Are One Night Stands Genetic, Or Are You Just Glad to See Me?

.”]Still trying to figure out why you keep wanting hot, steamy sex with strangers? Wondering why you have no idea which traveling Russian circus performer you should email to get back your favorite pair of underwear? Getting a bit too familiar with that walk of shame back from the trailer park? Tired of fuming while your friends razz you about doing the Horizontal Hustle with that juggling unicyclist from Santa Rosa, the right-wing gun-industry lobbyist from Pittsburgh, the performance artist who will only say “Meow!,” and the entire staff of the French restaurant you got treated to by the last respondent to your “SERIOUS!!! Seeking Cuddle-Friendly LTR” Craigslist ad?

Blame your slut brain!

That’s what Justin Garcia, Doctoral Diversity Fellow at SUNY Binghamton, suggests you don’t do, even though it’s oh-so-tempting, I know. Blaming your slut brain implies you’re not doing anything wrong. And whether or not you’re doing anything wrong, as youknow, is not for you to decide. It’s a matter of science.

Lucky for you, an article in Medical Daily reports on research that may look like a blurry mess when it first starts talking about World of Warcraft and how it’s going to make a total killing in the coming real estate market rebound, but by that eighth martini is definitely tomorrow morning’s ex-Mister-or-Mrs-Techyum Reader.

Here’s what the SUNY study did:

Gathering a detailed history of the sexual behavior and intimate relationships of 181 young adults along with samples of their DNA, Garcia and his team of investigators were able to determine that individual differences in sexual behavior could indeed be influenced by individual genetic variation.

“What we found was that individuals with a certain variant of the DRD4 gene were more likely to have a history of uncommitted sex, including one-night stands and acts of infidelity,” said Garcia. “The motivation seems to stem from a system of pleasure and reward, which is where the release of dopamine comes in. In cases of uncommitted sex, the risks are high, the rewards substantial and the motivation variable – all elements that ensure a dopamine ‘rush.'”

According to Garcia, these results provide some of the first biological evidence that at first glance, seems to be somewhat of a contradiction: that individuals could be looking for a serious committed long-term relationship, but have a history of one-night stands. At the same time, the data also suggests it is also reasonable that someone could be wildly in love with their partner, commit infidelity, and yet still be deeply attached and care for their partner. It all came back to a DRD4 variation in these individuals. Individual differences in the internal drive for a dopamine ‘rush’ can function independently from the drive for commitment.


The awesome thing is that you can easily replace that dopamine ‘rush’ you’ve been getting from one-night stands with the excitement of getting text messages.

However, Garcia is quick to caution that slutty antics are not necessarily OK!!

“One-night stands can be risky, both physically and psychologically,” said Garcia. “And betrayal can be one of the most devastating things to happen to a couple. These genes do not give anyone an excuse, but they do provide a window into how our biology shapes our propensities for a wide variety of behaviors.”


Translation? Just because your slut brain tells you to do the whole sales staff and their spouses doesn’t mean you get a free pass because you’ve convinced yourself you have a slut brain because some guy you’ve never met in Binghamton, New York says some significant percentage of 181 young adults out of the six billion people on Earth, seem to have a single marker to indicate that maybe they have a slut brain, based on the fact that they’re sluts.

Confused yet?

Don’t be. It’ll all make sense once your connectome is mapped.

Besides, being a huge screaming slut is the least of your problems! You should really get to work on that videogame addiction.

[Link to the Medical Daily article, via San Francisco Sex Information.]

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