Friday, 8 May 2015

Can women really do 'no strings attached' relationships?

It’s no secret that men and women are different when it comes to sex and matters of the heart.  However, lately the lines between men and women have become rather blurry.  Women are becoming more independent and empowered, and as a result, own their sexuality in a way that they have never done before.  Women are having one-night stands, and ‘no strings attached’ relationships, and they are no longer allowing themselves to be judged for doing so.  And rightly so, men have been living this way for years, and there has never been a stigma attached to them.  If a man chooses to sew his wild oats, then he is a king, a player, and it is celebrated.  If a woman chooses to do the same, she is a slut, too promiscuous, and she is shamed for it.  I absolutely agree that a woman should be given the same right to explore her sexuality that a man has.  If she chooses to have a string of one-night stands or a friend with benefits, rather than a relationship, then so she should.

However, I wonder, is it really a choice that women make, or is it something they feel they have to do?  Is it really their own decision, or do they feel it’s their only option?  Can women really have ‘no strings attached’ sex or do we naturally attach strings, so to speak? 

For me personally, I find it difficult to not become emotionally attached to someone that I become physical with.  However, I recognize this in myself and as a result, I don’t have ‘no strings attached’ sex or hook ups of any kind.  I do believe there are women that can have these kinds of relationships, and don’t worry about becoming attached, because they have found someone that they only connect with on a physical level.  If there is any emotional connection between them, then I believe a woman is lying to herself if she tells herself that there are no strings attached. 

The reason I was inspired to write this tonight is because I have a friend who is going through this at the moment.  B was in a ‘no strings attached’ relationship with a friend of hers.  However, she found after a few months of this, she was beginning to develop feelings for him.  She told him how she felt, and wasn’t given the response that she wanted.  Now B is faced with a decision, does she cut all ties with him and move on, or does she settle for their ‘no strings attached’ relationship.  The choice for the type of relationship that they could have was taken from her; he made the choice for her.  It’s this, or nothing.  So what is a girl to do?

It reminded me of my relationship with V.  For months I wanted more, and he only wanted to be friends.  We basically acted like a couple, but we weren’t a couple.  Our relationship was never physical (because I had to protect my heart), but the choice was still the same.  It was friendship, or nothing.  I chose friendship, on his terms, because I couldn’t stand the thought of not having him in my life.  I made the wrong choice.  He was bad for me, and thankfully, a little over a month ago; I realized this and ended our “friendship”. 

B is now faced with the same choice.  She can either move on from H, or she can go back to their ‘no strings attached’ relationship, and force herself to be happy with it.  B and I discussed her relationship tonight, and we realized that there really isn’t an emotional connection there with H.  We think that she has fooled herself into believing that there is something more than what there is, because she wants it so bad.  She’s lonely and as a result, she has imaged there to be an emotional connection where there really is only a physical one.

This is exactly why I don’t have sex until I know there is an emotional connection.  Because regardless of whether or not there is, I will believe there to be one because there is a physical one.  My mind confuses lust with love, unless I remove lust from the equation.  I believe B is similar to me in this aspect.  However, perhaps with her realization that there really isn’t an emotional connection there, she can go back to their previous relationship, without getting hurt.

For me personally, I couldn’t risk it.  My heart has been through too much, and I know myself too well.  I would inevitably be hurt by the relationship, or lack there of.  However, I personally know women who can do it.  I have a friend who rarely associates sex with emotion and only establishes physical connections with partners.  I admire her for being able to do so, and more power to her for it.  But, I also know women who pretend that they can do it, but can’t.  They pretend that their ‘no strings attached’ relationship is their own choice, when it was really the only option they had.  It was that or nothing for them, and they chose to accept the relationship for what it was, for fear of having nothing. 

I have advised B to think it over some more, and figure out what she really wants before jumping into anything.  If she realizes she really doesn’t have an emotional connection to H, and she wants to continue the relationship exactly how it was, then good for her.  I think she should go for it.  But I’d hope that if there were any doubt in her mind that she can really have a ‘no strings attached’ relationship with H without wanting more, she would make the choice to move on.  Because trust me, making a choice to settle for less than what you want, for fear of losing someone completely, is the wrong choice.  I made it with V, and I regretted it.  It just prolonged the inevitable, and made the sting of losing him far worse.

I hope she makes the right choice for herself, and only herself.  If she believes there is more than just a physical connection there, then she needs to move on.  She is a beautiful, strong woman, and she will be just fine on her own.  But if she really believes that she can have a ‘no strings attached’ relationship, and it truly is her own choice, then she should embrace her freedom to have any type of relationship that she chooses.  All that I ask from her is that whatever she chooses really is her own choice, and not something that she feels she has to settle for, for fear of having nothing. 

Embrace your womanhood B, and make the right choice for you, as an independent and empowered woman.