Friends With Benefits; The Biggest Problem With Or Does It Make Sense?
On the surface, finding yourself a friend with benefits can seem like a win-win for everyone.
Neither one of you has to worry about heartbreak because, technically, you're "just friends," and you have someone you can hit up whenever you want to have a horizontal party.
But too often, the problem with being friends with benefits is that the situation gets complicated when feelings get involved. Sure, you may have gone into the arrangement thinking you were just going to have some no-strings-attached sex, but nothing sucks quite like realizing you've developed feelings for someone, and they don't reciprocate.
Before you decide to dive into friends with benefits situation, consider doing some serious introspection. "Make sure it's right for you," Pricilla Martinez, CEO of Regroop Online Life Coaching, tells Elite Daily.
"The partner you choose should be on the same page as you around expectations. Do not choose this type of relationship because you are avoiding the risks that come with allowing yourself to really care about someone else, there are risks with all relationships."
So, maybe don't hit up your BFF for a sex sesh just yet. I spoke to several relationship experts for their take on the biggest issues that might arise from being FWB. Here's what they had to say.
It goes against core human interaction. The FWB process goes against one of the very core processes [of] human interaction. Physical intimacy is designed to create an emotional bond that is fundamentally different than that of platonic friendships. So, when we are in an FWB situation we are going to fight evolution.
The more physically intimate the relationship, the more satisfying that relationship, the more likely we are to develop deeper, more intimate feelings for the "friend."
We can tell ourselves anything we like, we can deploy defense mechanisms consistently, but when we are connected emotionally to an individual, being jealous of them dating others is normal and healthy. All of this happens no matter what we "declare" our relationship is.
There is a strong likelihood that, at some point, one of you may very well start to develop more romantic relationship feelings. If the other FWB does not feel the same way, then this could wind up being a painful experience for you or them.
This is especially true [if] you face a situation where sex and emotional attachment occur at the same time.
You really have zero control if you or your partner will develop stronger feelings or want a deeper commitment. People set up rules for how they interact or establish boundaries that, in the end, mean nothing because it can be very difficult to control your emotions if the lines are blurred.
Don't get me wrong, I absolutely believe that this type of relationship can work with the right boundaries and clear communication around what you both want.
However, if you are getting the girlfriend/boyfriend experience, which means you're spending time together and possibly engaging in other social activities, then you are at risk of creating a confusing and possibly painful situation.
If you're getting companionship from someone, even in a limited way, you may close yourself off to meeting someone with the potential for a long-term commitment.
If this isn't something you're looking for, fine, but if you ultimately want to be in a relationship then you could be creating an issue for yourself.
If your time and attention are wrapped up in someone else, then you may not even be aware of the advances others are trying. You may totally be sending out the vibes that you're not looking or interested in, so why would anyone bother trying?
The biggest problem with friends with benefits relationship is raising the risk that you will taint, destroy, and lose the original friendship. Feelings change.
Once you add physical affection, nudity, and sex to a friendship, the relationship changes.
If you decide that a friends with benefits situation is something you and your partner can handle, go for it! If, on the other hand, you think it may do you more harm than good in the long run, perhaps re-consider entering this type of arrangement.
There is no right or wrong way to date, as long as everything is consensual.