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Friends with benefits: why you should think carefully before getting in it

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Casper Libero chapter.

Sexuality has traditionally been associated with committed relationships, the famous “and they lived happily ever after”. Nowadays, the picture has changed, with the ascension of the hook-up culture. We don’t live in a dichotomy of long-term relationships or sexual loneliness, since there has been ongoing attention to the new kinds of short-term relationships.

But where to find those people? It can be dangerous to go out with someone whom you meet online, or even if you meet them in bars, like in the old days, you can never be sure it will be safe. Suddenly, your single friend, who you trust, doesn’t seem like a bad option.

So, what is friends with benefits (FWB)? This form of relationship has a big presence in the media nowadays, at its peak of popularity with the release of the romantic-comedy Friends With Benefits, but what is it? Is it monogamous, non-monogamous, short-term, long – term…? What is it? Does it fit your lifestyle?

A friend with benefit refers to a relationship between two people who start a sexual relationship while being friends. The point of this kind of relationship is to not commit emotionally to each other in any way. It can be cloudy to determine the rules of this, once there is no textbook to provide instruction. For some people, FWB is a series of hookups with a friend, just like for others it can be a romantic relationship, but without being exclusive. The only thing they all have in common is that they must be discussed with the person you’re entering this with. If not, you can lead to differing expectations and hurt each other.

In an article, published by Elsevier Lt, about the well-being of those who enter a friend’s with benefits relation, it was demonstrated that men and women had more positive emotional reactions than negatives. Gaining confidence and safety were two of the most talked about pros of this arrangement. Given a shot, it can be a very fun and rewarding form of relating to others.

This situation can be as amusing as terrifying for different people. Never agree with friends with benefits in the hope that a long-term relationship comes out of it. Be realistic about what you’re in. On the other hand, there are many ways that that kind of relationship can be a good option for certain people, for example, non-monogamous people or even someone who just doesn´t have time to commit to a traditional relationship. FWB is also a possibility for people who identify as aromantic, people with little to no romantic attraction to others, but also want their sexual needs fulfilled.

To make this settlement work, communication is the key. Discuss the duration of the agreement, whether it will last a couple of months or until one of you finds a long-term relationship. In addition to that, what about dating other people? It’s important to keep in mind that FWB isn´t a monogamous connection. Don’t be afraid to change your mind in the middle of it. Remember, if both of you aren’t happy, then it’s not working.

In conclusion, times are changing, and the forms of relating to other people are as well. Understanding what you’re committing to and always communicating clearly – about your feelings and expectations – is crucial to any form of connection. Moreover, it doesn’t make you outdated to not connect with this or any, form of relationship. The possibility of several ways of association is supposed to be adequate to what will make you more comfortable, not the other way around.


The article above was edited by Clarissa Palácio.

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Isabelle Olvera

Casper Libero '26

Audiovisual student at Cásper Líbero. Passionate about photograph, literature and design. Obsessed with ghost stories and sad music.