This is a question science has been trying to tackle recently, with some mixed results. It’s a valid question: when women have so much more risk, biologically and socially, why are they still drawn to have one night stands with guys? One would think it’s in her evolutionary interests to force a man to commit in any circumstance, so why does she skirt the system so often? Studies have shown that the majority of women will have at least one night stand in their life, while a minority will have many. Why?
A new study came out recently, claiming the obvious saying that both women AND men are motivated to have sex for pleasure’s sake:
Her research suggests women, like men, are motivated by pleasure-seeking when they enter the sexual arena. It’s just that women are less likely to be satisfied by a short-term encounter, and they know it.
File this under “shit we already know.” It blows my mind that researchers actually receive grants to study these kinds of things sometimes, especially when they use such rigorous methods such as the following:
In an attempt to learn if gender differences toward casual sex can be eliminated, Conley conducted yet another variation on the basic “Will you go to bed with me?” experiment. Only in this case, the scenario featured one very attractive and one unattractive suitor: Depp and Donald Trump for women, Angelina Jolie and Roseanne Barr for men.
The result: Women were just as likely as men to agree to have sex with the attractive celebrity. They were also “about equally likely” to reject the offer from the unattractive but famous individual.
So wait, you mean you sat a bunch of women and asked them if they’d have sex with Johnny Depp? And they said yes?!?! Really? I’m sorry… but it’s bad enough that they’re conducting psychological research based on overly-simplified hypothetical situations, but this hypothetical?
The funny thing is, I’m willing to bet — and there’s no actual way to find this out — that if you actually put these same women in a situation where they COULD have sex with Johnny Depp for 30 minutes if they wanted to, that many of them actually wouldn’t go through with it. The truth is that a woman’s disposition towards having a one night stand depends on a lot of external factors as well as internal ones, factors this study does not control for in the least.
But ultimately, it does arrive at a somewhat accurate conclusion:
Still, it’s fascinating that when you remove that variable and give women the option of a casual encounter that is likely to be both safe and pleasurable, they are just as receptive as men. This research, Conley concludes, “suggests that women are more similar to men in their reactions to casual sex than would have initially been expected.”
That women find casual sex just as pleasurable as men do, their hold up isn’t the men per se, it’s that they need to feel more comfortable, secure and safe before they take part. Or as the study says, women are “more receptive, when they are with partners they know and trust.”
It seems the old adage that “the game is played in comfort” holds true… that getting her attracted to you isn’t the battle as much as keeping her attracted while you make her feel comfortable and safe with you.
Another reason women have one night stands is the same reason as men: they want to feel validated and wanted. The irony here is that a different study (this one based on actual experiences) found that men typically lower their standards with women they’re willing to have a one night stand with, whereas women raise them.
So while the girl is feeling validated by the fact you took her home, you know in the back of your mind that you wouldn’t date her in a million years. This also explains why girls with low self-esteem are far easier to lay.
Ultimately, women do have one night stands for the same reasons that men do: because sex is exciting and fun, and to feel better about themselves. And, I imagine, because they just get horny some times (like when they’re ovulating). The difference is in the criteria that must be met for them to go home with a guy. Whereas guys drop the standards a bit, women raise them, mostly for security reasons.