Is friends with benefits worth the risk?

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Photo by Paige Bush
Photo by Paige Bush

In this day and age, more and more people prefer hooking up and being friends with benefits than having a boyfriend or girlfriend. The reason behind this is that relationships can be too much work. They can be high maintenance for students who have classes to worry about, extracurriculars to work on and parties to go to.

So we have friends with benefits with hopes of having a purely sexual relationship with someone, minus the hassel. Can this ever actually work?

More often than not, feelings start to develop and this creates more complications than a committed relationship.

Just because the person you’re seeing is not your boyfriend or girlfriend, it does not mean you do not owe them common courtesy and human respect. Communicate your true intentions to the other person and don’t assume that you know what they want out of the relationship.

Having hooked up for a year with a friend, we tried our hand at dating, but epically failed due to the lack of communication from both ends. It was an on-and-off, hot-and-cold, emotional rollercoaster that ended up with me learning that he was simultaneously seeing me and another girl, while he told both of us that he wanted to turn this casual relationship into something more.

This heartbreak hurt more than any other heartbreak I’ve experienced from more serious relationships and at first, I blamed it on the type of the relationship.

I thought to myself, “I can never hook up ever again. Hooking up is always full of anxiety and over-analysis”.

It wasn’t until the beginning of my second-year that I started casual relationships with other guys again. This time, however, largely stress-free and so much more enjoyable. The difference this time is the guys I’m dealing with may not necessarily want to be my boyfriend, but they respect me as a person. They don’t say that this is turning into something more when it isn’t.

It’s completely natural to catch feelings for your casual partner. There has to be psychological evidence that the more you are exposed to something, the more it grows on you. Being honest about your feelings will not only make you feel less anxious, it will help decide whether or not this casual relationship should be continued, or terminated completely.

The most important thing is respect. Since you aren’t dating, there’s no need for flowers and chocolates.

That’s not being in a casual relationship. That’s just inconsiderate, ill-mannered and straight up rude.


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