What does something casual mean on Bumble? What does looking for something casual mean in general? There’s so much talk of “casual dating” but this term seems to mean something wildly different to different people, and gets used to describe a broad spectrum of encounters and relationships. So when a woman on a dating app like Bumble says she’s looking for something casual, how do you know what that is and whether you’re on the same page?
If you’re bored with hookups and not quite ready for a committed partnership, then casual dating or a casual relationship might be worth pursuing. Let’s explore the something casual meaning in more detail so that you can decide if it’s for you and enjoy casual dating without hurting anyone’s feelings (or getting hurt yourself).
The Meaning of Something Casual
Before we explore what something casual means on Bumble, let’s talk about casual dating. When did casual dating become a thing? What does something casual mean in dating? And is there an exact definition for it?
What exactly is casual dating?
What does looking for something casual mean? Something casual means a physical, and sometimes emotional, relationship between two people who regularly spend time together, without the expectations of the extra commitments of an exclusive or serious relationship. It is not the same as a hookup, which is just one-time sex. It’s when two people enjoy hanging out together in a romantic sense, but aren’t committed to each other in any way. There may be a strong physical and emotional connection, and you probably go on dates, but you are also free to date other people and keep your options open.
However, it’s up to the two people involved to be open and honest with each other and set boundaries to maintain a level of respect and ensure no one gets hurt. This is where casual dating tends to go wrong for so many people. While there is generally a lot more freedom in a casual relationship, it doesn’t mean that both people can do whatever they want. There must still be clearly defined boundaries and rules, for example, with regard to how often you’ll see each other, whether you’ll spend time with mutual friends and family, practice safe sex, and the level of emotional intimacy you’re open to having. Ensuring both parties are comfortable and respected is essential for something casual to work.
When did casual dating get popular?
When the contraceptive pill was introduced for women in the 60s, sex started to become a little more normalized (not a lot though), as well as the idea of having sex outside of marriage. A 1977 study found that women who had premarital sex grew from 29% in 1965 to 57% by 1975. But casual dating and relationships have become even more popular in the past few decades. A 2014 study that surveyed college students found a noticeable difference in views on hookup culture with those who were at college in the 80s and 90s compared to the 00s. The latter were more likely to report sex in a casual situation and less likely to report it in a committed relationship. And a more recent study by tech retailer Currys reports that 1 in 10 people use dating apps purely for casual hookups, and 80% of those people are men.
The pros of casual dating
If hookups leave you feeling empty, unfulfilled, and lonely, but you aren’t ready for commitment, casual dating might be the happy medium. Or if you just got out of a long-term relationship and aren’t ready to jump back into a new one, casual dating can allow you to enjoy meeting and dating new people, without the pressure of a label. Plus, casual dating can be an exciting adventure where you get to date lots of different people at once and remain unattached.
The cons of casual dating
On the outside, casual dating might seem like the perfect solution for anyone who is scared of commitment or not ready to settle down with one person. However, it doesn’t end up working out that way for some of us. Dating (and potentially sleeping) with multiple people might feel unnatural to you, and it can be difficult to make time in your schedule to see everyone. It can also make it challenging to move beyond a physical connection because you aren’t spending enough quality time together, or not really allowing yourself to open up, which can eventually feel unfulfilling. On the other hand, one of you could end up catching feelings, which happens frequently, and find out the other person is not on the same page.
So although something casual means no commitment, there are still so many things to consider before diving into casual dating.
Is casual dating right for you?
We’ve explored what something casual means in dating, but how do you know if it’s right for you?
The first thing to do is get clear on your expectations around dating and relationships. What exactly are you looking for? How much time and attention are you willing to invest in someone? Will you be okay with keeping things casual, and potentially seeing a woman you like go on dates and sleep with other men?
Don’t rush into casual dating until you’ve carefully considered what you want, and whether this arrangement would suit you because it’s not for everyone.
If you want to learn more about yourself or explore sex and your sexuality, casual dating could be a good option. If you’re short on time and don’t want to invest a lot of energy in a relationship, then something casual makes more sense.
But it’s difficult to know if casual dating will suit you until you try it. So if you haven’t yet, and it intrigues you, there’s no harm in giving it a go. If you discover that you enjoy the feeling of a committed relationship, then you can always be open and honest with the people you’re dating and either walk away or redefine your boundaries.
FYI: respect and confidence still matter
The something casual meaning often gets misused and abused by people (mostly men) who just want to fuck around and don’t care about hurting feelings, crossing boundaries, or disrespecting women. But in a healthy casual dating scenario or relationship, maturity, and respect still matter. Causal does not equal carelessness. People’s feelings are still involved. Just because you aren’t committed to each other, that’s not an excuse to behave unacceptably or treat a woman as “less than.”
What Does Something Casual Mean on Bumble?
A study published in 2021 by the Kinsey Institute found that 19% of those surveyed are more inclined to pursue an open relationship since the pandemic, while 46% reported they are engaging in more sexual experimentation. Bumble, along with other dating apps, are updating their platforms accordingly and now lets users choose the option “something causal” when stating on their profile what they’re looking for.
So, what does something casual mean on Bumble on a woman’s profile? Simply, it means they don’t want the commitment of an exclusive relationship and are looking to date (and maybe sleep with) multiple people without putting any labels on it.
However, it’s important to remember that most women on Bumble are looking for something more serious. The chances of you finding someone on there who wants to explore casual dating are low, so if you are certain this is what you want, you may be better off using an app that is more geared toward hookups.
It’s all about honesty & communication
As we explored already, “something casual” means something different to us all. So when you’re meeting and messaging new people, and you’re both interested in casual dating, have an open conversation where you clarify what this means to both of you.
Honesty and clear communication are essential if you want casual dating to work for both of you and avoid hurting each other in the long run. Feelings can develop over time, so it’s important that you keep checking in with each other and set and redefine boundaries as and when needed. If at any point, casual dating is no longer working for one of you, you need to be upfront about it. Setting boundaries from the start will prevent things from getting complicated later down the line.
It’s not an excuse to be a fuckboy
Just because a woman is interested in something casual, that doesn’t mean you get to manipulate that word and have everything be on your terms. There are some guys who look for women who want to keep things “casual” but they want all the perks of being in a relationship with that woman (i.e. frequent sex) without any of the commitment. They want to be firmly in the driver’s seat, and they don’t give a damn about respecting the woman’s wants and needs. This will inevitably lead to anxiety, confusion, and insecurity.
When done in a healthy, mature way, casual dating respects both people’s needs and boundaries and works positively for both of you. If at any point you’re not both having fun, then something has gone wrong.
Should I go into a casual relationship on Bumble?
Now that you have a clear idea of what something casual means on Bumble, and casual dating in general, you probably have a better idea of whether it’s something you want to explore or not. If it’s not, that’s fine! And if it is, that’s great too. If you’re not sure, there’s no harm in giving it a try. If it makes you feel uncomfortable throughout the process, then that’s a strong sign it’s not suited to you, and that’s okay. Life is all about experimenting with things, seeing what you like and what you don’t, and learning more about who you are and where you’d like to grow.
The most important thing to remember with casual dating is to be open and honest from the start and to continue communicating with each other throughout the dating process. This way, you’ll both feel respected and heard, and you will minimize the chances of anyone getting hurt.