Ah, the elusive friend with benefits situation. It sounds like it should be easy. How hard can it be to find someone you like to hang out with, who respects you, and is also fun to romp around in bed with, without all the commitment of an exclusive significant other? Actually, it can be really hard to find one that works for you. We’re all only human, after all, and sometimes one of us catches feelings, toppling the whole glorious situation. It’s not easy to make work all of the time, but when it does, having a friend with benefits can be better than an actual relationship.
The trick is knowing whether you want a friend with benefits or not.
You need to be in the right headspace to make a FWB situation really work. Check your heart: Do you really want a partner and are just settling for someone else who just wants to fool around because the sex is good? Are you OK knowing that this partner doesn’t have to be at your beck and call, even after you’ve had a few glasses of wine? Because you can’t drunk text your f*ck buddy for anything other than orgasm. That’s the thing, really. A friends with benefits situation demands communication, and being respectful of each others’ space, time, and needs. Just like in a real relationship, but without all the nonsense. Because the focus of this friendship is getting busy, not building a life together. You in?
Here’s why a friend with benefits is better than an actual partner sometimes.
1They’re way more sustainable than relationships.
A lot of people end up having more longer relationships with f*ck buddies than they do people they actually date. You can have a friend with benefits for decades, ebbing in and out of it depending on what else is going on in both of your love lives. A lot of the relationships you have in your twenties and thirties can be pretty short lived, and once you break up, that’s sort of it for some time. With a f*ck buddy, you can not see them for years, still like each other, and want to hook up. They know you. It still works after all these years because you haven’t been sleeping with each other all the time, like you do with a partner you’re actually dating or living with. You can keep it fresh.
2You can be more upfront about what you want.
There’s something to be said for keeping it carnal, especially for women. It’s not uncommon for women to come of age not knowing what they want in bed or feeling like they have to cater to another person’s needs all the time. But there’s nothing to worry about with a FWB, since you know that when you meet up to get down, that’s all it is. A friend with benefits is a great person to try out that thing you saw in a porn that turned you on or practicing your dirty talk (or whatever it is that you want). Yes, being in a healthy, committed relationship is also a place for this kind of exploration, but with a f*ck buddy, asking for what you want, when you want it, is the whole point.
3Sleepovers are not necessary.
When you start dating someone seriously, eventually there comes a time when you start sleeping over, cuddling, and basically change your entire morning routine. That’s nice, if that’s what feels good. But it’s also sort of a pain in the butt. With a f*ck buddy, you can choose whether it goes down at their place or yours, and no one is required to snuggle after sex if they don’t feel like it. You get in, get off, and get on with your life. And you don’t have to make awkward conversation over coffee the next day.
4Your time is your time.
We are busy people, and committed relationships take time. You have to give a little of yourself to get something back and make it work. Which sometimes is just impossible to do. There is such a thing as a “wrong time” to be in a relationship. But that doesn’t mean your sexual needs don’t need to be dealt with. A f*ck buddy is great for these busy seasons of our lives. You get to spend a little time with someone whose company you enjoy and then get back to whatever you’re doing to take over the world. Just totally refreshed.
5You don’t have to introduce them to anyone.
Having a f*ck buddy is like keeping a little secret all to yourself and you know what? That can be powerful AF. No one has to know you even have a FWB or who they are or what you do with them. There’s something super sexy about slipping out of a lame work party to meet up with someone who just wants to go down on you. You can leave all of the drama in other parts of your life for later — it’s like a vacation from your real life.
6Ending it should be easy.
Sometimes, a friend with benefits situation runs its course. Breaking up with anyone isn’t easy, but ending it with a f*ck buddy is simple. There shouldn’t be any tears or heart wrenching discussions. If you’re ending it with a FWB, it’s because the sex stopped being fun, you found a someone else you actually want to date, or things got a little complicated in the Emotions Department. It’s not like it’s 100 percent hassle free, but the lines are usually more clearly drawn. And you can always text them in a few months if you change your mind and see where they’re at.
7There’s no commitment. Duh.
You should also be kind and respectful of anyone you’re getting naked with (and demand that in return), but when it come to a friend with benefits, you have no other responsibilities. You can choose how to devote your time to them and learn how to get better at setting boundaries and communicating them to a partner. Being in a relationship just isn’t the end goal for some people who aren’t ready to build their life around another person. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be able to get off now and again.
There are all different kinds of f*ck buddies and tons of reasons for wanting one over a serious partner. Enjoy your friend with benefits if you have one, because a good one can be hard to find.