Rules Without a Relationship
Sometimes, at a point in our lives, we don’t want a relationship. Work and/or school is time consuming and stressful, we aren’t “emotionally available,” or we are just in a period of being blissfully single. That doesn’t mean that we still don’t get that urge though.
In comes the friend with benefits… Heck, we might barely even be “friends,” but it’s the “benefits” part that we are interested in. We all know the positives of have a FWB: Sexy times when it’s convenient, no responsibilities, no dates, no checking in everyday, etc.
However, before jumping into bed with our pals, there are some guidelines that should be set up so everyone is on the same page.
“Friends With Benefits” is such a loose term. What constitutes as a “friends”?
Have you been friends on social media for awhile and “like” each others photos? Do you frequent the same bars/events with the same crowd? Are they really just someone you kind of know from a friend of a friend? Is the person who makes your lattes in the mornings a friend? Is a Tinder date that didn’t work out romantically a friend?
It is both easier and harder to get into a FWB situation with someone you already know and trust. Ending the “benefits” part could greatly strain your actual friendship.
If the person isn’t someone you would normally label a “friend,” it makes getting off and getting out easier. With this in mind, choose your FWB carefully. Think about them not only in terms of social settings but with sexual chemistry as well.
The “End” in “Friend”
Are you really cool with this being casual? No, seriously… Are you?
Has your own personal history taught you that sex = emotions? If you catch the feels after a few weeks, not only do you run the risk of it not be reciprocated, but you also risk hurting or ending the friendship if the other person gets weirded out. You don’t want to start having sex with someone if it might ruin a valuable friendship.
Of course, neither of you can be certain what the future holds. It’s a good sign if you are the type who can walk away from situations.
If your FWB is going to be a regular arrangement, you both need to be open and honest before it goes any further.
Over a beer or a coffee, talk out what each of you are looking for now and down the line. Will you notify each other if you have other FWBs? Are sleepovers okay? What about sexting?
If you are actually friends, discuss how sex might affect that relationship too.
I yell “condoms” almost as much as I yell “consent.”
Even if your f*** buddy says they aren’t seeing anyone else, you never know. They could have a drunken one nightstand, dismiss it as if it “didn’t count,” and BAM… You have something weird growing somewhere.
Always use condoms unless you are in a exclusive relationship and you both have been tested thoroughly. (Sometimes you have to ask the doctor/clinic for “everything.”)
As with any new partner, discuss consent. Talk about what limits you have in bed, what you are willing to explore, and what’s off the table. Maybe you are a lot kinkier then they are, so you should warn them before randomly whipping out the paddles and ball gag.
Also, as with any physical relationship, keep open communication before, during, and after intercourse. Remember: They are just a friend with benefits, so you are not trying to impress them with your sex skills.
Every few weeks, have a
after sex level-headed conversation in person to see if you two are still on the same page about your arrangement. Even if it’s just them telling you that they want more or less sex or that they started dating someone, the conversation is important. Even if it’s no strings attached, it can hurt to be cut off from sex out of the blue.
According to sex and intimacy coach Xanet Pailet, these check ins are key. “These types of conversations—’Hey, just want to check in with you about how things are going between us’—can really help prevent future meltdowns and will also strengthen the friendship, the trust, and the vulnerability with each other,” Pailet told Glamour.
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Original by Jordie Lee