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Friends with benefits

is a type of relationship that a lot of people fall into. It isn’t always planned (though sometimes it is) and it isn’t always an ex. There are pros and cons to doing it but that doesn’t mean it’s good or bad. There are some things you can do to make the situation work better for you than it has for others. Here are 3 suggestions:

Keep it real. Really.

Be honest about your expectations. Talk about what you both want out of the relationship (even though commitment and feelings and things like that aren’t being discussed in this arrangement, this is, without question, a relationship) and stick to it. If you are just having physical engagement, stick to it. If you are going to be available for functions where a date is required, stick to it. Lay the ground rules to try and keep things in line and moving smoothly. Determine the parameters of your relationship together so that both of you know what to expect.

Don’t assume things will stay the same.

It can be difficult to share a physical relationship without feelings creeping in. One person could be falling down that slippery slope while the other thinks that things are going perfectly (having your cake and eating it too is an intoxicating prospect!). It’s a mistake to think that everything you discussed was etched in stone. It wasn’t. Feelings have a way of changing the game. No one can be sure they won’t fall in love, especially when other intimate emotions are shared. Change is an inevitable part of all relationships.

Don’t think it will last forever.

Arrangements like this are usually short-lived. Feelings almost always creep in. Whether those feelings are jealously or love don’t matter as much as the fact that they will happen does. At some point someone will want more (or less) than the other is willing to give and problems will arise. Maybe one of you will meet someone else. Maybe one of you will form a crush on the other. Maybe the sex isn’t what you thought it would be and someone better comes along. Anything can happen to change the dynamic.

Friends with benefits sounds like a cool option and is fun while it lasts. The problem lies in making it last.

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