Sunday, November 17, 2013

The Science of One-Night Stands

I think that it's no surprise that beginning a budding relationship with going to bed on the first occasion is not an effective strategy for long-term mating (i.e., one that is marked by a marriage ceremony eventually), although some may regard this as a short-term mating strategy to be selectively used.

Years ago, a group of researchers from Florida found, to nobody's surprise, that men were less selective than women.  Young men and women were asked to approach people that they considered attractive enough to mate with and ask them (a) for a date; (b) to visit the asker's apartment; or (c) to mate with.  Only 3% of women agreed to the apartment visit; and none agreed to have sex.  The men respondents, on  the other hand, agreed to have sex with 75% of the women invitees, no matter their perceived attractiveness.

Reading further into what's available about one-night stands, two different reports indicated that Australian women or Norwegian women were most likely to have one-night stands. 

Researcher Anne Campbell of Durham University found that among 3,300 respondents between the ages of 17 and 40, more than half reported a one-night stand, about evenly split between men and women. Overall women's morning-after feelings were more negative than men's. While 80 percent of men had overall positive feelings, just 54 percent of women had positive feelings.
Women predominantly reported "regret at being used," with additional comments including: "I felt cheap," "horrified afterward," and "I felt degraded. Made myself look cheap and easy."  Apparently, they did not take into account the fact that guys' standards drop dramatically when it comes to an opportunity for easy sex.

In general, women are not well-adapted to a short-term mating strategy.  However, they might be more disposed to this during the peak of their menstrual cycles.  In general, they have too much more to lose.

[Pro tip: if you're unmarried and don't want a bambino, better stay home than go out looking to meet guys with this approach.  Or, even better, follow the old-fashioned Baseball Rule: second base only after the fifth occasion, etc.]

My point is that there are some bona fide reasons for the courtship rituals, whatever form they might take from culture to culture.  They allow for a couple to sort out whether or not they want a long-term relationship, or whether they're just responding to hormones.  It may be useful, too, for a graduated increase in the type and tempo of affections to serve to the man that his attempts are well-received, and that he is not just simply spinning his wheels.

Now after my pontificating, a little joke:

 John took his blind date to the carnival. "What would you like to do first, Kim?" asked the man. 

"I want to get weighed," said the girl.

They ambled over to the weight guesser. He guessed 120 pounds. She got on the scale; it read 117 and she won a prize.

Next the couple  went on the ferris wheel. When the ride was over, John again asked  Kim what she would like to do.

"I want to get weighed," she said.

Back to the weight guesser they went. Since they had been there before, he guessed her correct weight, and John lost his dollar.

The  couple walked around the carnival and again he asked where to next.

 "I want to get weighed," she responded. By this time, John figured she was really weird and took her home early, dropping her off with a handshake.

Her roommate, Laura, asked her about the blind date, "How'd it go?"

Kim responded, "Oh, Waura, it was wousy."


TexWisGirl said...

ha ha.

Anonymous said...

Girls who sleep around are losers and hos.

Mike said...

75% for guys seems a bit low.

Bilbo said...

I loved the joke!