Don’t worry: Catching feelings after a one-night stand is super normal


After casual sex, I often get emotionally attached to whoever I slept with, even if I know I dont want to be with them. Ill snap out of it later, but how can I better separate emotions and sex? Sometimes I just want to orgasm without catching feelings. L.G., 26, Los Angeles

I would have given anything to have had casual sex when I was single! Just be glad people are willing to sleep with you. If you get emotionally attached, so be it. Nothing heals that more than time, a cheese plate, and a little alcohol. (Just go easy on the cheese.) There are much harder things in life to have to go through. Like getting diabetesmuch worse. I mean, I dont have ­diabetes, but I could be a few cheese plates away. So dust yourself off and get back out there! Fortune Feimster, comedian and actress on The Mindy Project

Ask yourself: Is the sex really, truly casual? It can get tricky when you know someone a little but havent figured out your feelings yet. So the fewer details you have about him, the more your brain will let things be purely physical. A lot of times after casual sex, a woman will take whatever she knows about the guy and build him up as the perfect partner and daydream about a life with him, which can increase attachment. Check yourself by remembering that you dont know him wellafter all, he could be weird and think its normal to take you on a date to Señor Frogs. And you dont want feelings for someone like that. Jordana Abraham, cofounder of Betches and coauthor of I Had a Nice Time and Other Lies: How to Find Love & Sht Like That*

The term casual sex can be a bit of a misnomer. For many, sex has consequences. While some can keep it no strings attached, others will develop feelings. My research shows that sex and the physiological fireworks involved can actually prime the brain for romantic attachment, and for some women (and men), the emotional responses to sex are part of the pleasure. So recognize that it may not be possible for you to keep emotions separate, and then decide if its worth it. Justin Garcia, Ph.D., associate director for research, The Kinsey Institute, Indiana University

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