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Pajiba Dirty Talk: Why I Don't Sleep with Strangers (Often)

By Dr. Pisaster | Pajiba Dirty Talk | March 23, 2011 |

By Dr. Pisaster | Pajiba Dirty Talk | March 23, 2011 |

In light of the opinion expressed by a number of people in both the comment section of my article two weeks ago and in a recent post on Dan Savage’s blog that the reason women are less likely than men to engage in anonymous, casual sex is simply that women aren’t as into sex as men (an opinion, which, amazingly enough, Savage did not promote in his actual post - bless him, he’s toning down the gender stereotyping!), I thought I’d offer y’all some insight into the mind of a lady who loves sex but doesn’t generally fuck strangers. I would (and someday will, promise) discuss research that investigates the differences in men and women’s sex drives, but I have a grant due and so I’m taking the lazy route of personal experience (lazy is going to be a theme in this post, btw). Of course, my experiences don’t apply to every woman out there, but at least they might give you an idea of why a sexually active and very sexually interested woman might not take the same approach to casual sex as your average man.

I have, as I’m sure you’re sick of hearing by now, a very high sex drive. If it weren’t for the male refractory period and the fact that while my spirit is always willing the flesh occasionally gets a little raw, I would probably never leave the bedroom. I have gone to great and sometimes ridiculous lengths to get laid. What I don’t do, however, is one night stands. Which isn’t to say that there aren’t guys I’ve slept with one night and then never saw again, but those were more like auditions for a lover that didn’t result in a callback than intentional one-time affairs. In general I prefer to have a guy on hand that I can count on for casual, no strings attached sex. I prefer this approach for two reasons. The first is that I’m lazy. Finding a stranger to sleep with involves getting dressed at least somewhat presentably, going out to a bar or other venue, finding someone who looks attractive and who is attracted to me, flirting, and then negotiating how things will actually go down. That’s a helluva lot of effort and there’s a chance it won’t even work out and I’ll go home alone and frustrated. I’d much rather be able to just make a quick phone call and have sex delivered to my door (free!) or, worst case scenario, travel 15 minutes to a place where I know sex will commence shortly after my arrival. Hell, I don’t even necessarily have to change out of my pajamas for that.

That part is pretty much a no-brainer, and I’m sure lots of guys would agree that in a perfect world they’d love to have casual sex-on-demand as well rather than going to all the effort involved in finding a new hook-up every time they wanted to get laid. The bigger issue, I think, is the second reason: with a fuck buddy, I know what I’m getting. Bringing home (or going home with) a stranger presents all sorts of risks for a woman that it doesn’t for a man. There’s always the chance of assault, for one. And there’s the fact that, frankly, I don’t know where that dick’s been. Even with condoms, sexually transmitted diseases are a possibility (and I have to use the non-latex kind, which in my experience are sadly prone to breakage). As Savage notes in his post, male-to-female transmission of STIs is more common than the reverse, and some of those STIs - like HPV - have potential complications that are more dangerous for women. In a no strings attached kind of affair, there’s more chance to determine the health status of your partner, and no need to worry that each new hookup brings a fresh chance to catch something. The most important part of knowing what I’m getting, though, is that I know that the sex will be good enough to leave me satisfied.

I cannot stress that enough. For a lot of men (though certainly not all), sex with any woman that they find attractive will likely result in satisfaction, for women, this just isn’t the case. I get off about as easily as it is possible for a woman to. Under the right conditions, I can have an orgasm from heaving petting. And yet, I have slept with guys who couldn’t manage to ring my bell at all, and others who were good enough to get the job done (barely), but not to leave me craving more of their company. The study I cited two weeks ago was exactly right: the chances of my sleeping with someone depend greatly on whether I think they’ll be good in bed, and its really hard to know how good a guy is going to be without taking him for a test run. I can’t count on picking up random guys in bars to lead to great, or even okay sex. On the other hand, if I’ve already had sex with a guy and know he’s good, why not use that knowledge to advance my own pleasure by continuing to sleep with him? There’s also the benefit that the more you sleep with someone, the more they learn about your personal turn ons and are able to adjust their technique to suit your tastes. Sex with any given person tends to get better with practice. So I practice.
If I have a choice between putting in lots of effort but not knowing how good the payoff will be, or putting in minimal effort for what I know will be a fun time, why the hell would I choose the former (especially given the lazy)? The thrill of something new pales in comparison to the frustration of discovering the hot guy you picked up doesn’t last for more than 5 thrusts. Not to say that men never have this problem of bringing home a dud (probably more than they admit, since half the fun of sleeping around is bragging rights), but generally I think women are less likely to assume up front that a random guy in a bar is going to be good in bed. Even if the goal is pure sexual pleasure and nothing resembling a relationship, it’s a better strategy for women to find someone who knows how to please them (which for a lot of women requires an investment of time and repeat sessions), than to try a bunch of random guys in hopes that some of them will happen to hit the mark. So I have lots of sex, even when I’m technically single, but I don’t have it with lots of men. Not because I don’t like casual sex, but because I’m strategic about how I engage in it.

Dr. Pisaster has a doctorate in biophysics, not actually anything sexy. She does however enjoy having sex, reading about sex, and talking about sex. Especially when she’s had a little whiskey.