Well, there isn’t exactly a formula to casual sex dating. But there are some pretty good ground rules to set up for yourself and your relationship. The first rule of ground rules is to not talk about ground rules. Actually, it’s to make sure you’re setting them up. While most casual relationships are unspoken codes, there’s nothing worse than assuming both parties want the same thing.
If you’ve both agreed to casual sex dating, that’s great. You should be able to leave it at that. You’re likely on the same wave of thinking. Neither of you want to be tied down, or you’re not ready for something serious. Everyone has their own reason for wanting something casual. As long as you both want the same thing, it’s all good.
The second rule is addressing the first rule. Once you’ve set up ground rules, there should be an escape route made as well. A sort of safety-action that either of you can take if you’re starting to feel like you’re getting emotionally involved. Now, if either of you have entered the agreement saying “we’ll let it progress on it’s own”, you’re not looking for something casual. You’re just afraid of getting into a new relationship at that time in your life. You’re looking to buy time. But time isn’t for sale. Entering a casual relationship under false pretenses only wastes your time. Be realistic. A casual sex experience isn’t going to end with reading vows, right?
So the next rule is don’t let your emotions get the best of you. They will try. Emotions feel like such a burden sometimes. They can take a totally fun and careless experience and throw themselves into the mix to ruin everything. But, you don’t have to let them ruin everything. Recognize the signs. If you start feeling attached, see rule 2 and get out of the arrangement. If you think you can fight through it, you’re welcome to try. But the chances are, once feelings start to show, it’s too late to change them. You’re better off finding someone you don’t have feelings for. It’s rare that a casual relationship will develop into anything more. You’re more likely to get hurt believing it will.
Rule 4 is about respecting your arrangement. If you’ve agreed to exclusivity, maintain it. If your needs change, address it. Communicate with your partner the same way you would if you were in a normal relationship. There is no type of relationship in existence that doesn’t require communication. Whether it’s romantic, casual, or business. Every relationship requires communicated about a direction you’re mutually moving in. When the boundaries are over stepped, things can get messy. Establish boundaries. Respect those boundaries. Also, respect your partner and yourself. If your partner doesn’t respect you, call off the arrangement and find someone else. Being casual doesn’t mean you can walk all over each other.
The final rule is avoid all date-like activities. You may think it’s harmless fun to go out for a couple drinks or to the movies. Even if the intentions are just to spend time with one another, you’re sending the wrong signal. A causal relationship should be something that takes place mostly behind closed doors. You shouldn’t be introducing each other to friends and family. You shouldn’t be having outings that lead other people to mistake you as a couple. No holding hands, kissing on the couch, or sending cute text messages. You’re casual. Your interactions should be as well.
Now these rules don’t work for everyone. It’s impossible to come up with a list of guidelines that will. But it’s a good start to establishing your boundaries and picking a partner who will share those same boundaries.