sex first; relationship later?
It’s been said that there’s a pattern to everything. And when it comes to relationships our society has laid the foundations for it quite clearly – you meet, you woo, you copulate, you fall in love.
But can the pattern work in a different order? In these times of casual sex can you ever segue your bedmate into your real mate? If you start with sex, can you ever have anything more?
I bring this up because it tends to be my pattern. On several occasions I have slept with a man innocently enough only to then fall hard.
It doesn’t happen right away and I’m almost never looking for anything beyond an orgasm. But usually after a few romps in the sack, some post-coital communication and an underlying attraction, I find it hard-pressed not to start excessively pinning and basically getting caught up in the rapture. Is my lust really triggering love? And if so, is it ever feasible that a real relationship will come out of it?
According to Helen Fisher, anthropologist and author of Why We Love? the answer is yes and possibly. Fisher says that “the hormone of sexual desire can trigger the release of the brains’ elixirs for romantic passion.” Basically after-sex cuddling with my one-night-stand sends all sorts of messages to my brain that are fueling my ardor.
So while it’s biologically possible, is it ever realistic or, for that matter, advisable?
My friend Meg slept with her now boyfriend before they started dating. They had been friends for some time but one night had a little too much to drink and ended up screwing. Three years later, they live together and are now contemplating getting married.
I haven’t had nearly as much success. In fact because of my penchant for falling for my friends-with-benefits I now have to avoid the Circa computer lab by Marston and also have stopped going to a certain ‘Sunday-Funday’ pool party.
I can’t help but think that gender differences play an underlying part here. It’s easy for women to get caught up in the intimacy created from sex, but for men, if there’s no challenge, no wooing, no working for it, they tend to lose interest. Why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free, right?
Truth is, I wish I had an answer. While some of my friend’s have been successful in this department, I most certainly have not.
Perhaps the answer is simply that no one wants to tell their grandchildren that their happily ever after began with “once upon a time we had too much to drink and I took grandma home from the bar…”
Maybe the pattern is that relationships begin, end and subsist in all manners and forms. If you can make it work, great. In fact, if you can, do you think you could e-mail me how? I’d rather not avoid a certain bar altogether anymore.