Hook ups

Paik's earlier studies indicate that people involved in hookups are more likely to have concurrent sexual partners, which can increase the risk of sexually transmitted diseases.

In a study of Chicago-area adults published earlier this year, Paik reported that being involved with a friend increased the likelihood of non-monogamy by 44 percent for women and 25 percent for men.

Relationships that start with a spark and not much else aren't necessarily doomed from the get-go, new research suggests.

Couples who became sexually involved as friends or acquaintances and were open to a serious relationship ended up just as happy as those who dated and waited.

"The finding is that it's something about the people." People with higher numbers of past sexual partners were more likely to form hookups, and to report lower relationship quality.

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It's a bit surprising, Paik said, since dating falls under the romance category, while "friends with benefits" and hookups do not.

"While hookups or friends with benefits can turn into true love, both parties typically enter the relationship for sex and the expectations are fairly low," Paik said.

The survey also asked when participants became sexually involved with their partners.

So if not the context of sexual involvement, what is behind the lower quality scores for relationships initiated as hookups?

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