Guest Post: How to: The Non-Relationship

A completely unsolicited guide to a non-relationship from your favorite guest poster, Colette.

The Non-Relationship is a glorious thing that few people ever get the opportunity to fully enjoy. If you’re single and the window of opportunity for a non-relationship comes up, you owe it to yourself to jump right through. So what the hell *is* a non-relationship? It may be hard to define for some, but it can be identified by the following key points:
1. You have great sex
Wait. That’s the only point of a non-relationship.

But how do I go about it? What if I mess it up? What if he likes me more than I like him? What if I start to have feelings for him? Should he spend the night? Should we hang out? What about…?

Relax! Take a breather and think about your situation before you get in your own way. If you’re wondering about enacting the non-relationship, you’ve probably already got someone in mind. Congratulations! Let’s assess. You met someone who is attracted to you and vice versa. Excellent. There is a very real possibility that you’re going to hook up soon. And possibly often. Congrats again, you sexy beast. Do you care what he does for a living? Do you care if your friends would like him? Do you imagine doodling your first name with his last name after it in the margin of your spiral notebook? If the answer to any of these questions was “yes”, then he’s probably not non-relationship material and you’re not ready for it anyway. But if you got to that last question and suddenly realized you don’t even know his last name (but you do know that you’ve imagined him naked at least a handful of times), then you’re well on your way!

In my experience, when two people are at a stage in their lives where they are both looking to have great sex with zero commitment and zero strings, something magical happens. Each person knows exactly where he/she stands without having to have a real discussion about it. And that’s probably because the relationship these two people have already established is not too deep. In fact, there aren’t a ton of discussions in general, so why have one about feelings? If this is your first attempt at a non-relationship and you just don’t feel comfortable without at least letting your thoughts be known, then go ahead and throw it out there. If he’s up for it, then you just became a very lucky woman.

Let’s again take a minute to assess. You’re attracted to this guy. You want to sleep with him. That’s it. If you’re honest with yourself and that’s your only real expectation, then there’s no better time than the present.

Broaching the subject:
Text him to see if he has any plans tonight. Yes, text. I would suggest making this a day when you’re not working the next. If you’re slightly more confident and don’t mind being forward, ask him if he has any plans early tomorrow. 😉

Get together for drinks. Sit at the bar, not a table.

Chit chat as much as you want until your drinks get there. If you can’t or don’t bring up what you want to say by the time either of you are done your first drinks, then you’re probably not ready for a non-relationship with this guy.

Tell him what your plans are for him. Example:

So Jason, here’s the thing: I’m attracted to you. And I’m pretty sure that feeling is mutual. I don’t know how you feel, but I am really not interested in a relationship. I like the vibe we have. I think we could have a lot of fun together.

That’s it. That’s all you need to say.

If he’s not on the same page, don’t worry about it! If this if your first time being completely honest with someone this way, it might feel very strange to get rejected. Because let’s face it, this is a rejection. But who cares? You didn’t die. You set out with a goal in mind and you did what you wanted to do. In the long run, if he’s not interested in hooking up right now, for whatever reason, then saying “no thanks” is saving you a big hassle later.

If he agrees with you, you’re in business. The only other question should be, “Your place, or mine?” Pay the tab. Get the hell out of there and have fun, you goddess of everything fierce and awesome. You deserve it.

What happens next is all up to you two. I hope you have a fabulously naughty time. Here’s just a bit more insight from my own experience. Don’t think of this as a rule book, because there really aren’t any rules. This is just the formula that has been successful for me.
Stick with text messages. And only for the express purpose of making plans to get together. A sext here or there is great because it keeps you fired up. I was lucky enough to not have to initiate the sexts, so I simply played along.
Don’t get caught up in the details. If after a few hookups, you still really don’t want a relationship with this guy (nor he, you), try not to upset the balance. His personal shit is really not relevant to you. As soon as you start talking about friends, family, work, you fall into the “stress unloading” talks that become mainstays in real relationships. Ugh. Avoid. The only stress you need to unload with this guy can be taken care of in the bedroom. Or the kitchen. Or the car. Whatever.
Stay honest. With yourself. With him. If you get the sense one of your feelings has changed, do a quick reality check.
Is it you? Do you suddenly want Jason to be “Jason, my boyfriend” instead of “Jason, my non-relationship?” Cut ties. You don’t want to mess up a good thing by having a relationship talk when you’re the one who wanted a non-relationship to begin with. If you tell him you’re calling a time-out on the non-relationship and he agrees, but then a few days go by and he calls (breaking the text custom) and say’s he can’t stop thinking about you and needs you in his life and not just in his bed, then you’ve just found out you’re playing a starring role in a romantic comedy. Chances are, this isn’t going to happen. As much as you want him to reciprocate your feelings, if there’s no follow up after you decide to go on hiatus, then he wasn’t feeling the same things you were. Or he wasn’t ready to admit them if he had them. His loss.
Is it him? Does Jason suddenly start texting just to say hi? Does he send you a friend request on facebook? Is he asking you out on dinner dates instead of coming over for a midnight snack? Is there a greater proportion of talk before having sex any given day/night than after? Has he just come right out and said that he’s into you more? These are pretty good indicators that the non-relationship status is shifting. Again, honesty is your best friend here. Think about what you wanted when you started and what you want now. Then act.
-Have a feelings-free out. Again, in my experience, this was pretty easy. I won’t tell you how to do it, figure that out what works for you both. In my case, I was lucky enough to “take a raincheck” or “tap out for a while”. Both of which I texted in response to requests to get together. One time I even said admitted that I started seeing someone else. We’re all grown ups here. There were no hurt feelings.

I wish you all the best in your non-relationship endeavors. Have fun!

*Note: avoid any attempts at a non-relationship structure with someone you are already friends with or see on a regular basis. That’s a recipe for disaster. And a whole other topic entirely.

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