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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have trouble with the distinction between friends with benefits and sexual relationships. As I understand it a relationship is when 2 ( lets stick with 2) individuals enjoy each others company, spend time together, and get romantic.

A friend with benefits is someone who is a friend, whom you get romantic with.

I thought being friends was the same thing as enjoying each others company and spending time together. In addition, either a relationship or a friends with benefits situation can be monogamous or polyamorous so I don't see why the number of people involved in that sense would matter.


Am I the only one a little confused here? If you are friends with someone and get romantic with them, how (or why) are you not just dating? Is friends with benefits just a label for people who are acquaintances (friends lite), who get horney and/or drunk and hook-up to absolve themselves of any emotional or personal responsibility? I am obviously not somebody who is into casual encounters, and people's personal decisions are their own business, but I am awfully curious how about people reconcile what appears to be this descrepancy. I am guessing everyone defines these things a little differently, but maybe not.
 

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Friends with benefits has nothing to do with romance and everything to do with sex with a friend imo. I do believe the parties involved usually have no intentions for commitment. Sometimes I suppose one might lead the other on for physical satisfaction and dangle the 'carrot' of relationship. I think INTJ's are very deliberate in their dealings with relationships so just accidentally getting involved with someone is less likely to happen. The definition of romance might differ from person to person as well; I do think most attribute it to feelings that might not make any logical sense.
 

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A relationship is generally understood to be exclusive. Furthermore, there is at least the potential intentention of maybe making it a long-term thing. "Friends with benefits" sounds like neither. Plus, quite often, the person you are in a relationship with turns out not to be so friendly after all - but that's a separate story :wink:

As for me, I go for serious relationships only. Fits nicely in a traditional pattern I suppose.
 

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They way I always understood it is that you have a friend with benefits because you really don't want to date them/be stuck in a relationship with them... and you want to be able to call them up whenever you want for a "quick fix".

An actual dating relationship, has all the typical courtships and romance, wooing etc. Benefits come later with strings attached.
 

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Friends with benefits is a friendship that is focused around the sexual component of this relationship. There is no long term strategy to keep together or get to know each other better, only to enjoy each other's immediate company and satisfy the sexual urge. People usually enter these relations when they have little time or no interest to invest into a regular relationship but they still want to be having sex with somebody. If you have a very strong sex drive what happens is that your thoughts will be regularly invaded by thoughts about sex and this will distract you from your work, or studies, or whatever other activities. So people try to extinguish this by having somebody they can trust to have sex with them regularly.

In regular relationships that include sex between partners there is an emphasis on growing the mental and emotional bond, getting to know each other better, opening up, working out personality differences, etc. This requires more time to be spent with partner and more of your mental/emotional energy. There are usually long-term plans involved that span into the future and some sort of a strategy between the partners to keep together. For example if you received a lucrative job offer that is quite distant from where you currently live, a FWB parner will obviously not follow you there. But with a boyfriend you will start working out a plan how he can move with you there. Or you two may decide to do a long distance relationship for a while and keep sexually faithful to each other until reunited. Usually the aim of these relationships is very long-term relations, possibly marriage and kids.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
thanks for the continued feedback.

I posted the same issue on the ENFP part of this site. The discussion is a bit more in-depth there and I would love it if you guys chimed in.
 

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Concise definitions are probably too concise. There are a menagerie of potential relationship types with different levels of involvement and interactivity.
 

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This makes me curious what the overlap of "friends" and "love", but no sex would be. A platonic relationship, I suppose. Life would be so much easier without a sex drive. And so much more dull...
 

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This makes me curious what the overlap of "friends" and "love", but no sex would be. A platonic relationship, I suppose. Life would be so much easier without a sex drive. And so much more dull...
You don't love any of your friends?
 

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Well, the picture you showed implies to me that this deals with romantic love. I certainly don't love my friends like that. I do care for them a great deal. Which may be semantics. Or maybe not.
 

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Well, the picture you showed implies to me that this deals with romantic love. I certainly don't love my friends like that. I do care for them a great deal. Which may be semantics. Or maybe not.
Good point--I was using the Greek composite love model--agape love plus romantic love, etc...
 
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