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A one-night stand or one-night sex is a single sexual encounter in which there is no expectation that there shall be any further relations between the sexual participants. It draws its name from the common practice of a one-night stand, a single night performance by an entertainer at a venue. The practice can be described as "sexual activity without emotional commitment or future involvement". 
The one-night stand is the most common form of infidelity  and is often used in research, polls and surveys to define the level of promiscuity in a society at any given time.  It has been suggested that such an act can be as threatening to a relationship as a long-term affair:
A one-night stand can be more dangerous than finding a lover with mutual considerations. This scenario is good for the business traveler who has the odds in his or her favor; however, it is very important to know with whom you are getting into bed, even for just one night. No one should be exempt from causing you a problem, no matter the distance or circumstance. A one-night stand is still a form of infidelity and can be just as damaging for you and your partner if discovered. 
Some women have suggested that women who feel sexually insecure or unfulfilled should seek out one-night stands for personal growth and fulfillment. One writes, "[a] one-night stand is the erotic manifestation of carpe diem— only we are seizing the night instead of the day".  Another source advises women seeking empowerment to "jumpstart your heyday by having a one-night stand",  and clarifies that the one-night stand should be a conscious decision. 
The prevalence of one-night stands has been abetted by the advent of online dating apps such as Tinder and Grindr, which allow people to connect for purposes including sexual encounters, although these tools can also be used to seek longer-term relationship partners. 
Relationship therapist Laura Berman suggests that the circumstances that lead to such an encounter do not necessarily preclude a later relationship:
Certainly, having sex on a first date can be a death knell if your partner decides that a one-night stand is all he is after. On the other hand, many happy couples broke that rule of no sex on the first date and have been together for years. 
In contrast to a one-night stand, when the individuals involved have recurrent sexual contact without romantic involvement, this is considered a casual sexual relationship.   
A one-night stand may also be included in a sexual fantasy. 
Promiscuity is the practice of engaging in sexual activity frequently with different partners or being indiscriminate in the choice of sexual partners. The term can carry a moral judgment. A common example of behavior viewed as promiscuous by many cultures is the one-night stand, and its frequency is used by researchers as a marker for promiscuity.
An affair is a sexual relationship, romantic friendship, or passionate attachment in which at least one of its participants has a formal or informal commitment to a third person who may neither agree to such relationship nor even be aware of it.
Online dating, also known as Internet dating, Virtual dating, or Mobile app dating, is a relatively recent method used by people with a goal of searching for and interacting with potential romantic or sexual partners, via the internet. An online dating service is a company that promotes and provides specific mechanisms for the practice of online dating, generally in the form of dedicated websites or software applications accessible on personal computers or mobile devices connected to the internet. A wide variety of unmoderated matchmaking services, most of which are profile-based with various communication functionalities, is offered by such companies.
Infidelity is a violation of a couple's emotional and/or sexual exclusivity that commonly results in feelings of anger, sexual jealousy, and rivalry.
Sociosexuality, sometimes called sociosexual orientation, is the individual difference in the willingness to engage in sexual activity outside of a committed relationship. Individuals who are more restricted sociosexually are less willing to engage in casual sex; they prefer greater love, commitment and emotional closeness before having sex with romantic partners. Individuals who are more unrestricted sociosexually are more willing to have casual sex and are more comfortable engaging in sex without love, commitment or closeness.
An intimate relationship is an interpersonal relationship that involves physical or emotional intimacy. Although an intimate relationship is commonly a sexual relationship, it may also be a non-sexual relationship involving family, friends, or acquaintances.
Casual sex is sexual activity that takes place outside a romantic relationship and implies an absence of commitment, emotional attachment, or familiarity between sexual partners. Examples are sexual activity while casually dating, one-night stands, prostitution or swinging.
Erotic talk, also known as dirty talk, gross talk, love talk, naughty talk, sexting, sexy talk, talking dirty, or talking gross is the practice of using explicit word imagery to heighten sexual excitement before and during physical sexual activity. It is commonly a part of foreplay, and can include vivid erotic descriptions, sexual humor, sexual commands and rude words. It may be whispered into a partner's ear, spoken over a telephone, or put into text. The intention of erotic talk is generally to generate excitement between one, both or all parties engaged in a sexual interaction, or even to induce orgasm.
The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to interpersonal relationships.
The term emotional affair describes a type of relationship between people. The term often describes a bond between two people that mimics or matches the closeness and emotional intimacy of a romantic relationship while not being physically consummated. An emotional affair is sometimes referred to as an affair of the heart. An emotional affair may emerge from a friendship, and progress toward greater levels of personal intimacy and attachment.
Dating is a term coined in America to signify that stage of romantic relationships in which two individuals engage in an activity together, most often with the intention of evaluating each other's suitability as a partner in a future intimate relationship. It falls into the category of courtship, consisting of social events carried out by the couple either alone or with others.
Casual dating or a casual relationship is a physical and emotional relationship between two people who may have casual sex or a near-sexual relationship without necessarily demanding or expecting the additional commitments of a more formal romantic relationship. Motives for casual relationships vary. There are significant gender and cultural differences in acceptance of and breadth of casual relationships, as well as in regrets about action/inaction in those relationships.
Laura Berman is an American relationship therapist and television host. She is the host of In the Bedroom with Dr. Laura Berman on the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN). She is also a regular guest on The Dr. Oz Show, and hosts her own nationally syndicated radio program, Uncovered with Dr. Laura Berman. She previously starred in Showtime's reality television series Sexual Healing.
Sexual consent is consent to engage in sexual activity. In many jurisdictions, sexual activity without consent is considered rape or other sexual assault.
Relational transgressions occur when people violate implicit or explicit relational rules. These transgressions include a wide variety of behaviors. The boundaries of relational transgressions are permeable. Betrayal for example, is often used as a synonym for a relational transgression. In some instances, betrayal can be defined as a rule violation that is traumatic to a relationship, and in other instances as destructive conflict or reference to infidelity.
Demisexuality is a sexual orientation in which an individual does not experience primary sexual attraction – the type of attraction that is based on immediately observable characteristics such as appearance or smell and is experienced immediately after a first encounter. A demisexual person can only experience secondary sexual attraction – the type of attraction that occurs after the development of an emotional bond. The amount of time that a demisexual individual needs to know another person before developing sexual attraction towards them varies from person to person. Demisexuality is generally categorized on the asexuality spectrum.
When God Writes Your Love Story: The Ultimate Approach to Guy/Girl Relationships is a 1999 book by Eric and Leslie Ludy, an American married couple. After becoming a bestseller on the Christian book market, the book was republished in 2004 and then revised and expanded in 2009. It tells the story of the authors' first meeting, courtship, and marriage. The authors advise single people not to be physically or emotionally intimate with others, but to wait for the spouse that God has planned for them. The first edition was packaged with a CD single by the Ludys: "Faithfully", a song they had written specifically to accompany the book.
Hookup culture is one that accepts and encourages casual sex encounters, including one-night stands and other related activity, without necessarily including emotional intimacy, bonding or a committed relationship. It is generally associated with Western late adolescent sexuality and, in particular, United States college culture. The term hookup has an ambiguous definition because it can indicate kissing or any form of physical sexual activity between sexual partners. The term has been widely used in the U.S. since at least 2000. It has also been called nonrelationship sex, or sex without dating.
Human mate guarding refers to behaviours employed by both males and females with the aim of maintaining reproductive opportunities and sexual access to a mate. It involves discouraging the current mate from abandoning the relationship whilst also warding off intrasexual rivals. It has been observed in many non-human animals, as well as humans. Sexual jealousy is a prime example of mate guarding behaviour. Both males and females use different strategies to retain a mate and there is evidence that suggests resistance to mate guarding also exists.
Friends with benefits relationships is a term commonly used to reference a relationship that is sexual without being romantic. Typically, these relationships can be between people that consider themselves non-platonic and friends. These non-committal relationships can be short term, or evolve into serious romantic relationships. FWB relationships are enjoyed by both women and men, which is in contrast to casual sexual encounters, more prevalent among men.