So I went out with this guy.
And he seemed nice enough, even though he asked me if I’d ever been to a swingers’ party in the first 20 minutes of our date.
He kissed me goodnight and asked if we could go out again.
And I said, “Sure, sounds good.”
“What would you like to do?” he asked.
“Go wine tasting,” I suggested.
“Great idea!” he said.
The only problem is that all the wineries I know about are off highways that have mud slides, fallen trees, and road closures – I pointed out.
We could wine taste at my house. . . he suggested.
I mean, NO. THANK. YOU.
I’m 43 years old.
I know what it means when a man invites you to his house.
He’s looking for some nookie.
And it’s not that I object to that, I just object to that when there’s no effort to get to know me.
At least make a pretense of looking for a “friend” with benefits.
Otherwise it starts to smell like No Strings Attached and I’m not looking for that.
Maybe I’m confused (I probably am) but it seems like the timetable to get in my pants has been sped up to nuclear speeds.
And I can’t help but feel like the men who are successful are the ones who text me during the day just to see how things are going, even when we don’t have a “playdate” planned rather than the ones who go at me at warp speed.
So what’s happening with this guy?
He’s taking me to a wine bar.
Because who knows, maybe he likes me AND wants in my pants too.
But I’m not holding my breath.
I’m signed up for Google Alerts.
And the only reason this has any relevance whatsoever is that one of the topics I have flagged for notifications is “friends with benefits.”
Lately, I’ve been getting a lot of alerts letting me know that people are out there looking for hook ups on Craigslist and more often than not, they state they’re looking for “a continuous FWB.”
NSA is dropping off the charts.
Is it no longer fashionable to admit to wanting No Strings Attached?
Is there something favorable in looking for a Friend with Benefits situation?
Well, let’s examine.
A FWB is someone you hook up with repeatedly, over a period of time. But there’s also some element of socialization involved – beers, cocktails, meals, etc.
I think a NSA lacks that element of social activity. I think a NSA is just a hook up. Maybe it only occurs once. Maybe it happens multiple times whenever the partners need to scratch that itch. But the point is that is all that happens. Itch scratching.
I personally get a feeling of dismay when I see someone looking for a NSA.
- Why just a NSA?
- Is something wrong with me?
- Do you not like me enough to hang with me for drinks?
- I’m good enough to fuck but not good enough to have a conversation with?
Whereas when I hear about FWBs I think, “Oh how nice! A mutually beneficial relationship revolving around sex.”
Call me old fashioned but I like my sex to come with a little friendly repartee.
Also. . . I don’t believe that sex ever comes with no strings attached so there’s that.
Ultimately, I do have to say I appreciate the honesty of folks advertising for NSAs. I’m 100% positive they mean exactly as they say while I’m not so certain that some of those FWB folks don’t fall into the NSA category as well but don’t want to admit it.
Perhaps I over simplify.
I can’t be the only one who would prefer to be called a friend rather than a one night stand.
But that’s just me.
It seems like everyone I meet these days is either a friend (with benefits), or just a person passing briefly through my life.
I am flush with FWB but fresh out of LTRs.
My life coach has advised me to abstain from FWB relationships and wait for the right person to come along.
In theory, I like the idea.
In practice, I hate it.
Who knows where my significant other is? If I were to hazard a guess, I’d suspect he is dallying with his FWBs wondering where the heck I am.
But this brings up a good question… do FWB relationships interfere with meeting the Right One? Do they distract you too much from the goal of meeting someone really special who will hold a place in your heart?
I’d like to say no, but lord knows I’ve fallen for more than one of my FWB even though I knew we had no long term relationship potential.
On the other hand, it’s hard to be single all the time and not get any affection from a partner. Having a FWB could keep you satisfied and prevent you from throwing yourself at the wrong person just because you’re so damn lonely.
Perhaps if I was a more solitary person.
Perhaps if I was less gregarious and social.
Perhaps if my hormones were toned down.
Then I could abstain from frisky business with my FWBs and my reliance on my FWBs would be diminished so I could meet someone special.
Perhaps, but I’m not holding my breath.
I once posted a Hierarchy of Cum Rags. LOL. That got a few laughs. Here is my Hierarchy of Casual Sex:
- One night stand – It doesn’t get more casual than a one night stand. These are your Tinder “dates,” your hookups, your “hit it and quit it” moments. Maybe they spend the night, maybe they don’t. The important thing here is that EXCHANGING PHONE NUMBERS IS FOR SHOW ONLY. No one intends to call. It’s a one night stand, after all!
- Booty call – Booty calls typically evolve out of one night stands. You fucked once and enjoyed it and want to do it again. There are no emotions involved here and no one thinks there is a potential fr anything more. This is a relationship founded on sex. WOO HOO!
- No strings attached – Ah, the casual habitual hookup with absolutely no intention of doing anything besides what you’re already doing. The difference between this and a one night stand or booty call is that a no strings attached relationship occurs over a period of time. Food may be involved. It’s allowed. You hook up more than once but again, it’s just for sex. No strings attached means you’re free to do as you please. NO ONE IS GOING TO ASK YOU TO MEET THEIR PARENTS AT CHRISTMAS.
- Fuck buddy – Ah, the beloved fuck buddy. This is someone who you hook up with who is more of an acquaintance than a friend. You don’t really move in the same social circles at all. IT’S JUST SEX!
- Friends with benefits (FWB) – Here you have your typical no strings attached relationship except you also see each other socially. There are two kinds of FWB relationships – in the closet and outed. With in the closet FWB relationships, no one knows you’re bumping uglies. With outed FWB relationships, your friends know. Either way, these are more than one night stands and no strings attached hookups. They’re relationships. There may be food involved before the boinking (or afterwards) and there’s at least a modest amount of socializing. Either way, this is a friendly, repetitive arrangement that involves sex and friendship. The bottom line is you like each other, JUST NOT ENOUGH TO ATTEMPT A REAL RELATIONSHIP.
- Ex sex – Ooohh, dangerous territory. Here you have your typical failed relationship, only you still like each other enough to continue the physical part of the relationship minus the messy stuff that made the relationship fail in the first place. Only problem is, people are BAD AT COMPARTMENTALIZING. Expect problems with this one.
- Non-exclusive – You’re dating. You’re fucking. But no one has used the L word and technically since you haven’t had THE TALK, it’s still non-exclusive. Meaning both of you can still be seeing other people… like your FWB or a Tinder hookup.
- Exclusive – Maybe the L word has been used. Maybe it hasn’t. What sets this relationship apart from the others is that you are now committed to sleeping with ONLY ONE PERSON. Welcome to the world of monogamy. I’m not sure this belongs on this list since TECHNICALLY, it’s no longer CASUAL sex. But seeing as how this is a progression of casual sex, I figured I’d include it
- Polyamorous – JUST KIDDING! That’s a whole other blog post (that I’ll never write).
This blog is supposed to be about sex, dating and relationships. But it seems to me that the majority of the time, my blog is dedicated to my quest for sex, which never quite seems to materialize for me.
A few weeks ago, I asked Jeep to be my FWB. And he agreed in a very sweet way. Touching. Nice guy. Not a bad choice for FWB.
Then last week, we made it to 3rd base.
But so far NO HOMERUN.
So I asked him this week if I could come over to his place for a little, you know, action.
And he told me that his roommate who he rents from doesn’t like him to have guests.
Now the reason this is a problem is that I’m in the same boat – I can’t have guests over when my sons’ bedrooms flank my own and I’m never alone at home.
Only I could pick a FWB and have it turn into a TOTAL IMPROBABLE FIASCO.
So once again I am back to the drawing board.
“Hope you’re not upset at me….” Jeep texted.
“No, but I guess we can kiss FWB goodbye,” I replied.
“Why would that be? There are other avenues to pursue…. There’s always a hotel, right?” Jeep responded.
“That is an expensive option. It’s getting complicated. I want to just be able to drive over your place and get some,” I clarified.
I do have enough sense in my head to feel bad about this, but since I also know that Jeep wants more than a friendship, it’s probably in his best interest to end the flirtation now, before he gets hurt. Still, I am disappointed that my attempt to get a FWB failed so miserably, and before it even got started.
But I’d like to take a page out of my birthfather’s handbook* and say, “If at first you don’t succeed…. try again…. and again….. and again….”
*You may not get this reference so I’ll explain: My birthfather has been married 4 times. Thankfully, #4 seems to be the charm. And if I count Anthony, Matthew, and Jeep as 1 – 3, perhaps #4 will be my lucky charm as well.
[As a bit of foreshadowing, when I went to pay him for my parts, a condom fell out of my wallet and on to the floor by his feet. Oh dear!]
As previously discussed, I feel conflicted about letting him repair my truck for free.
But he insists he’d do it for any friend, so okay…
After he fixed my visor, we discovered my tail lights were out.
So he went to the store and fixed those.
AND THEN we discovered my 3rd brake light was out.
So he fixed that. And it involved a second trip to O’Reilly’s Auto Parts store while I stayed home and ate dinner.
Because he knew I was hungry and missed dinner.
I finally worked up the courage to ask him, “What do you think of us being FWB?”
“Michelle, I think you’re gorgeous. And funny. And sexy. And smart. And I would be honored to be your FWB but not if it jeopardizes our friendship,” he replied.
My jaw dropped.
“When I first met you, I knew you were special and I’d rather have you in my life for a long time as a friend than for a short time as a FWB,” he continued.
This was, quite possibly, the MOST ROMANTIC thing anyone has said to me in a good long while.
But I do find it ironic that even when I try to misbehave, the universe has a way of reigning me in.
Is it preferable to jump back in the sack with an ex or is it better to find a friend to fuck?
Sex with an ex may be great at the onset, but it could reintroduce feelings for one of you and heartbreak may ensue again… and again… and again…
FWB may avoid that pitfall if romantic feelings never existed between the two parties. It’s just two people going bump, bump, bump in the night.
Let’s face the truth here. Whether you choose ex sex or FWB, you’re choosing a minimalist approach to getting laid. You’re not making an investment in your future, you’re living for the moment.
And what’s wrong with living for the moment? Nothing (especially if you ask a Buddhist). That’s right. You’re entitled to avoid dates and person intimacy. These things take time and you need some NOW.
If you choose ex-sex, you’re okay with revisiting and old emotional attachment. Maybe you prefer your sex with a side of romance and emotion.
If you choose FWB, perhaps you’re looking for something simpler – a little more body and a little less soul.
It’s likely , no matter what you choose, how many rules you impose, or who has the attachment, feelings will be created; hopes will be established; and you will likely have to deal with intimacy again, or all over again. But meanwhile, what a run, right?!
I’ll be the first one to admit that I’ve dipped into the FWB (friends with “benefits”) bucket. It’s a guilty pleasure of mine – it seems so wrong but it feels so right. And even if it is wrong, it’s much better than romantic and sexual celibacy.
If you google FWB, you will find a whole list of sites offering up their advice on how to make it work, what to look out for, even rules to adhere to, such as:
- Pick someone you wouldn’t normally date.
- Don’t let things get complicated.
- Don’t text for any reason other than sex.
- Don’t do sleepovers.
- Don’t kiss goodbye.
- Don’t fall in love.
- Go your separate ways.
Obviously, with lists of rules of engagement peppering the internet, there’s an implied complexity to these arrangements. Are the rules there to make for the perfect FWB union or are they there to blow a horn in your face letting you know what the pitfalls are?
Someone, somewhere screwed up big time.
Here’s my personal list of rules:
- Have more than one FWB.
- Try all that stuff you were too embarrassed or afraid to try in your previous relationships.
That’s pretty much it. Two rules. Keep more than one FWB and you won’t get overly attached to any of them. Also, take the opportunity to try out new things and expand your repertoire. Might as well do it while you have the chance.
My sister suggests that I read books – “Obsess on knowledge!” My birthmother agrees.
But I want to study anatomy.
Sadly, no one backs me up. My friend Jenny wrote, “FWB is a recipe for disaster. One of the participants involved will eventually want more out of the friendship & down the road, those FWB don’t usually remain friends.”
Yes, but did they enjoy studying each other’s anatomy for a while? Cuz in my book that’s success.
It’s not meant to last forever. Just long enough to get to where you’re going next .
And maybe that’s the takeaway here: FWB relationships are unlikely to end well but in the meantime, they are just good fun. When asked, “Friends with benefits….just good fun or a recipe for disaster?” my friend Mark responded, “Yes and yes.”