How to ask a guy for casual sex?
August 5, 2010 6:53 PM   Subscribe

How should a female bring up the idea of having casual sex to a man?

Here's the whole story: I am single and in my late 20s. I am single by choice. There's a lot to it, but I just don't want to be in a relationship right now. But I wouldn't mind a little sex. So, my hot neighbor approached me the other day with his phone number and told me to call if I ever wanted a drink. I do not know anything about him; we are not friends, and we've never even spoken to one another. He appears to be in a similar situation to me: that is, he seems to work a lot and is home on the weekends, probably too tired to go out and have much of a social life.

I realize that there is a possibility that I could go for a drink with him and fall head over heels and want to be in a relationship, but really, I know me, and I suspect that I am just going to want sex.

I have no reason to think he has a crush on me or anything, as we have never spoken, so there is this part of me that thinks maybe he has the same idea. But, I can tell that he has manners, and I'm worried he's not going to bring it up, and then we might end up with some awkward situation because we both just wanted a lay but were too polite to bring it up.

So, how should I approach this? The only thing that is stopping me from just saying it is that we live across the hall from each other. Should that even bother me? Like I said, we've lived across the hall from each other for years and have never spoken to each other. I guess I'm just a little worried about what he might think of me.
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (39 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
"Hi, I'm calling about that drink you mentioned."

It is okay to presume it's casual, given the circumstances. If you get vibes in another direction, be clear that you'd like to keep it casual.
posted by jessamyn at 6:54 PM on August 5, 2010 [8 favorites]

So, how should I approach this?

"I'd like to have sex with you"

Really, most guys won't turn down sex.

I guess I'm just a little worried about what he might think of me.

Well, try to get to know him first and see how he feels about these kinds. Some guys are going to be prudes, some guys will look down on women who give it up too easy, unfortunately. Other guys will think it's awesome. If you're really worried about what he'll think, just get to know him first.
posted by delmoi at 7:01 PM on August 5, 2010 [1 favorite]

I say get to know him more so the two of you have some knowledge of each of your lives and then get together with him for a drink an additional time, and explain what you had in mind and see if he would like to see how things go. Trial basis agreement perhaps?

As a guy, I'd be a bit surprised at first, but I'd love the direct approach, and I can't imagine many single, unattached men having a problem with this. You're not even asking for FWB. All you're asking for is "neighbors with occasional benefits." Personally, if I was even remotely attracted to you, I'd think I hit the jackpot.

Only caution that I see is that you two are neighbors so you'll see each other inevitably in the future. It's not a problem as long as neither of you becomes obsessed, etc. with the other.

I say go for it. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.
posted by InsertNiftyNameHere at 7:06 PM on August 5, 2010 [1 favorite]

Really, most guys won't turn down sex.

I get what you're saying but I think you need to be careful with phrasing like that as it could potentially turn into a situation where a gal approaches a guy with a certain mindset and a rebuff could possibly not work wonders for her self-esteem. Not saying anything like that would happen, but, well.

That said: "I would enjoy having a drink with you, and then perhaps retire back to [your/my] place for a nightcap?" That way you're being upfront and a dude with half a clue is going to get what's up, but you're not explicitly saying "I would enjoy sexy sex with you" because that could lead to problems sketched above.
posted by turgid dahlia at 7:11 PM on August 5, 2010 [1 favorite]

Really, most guys won't turn down sex.

To be honest, that kind of assumption usually rubs me the wrong way. It's often thrown in with knuckle-dragging assumptions about what a man is meant to be (though I'm sure you didn't mean it in that sense, delmoi).

That being said, in this situation it does seem like he's interested. He gave you his number and indicated that he'd be interested in seeing you again. So, call him and meet up for a drink. Be flirty, see how he reacts, and if necessary, be straight forward - "want to come back to mine for another drink?" is clear enough without being explicit.
posted by twirlypen at 7:12 PM on August 5, 2010 [6 favorites]

As a dude who has been on the receiving end of this before, just mention the fact that you'd like to keep it casual, and don't stress him to meet up if he can't/doesn't/won't put aside time to meet up. It feels clingy and a big turn off of the original statement of 'casual'.
posted by deezil at 7:14 PM on August 5, 2010 [3 favorites]

"I'd like to have sex with you"

As long as you don't phrase in a weirdly clinical way like that, and you wait until the right time to say it, this.
posted by ripley_ at 7:19 PM on August 5, 2010 [2 favorites]

Timing it well could help. Dunno what kind of neighborhood you live in, where the bars are and when they close, but I would tend to think a call after dinner but before bed, maybe a demi-weekend day like a Thursday, could help. 9ish, or so? Something that makes it clear it's not a date, but which if it goes well and you're comfortable, could become a hook up. In your situtation, your place or mine is going to be pretty simple. I mean, obviously you want to hang out a bit in a public place to make sure he's not creepy, but I would think you'd also want to avoid as much formality as possible.
posted by Diablevert at 7:22 PM on August 5, 2010

You're in a great position here. 99% of the effort in getting laid is getting someone to leave the bar/cafe/library/date/whatever with you and get them back to your place. You guys are already there, right across the hall. Why don't you invite him over to your place for that drink. It's already casual and ice-broken because you're at home, and you can have more than a drink or two if you want because you're not driving anywhere. Maybe he'd just like to go out and have a chat because he's lonely or has long harbored a secret pining crush on you. But typically when guys says "let's go have a drink," we finish the sentence silently in our heads, "...and I hope to fuck you pretty soon after that."

You can let nature take its course here with less thinking than you're putting into it now. Buy some fun liquor and/or wine and ask him to come over on a Friday or Saturday night and put a dent in them with you and unwind from the week. "We've been neighbors all this time - let's hang out." Rent a light movie that you don't have to pay too much attention to and can talk over, which will put you on the couch in close proximity. Here's where you can get a bit forward after a few drinks. Lay down perpendicular to him and lay your legs over his lap, or any similar maneuver. That's his clue. And if it doesn't quite work, you can do some lowered-inhibitions-flirting to further reiterate your intentions. And then a bit of poking him with your foot. And then some reaching for his hand and some eye looking and more overt flirting. I'm telling you, unless he's got issues, his autopilot will kick in sooner or later and then you two will be getting squeezy.

If right now he's the guy you don't see much, don't know, and don't talk to, you don't have much to lose. If you move in for the goodies and he is put off by that, well, you'll go back to the way things were - no loss. And if he reveals his secret love for you or tries to pull back and go slow and date, you can say you're where you want to be right now and that aren't looking to date. It can't hurt to tell him at that point that you just think he's hot and you live right across the hall from each other and you just thought... it might be nice to have some contact now and then, but if not no harm no foul and good luck.
posted by Askr at 7:33 PM on August 5, 2010

: "I guess I'm just a little worried about what he might think of me."

I ask you in all honesty what you think about him, and why he would think any differently about you. It's casual sex; I tend to think fondly of the people I've shared that with, and assume they think fondly of me. On the other hand, I don't really care and encourage you not to expend a lot of thought on that either. As long as everyone is clear on the boundaries and good to go, it kind of doesn't make any difference what he thinks, you know? You're not there for his good opinion.
posted by DarlingBri at 7:34 PM on August 5, 2010 [4 favorites]

The notion that "most guys won't turn down sex" is false. It has been my experience that there are plenty of men who feel uncomfortable with casual sex. There are plenty who are fine with it, too.

Whether or not it's a big deal that he lives across the hall from you will vary from person to person. Use whatever rule of thumb you might use for dating within the workplace.
posted by lover at 7:34 PM on August 5, 2010 [12 favorites]

Treat it like any other potential friendship, is my guess. Even if you only want a physical relationship, time getting to know him is a given. Consider carefully how this might play out with him living nearby. I wonder if a neighbor would be ideal in such a situation.
posted by marimeko at 7:43 PM on August 5, 2010

Kiss him, you fool.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 8:01 PM on August 5, 2010 [3 favorites]

Jeez just go out with him and throw out the signals. It's not like there will be an awkward walk back...
posted by Hurst at 8:03 PM on August 5, 2010 [1 favorite]

I have no reason to think he has a crush on me or anything

Yes you do. He's asked you out.
posted by Jaltcoh at 8:09 PM on August 5, 2010 [4 favorites]

Totally agree with DarlingBri.

If someone who wants casual sex is going to think less of you for being willing to have casual sex, that person does not belong in your life.

Askr's advice to invite him over to your place for a drink rather than going out somewhere is good, too.
posted by Sara C. at 8:11 PM on August 5, 2010

When you're talking, briefly mention that there are many reasons you don't want to be in a serious relationship right now. Then when the night ends, invite him in for a drink.

He'll know what you mean.
posted by surenoproblem at 8:20 PM on August 5, 2010 [2 favorites]

A woman with whom I had a longer-than-brief casual sex relationship started it by saying, after meeting me amongst mutual friends and as she was leaving, "It was nice to meet you. Let's have sex sometime."

It was casual and light-sounding and let me know that, with her, sex would be casual if I was interested and no big deal if I wasn't. It actually cleared the way for some comfortable and straightforward "hey, let's get together for sex" phone calls, and it didn't have the ponderous quality of a prepared speech nervously delivered that starts "look, I don't want a relationship..."
posted by fatbird at 8:25 PM on August 5, 2010 [1 favorite]

Have said drink, transition into multiple drinks, offer massage, reap reward.

See you in three months when you ask the question "How do I give my annoying neighbour the signal that I only wanted a casual relationship!?"

posted by mannequito at 8:25 PM on August 5, 2010 [1 favorite]

Golly, don't you know any gay guys or teens?

Drinks, schminks! Here's how it goes.

First, pretend you're in a movie and you're the main character.

And then! Text him after 9:25 p.m. but prior to 10:45 p.m. with the words "Hey! What are you up to? --Your neighbor, [NAME]"

And he'll text you like "Um nothing, just hanging out?"

Then you'll text him like, "Small world, me too? Wanna get that drink? I have a bottle of wine! Come down the hall why dontcha!"

Have a good time, kitten! You're the best!
posted by RJ Reynolds at 8:27 PM on August 5, 2010 [4 favorites]

Just be aware that if it is weird, you still are his neighbor.
posted by k8t at 8:30 PM on August 5, 2010 [6 favorites]

The notion that "most guys won't turn down sex" is false. It has been my experience that there are plenty of men who feel uncomfortable with casual sex.

True, but I believe if most men were presented with a woman saying "I want no-strings sex. Are you cool with that?" they'd be more flattered and more comfortable with giving a civil yes/no than if the genders were reversed where neither a slap, disgusted look or a can of mace in the face would be far outside the reasonable gamut of responses. This is one area where women have the upper hand in merely asking for what they want.
posted by wackybrit at 8:32 PM on August 5, 2010

Guys turn down sex all the time, especially when something seems weird. "Hey, let's have sex!" from someone whose name I barely know is kind of weird; "I just made margaritas, come over and help me drink them!" isn't weird at all and any dude with any experience at all knows that an invitation over plus drinks is, if not quite a guarantee of sex, at least a strong and happy signal of good things to come.

The "let's keep this casual" conversation should happen about when you get to the first kiss -- too early and you risk him answering "oh honey, didn't you know I was gay/married/furry?" or some other embarrassing rejection; too late can make it sound like an indication of regret. And if you are going to say this, it's on you to follow through yourself -- no fair asking him to be casual while you get all intense.

tl;dr: Invite him over to your place; alcohol is good; casual is as casual does.
posted by Forktine at 8:37 PM on August 5, 2010 [9 favorites]

The guy approached you and gave you his phone number. He's definitely interested. Above, deezil gave some good advice: if it's casual, keep it casual (personally, I think this would be the toughest part). As for making it happen, invite him out for a drink to make sure he isn't a complete freak. If you think it is safe to do so, invite him back to your place.
posted by KokuRyu at 9:25 PM on August 5, 2010

If I were you, I'd seek someone else. The fact that he's your neighbor means it could very easily get messy. And not in a good way :)
posted by 2oh1 at 10:48 PM on August 5, 2010 [1 favorite]

If I were you, I'd seek someone else. The fact that he's your neighbor means it could very easily get messy. And not in a good way :)

I was just about to say this exact thing. If you do sleep together and it--for whatever reason--doesn't end well, being across the hall from each other could be awkward at best. I speak from experience.

But who knows? Maybe this is your future husband, the grandfather to your grandchildren. Go out on a date with him, but don't treat it as a speed bump to having sex, just get to know the guy. If he's ugly on the inside, it won't really matter what he looks like on the outside; you won't want to have sex with him. And then you just move on to the next hunky guy you encounter.
posted by zardoz at 11:08 PM on August 5, 2010

He's your neighbor and u know nothing about him, except that he's hot. Either get to know him better so u can figure out whether u even like him or find a fuck buddy u don't live across the hall from. The potential for things to get messy in your situation is high.
posted by nomadicink at 12:27 AM on August 6, 2010 [1 favorite]

Her Text: Bijan's has half price bottles of wine on Mondays. Join me?
Me Text: Be right over.


Her: I can't drive. You are.
Me: Sure.
Her: I just want to go to your place. You can take me back to my car tomorrow.
Me: Sure.

See? Perfect excuse to go to his place. It's worked on me. Even if you aren't drunk, just supply the pretext of needing the ride.
posted by sourwookie at 12:42 AM on August 6, 2010

I'm of the mind not to shit where I sleep, or even nearby, but really you should just take it at face value: get the drink or invite him over.

Asking directly for sex is creepy. Watch "The Graduate."
posted by rhizome at 1:12 AM on August 6, 2010

Please don't use the phrase "don't shit where you sleep" when talking about sex. I fuck where I sleep. Every night.
posted by megatherium at 3:59 AM on August 6, 2010 [2 favorites]

He appears to be in a similar situation to me: that is, he seems to work a lot and is home on the weekends, probably too tired to go out and have much of a social life.

If this is true, I strongly suggest you think about having casual sex with him, as it would be very easy for you to just wind up together by default. That could be great if both of you are into it, but you clearly seem not, which could result in hurt feelings and both of having to deal with those feelings as you're living across the hall from each other.

He threw out an offer to go get a drink, so he's clearly interested in you in some way, so that question is solved. The only other question is whether it would be good FOR YOU to have casual sex with him, as opposed any one of another 1,000 guys who are in a five mile radius, but just not next door.

Your home is your home, you safe spot and place away from the world that is all your own. You do not want that vibe messed up by having a crappy fuck buddy you run into at unexpected times in the hallway.
posted by nomadicink at 4:12 AM on August 6, 2010

Explicitly. And with some alcohol.

He obviously likes you. And us men, we like to have sex with women we like.
posted by fso at 6:28 AM on August 6, 2010

When I was doing the Wham Bam Thank You Man thing, going out on pretense then a little "I don't really want this to be serious or anything but you wanna make out/mess/around/do sheet karate" usually got me exactly what you're looking for. Good luck, be safe and have fun!
posted by ShadePlant at 8:06 AM on August 6, 2010 [2 favorites]

Just have the drink with him and mention something at some point in the evening about enjoying being single or how nice it is not to be tied down to anything serious. Then let things proceed as they will.
posted by Ragged Richard at 8:39 AM on August 6, 2010

As long as you are clear about not wanting it to get too emotional and don't come off like "you are a dude, you will hump anything above room temperature, so you ought to be okay with whatever arrangement I throw out" things will go swimmingly. Perhaps a little emphasis on making him feel wanted, versus convenient, would do you well.
posted by adipocere at 9:06 AM on August 6, 2010 [1 favorite]

posted by ob at 10:58 AM on August 6, 2010

delmoi: some guys are going to be prudes, some guys will look down on women who give it up too easy

Hmmm. So women who don't fuck me are just prudes, or looking down on me because I'm a whore? Please.

Some men avoid casual sex for the same reasons women do: Because the benefits don't always outweigh the (often unknown) drawbacks. Is she a psycho? A tranny? Have herpes? Fulfilling her lifelong dream to become a single mother? Is she gonna try to put a finger up my ass? Having gone through the whole casual thing in my younger days, I now realize that it's generally more pleasant/more fun/more fulfilling to jerk off than screw an unknown woman. I also much prefer sex with people I actually love than random bar chicks.

That said, anonymous has a good chance of casual sex by going out to dinner, making it clear she's not looking for a relationship, inviting him up for a drink, and hoping for the best.

But re-reading the question, I'd lay off just because he lives across the hall. That could get weird, especially if he turns out to be clingy or an asshole.
posted by coolguymichael at 12:17 PM on August 6, 2010 [2 favorites]

A lot of people gave good advice here, so I won't muck it up with even more of the same...BUT:

Guys are dumb. They view the slightest bit of niceness on the part of a girl as "she REALLY wants me".

Sex is a lot nicer and some guys will get kinda attached to a girl in a situation like yours. You have to make it VERY clear that this is sex, and NOT a monogamous committed relationship.

Not only is that being honest, but you are deterring any problems in the future.
posted by hal_c_on at 3:17 PM on August 6, 2010

Really, most guys won't turn down sex.

I have known a few, who, even with mutual attraction and no other entanglements have indeed turned down sex.

That said, I'm with everyone else. The only way to know is to go for that drink, and over drinks say "I'm not interested in dating right now, but I'm up for a good time." Phrase it however you like, just get the message across.

Be prepared though, because you live across from each other, it could become annoying if he gets clingy. And yes, there's always a possibility that might happen. I can't imagine living in the same building with someone and having that happen. It's enough of a pain in the rear end when they live across town.
posted by tejolote at 7:46 PM on August 6, 2010

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