What Is A Hookup? And 11 Other Definitions You Need To Know
What's the point of a committed relationship when hooking up gets you all the positives anyway? Hooking up takes everything we love about relationships - sex, instant gratification, intimate connections, and does away with all the nonsense. With hookups, you don't have to worry about taking your 'other half' to dinner or impressing her with expensive gifts. It's a win-win for everyone.
And that's why casual sexual encounters are the number one way young adults are getting their kicks in the modern age. College students, middle-aged people, even the elderly are all doing away with relationships and turning to casual sex instead. Are you interested in getting involved in this world yourself? Then read on, because we're here to answer all your questions starting with - what's a hookup?
The Definition of Hooking Up
A hookup is a non-commital meeting between two people with the desired result being sexual gratification. Basically, you meet up, do the deed, then go your separate ways. No questions asked. There's no expectation that you'll meet again and no expectation that your brief interaction will be anything but that. The goal is sex, and both parties know this going in. No strings attached.
Hookups can take place anywhere, from a private bedroom to a public parking lot. In the past few years, hook ups have permeated college campuses across the world, birthing what's since become known as hookup culture - a society typified by no-strings sexual intercourse without any further commitment. As of 2022, one third of college-aged women report engaging in no strings attached sex on a regular basis.
11 Hookup Terms You Need To Know
That's the long and short of things, and it's pretty easy to get to grips with. Hooking up is the natural result of a world obsessed with casual sex, and it offers a million advantages of a regular relationship (which we'll look more at later). But if you want to dive into this world of promiscuous sexual behavior, you should first familiarize yourself with some of the so-called "hookup terminology" out there.
Now, there are so many different definitions for casual sex out that we've pretty much invented terms for every little nuance of the hook up scene. During your journey through the world of sexual hookups, you'll certainly come across a few of these phrases, so it's a good idea to get a handle of them before you jump in head first. Here are 11 hookup terms to familiarize yourself with before you get started.
Hookup culture is the theory that most young people are avoiding serious relationships to indulge in endless recreational sex with a series of different partners. One study from a large university suggests that over one 60% of college students have engaged in at least one hookup during their time at college, and more than one third of sexually active young people are having these kinds of transient sexual experiences on a regular basis.
Hookup culture is the very definition of hooking up. It incorporates everything modern society has come to love about sexual experiences; sexual touching, oral sex, every sexual act under the sun. Providing it's brisk and non-commital, it falls under the umbrella of hookup culture. It's also important to remember that while college students birthed this phenomenon, it's not exclusive to college students by any means.
One Night Stand
A one night stand is the definition of hooking up. One night stands involve two people meeting, usually for the first time, then heading to the bedroom to knock boots. When people talk about promiscuous sexual activity, chances are they're talking about one night stands. Research shows that most students have engaged in at least one night stand during their three-year university tenure, with around 36% having them on a regular basis.
Does this kind of hookup differ from others? A little, because the difference is that you don't know a one night stand is a one night stand until long afterwards. Quite often, these kinds of hookups can progress into different kinds of hookup relationships (which we'll look into next), but in the cases of one night stands, the two people involved never see each other or hookup ever again.
What happens when a one night stand becomes something more? Then you've entered into a fuck buddy relationship. Unlike a monogamous relationship, a fuck buddy arrangement is solely about the fucking, as the name suggests. You and your fuck buddy will enjoy non-commital sexual behaviors together on a regular basis, but not concern yourselves with the additions that comes with a romantic relationship.
That means no hanging out, no going to dinner, no catching movies together. Usually, both people involved are well aware of these limitations before they enter into the relationship, so everyone is fully aware of the ground rules. Additionally, there are multiple definitions for what constitutes a fuck buddy relationship, so be sure to make things clear before you jump into one.
Friend With Benefits
The 'friends with benefits' label is often used interchangably with 'fuck buddy,' but there are a few notable differences between the two. While both relationships are categorized by two individuals having regular sex with one another, friends with benefits have a little more leeway when it comes to doing things outside of the bedroom. In this case, the 'friends' part of the label is quite important.
Circumstances around the way you meet may also be a factor. For example, if two people were already friends, and they then progress to hooking up, they're more likely to remain friends as well as having sex, so they'd be friends with benefits. However, if you meet your fuck partner within the context of hooking up (and then continue to hook up), chances are you'll be more fuck buddies than friends with benefits.Kittenfishing
We've all heard of catfishing, right? That's when someone sets up a fake profile for the purposes of misleading someone else. However, kittenfishing is the less-dangerous, less-scammy little sister of catfishing. Kittenfishing is when people use filters, fancy angles and photoshop edits to make their pictures appear more desirable than the real life product. Basically, its's when people virtually prop themselves up to unrealistic levels.
If you spend any time online dating (and you will if you're interested in hooking up), then you're going to come across a few of these types. You'll regularly find people who hide behind filters and edits to make themselves appear more desirable, and the downside is that you won't know about it until you A) meet them in person or B) video chat with them. Always keep your wits about you, because the hookup scene is full of kittenfishers.Ghosting
There's been a lot of talk about ghosting in the past few years. It's a prety hot topic, especially as it's so incredibly common in the world of hooking up. And while it sucks, it's inevitable that you'll get ghosted at some point on your casual sex journey. Basically, ghosting is when someone stops replying to your messages and doesn't give you a reason for doing so. It's very frustrating, and can really affect a person's mental health.
Ghosting can really have negative consequences for the ghostee, especially if that person is a classic over-thinker. So, if you're looking to get involved with a number of hookup partners, try not to ghost anyone. Sure, you don't owe anyone explanations for anything, but it's always a good idea to explain your actions to avoid any negative outcomes or negative feelings. No one said hookup culture was all positive, so the least you can do is not ghost anyone.Benching
Benching is when you keep a girl holding on while you sleep with someone better. Let's say you're seeing a girl and it's going great, but then an even hotter girl comes along and she starts taking up all your time. You might be tempted to 'bench' the original girl to keep her warm, then only bring her back out onto the playing field once your new squeeze has moved on. It sounds immoral, but this is a cornerstone of hook up culture too.
The truth is that most young adults in the world of hook up culture are in a constant state of benching or being benched. The downside is that you don't know you're on the bench until you're brought back onto play, usually in the form of a midnight booty call. Unfortunately, if you're a part of the hook up world, benching is a natural part of the process, so it's important to get comfortable with it. Chances are you'll be spending some time there yourself.Hibernationship
A hibernationship is a relationship that you strike up to get you through the cold winter months. It's no secret that most hookups take place during summer, and during winter some people just want to kick back with a trusted partner who'll provide all the physical intimacy they need. Sometimes, this can take the form of a committed relationship, so always keep your wits about you when you see women cruishing for relationships during the fall.
Of course, you might be looking for your own hibernationship to last you until the spring, but it's often easy to confuse a hibernationship with a serious relationship. It could also lead to negative emotional outcomes if you and her have mismatched expectations, so make sure you're altogether clear with what's going on. Young people are happy to divulge their true intentions (hookup culture has made us a lot more honest), so always ask the questions.Cushioning
Cushioning is a bit of shady dating tactic, so it pays to be aware of this one. Cushioning is when someone in a committed relationship keeps a bunch of single people on the hook in case their relationship goes down the pan. Men and women are equally guilty of this one, so everyone needs to keep an eye out for any red flags that that charming online dater you're talking to might actually be in a long term relationship.
Now, cushioning is nothing new. People have been pulling this little trick for decades, but it's since become all too common in today's world of endless hooking up. You might not think there's anything wrong with this, especially if you're the single person in the arrangement, but cushioners tend to be unreliable, dishonest and toxic, so they're not the kind of people you want to have sexual intercourse with.
Pie hunting is the act of purposely seeking out daters with disastrous dating or relationship histories. We're not sure if this is genius or cruel, but pie hunting preys on the weakness and low well being of others, and while it might translate to hooking up, it's still a little immoral and should be avoided. But why do people do this? What makes people with low self-esteem appealing to others?
Well, for one, these people are 'safe.' Chances are desperate people will be more likely to hookup, not to mention they'll be a lot more committed given they've recently had their hearts broken. It's the hookup equivalent of hitting on widows at their husbands' funerals. It's definitely a strategically ambiguous approach, and we don't encourage it. If you''re getting into the hookup world because you've recently been wronged, look out for pie hunters!Roaching
Roaching is a new dating term that refers to people who hide the truth from their hookup partners. The term refers to the fact that if you see a cockroach, chances are there a few more lurking about somewhere. If we're being honest, most people involved in hookup culture are fucking around. College students are probably fucking about half of the other students on campus, and this is something that everyone needs to be at ease with.
Casual hookups are a numbers game, so there's really no point in hiding your true intentions. But for some reason, people do, perhaps because they're afraid of upsetting their current hookup partner. But doing so is risky behavior, because if your hookup partner is under the impression you're only seeing them, then they discover the truth is a little greyer, it can have some severe negative outcomes and deeply affect mental health. Always be honest.
The Pros & Cons Of Hooking Up
Hooking up comes with a wide range of advantages and disadvantages. You might not yet be sold on the whole idea of hookup culture, and indeed this world isn't for everyone, but you should familiarize yourself with the potential ups and downs before making your decision. Here are the pros and cons of hooking up.
No strings sex
At some point, everyone desires no strings casual sex. Even the most hopeless romantic has craved a rock hard stud or a dripping wet slut for the night without any intention of taking things further, and hookup culture has brought this fantasy to the masses. By its own definition, hooking up is nothing but a good time.
Obviously, this is the most appealing feature of hooking up. In today's world of busy college students and overworked adults, very few people have the time or energy for talking, let alone dating. To counter our problems, we've all turned to hookup culture, and hookup culture has delivered every single time.
You don't have to be a bonafide G or a certified stud to get involved in hook up culture. Everyone has to start somewhere, and if you're into the world of hooking up, you can get a ton of practice under your belt without having to waste time finding 'the one.' Hell, a lot college students reported engaging in hookups to lose their virginities.
Hooking up allows you to get your fill of sexual activity while bagging some much-needed practice at the same time. It's no secret that you'll be pretty bad at sex the first few times you try (and probably a lot longer), but there's less pressure to perform to an A-grade standard when you know everyone involved will be fucking someone else the next night anyway.
Mental health boosting
Any vigorous sexual activity will have fantastic effects on your physical well being, but did you know that it can greatly improve your emotional and mental health too? Sex is a natural stress buster, and releases the same chemicals as we would when receiving good news. With sex, endorphins and dopamine are coming at you in spades.
A study from the University of Montana found that college students who engage in frequent sexual behaviors are less prone to anxiety, more equipped to deal with stress and have higher overall mental health. Additional research also showed that regular sexual activity had a correlation with better performance at college too!
Let's say that you're into some kinky shit. It's nothing to be ashamed of. We've all got something weird that gets us off, right? Sure, and you might feel a little strange even talking about your nasty perversions with a long term partner, let alone actually doing it with them. But with a hookup partner, you don't have to hold back anymore.
Why not? Well, the whole point of hooking up is to indulge your filthiest sexual fantasies. Plus, if everyone's going around nailing each other, chances are it's gonna expose people to some downright bizarre fantasy scenarios. Hookup culture has hardened us all up to kinky acts and saucy fetish roleplay, so you're free to indulge your deepest, most taboo desires.
Hooking up doesn't have to cost anything. All it will cost is your time, a little bit of energy and the gas it costs to get to her place. In the grand scheme of things, this is practically nothing, not to mention that it's a small price to play for sexual gratification. Short of hiring the hooker that lives next door, a hookup is the cheapest way to get your rocks off.
Compare this to standard dating, when any meetup is going to cost you probably a minimum of $30, and there's no guarantee that you'll even get underneath clothing afterwards. And once you get past the first date, you can expect to pay $40 for dinner then even more for her cab fare home. Put simply, dating costs a ton, hooking up costs nothing.
Could get attached
Any sexual encounters naturally creates an emotional connection between the two people involved. Try as you might to maintain pluralistic ignorance, you can't resist your own biological responses. The harsh truth is that physical intimacy creates emotional intimacy, so there's a chance you might fall head over heels in love with your hookup partner by accident.
Unfortunately, this is all too common in the hookup world. There can easily be mismatched expectations between you and the other person when hooking up, but (as we'll see in the next point), hooking up rarely leads to any kind of fruitful relationship. This is one of the biggest downsides of hooking up, so be aware that it could happen to you.
The sad truth is that hookup relationships barely progress to anything more. Once you've hooked up with someone, the absolute best outcome is that you might hook up again. If you're on the hunt for a relationship with a little more stability, you'll rarely find it by hooking up first. It's a tough pill to swallow, but it's true.
The precise elements as to why this aspect of hookup culture exists is not fully understood. It possibly has something to do with the contextual foundations of your relationship. Like they say, first impressions count, and if your partner's first impressions of you are as someone to provide them sexual satisfaction and nothing more, chances are it'll stay that way forever.
As well as mental health issues, the most damning part of the casal sexual experience is the rise in sexually transmitted infections. Since we're all having sex at an unprecedented rate, it's totally understandable that a few diseases might take hold in the genitals of young people throughout the world. Sadly, not everyone uses protection!
There are a couple of things you can do to mitgate the risk. Of course, any act involving sex is going to come with a risk, but providing you wrap your tool, you'll have done everything you can to keep you and your hookup partner safe. Always be wary, and yes, this includes sexual touching too! Any sexual encounter comes with a risk, so always play it safe.
Rules Of Hooking Up; A Quick Guide
Even if you still haven't decided to dive into this world of hooking up just yet, we've put together a quick hook up guide for your future research. These are some classic tips as well as a new new ideas to keep in mind. If you want to be the best hookup partner possible, follow these simple steps.
Play it cool
Needy men don't get no pussy. Guys who fret, moan and flake aren't exactly considered desirable by the opposite sex. When it comes to hooking up, a general rule is to always play it cool. Now we understand that there's no precise definition of 'playing it cool,' but it comes down to a simple rule; be respectul of your hookup partner's wishes.
If she asks to meet up at a reasonable hour, do whatever you can to make it happen. If she rejects you for whatever reason, accept her wishes and move on to the next person. Don't be needy, don't come across as a creep, and don't act like a jerk. And once the hooking up is done, keep your discreet activities between you and her.
Give and receive
Hooking up is just as much about the other person as it is about you. You're both in this for the same reason - great sex, so it pays to pay attention to her needs. There's the cliched image of a guy rolling over and pulling his pants back on as soon as you've hooked up, but the best advice you can ever receive is: don't be this guy.
This woman (or man) is relying on you for her sexual gratification. Of all the guys out there, she's chosen you, so the least you can do is give as much as you receive. Learn some oral sex skills. Try some fancy positions. Push her to her sexual limits. Make it a sexual encounter to remember and you'll find the gesture returned tenfold.
Don't be pushy
Nothing kills a hook up like being pushy. It's the number one turn off for women despite what Fifty Shades of Grey might tell you. Women don't like men who push or beg them for sex, especially in today's world of sexual equality. This includes sexual touching, too. Don't try your luck even if she's said no because you can end up a world of trouble.
There will be a time when your hook up just doesn't work out. Maybe you're not sexually compatible. Maybe your beer goggles were playing tricks on you. If for whatever reason things don't work out, leave it be and move on. Nothing good comes from coercing a woman into sex, because chances are she'll just tell her friends, thus reducing your pool of hook up partners.
Know it ends
Any relationship purely involving sex will come to an end. This is the nature of hooking up and hook up relationships. Usually, they end immediately after you've hooked up, but certain relationships might thrive a little longer. But as we mentioned above, don't expect your hook up deal to evolve into a mortgage and two kids.
And when your hook up relationship ends, it's up to you to deal with it. Don't beg her to carry on because that will just reinforce her decision to end things. She wants sex, not a high school relationship. Keep your sexual behavior in check during your hook up, and then keep your regular behavior in check once the sex stops.
Finding Your Next Hookup
So, you've learned how to perfect your sexual behavior, now you need to know exatly where to find your next hook up. Whether you plan on using dating sites or getting out there in the real world, there are no shortages of places to find easy sex in your city. Here are some ideas to get the ball rolling.
Adult Friend Finder
Adult Friend Finder is one of the oldest and most reputable hookup sites of all time. It's been around since the 1990s and has helped literally millions of people all over the world with their hooking up needs. Even today, it remains a powerhouse in the dating industry, boasting over 8 million users as of the time of writing.
The site is something of a social media platform rather than a direct hookup site, but it's basically an all-encompassing adult entertainment hub. There are forums, chat rooms, and personals sections to help connect you with like-minded people, and of course you can just direct message other users for steamy private chat.
Casual X is another highly reputable site, but how does this hookup differ from behemoths like Adult Friend Finder? Well, Casual X is basically what Tinder used to be - a place for promiscuous sexual behavior to run rampant. And unlike Tinder, it doesn't rely on an annoying swipe system that matches people based on physical appearances alone.
The precise elements that make Casual X a monster are numerous. It's got millions of horny users, it's got a ton of interactive features, and it's got one of the highest success rates of any hookup site on the scene today. With so many satisfied users, Casual X is certainly doing something right, so check it out if you're interesting in hooking up with tons of local hotties.Bars
Before dating sites came along, people found their fuck partners in bars all over the world. Bars, clubs and any kind of social environment have been facilitating hook ups for decades, and even today they remain ideal places for hooking up. After all, they're full of attractive people on the hunt for a good time.
Bars are like dating sites in real time. Most people are actually there for the sole purpose of hooking up anyway, so half of the work is already done for you. Just be sure to look your best, strike up conversation with as many women as you can, and be sure to keep conversation interesting.
Consider Yourself A Hookup Expert!
Now you've learned everything you need to know about hooking up, it's time to get out there and find your own hook up. Remember, hooking up offers a lot more than just easy sex on tap. It boosts physical and mental health, it helps improve your sex skills, it'll make you more confident and outgoing. Hooking up will make you a better person all round. So use our guide, make it happen and get the sex life you desperately want!