One-night stand not worth the risk

HE World Cup has brought 680000 foreigners to our lonely selves, hundreds of parties and litres of booze. This has put the hormones in an invidious position - and means that keeping ones knickers on might be a challenge.

Melinda Forest, a sex and relationship expert, says one-night stands are three times more likely to happen during big events such as the World Cup.

She says a one-night stand is the dream of many tourists, especially men.

Many people are excited by the idea that they have zero chance of meeting the person the next day - and most of the time they just want the simple animal joys of sex without unnecessary conversations and subsequent meetings, she says.

"Just for the thrill of it," Forest says. "People often fantasise about sex with a stranger and the one-night stand allows you to live out that fantasy and try out things you might be too scared to do with someone you know."

She says many people get caught up in the heat of the moment.

"When this happens it's hard to think about anything else besides the person you're with. Add alcohol to the mix and it's even more difficult to keep a clear head, which can lead to some risky behaviour."

Ayanda Nkune, who is a recovering alcoholic and a drug counsellor agrees with Forest.

"Alcohol and drugs reduce people's ability to think clearly, so when they drink they are more likely to take risks," Nkune says.

She says that these risks can include putting yourself in unsafe situations, having sex with someone you wish you hadn't met and not using a condom - or not using it properly.

Popular Bitches' Brew columnist Kuli Roberts says just to be on the safe side she has enlisted the services of her man.

"To help me keep my legs crossed, I cling to my man for dear life," Roberts explains. "There is a lot of 'talent' out there. I just don't want to be tempted."

Roberts says sex for its own sake can be fun, provided you're playing safely and both know what you're getting into beforehand.

She says one-night stands are even more dangerous if you like the person "in a spend-the-rest-of-your-lives-together dream world" kind of a way.

She warns that if a person thinks it was just one fun fling or worse, a drunken mistake, the other party will get hurt.

"My advice to both parties is to be open about their intentions before they get up close and personal," Roberts says.

Because of the one-night stand consequences www.howto has expert advice on how best to prevent it turning into something you regret.

lAssess yourself very carefully. What are your values? Do you feel comfortable having one-night stands? Are they really part of who you are and part of your belief system?

lMake a mental or written list of any consequences that could follow. For example, you could end up with a sexually transmitted disease, an unplanned pregnancy or get involved with a psycho.

lAsk yourself why you would consider a one-night stand in the first place. What would you benefit from the experience? Is the experience worth taking a chance?

lUsing the assessments in steps 1, 2 and 3, and assuming you've decided one-night stands aren't for you, make a promise to yourself not to get involved in a one-night stand.

Use the following methods to help prevent this.

lTake along a friend who shares your values in not having one-night stands when going out on the town. A buddy system will help keep you in check.

lLimit the amount of alcohol you drink. Alcohol tends to makes one drop your inhibitions and do things you ordinarily wouldn't do. Know how much you can drink before you get drunk and out of character.

lSet boundaries for yourself before you go out on the town. Stick with your boundaries and you can prevent the consequences of an unplanned one-night stand.