Nicole Leigh West
Nicole Leigh West

Jul 19. 2 mins


Is doing friends with benefits – the right way – nothing but a myth? You’d be forgiven for thinking so, especially when the situation often leads to one person ‘catching’ feelings, leaving the other guilt-ridden and looking for a way out. However, if your life revolves around dive, travel, dive, or even if you just don’t want the complications of a relationship, friends with benefits is a near perfect deal.

When you get it right.

Get Down and Dirty with Yourself First

Friends with benefits are essentially no-strings hookups, but between two people who already genuinely like and trust each other. The trust part is the big advantage over one-night stands, and the absence of emotional turmoil and commitment expectations is the plus over romantic relationships.

That doesn’t mean it’s not complicated though, as it’s hard to define boundaries unless you’re both totally on the same page. Here’s where it’s time to get really honest with yourself, as to whether or not it’s the right thing to do, for you. Go inward, to ask yourself these questions:

Do you get jealous easily?
Are you prone to falling in love at first sight?
Do you need an intense emotional connection to feel fully satisfied with sex?
Are you hoping sex with a friend will change the dynamic and they’ll turn out to be the love of your life?

As easy as it may seem to have a booty call and dive buddy rolled into one tantalizing package, answering yes to any of these questions means you should think twice before jumping out of the water and into bed. Successfully maintaining a friendship with someone you sometimes sleep with requires an open mindset. One that understands that expectations, beyond respect and trust, don’t belong in the scenario.

There’s nothing wrong with having expectations, and you deserve to have yours met in life and relationships. However, remember that expectations of another person require a certain level of commitment, and that’s defeating the very purpose and liberation of friends with benefits.

If this is now sounding less appealing to you, it’s usually best not to go there in the first place. You’re not missing out on anything. You’re simply making a smart choice that aligns with your ideals, while avoiding an inevitable fall out that may lead to losing your friendship – not to mention your best dive buddy.

Get Real With Each Other

In an ideal world, when you want sex without having to date or risk a nightmare Tinder hookup, you’d have a friend or three happy to oblige. If you’re not experiencing this fairy tale, but you do have a friend you’re attracted to who wants the same thing, laying some simple ground rules makes all the difference.

The most important one is that you both understand you’re just adding a physical element to your friendship, not building an intimate relationship. It’s vital that both of you are honest with yourselves, and each other, about this.

Be upfront and honest about what friends with benefits mean to you and have a sincere chat about it. What happens when one of you wants to bail out on the sex part? Starts feeling something more? Falls in love with someone else? It’s not the fun part, but putting it all out on the table straight up ensures transparency. If you can keep up communication in this way, you’re doing it the right way.

As a final note, introducing sex into a friendship does establish stronger bonds, no matter which way you look at it. So, to maintain the possibility of a sexual friendship without hurt, steer clear of actions that foster emotional intimacy, like sleeping over, having too much one-on-one time out of bed and placing too much priority on each other.

Unless, of course, you both decide you want to. But that’s a whole other story…

How do you feel about doing friends with benefits? Let’s open up the convo, in the comments below.


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