as she jokingly quipped ‘she has needs too!’ My aunty was married at a young age, before getting divorced and meeting the father of my cousin P, who she split with after finding him cheating on her with another woman.
For women like my aunty who are not in the over 50’s demographic and are classed as a single parent,have found that single parent dating can be hard. In fact men surveyed in an official dating stats test declared that they were more likely to swipe left, if the woman had a child which seems unfair really. After all no ones swiping left because you are a massive arsehole are they…oh wait. But back to the issue, single parents are often given a bad rep if they choose to date- ‘think about your child for once’ said man who has never birthed said child- or are called ‘sluts’ if they even dare to have a drunken hookup. Let’s get one thing straight, no woman or man should be called ‘sluts’ or manwhores for wanting to have fun ya know. Besides since when did we put an expiry date on single parents, since when did people like my friend L who has a child and is a single parent at the age of 20 become ‘un-desirable’ for having a child? And single parents aren’t the only demographic who is getting a bad rep for having one night stands or going on dates…
Meet the tricky age quota of the ‘other 50’s who according to society and other appropriately titled arseholes, are ‘past it’ because they should know better. I mean hello noone wants to think of our parents or even grandparents having sex, but they do, get over it. I used to work as a community nurse during my third year of university and many of the elderly I tended to, who were well into their 60’s, 70’s , 80’s and in some cases 90’s had pretty active sex lives until their health problems started kicking in. After all as they would chuckle ‘there is such thing as Viagra you know’ and I would laugh too, because I was happy at how sex positive they were regardless of age. Some of them were quite ‘naughty’ as they would call themselves and used to tell me about their sexual cohorts. ranging from ‘sex saunas’ to swinger parties and I would listen in awe. Where were the dating sites that were catered to over 50’s, where were the casual dating sites that would allow them to feel young again?
Regardless of age, income, background or martial status there is no harm in casual dating and while I might prefer relationships, it is good to know that there are sites out there that do offer no strings dating. If you are 50 and want to find the one then go for it or if you are new to online dating and want to test the waters then why the hell not? I like to think that I am pretty open minded about sex and believe that if you have a kink, want to date despite your age or have children and are looking for the one, then who is stopping you? As long as you are a good person, own up to any mistakes made and do not cheat on anyone then all is fair in love and war!
What Are Your Thoughts On Casual Dating?
Please note this post was compensated by ‘No Strings Dating’ but all opinions, experiences and research are my own.
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