Reasons Why You Should Stop Hooking Up With Someone

If you have to preface every hook up with “This is going to be the last time we do this!” chances are there shouldn’t have been a first time. I understand why it starts though. People like this. They like hooking up with someone who makes them feel rotten the second they cum. They like sex that feels wrong or forbidden. We need to feel bad about ourselves, especially when we’re in bed. How much pain can we inject into a pleasurable act? The agony and the ecstasy, side by side, coming together in euphoric misery. So Americana.

Sleeping with a person you know you have no future with can be fine for awhile. The weather’s cold, I’m living alone these days, so why don’t you just come over and distract me. These rationales can hold up for quite some time, but they’ll eventually crumble and leave you feeling more alone than you did before you found a warm body. Sleeping with someone who doesn’t get you, isn’t a part of your tribe, can be the loneliest feeling in the world. You might as well spoon two body pillows and watch porn underneath the covers. There’s less guilt when it’s over.

If you sense yourself falling for someone who, for lack of a better term, is a booty call, you need to stop calling that booty. Certain relationships have firm and inflexible definitions, and when you attempt to redefine it, it usually ends terribly. You’ll work so hard to get someone to look at you in a different way, to put you in a different kind of box, but it often never works. All you’ll feel is their coldness. You won’t remember the sex. You’ll just remember the moment they pulled away afterward.

If someone doesn’t make you laugh, they need to get out of your bed. Intimacy requires a sense of playfulness and if your partner can’t get to that level, it’s time to stop and look elsewhere. Sex is messy and hilarious. Laugh at my O face! Laugh at my clavicle! Laugh at my penis! (JK, don’t do that. I will F R E A K out.)

Stop hooking up with someone if it can’t happen during the daytime or when you’re sober. You shouldn’t be able to sum up a relationship by just saying “Those hook ups were sponsored by booze and regret.” When you’re always with someone in an altered state, you’re making them into whoever you want them to be. You’re blurring out the edges, altering their personality, because you refuse to take them as they are. Being drunk allows you to pretty much sleep with anyone because it will all feel and look the same—like a hazy numbness that has swallowed your body whole and given you a sporadic jolt of electricity.

Stop hooking up with someone if you always want to leave the second you finish. “Why do they call it cumming when everyone just leaves afterward?” There are way too many people out there for you to waste your time on someone who feels like a stranger. GET OUT OF THAT BED AND INTO SOMETHING MORE REAL ASAP! TC mark

image – thecrazyfilmgirl

Ryan O'Connell

I'm a brat.


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  • little

    Ah I love this, but hauntingly relevant right now!

  • Reebee7


  • anon

    But I don’t waaant tooo :(

  • jem

    Exactly what I needed to hear to kick start my reading week, though I don’t consider myself as part of a “tribe”. 

  • MegaTigers

    I definitely needed to read this. It happened again this weekend – well sort of – he came over and i couldn’t go through with it because i felt physically ill at the thought of it (that or the beer…but still). I made him leave and deleted his number. 

  • anon

    So, according to you, sex cannot be casual?

    • Asia Hodges

      some people have sex casually, as described above, but sex is never casual– it is probably the single most intimate act ever. 

      • Dbmag9

        Why? I guess if you define ‘intimate’ to just mean ‘involving nakedness and genitals’ it is, but to my mind intimacy is about emotions, and sometimes sex is just about playing with each other’s bodies to feel good. Sex can be intimate, sex can be nonintimate, and non-sex can be intimate too.

      • Asia Hodges

        why what? why is sex never casual? I don’t know of anything else that requires as much postering… like, oh… this isn’t as powerful and penetrating as it feels! People want all of the pleasure and none of the pain, so we have to construct the act of sex in a way that makes the pleasure accessible while keeping the pain at bay.. i.e. the hook up. but each time you have sex, you’re  putting your life on the line… sex is everything… people can be changed forever by it. it can fuck you up, or you can just get fucked. 
        and intimacy has a lot of definitions, but ultimately, it has to do with the familiar… there can be intimacy had in that particular moment with another person, or there can be intimacy within yourself that another person gets to witness at orgasm or there’s the intimacy we’re all sharing right now by reading Ryan’s thoughts and knowing exactly what he’s talking about because we’ve all been there… or sex can be all of those intimate moments rolled into one. that’s why. 

      • Tyrone

        thank you dr phil.

    • Dbmag9

      As I read it, he’s not saying sex is only for people you want to live with forever, but he is saying it doesn’t work when it’s long-term with someone you don’t like, don’t get on with, don’t relate to.

  • Jess

    Fuck yeah. This is one of the truest things I’ve read recently. Thanks, as usual, Thought Catalog.

  • Tanya Salyers


  • Connor Bennette

    Also note: this advice applies to ANY relationship, platonic or otherwise. If you don’t jive, why try and force it? You’ll end up spending all your time and energy on toxic relationships and have nothing left over for the real ones. Spot on, Ryan. Thank you.

  • regret

    this perfectly describes something that i recently got out of. wish i had read more things like this before things had to end violently

  • neveragain

    This spoke to me way too clearly and adamantly. Though I haven’t contacted him or given in to his friends with benefits proposal since the summer, there were times I was almost willing to sacrifice my own dignity for his pleasure. Did I mention that he is not even single anymore? He chose his girlfriend over me and now he wants me back..while dating her…scumbag

    • Tyrone

      loklolololololololololololololololo HHAHAHAHAHAAHAHAHAHAHA

  • DP

    Thank you so much Ryan…

  • Anon

    Anybody remember that SNL sketch “Don’t Buy Things You Cannot Afford?” They should make one called “Don’t Sleep With People You Do Not Like.” Bam. Quarterlife crisis solved.

  • hansolo

    yea you’re right haha. i don’t know if it’s better or worse if the person you’re hooking up with is your friend.

  • Claire

    This is EXACTLY what I needed to read right now. But damn it’s hard to admit to yourself that something isn’t working sometimes.

    • Dish

      Completely agree.

  • Karla

    Wow, this really put things in perspective, feels like a wake up call. Hopefully i can get out of these bad habits.

  • kimmie

    this article made me feel good about my decision on being alone rather than with someone i can’t have a real relationship with. 

  • Jordana Bevan

    ” Sleeping with someone who doesn’t get you, isn’t a part of your tribe, can be the loneliest feeling in the world. ” </3

    can you please write (what COULD be beautiful) articles like this without throwing in the parts that try to be humorous? (eg "JK, don’t do that. I will F R E A K out.") they take away from what i really want to hearrrrrrrrrrrrrrr (and what i want to hear is direct, not injections of abbrevs to make the tone lighter). please please please? in a constructive criticism way

    • Tyrone


    • tiger15

      I like the little injections of humor. It shows how uncomfortable the subject is, and doesn’t leave you feeling completely bummed out afterwards

      • Anonymous

        ” They like hooking up with someone who makes them feel rotten the second they cum.”

        There is no amount of “JK PLZZ  LOL” in the world that would not let me leave this article not-bummed out.

  • Mitch Lavender

    It seems to me the emphasis is not right.  How about:- Don’t expect something special from a booty call.  It is what it is.
    – If you don’t like a person/aren’t attracted to them, don’t hook up just because your genitals fit together.
    – Self-loathing gets you nothing but you can still learn from your mistakes.

    And for God’s sake… use a rubber.

    • Tyrone

      for god’s sake, get married first before you engage in coitus.

  • Sarah

    where was this when i needed it 5 months ago?

    • Heather

      where was this when I needed it 6 years ago?

  • Alex

    “All you’ll feel is their coldness. You won’t remember the sex. You’ll just remember the moment they pulled away afterward. ”

    This is so incredibly true. And building off that I remember the miserable day after, the shameful walk home, the following days where I spend agonizing over something that could never be true, never be real. I wait endlessly for that one text, that one phone call , that one second that tells me “im alive to you.”
    I put myself through so much emotional agony for a couple hours of pleasure that are so empty within  themselves because they will never be real.
    The way I treat myself for a couple hours of biweekly pleasure is disgraceful.
    Thank you Ryan. I can now see.

    • Tyrone

      yes, thank you ryan for buying me these absolutely smashing glasses. I can now see too.

  • Angel

    If you have to preface every hook up with “This is going to be the last time we do this!” chances are there shouldn’t have been a first time. – I should have known that this was a bad sign! It took an email from me to formally end things with him. And up til now, that asshole still tries to keep in touch even if he’s moved on to a younger, more naive girl. Thank God, I’m sooo over it now. He can go to hell for all I care. I think people who engage in this kind of relationships are so fucked up, and maybe that included me months ago.

    • Gil Hacco

      I hope you’ll eventually have at least one conversation with him later on… it always depresses me when people can’t at least communicate (regardless of what caused the break up).

  • Dish

    Ugh. Why do you have to be so right, Ryan?! Booty calls never end well, should have known that from the start… le sigh.

  • Meera Shah

    this is my life right now and i wish we were friends because i need someone to give me great advice like this.

  • Strokd

    I have been reading this every day to remind myself why NOT to go through with it again, even though I really, really want to and crave the sex and intimacy like nothing else. This is so, so on the freaking money. You are saving my emotional life here, Ryan. Thank you…

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