If most TV shows and movies have taught us anything, it’s that your one true love is worth waiting for, and sure, sex can be enjoyable, but one-night stands are something you should regret. The thing is a lot of people don’t regret one-night stands. Either way is totally fine and normal, and now we know a bit more about our post-one-night stand feelings thanks to a recent study performed by researchers from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology along with the University of Texas.
In short, they say if you’re regretting the night before, it’s because you’re apprehensive about the affair.
The researchers say that if you had negative emotions going into the romp — such as worry or you felt pressured to have sex — you probably regret the experience more than if you were excited going into the big event.
On the other hand, if you initiated contact, had an enjoyable time or had a great partner, you’re less likely to regret having a one-night stand. Specifically, your own pleasure and the skills of your partner really matter. (Of course, that makes most sex more enjoyable and ideally should be the standard.)
“Women who initiate sex… are likely to have a healthy sexual psychology, being maximally comfortable with their own sexuality. Second, women who initiate have maximum choice of precisely who they want to have sex with. Consequently, they have less reason to feel regret since they’ve made their own choice,” David M. Buss of the University of Texas told BBC News.
Other casual-sex findings
Keep in mind that if you had great sex on a one-time basis, you’ve kind of defied the odds. Research from a few years ago found that women are half as likely to climax during casual sex than they are in a relationship. Not that an orgasm is the only factor that comes with sex regret.
Interested in more findings about casual sex? A study by Canadian researchers published in the journal Archives of Sexual Behavior last year says that men and women with wider, shorter faces are more sexually motivated and have stronger sex drives. So if you’re not sure why you initiated, maybe it’s as simple as looking in the mirror.