FWB: How to Make Friends With Benefits Work For You

Relationships can take different forms and diverge from what is considered traditional and appropriate. One of the more ambiguous and, frankly, more frowned upon types of relationship is a friends-with-benefits model.

What does “friends with benefits” mean?

The term friends with benefits (FWB) applies to a relationship where two or more people have casual sex without committing to any form of romantic relationship beyond the bedroom. Usually, they pre-agree to just have a sexual relationship and not seek to become more than that, so there are no hurt feelings. Although, naturally one of the people can develop feelings which can be very sad if it’s not mutual.

Friends with benefits vs dating vs relationships vs situationship

Friends with benefits really occupies its special niche in the romantic love-life sphere.
With traditional dating and relationships, there are clear expectations and plans to be more than sex partners. Moreover, many people go on dates with the intention to build a long-term committed relationship or even a family.
Situationship sits somewhere between FWB and dating and relationships. In a situationship, one person is usually more interested in “becoming something serious” while the other is simply there for hookups and a good time. Situationships are often painful because there are always conflicting expectations of where the romance is going. FWB is more transparent in that sense, and it doesn’t give false promises from the start.

Rules for friends with benefits

Here are some rules that will help you understand how to be friends with benefits and navigate this arrangement gracefully.
  1. Communicate openly about your desires, goals, and limits.
  2. Make sure you have full mutual consent and respect before having sex.
  3. Agree on exclusivity terms and other boundaries.
  4. Discuss how (much) you’d both want to spend time together outside of sex.
  5. Be respectful of their privacy and don’t overshare with others.
  6. Agree on how and when you’d end the arrangement.
  7. Go back to your agreement every once in a while to ensure it still makes sense for both of you.

How to find a friend with benefits

That’s a tricky one! You can’t really go around asking your friends and acquaintances to become casual sex partners with you, or can you?
So how do you get a friend with benefits? Here are some helpful tips for anyone interested.
  1. Think about all the people that have hit on you recently. Perhaps there’s this guy who’s always leaving you spicy comments on your stories, who wouldn’t mind a no-strings-attached (NSA) adult fun.
  2. Go online. Dating apps like Flure are perfect for finding an FWB. You can text and chat with multiple people and explore different options. There are also disproportionately more men willing to engage sexually in a casual way, so if you’re a woman – there’s plenty of choice there for you.
  3. Explore your exes portfolio, but only reach out to an ex you’re 100% over. Otherwise, you might get hurt all over again, and nobody wants that!

Tips on how to make FWB work

The application of the rules we shared above will already set you up for success with your FWB. Here are more useful tips to ace this confusing form of relationships.
  • Respect each other’s independence. Don’t expect that your sex partner will be there for you when you need them or sacrifice something for you. They’re entitled to their whole separate life, and it goes both ways.
  • Always remember about sex safety, especially if you’re not exclusive. Do regular checks, use condoms, share health updates with one another.
  • Don’t allow yourself to talk badly about them or treat them as someone unworthy because they’ve agreed to have casual sex with you. Remember that you are doing it too, so whatever you say about them applies to you.
  • Keep in mind that it’s not a forever arrangement. One of you will inevitably move on. Either to the new FWB partner or a relationship.
  • If it comes to ending your FWB, don’t make it ugly, even if your feelings get hurt. Remember why you started and how much great sex (and hopefully orgasms) you both had together.

Is friends with benefits right for you?

Nobody has the answer to that, not even the Flure team, only you. FWB can be pretty dangerous if you’re not mentally ready to withstand the boundaries and stop yourself from growing feelings or being jealous. It can have negative psychological effects on you, and the bummer is that you can’t really find out if you’re ready or not unless you try.
If you’re not sure, maybe stay away from it for now. FWB can be great, and it’s an awesome way to get to enjoy someone’s company and have your sexual needs met. It’s a good fit for someone with a busy life and no interest in being in a committed relationship.
Only you are always in a relationship, even if it’s 95% just casual sex.
Perhaps, someone who’s more experienced with one night stands will be a better candidate for FWB than a person who’s fallen in love with everyone they dated or slept with. In any case, you can always give it a try, and if you see that you’re crossing the line and starting to really fancy the person, have an open conversation with them. Maybe they feel the same and you can start dating properly. If not, well, then the best thing would be to stop it altogether and move on.