Lifestyle Sex and Relationship 27 Dec 2019 Do one-nighters work ...

Do one-nighters work?

Published Dec 27, 2019, 12:38 am IST
Updated Dec 27, 2019, 12:38 am IST
One-night stands are incredibly simple and extraordinary complicated at the same time. Let’s see how...
A still from One Night Stand
 A still from One Night Stand

It’s the festive season and you’re single and ready to mingle. Sometimes, the evening culminates into that meeting of the eyes and an electric instant attraction that gravitates you to the other, like two magnets. You wonder in anticipation whether it will bring about the good night invite up to her or his place for a continued conversation and a ‘night cap’?

Do you already have an opinion on one-night stands? Consider this — it is not the carefree state that you may at first think it to be. It indeed may not be as simple as it seems and, of course, it depends on your psychology and how you view a one-night stand.


Are you the sort who views an evening spent thus as picking up your handbag or jacket the next morning and leaving with a vague promise to meet up soon, wending your way back to your life as usual, with no further ado? You both had a good evening and emotional attachment was not a part of the configuration. Perhaps that has been a pattern in your earlier equations.

If that works for you, good for you. No one needs to go into a moralistic diatribe about your life so long as you are okay with it. Least of all me, I am definitely not going to be the abhorrent vigilante!


And, yet, one-night stands are not everyone’s cup of tea. You may have been out for a night of fun, but even with a similar mindset, your partner may have expectations. If not for any degree of attachment, at least to be let off a bit more gently. Maybe they could have had farewell breakfast. It behoves one to be a little courteous, even if emotionally unengaged! I’d consider it a ‘humane’ rights issue, at the very least. And it need not be the lady, as generally presumed. A lady these days may be the one who more casually puts on the jacket and picks up the car keys for work as usual. It may be the man, ruefully collecting his bruised ego as he feels so casually used! No longer are stereotypes the norm; I find it is more often a man hankering for the relationship.


If you are checking into uncharted territory, then you especially may find you are out of your depth. You’ve given in to the flow of events with not much ado, there may be unanticipated consequences you might find difficult to cope with. It may only be the seasoned person who views one-night stands as almost entirely a proposition untrammelled by any emotional sentimental baggage. As they like to phrase it, it’s a physical thing. But wherever there is a pull of mutual attraction, usually it’s a little more than, to put it plainly, a blasé physical function.


The mind does evaluate with a flow of serotonin and dopamine, the feel-good hormones that bring along an inclusive feeling with the partner. So if you are a first time ‘offender’ so to say, you have to consider this inclusive feeling and some degree of expectation this brings; while your partner may be on the totally ‘physical thing’ trip! Take care as you may end up feeling cast-off, even abused. Why is it you wonder, that people go in for this very transitory experience, and, in fact, seek it out? Most seem inclined to the stability and base of a relationship, at least of some enduring status before bonding it with a common bed.


I wonder why in the first place go in for this very transitory interaction? Well, as I understand it, the one-nighters are largely commitment phobic. They are often of the view that life is too short to confine it to a ‘monotonous’ box-in with a repetitive single person. They even appear to see the field as an excitement-laden hunting ground! Sort of stargazing from a bubble tent.

Or, perhaps, they’ve come with a pre-conceived notion that they are never going to find that ‘right person’ and ‘why let life slip by?’, when they do find willing enough partners not demanding more from each other.
To be sure, the other side of the fencers who root for a satisfying relationship based on sharing and caring (however long it may last) have much to argue for their ‘happy state’, but it's indeed a live and let live world as qualified by our contemporary urban metros at any rate!


Women are their own persons, often financially independent, and of a firm sense that they are in charge of making own happiness — it is not from a husband or mother or father that they expect it. So it's their choice and responsibility.

We can thus sum-up, if consenting adults, even if not single, but ready to mingle, it's their path and their consequences to entail.

And don’t forget to consider where one-nighters go — often adventurous and exciting unknown territories, ventured into with not much thought, can come with hazards of sexually transmitted disease.


Maybe time to think this one through? More on this next time.

The writer is a columnist, designer and brand consultant. Mail her at