how to turn friends with benefits into a relationship

How to turn friends with benefits into a relationship

Lots of dating experts will advocate withholding sex before commitment if you want a relationship, or waiting at least a few dates before you end up between the sheets.

But let’s face it, we don’t live in Victorian England. We live in an era of Tinder, Bumble and hookup culture. Sometimes we find ourselves in a “friends with benefits” or fuck buddy type situation, engaging in casual, no-strings-attached sex. Sometimes it’s agreed up on, sometimes it just happens that way.

Perhaps at first it’s just a bit of fun to distract you from someone else. Perhaps you keep getting drunk and dialing his/her number when you know you shouldn’t. Or perhaps you’re just horny and there’s incredible chemistry between the two of you.

At first it’s all fun but if you’re regularly hooking up with someone it’s really hard not to get attached and develop some feelings at some point.

Then all of a sudden the hooking up doesn’t become fun anymore because now you want something different and you’re not sure if your FWB is on the same page.

If you’re in this situation right now, here’s how you can turn your friends with benefits into a relationship.

Ways to turn a booty call or friends with benefits into a relationship

Dating experts have many different approaches to turning a hookup into a relationship, so I’m going to go through them all here:

Go over there and tell him/her how you feel

The most simple option of all is, you know, just saying how you feel. Who would’ve thought? This one is better done in person but if you’re the type of person who fears rejection or feels uncomfortable talking about feelings, this is definitely the scariest option.

Don’t, whatever you do, confess your undying love to them. That might definitely have them running for the hills. But do speak up and try to figure out if they’re digging you too.

If you only ever have sex, you could try something like, “I really enjoy doing this with you. I was thinking we should do something with our clothes on sometime, what do you think about that?”

Or, if you’re already spending time together doing normal things sometimes as well, then maybe say something like “Listen…I love hanging out with you and was thinking I’d like to date you properly. Just throwing it out there and wondering if we’re on the same page.”

Gauge the response. If your fuck buddy suddenly clams up or tells you they’re not looking for anything more serious, believe them. Be gracious about it, listen to what they have to say and then tell them you appreciate the honesty. You don’t have to bolt out the front door, but you may not want to stay the night and continue having sex if they turn you down.

After that, don’t text or call. Don’t send any sort of essay texts talking about feelings. If he/she really wants you, they know where to find you. Sometimes people need space to think about what they want and absence often makes the heart grow fonder.

Stop hooking up with them

If you’ve decided you just can’t keep doing a casual relationship anymore and you’re afraid to talk about your feelings, then it might not be a good idea to go over for another hookup session.

We all know how it goes: before you know it you’re deep in the throws of passion and too much of a chicken to ruin the moment by telling them how you really feel.

In this case, you might want to try a text. Next time your FWB asks you to come “hang” just say something like “No. I like you, I just don’t want to do the whole casual thing anymore, I’d prefer something more meaningful.” Then see how they respond.

If the person says something along the lines of “I’m in a weird place right now” then you know they’re not looking for a relationship. Thank them for their honesty and tell them you don’t think it’s a good idea to see each other anymore.

Alternatively, if they tell you they’ve been thinking the same thing and they want to meet up in person to chat, then awesome!

Tell them you want to do something with your clothes on

Another way to do it is simply tell them you’d like to do something different this time…an activity with your clothes on. Try not to suggest just getting drinks because drinking leads to being drunk which leads to sex. Anyone can do that. You want to do fun activities that can help you bond as a couple.

Here are some ideas of things you could say:

“No, I’m busy tonight, but are you free for lunch or dinner later in the week?”

“I can’t tonight but would you like to come to this art show (or insert whatever activity) with me on Sunday?”

“That sounds like fun but how about we do something different for a change.”

“As much as I enjoy sex with you, it would be nice to do something with our clothes on sometime.

“No, it’s late. I’d prefer to do normal things at normal hours”

If you’ve just been hooking up it’s easy to get stuck into a pattern and a routine. You need to break that routine. Don’t worry if they say they’re busy or they can’t. Just keep asserting your boundaries when they contact you and say no to hookups. They’ll soon realize that they’re not going to be able to just text you for sex. Either they’ll disappear or they’ll step up and catch you in normal hours.

Don’t kid yourself

Honestly, there are so many ways to approach this, but it’s best to be honest. If you were enjoying the FWB but then caught major feelings, it’s best to come clean or see if they’ll do ordinary activities with you besides sex.

The worst that can happen is you’ll be rejected, but honestly, better to know than spend months and years sleeping with them hoping for more.

Victoria
vbrewood@gmail.com

Hi, I’m Victoria. I’m not a psychologist or a therapist, instead my relationship advice comes from real life dating experience and lessons learnt by trial and error. All the guys I’ve dated have been very different but I certainly came across my fare share of “Mr Unavailable” types, so if you find yourself in a situation with a guy who won’t commit, hopefully these stories will help.

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