What Exactly Is Friends with Benefits?
You're looking into the different types of online dating relationships, you'll likely come across the term "friends with benefits." In fact, there are high chances that you've heard of the term even when you've not looked into online dating options.
There are plenty of movies and TV shows that show some form of a friends with benefits relationship. You'll see people hanging out, having sex when they want it, and generally seeming like they're in some sort of relationship without some of the commitment. It can be a little messy and, more often than not, these couples fall in love and decide to go from friends with benefits to a couple.
But what the shows and movies don't show is what friends with benefits do together. What exactly do they gain out of this line-blurring relationship? It's not all you see in the movies.
Casual Relationship With a Friendship
In many cases, you're getting a casual relationship. You can both enjoy the sexual relationship without any of the commitment issues and questions of the future. So, why isn't it just called an NSA/No Strings Attached relationship?
Well, you've still got the friendship side of things. It is possible to still hang out as friends. You can enjoy trips to a bar with another group of friends and even just hang out watching TV or go to the movies.
This is where the lines blur, though. When you do the friendship things together on your own, it can feel like a date. Things start to feel awkward for some, and you'll find that a lot of people recommend against these types of friendships when you're getting the benefits.
Both of You Are on The Same Page
It's important that both of you are fully into the idea of this relationship. If only one of you really wants it, this isn't going to work. Don't pressure the other into the relationship and don't agree to it if you feel pressured. The idea is that you have a lot of fun with the friendship.
If at any point you no longer enjoy the relationship, it's important to be honest. Honesty is the most important aspect of a friends with benefits relationship. Without the honesty, you end up resenting each other and it no longer feels like fun.
No Commitment to the Relationship
The idea of friends with benefits is that you avoid the commitment to the relationship. While you'll still be friends, you don't stop each other from dating or sleeping with other people. There is no jealousy and you can both spend time finding the right person to spend your lives together with, while still getting some fun on the side.
This is where the lines can start to blur, though. It is possible for one or both of you to start developing feelings. This is the type of relationship you start seeing in a lot of the rom-com movies you're thinking about right now.
Making Rules for Your FWB
One of the most important things to do while in a friends with benefits relationship is to have some ground rules. What are you going to do when one of you starts to have feelings for the other that go beyond the friendship and fun? What happens if you start to feel jealous about the other partners in your friend's life? Knowing what you're going to do, such as walking away from the benefits part of the relationship, is essential.
You'll also need to know what to do around the rest of your friends. Will they find out that you're in a friends with benefits relationship? Is this something that you will keep a secret from others to avoid any awkward conversations? You'll need to make sure you can remain just friends when around other people.
In most cases, other friends won't find out about the relationship. It's not worth putting them in an awkward position, especially since you'll likely find that you decide to go back to a friendship at some point.
A friends with benefits relationship certainly isn't for everyone. Some people prefer a no strings attached relationship with a stranger online. It gets rid of the awkwardness in the friendship situations. However, this is going to be something you and a friend need to discuss.
In some ways, a no strings attached relationship can turn into a friends with benefits. It is possible to find that you enjoy hanging out with the stranger and you spend time together in a friendship situation. Whatever you decide to do, you both need to set the ground rules and decide together where you go with this FWB relationship.