We all need a no-strings-attached relationship once in a while. Here are the friends with benefits rules that nearly everyone knows, but no one talks about them.
Why Do We Need Friends With Benefits Rules
Casual relationships exist for a reason. Pretty much everyone participated in a no-string-attached type of situation at least once in their lives.
We get busy planning our careers and discovering who we really are. So busy that we simply don't have time to build a strong and meaningful bond with anyone.
Enter friends with benefits: they are there for you physically and somewhat emotionally. But they don't ask for much and allow us to run free.
For the most part.
Since sex is a part of the equation, things tend to get complicated and messy. When our feelings take over, anything casual can simply turn into a catastrophe.
That's why we all kind of agreed to follow a set of guidelines to save us from trouble in a no strings attached relationship. As long as everyone involved knows what is happening, everything should be just fine.
The only issue is: how do we know that everyone is aware? Well, I'm making it my duty to spread the word and tell you about friends with benefits rules.
With a total of ten, we will break them down into two categories: spoken (obvious) and unspoken ones. These will come in very handy if you are looking to initiate a no-strings-attached relationship.
Obvious Friends With Benefits Rules
When I say obviously, I really mean 'girl, I hope you already know this'. Because the following five rules should be clear to anyone in the no strings attached relationship.
Some of these friends with benefits rules might not necessarily apply to your specific situation. But keeping them in mind will only do you good.
1. No Strings Attached, No Drama
This one is simple. We enter a no-strings-attached relationship because we don't want or don't need to be vulnerable right now.
Sometimes life gets complicated enough and there is no room for extra stress. By this logic, people who we turn to for stress relief should not cause any drama.
Yes, friends with benefits come in a variety of arrangements. However, it is generally understood that your FWB is not there to make you feel bad in any way.
Their job is to help you find an outlet for your sexual energy and have a good time overall. If we wanted a headache (read heartache) we would not be looking for friends with benefits rules, to begin with.
2. He's Not Your Boyfriend
Repeat it like a mantra: he's not my boyfriend. Because guess what — he isn't.
If you wanted a boyfriend, you would not be here. You needed someone to have a laugh with and enjoy each other sexually.
Does it obligate them to be your plus one for a wedding? Nope. Will they be by your side through rough times? Probably not.
Friends with benefits rules don't technically stop us from being too personal. But if you want to stay casual and avoid pain, it's best to keep it simple and fun.
3. Friends With Benefits: Sex In The Air
It's ok to be horny. We are only human after all and sex is one of our primary needs.
Friends with benefits are there to satisfy us sexually and this should always be the focus of your no strings attached arrangement.
You might both be incredibly interesting people. Possibly you even connect on levels other than sex.
But a sexual connection has to always remain number one. Because at the end of the day, that's what you are here for.
This also means that you need to make sure that both of you benefit equally. Simply said: you both climax.
Don't be selfish and make sure to get to know your FWB physically. And let them know what makes you moan.
Once again: sexual pleasure is your priority here.
4. Communication Above Everything
Starting to feel like your relationship is going from no strings attached to something bigger? Maybe it's just you. Or maybe it's just him. How do you know?
Well, you talk.
A lot of friends with benefits rules summaries will tell you to not communicate at all. Many believe that it's the talking that makes us fall in love.
It might be partially true. But how else are we going to know what's happening if we don't speak?
In my opinion, one of the most important friends with benefits rules is to keep in check by constantly communicating with each other. Voice every thought or concern you have about the arrangement and give them space to voice theirs.
Because while many rules exist, being friends with benefits is still a gray area. Just try your best to make sure no one gets hurt and talk it out whenever you feel like it.
5. Friends With Benefits Keep It Real
Friends with benefits rules exist to help keep things simple. And what is simpler than being your authentic self?
I wouldn't suggest faking who you are for any type of relationship. But the no strings attached type is where it is definitely uncalled-for.
You don't need to lie about your interests or preferences, hide your personality traits, or go to great lengths to look smarter, richer, or prettier.
Remember what all of this is about and exhale. If your FWB is not satisfied with who you are, let them go.
Because you are here to relax, not to perform a sophisticated act.
The Unspoken Friends With Benefits Rules
Now there are some things that are not always said out loud. There are still out there, however, and it makes total sense for us to discuss them.
Remember that friends with benefits rules are mostly there to shield you from pain. So try to keep them in mind as you go along.
Because once again, although we aim for something casual, at times it can get really confusing.
1. Are You OK?
This one is kind of big. Before you dive into a no-strings-attached relationship, make sure that you actually need it, to begin with.
Friends with benefits rules are often broken by people who went in with wrong intentions.
Some of us are trying to get over a breakup or conceal emotional pain. Others escape to the world of meaningless sex from their commitment issues or low self-esteem.
Whatever the reason is, wanting anything other than simple sex and casual fun will eventually get you to a very unpleasant place.
Take a good look at how you are feeling and what is actually bothering you. Consider consulting a therapist about why you feel the need for a casual relationship.
Remember that no strings attached relationships have one basic purpose: satisfying sexual needs. Anything beyond that is simply outside the friends with benefits zone.
2. Simple Exit From Friends With Benefits
At some point, every no-string-attached relationship comes to an end. Sometimes it grows into something bigger and sometimes it just disappears.
The thing is, we never know what will happen in the future. That's why we need to make sure that the ending is going to be as simple and as pain-free as possible.
You know what this means, right? No coworkers, ex-partners, actual friends, or service providers in your area.
That's correct, that sexy Starbucks barista is off-limits. He's making your coffee for goodness' sake, why would you mess with that?
Find someone completely outside your usual circle. Use Tinder or any other dating app and outline your expectations from the start.
3. No Strings Attached
Take a moment and think about the meaning of the words no strings attached. Yes, it means casual and carefree. But you know what it also means?
Yes, they have a complete right to sleep with other people. So do you. This doesn't mean that it will necessarily happen, but the opportunity is there.
They also don't have to tell you about their sexual endeavors, so don't get offended if you accidentally find something out.
Another thing that goes without saying is keeping your sexual health under control. Pay regular visits to your local STI clinic and make sure that you are staying on top of the protection game.
Unwanted pregnancy is just the tip of the iceberg of all the issues associated with no strings attached relationships. Stay safe and don't do anything uncomfortable, if you don't want to.
4. Keep Your Heart Open
In case you are not entirely against committed relationships, but happen to be in a no-strings-attached at the moment: keep your options open.
Don't decline a date only because you think friends with benefits rules would suggest otherwise. You don't owe anything to your FWB.
If your casual sex partner is limiting your romantic freedom, discuss it with them. You should feel free to do whatever (and whoever) you wish to.
And if you think that your search for love is somehow affected by having a friend with benefits, consider ending things to pursue your true goals.
5. Avoid Intimacy
I put this one last because it is probably the most challenging one. Sex is an intimate activity, but you should definitely avoid all types of additional intimacy.
No strings attached means no cuddling, no prolonged hugging, no holding hands, no making out unless it leads to something, and so on.
You should also refrain from sleeping over or letting them spend the night.
All of these are signs of a genuine relationship, not an FWB type. So reduce the touching to the minimum and keep it purely sexual.
It's a bit difficult to do at first. That's why it is important to understand the nature of no strings attached relationships and keep going over the friends with benefits rules.
No Strings, No Problems
Every no-strings-attached relationship is different. The friends with benefits rules might also fluctuate from one casual partnership to another.
Just remember to serve your own interests before anyone else's and create a safe environment that is just about sex. Nothing else.