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There’s no denying the allure of “friends with benefits.” But there’s also no denying the risks attached to it.
You’re tempted to breach the boundaries of your relationship—go from pals who eat takeout and watch Netflix to pals who eat takeout, watch Netflix, then have sex on the couch. Problem is, your carefree lady friend who seemed like the perfect sex partner could be totally chill about the whole situation, start sleeping with someone else, then you find yourself irrationally jealous and wanting her to be much, much more than a casual romp. Or, she could turn around and attach herself to you entirely so you’re left with the dilemma of breaking things off entirely so you no longer have a sex buddy or a buddy buddy—and everyone loses.
What’s a guy to do? Well, you can start by listening to what 20 women have to say about the interesting proposal—they might help you make up your mind.
“I suppose it can work if you and your friend are completely open about what you’re looking for and willing to adjust if it no longer works for someone.” – Eliza J.
“Usually not. It’s hard for feelings to not get in the mix, and someone always seems to get hurt. But if both people want to suppress their feelings then, hey, why not?” – Nicole M.
“I’m actually in a friends-with-benefits relationship right now. I think it works if you have boundaries and legit open communication. Both people have to be on the exact same page, otherwise it gets messy.” – Kirsten E.
“Hard no. You think it can work, and you tell yourself it can work, but it can’t.” – Lauren R.
“I think friends with benefits can work when guidelines are set about each person’s expectations. However, someone is bound to catch feelings eventually. Sex creates attachment—thank you brain chemicals.” – Alexa P.
“No, they don’t work because I’ll become obsessed with him.” – Sarah H.
“I think the only way it can work is if both people really don’t give a shit about anything and don’t need love.” – Jessica S.
“Eh, I don’t think so, unless feelings are mutual. It’s always sticky when you find out other parties are involved.” – Jessica L.
“If you’ve only ever been friends—never dated. And if it’s brief!” – Tara W.
“I think friends with benefits is good while it lasts, but it definitely has an expiration date. Someone, at some point, will want something more serious or want out.” – Laura M.
“It. Can. Never. Work.” – Danielle C.
“Yes, but in my experience it will only work if you’re friends first. You can’t choose to be friends with benefits early on in a relationship, because neither party knows each other well enough to be 100% comfortable and committed with the expectations.” – Vanessa L.
“In the beginning it can work but once it happens more than a few times and it becomes consistent, someone will fall for the other.” – Jane R.
“I think in rare occasions it works, especially if you have the same personality type—the type that doesn’t like commitment.” – Olivia R.
“I think it’s everyone’s dream, but someone always ends up feeling too strongly about the other person and it will eventually blow up.” – Brianna S.
“Friends with benefits never works. Someone always grows feelings and then the friendship and the sex stops…so everyone loses.” – Carly G.
“I think acquaintances with benefits can work, but definitely not friends. Someone always gets hurt, and it’s usually the one you least expect.” – Chrissie G.
“You saw this played out in movies with Mila Kunis and Justin Timberlake and with Ashton Kutcher and Natalie Portman. Friends with benefits is great for two weeks, then it falls apart.” – Marianna S.
“Friends with benefits is interesting. I’m into the idea of sleeping with someone I’m already comfortable with. But you know it’s going to go up in flames.” – Paige T.
“I friend zone all my guy friends so I’d never actually do this.” – Rachel K.