Girlfriend Management: Morning After Edition

This week, Esquire's Rachel Fellows addresses the golden rules of one-night stands.

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So, I gather you guys want to know how to extricate yourself from tricky situations the morning after.

Don't worry, I get it. The course of true love never did run smooth. Sometimes it barely runs at all. Sometimes it fizzles out after only a few hours and you're left with a situation as anticlimactic as that pathetic bucket of muddy water used to douse all the sparklers and rocket-butts.

That's life. But when it comes to getting those one-night stands objectively 'right', I'm going to have to disappoint you – there is no one failsafe code of practice. There is, however, a golden rule for you to follow. It's very simple. So simple that I doubt you'll think of it as a rule at all: don't be a dickhead.

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I know a guy who so regretted his one-night stand that he made up a family event the next morning (that the girl already knew was total rubbish) and then drove her to the tube before it had started and dumped her there to wait. No coffee, no breakfast, no time for a shower and don't even think about exchanging numbers (as I recall, he made up something to get out of that bit, too).

Whether you put it down to youth or an extreme hangover, this wasn't a very nice way to behave, and all he needed to remember to come off as an alright guy is our one, steadfast principle.

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Some women will regret your encounter whatever you do; some care even less about it than you; some may want breakfast in the morning and some will just want to get out of there; some take two sugars in their tea and others prefer a slice of lemon. You're not psychic. You just need to avoid rushing her out the door with a series of transparent excuses or failing to make even cursory offers of replenishment and / or washing facilities.

But remember, while a cup of tea might be lovely, she's probably not lying there waiting to see if you'll offer her one as some sort of test. Honestly, she's probably wondering how many inches those glasses of wine last night have added to her hips. Or whether she needs to pick up anything for dinner on her way home. You know – the crucial things.

One little bonus tip: unless she's incredibly secure in herself, she most likely won't be feeling like a goddess – it's only people in films who wake up looking presentable. So if you can't say anything nice then it might be an idea not to mention her appearance at all. But if you did, that would make you a bit of a bell end, and we've already gone over this, haven't we?