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Hookup Tips: How to Prioritize Your Needs and Desires

Couple in love kissing against the wall

Prioritizing your needs and desires with casual hookups is important for your sexual health. All the hookup tips advise you to be honest with your partners about what you want, but this is all about you getting what you want too.

Are hookups worth it? For some, yes

Causal hookups are great if you’re not looking for something serious. Stay honest with the people involved, and then there’s absolutely no harm in having a bit of fun. And also, casual dating can be a good way for you to work out what you like and what you don’t. Although, you should take some precautions if you don’t want to catch the feels.
Let’s face it, we know it can be easy when you’re sleeping with someone on a regular basis to start feeling something more. But if you’re casually dating, you need to keep your heart close to avoid this.

You should only use casual dating to satisfy your needs and desires while staying respectful and honest with the person that you’re dating, and without letting it turn into a relationship. There’s a few things to think about, right? As you can already tell, casual dating is not for everyone.

Firstly, before going any further, you need to be honest with yourself about what you want and need. Are you sure that you can handle casual dating? Is hooking up with someone new all you really want, or are you secretly hoping for a serious relationship?
Be honest with yourself, and don’t do anything that goes against what you really want. If you’re hoping to fall in love, casual dating is probably not right for you, at least for now. On the other hand, if you’re perfectly fine with casual hookups, let the following hookup tips help you get the most out of this situation and prioritize yourself.

1. Honestly communicate your needs and desires

Couple in a casual relationship talking in a bar with low lighting

The first rule of casual hookups is not to lie about what you want. Don’t get involved with someone who wants more if all you want is sex.

This is not just about being fair to them, it’s also about you getting what you want. Someone who wants more isn’t going to give you what you want. You don’t need a partner who will act like they’re in a relationship with you or get heartbroken once the hookup ends. Communicate your needs and desires openly and honestly if you want to find the right person for what you’re looking for right now.

For instance, you could tell them that you’re not interested in a committed relationship, but that you would like to be friends with benefits if they’re up for it. Communicating your needs and desires doesn’t refer only to the type of relationship you want, it also means that you should openly talk about sex and your likes in the bedroom, as well as what else you need from this person to make this work.

2. Set boundaries before sleeping together

What are the ground rules for your hookup? How often are you going to see each other, and are you going to be exclusive? These are just some of the answers that you need to honestly answer to yourself and your partner. Don’t sleep with someone before setting boundaries and aligning your expectations.

How will you act in public? Will you talk often, or just meet for sex? How will you end the fling once the time comes? Talk about these things on time to avoid broken hearts and different expectations.

Is it okay that your partner frequently calls or texts? Are you going to get in touch only to arrange hookups instead? Discuss all of these things ahead of time to prioritize your needs and desires without anyone getting hurt.

3. Stay distant and mysterious

Couple laughing in the backyard

Share only the important things about yourself with your hookup buddy. They don’t need to know about your hopes and dreams for the future.

Casual hookups are about right now, not the past or the future. It’s best if you only talk about hooking up and focus on that instead of learning more about each other. This will keep you from getting attached and it will clearly define your relationship as just a casual fling.

Stay emotionally distant and a bit mysterious to prioritize your needs and at the same time keep things new, hot, and exciting. It’s also a good idea not to connect on social media, you don’t need to know anything about each other except that there’s enough chemistry to hook up with no regrets.

4. See each other sporadically and causally

Don’t hook up too frequently, or it could end up pretty serious quickly. It’s best that there’s always some safe distance between you and your partner, spending too much time together will put you at risk of developing romantic feelings for each other.

How much you meet up is up to you, this is different for everyone. But you shouldn’t message each other too often when you’re not together. Also, some good advice is to spend a lot of days apart in between hookups. If you keep it to the point, your hookup is more likely to be successful and stay just a hookup.

5. Don’t get mad at them

Since you’re not in a relationship, you shouldn’t get jealous or mad. Don’t freak out when they ignore your message or take forever to respond, it’s okay if they take some time. You also shouldn’t react if they decide to sleep with someone else.

And remember, the same rules apply to them. If they get jealous or angry, they’re breaking the ground rules. Something has changed and your hookup is no longer working for them, so it won’t work for you either.

6. Focus on yourself and prioritize other things in your life

Sophisticated woman with glasses reading a book

Don’t neglect other areas of your life because of a casual relationship. If you’re looking for something real with someone else, feel free to look for it too.

Most importantly, don’t ditch your friends or cancel other plans because of a casual relationship. If you’re too busy to fool around with your hookup buddy, schedule it for another time instead of canceling your plans.

Prioritize other things in your life, such as your hobbies, job, self-care, and time with friends. You can’t let your life start revolving around something casual. When they text or call, and you’re doing something else, don’t feel that you must respond right away.

You also don’t owe them information on where you’ll be and who you’ll be with when you go out with friends. Sure, you might voluntarily share this information, but know that you’re not obligated to do so when the relationship is casual.

If that doesn’t work for your partner, talk about the ground rules again. You both must agree on them for this to work, and it’s best to regularly check in and discuss them to make sure nothing has changed in the meantime.

7. Don’t meet each other’s friends or family

Someone that you’re casually dating isn’t someone that you bring to meet your friends or family, nor do you agree to meet their loved ones. Casual relationships are best kept private. Until you see a future with someone, don’t introduce each other to friends or family members. This might mean that you’ll go to big events without a plus one, but it’s better to keep it that way until you meet someone that you’re serious about.

If you bring your casual partner with you, your friends and family will assume that you’re serious about them, and this could complicate things. In addition, you would give your partner the same impression, which complicates things even more.

8. Don't feel like you need exclusivity

Casual hookup touching hands in a bar

Casual relationships are not necessarily exclusive. They can be, but this is something that you discuss early on and agree on as one of the ground rules. It’s taken case by case. However, it’s probably best to not be exclusive when you’re casual.

As long as you’re honest with everyone involved, you can casually date several people. Of course, they don’t need to know the details, but be honest about not wanting to be exclusive and about already seeing other people.

Talk about being exclusive or non-exclusive to also know whether your partner is seeing someone else. You both need to be on the same page about whether the relationship is exclusive or not, so don’t assume anything without talking about it first.

9. Stay safe

When you’re casually dating multiple people, it’s important to think about safety, especially since you probably don’t know them so well.

This means that you should practice safe sex, but also that you should notify your loved ones about your location and give them information about the people that you’re dating.

While you shouldn’t introduce your hookup buddies to your family and friends, it’s best that you keep some of your loved ones informed about your whereabouts and about the people that you’re seeing. Choose a few trusted friends or family members and let them know about your casual hookups to make sure that you stay safe.

Stay safe by not sharing too much personal information with your partners. Meet them in a public place before deciding whether you want to let them know your location by bringing them home.

10. End things respectfully

Black woman texting on her phone to end up a casual hookup

Stay respectful to the people that you’re dating. While you may not romantically love them, you still need to treat them kindly and respectfully. This means that you end things respectfully too.

Avoid being mean by ghosting these people. They knew what they were getting into so you don’t owe them too much, but it’s important to give them closure. You could send something along the lines of “I had a great time with you, but I’m not feeling it anymore.” End things when the arrangement no longer works for you or when either of you starts catching unwanted feelings.

So, are hookups worth it?

While it might be the perfect arrangement for some, many people are not cut out for sex with no feelings, and that’s okay too. Always make sure to check in with yourself and your partner about your wants and needs to make sure to keep prioritizing them.

Disclaimer: #Dating’s blog posts are for you to view at your discretion, and the sexual health insights presented are for general information only. It is not intended as medical advice and readers should seek professional guidance if appropriate.


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