How ‘Friends With Benefits’ Can Backfire on Men


A guy falls for the woman he’s in a “friends with benefits” relationship with… What now?

This Letter to Headquarters comes from Dwayne. He’s 36, from Seattle, Washington:

Hey V.U.,

Love the show, man. I got a question for you, though. Right now, I’m in a very shaky situation. I met this woman about a year ago. When I met her, she was involved with some guy who she had been with for over three years. At that time, they were having a lot of problems, and even though she told me she was attracted to me, she opted to stay with him instead to see if they could “work it out”.

Anyway, cut to three months later and guess what? She called me out of the blue! We got to talking and she told me that her and the guy had broken up. So, of course I saw that as her giving me the green light, so I went for it. Our physical attraction was so strong that we only went out on one date before our sex drives took over. We began having sex often, and I began to really like her on a lot of other levels too. But whenever I tried to get close, she’d always pull back. She shied away from me whenever I tried to let her know that I was interested in her for more than just the sex.

As a matter of fact, one day when I called her on the fact that she kept pulling back from me, she flat out told me point blank that she wasn’t interested in having a real relationship, but she was open to just continuing to hook up with me from time to time as long as I didn’t start pressuring her for anything more.

Since then, we don’t go out as much, but we still have sex fairly regularly. I know most guys in my position would probably be thinking, “Well, what’s the problem”? Well, the problem is that I’m not really the casual sex, F-Buddy, hookup-type of guy.

I’m in my thirties. I’m not some horny teenaged guy who only thinks about sex. I’m past that phase. There’s a lot of other things I want from a woman besides just sex. For almost a year now, I’ve tried to play the FWB roll, but now I’m about played out. The sex just doesn’t seem to be doing it for me anymore.

On top of that, she seems to be acting more and more distant afterwards. At first, this whole Friends With Benefits arrangement seemed like a good idea, but now it’s driving me crazy. All I think about now is her, what’s she’s doing when she’s not with me, and who she might be doing it with.

Victory, can you please tell me what the rules are for these Friends With Benefitssituations? Somehow, this whole thing has gotten all screwed up. My head is real messed up right now.


Victory Unlimited writes:


So…you want to know the “rules” to the Friends With Benefits scenario? Well, unfortunately for you, the rule to the Friends With Benefits scenario is that there “are” no real rules——–which is why it almost always leads to a crash and burn eventually.

Why is that?

Well, it’s because usually, if two people have sex, and they keep having sex long enough, one of them will eventually want more out of the relationship than the other. Also, contrary to popular belief, pickup artist propaganda, and testosterone-driven delusion, this is true for “men” as well as it is for women.

If you’re a man with an emotionally available heart and you haven’t burned your conscience beyond recognition, you WILL begin to have some feelings for the woman you’re consistently having sex with———whether you want to or not. What you’ve written here shows that you’re obviously already emotionally attached to a woman who has shown you repeatedly that she’s NOT emotionally attached to you.

What you’re experiencing firsthand is the reality that it’s extremely difficult for a normal, emotionally healthy man to participate indefinitely in a F-Buddy relationship without feeling something for the woman he’s having sex with. Now keep in mind, this statement is not true for men who have little regard for women as a gender, or for men who fit the description of sociopath or psychopath.

Please understand that having sex with the same woman repeatedly and feeling absolutely nothing for her as time marches on, usually takes a level of desensitization that doesn’t come naturally. Guys who’re able to do this don’t usually get to that dehumanized point by accident. They have to work on it.

So again, unless you’re one of those types of guys, which I doubt, FWB relationships will come with a built-in time limit. Yes, it’s only a matter of time before you feel the fallout that results from repeatedly detonating the Casual Sex Bomb.

This is what I call the Serial Sex Scenario———and this is how the Serial Sex Scenario goes:

  • First, the two people meet and they become sexually attracted to each other.
  • Second, the two people have sex.
  • Third, the bonding aspect of sex occurs and tends to increase every time the sex act occurs.
  • Then finally, either consciously or unconsciously, the two people discover that instead of having sex——–NOW, the sex has them.

Understand that sex is not just a physical, emotional, and spiritual bonding process that’s designed to bring men and women together, it also continues to bind those two people together long after the sex act itself is over. In other words, sex has the ability to create a lasting, residual, and an ever-increasing bond.

If you have any doubts as to the truth of the above statements, all you have to do to put to death your doubts is to simply ask yourself the following question:

“If the Serial Sex Scenario is NOT the gateway to multifaceted human bonding, then why is it that most people who keep having sex with the same person, yet aren’t looking to have exclusive, long term relationships——-have to fight AGAINST developing an emotional attachment rather than FOR it?

We, as men, like to act like only women get emotionally attached after sex, but that’s far from the truth. Men can experience that connection too. Some just loathe to admit it. Usually this is just a result of years of societal and cultural programming meant to brainwash us into believing that having feelings for women is somehow a sign of weakness. This also, is a lie.

Emotional attachments aren’t the problem. It’s the effects that those emotions have on us that’s the issue. Rational thought tells us that the more multifaceted the connections are that we have with women, the stronger the relationship will be, No doubt, if it’s a bad relationship, the worse it’ll be. However, if it’s a good relationship, then the better it’ll be.

It is because of this inevitability of forming some kind of emotional attachment that men should pick the women that they become sexually involved with more wisely. In lieu of this, you now know why a lot of guys who don’t want relationships usually just try to “hit it and quit it” when it comes to their dealings with women.

Indeed, they view sex with women as a repetitive cycle of “getting in” and “getting out” over and over again——running like horny hamsters stuck on a slippery wheel powered by their own freewill. You see, these guys instinctively know that the longer they stay with any given woman, the more they run the risk of emotionality ruining their routine.

However Dwayne, you, unlike those guys, didn’t get “caught up” because you were trying to avoid emotional attachment———you got caught up because you kept having sex with a woman that you were hoping would get just as caught up with youtoo. What you’ve been doing is gambling. You’ve been playing roulette———-but unfortunately, it’s turned out to be the “Russian” kind.

The depth of the interest and attraction that you had for this woman was out of proportion to the amount of interest and attraction she had for you.

The hardcore truth is that only Emotional Unavailability can empower a woman to repeatedly have sex with a man and never want anything more.

What are the reasons for her emotional unavailability?

  • It could be that she’s still hung up on her old boyfriend.
  • It could be that she has more multifaceted interest and attraction towards other men than she has for you.
  • It could be that she doesn’t see you as a whole man, but rather as just a tool——adevice that she uses to scratch her sexual itch, and NOTHING more.

It could be a variety of different things…only she knows for sure. The critical Intel that you need to extract from this experience is that for whatever reason, that particular woman has proven for almost a whole year that she is emotionally unavailable to you.

No doubt, for certain kinds of men, just getting sex from a woman is enough for them. But—-you are NOT that kind of man. So what if you’re getting “the sex”? At the end of the day you’re still unhappy. And why is that? It’s because you’re a man who is interested in having more than just a series of One Night Stands——–you’re looking for just one relationship that could stand the test of time.

What you need to realize is that what you have now is far less than what you really want. Also recognize that any man who continues to settle for less than what he wants out of a relationship will continue to receive…only that.

Now is the time when you have to decide whether you’ll continue to drown your sorrows in relationship ambiguity, or rise up and go find the kind of relationship that you really want with the kind of woman who is emotionally available enough to give it to you.

Soldier on.


~Victory Unlimited 2011


Originally appeared at Victory Unlimited




Photo: Wikimedia Commons


About Victory Unlimited

The Victory Unlimited Show is a tongue-in-cheek, self-help show for men that's reminiscent of programs from the Golden Age of Radio like The Shadow, The Green Hornet, and Flash Gordon. During each broadcast, the host codenamed "Victory Unlimited" answers dating, relationship, and life strategy questions from men by addressing them with a motivational, military-like intensity. You can listen to the show and read more articles here:


  1. This article and the comments has been very clarifying to me. Thank you all.

    • Just the conversation that I needed to read. Thoughtful, well-mannered and educational. Thank you everybody.

      • Yes, it’s a good conversation. In my 20s, I had a lot of options for fwb, for relationships, all. Now I am a youthful looking 50, and out of a long term relationship over a year. Options for a good relationship seem few. I have a best friend, I’ve known for 25 years; we’ve been through some challenges over figuring out where we stand. While I totally appreciated the sexual opportunities I have had in the past, nowadays, I’ve turned down a few offers of casual sex. After all this time, being super healthy, why jeopardize that health? STDs are an issue, and I think, the real brass ring of human relationships is to find that best friend and companion and be sexually satisfied with them. I don’t think I’m willing to settle for the scraps of just fucking someone; being single and celibate is far more fulfilling – and safe – than that.

  2. Im in love but scare that he gonna hurt me break my heart if i tell him how i feel we not together we just friends with benefit

  3. Sometimes we choose the “love” we think we deserve; I had fallen for the FWB, and despite the guy being upfront with me, I prolonged it for more than a month (Never ever have a FWB for longer than a month). It is better to just do not get int an FWB situation at all if you want more in a relationship. First know yourself and believe people when they tell you the true. Sometimes being alone is better than using someone’s body (or letting someone use yours) in order to feel less lonely. Being alone means that you have unlimited options, you have not yet meet.

  4. Great comments here! I am so glad that you wrote this piece, VU.

    We choose friends with benefits relationships hoping to avoid heartbreak and an intimate encounter with ourselves. We have old patterns that come up when we love someone and sexually close to them as well. We think we can bypass doing our inner work by anesthetizing our need for connection, desire to be known and loved deeply by these kind of friends with benefits type relationships. Ultimately, someone crosses the barriers we have put up and we are catapulted onto a journey of self-discovery through the hard to suppress feelings inside of us. We are not here to escape ourselves, we are here to find out what we have to contribute by becoming intimately familiar with who we are.

    My two cents…

  5. Someone always catches feelings in a FWB. He seems to have always had them for her while she is probably not over her ex, or just not as committed to the idea of them as a “thing.” He needs to either accept it (and he will be unhappy) or move on.

    I am of the opinion that if you keep sleeping with the same person, you will develop some kind of feeling for them. Even if it’s protective/territorial (most likely) or romantic feelings. This is why I’m not into just randomly sleeping with a lot of folks. Because emotionally, I know, I am not good at a FWB.

  6. cameragirl says:

    Options…how funny…eve attractive women don’t have options. I get hit on, but am extremely shy.

    Currently riding thru a 2.5 year FWB. He w.ants to go back to just being friends. As if I can shut down that part of my personality. He still wants to go to shows, take vacations, hang out, just everyone else gets the benefits besides me. I told him it would destroy our friendship, it hurts too much,he knows I love him.
    ..He still wants all else to continue with me and not loose the friendship. This is my best friend in the world, and its a lose/lose situation. But he insists he’ll lose if I end our friendship…….

    • You are essentially the guy in this article. See? You have feelings for him and he doesn’t. The longer you keep sleeping with him, the worse off you will be. You should probably go no contact with him.

  7. One of the greatest emotional dangers of FWB type relationships is that the risk of someone wanting MORE out of the relationship than the other person the LONGER the scenario plays out. Though there are exceptions to this rule—it these exceptions that actually “prove” the rule.

    Here’s a mission that everybody should go on—if they choose to accept it:

    Google phrases like

    “Do guys ever want a relationship with their fwb”
    “Can friends with benefits relationship ever lead to something more”
    “Can friends with benefits relationships backfire on you”

    To think that FWB relationships are always just worry-free “fun n’ games” scenarios for men is a FALLACY. There are always consequences to actions—and those consequences are not always good for guys who want MORE than just “sex” from a woman.

  8. What some people fail to realize is this:

    Even if a man does have a lot of options—all his options are NOT created equal.

    For some men, like the guy who wrote in to me, quick, convenient sex with a woman that you’re “into” is different than quick, convenient, AND “committed” sex with a woman that you’re “into”.

    That guy was looking for the latter—and never REALLY wanted the former.

  9. There’s no shame, weakness, or foolishness associated with a man who KNOWS what kind of relationship he wants with a woman—and REFUSES to settle for less. Men who want to experience a more multifaceted relationship with a woman than just a “sexual” one should NEVER allow themselves to be talked out of it by those who feel differently.

    What’s right for other people is not always the same thing that’s right for you. Accept that fact and keep your life moving in the direction that YOU want it to go.

  10. I agree with NN when he states “Sex is form. Connection is substance. At some point our sexual selves need more than to bust a nut. Even for the man who has many options, he too desires an option that nourishes him, not just relieves the hunger”.

    I know this happens with some men at least because it has happened to me — I would much rather have a deep, trusting relationship with a woman with similar values and outlook on life than a continued series of temporary relations with varying women. I have done that many times over and some men learn to eventually value the internal qualities in a woman as well as the relationship with her (do we have fun together? do I trust her? Am I happy with her? Is she kind?)….isn’t it better to find great sex with a woman you value, respect, and enjoy in many ways….certainly feels better to me, and it is harder to replace with just any other woman.

    I am not saying that the external does not matter — I need to be attracted and there needs to be chemistry but finding kindness in a woman can be long-term attractive. I still look at the hot women but I look/search for other things as well. And if I am in the mood for it , I will have sex with a woman I find hot and not much more….but there can be a lot more. Also I tolerate less BS from very attractive women and prefer a cute woman that I feel good with, even for a short-term thing.

    Jules, not all men are the same. You cannot lump is into a neat one-size fits all bucket of how we all behave or what we all value. My experience has been that a lot (not all) of women who make generalizations like this have got to that point because they have been hurt and disappointed by men repeatedly. Not all men are the same: that is precisely why we have this dialogue here. But if you approach relations that way and you also combine it with a “sexual” focus rather than a “connection” focus, you will for sure continue meeting the same kind of guys — the ones that only value sex and not connections which include sex – and self-reinforce your belief. Just my thoughts — not intended to offend.

    Finally, some of the comments here from women who see sexuality so lightly make me think I am better off single as I am. Maybe other men don’t mind, but I personally for myself do not want a woman who has seen and sees sex as a sport or a stress-release. You may disagree vehemently with me, but it is my choice for me. Furthermore, many men I know don’t mind women who view the world like that (sex as a sport) for a short-term thing but would rather avoid this for long-term relations or marriage.

    Just saying: men are not all the same, some of us also value connection/internal qualities and not exclusively the technical/physical/external, and many of those of us like that would like women who think similarly.

    Best regards,


    • That’s very nice, Rick. But tell me, how would a man, who has only had a handful of dating/sex opportunities in his lifetime, know what he really wants? I believe I’m talking about a good 60-70% of the entire male population.

      How do we know how the dating / relationship lives of men would play out if they had more options? If they had the ability to attract women easily?

      You might want to point at the countless men you know of who love their gf’s and wives to bits, who are in happy fulfilling relationships and wouldn’t trade them for anything. But you are only looking in retrospect.

      Our experiences, circumstances, and opportunities greatly shape our outlook and strategies regarding dating, sex and relationships; both, on a conscious and subconscious level.

      Consider this possibility..

      A guy who has had few women interested in him in his lifetime and doesn’t attract women easily, is likely to develop a different outlook regarding relationships than a guy who has had many opportunities. Once a woman does come along he is likely to make more effort to like her. He would realize perhaps subconsciously, that the most feasible way for him is to hold on to a woman once he gets the chance because it might be years before another opportunity comes up.

      He might go on to love her and have a happy fulfilling relationship with that woman. But who knows how his life would’ve played out if he had more opportunities? Perhaps he would’ve lost interest quickly, let her drift away, quickly moved on to another one after a brief fling, and repeated the process with several other women for a long time.

      I believe if most men could obtain casual sex and have short term relationships easily, the number of men interested in commitment and monogamy would plummet significantly.
      Perhaps most men would still have committed relationships but only much later in their lives… say, when they’re 38 instead of 26, when their sex drives are off the peak, when they are exhausted emotionally and physically and want to wind down; when the hairline begins to recede, the waistline expands and the erections get less stiff. The dating and relationships landscape would be very different.

      I don’t have a problem acknowledging that there are men who, despite having all the opportunities in the world…despite having the ability to attract women easily, would still prefer serious invested monogamous relationships. The problem is that YOU don’t want to acknowledge the existence of a sea of young men out there who don’t really want a big relationship or at least aren’t ready for them yet; and would just like to have sexual relationships with a few women w/o emotional involvement and complications, but they don’t have the option / ability to do so. Their only feasible option is having ‘proper’ relationships.

      • woodsy31 says:

        Good points Tim. I don’t see the majority of young men growing up dreaming about finding the one particular girl for to spend the rest of their lives with, either. I don’t see them actively searching for ‘the one’. Its more like they are just looking to ‘pull girls’. Why then most of them are seen in proper official relationships as soon as they enter young adulthood? I think it may have a lot to do with the ‘constraints’ you’ve talked about in detail.

        When a young man expresses his sexual frustration, the standard advice and the message given to him is “You need to get a girlfriend mate”. No one considers that he would probably have been perfectly content having casual sex, fwb and flings. Perhaps its a silent acknowledgement that the former is not a viable option for many.

        • “Good points Tim. I don’t see the majority of young men growing up dreaming about finding the one particular girl for to spend the rest of their lives with, either.”

          I dream about finding and married the right girl since high school to be honest. And I’m a 22 year old guy with lots of sexual energy. I want to ask, is this an American thing, to be a guy who rather have multiple casual sex rather than relationship with one woman? Because I’m not American, I’m Asian who live in rather conservative Asian country. We have no hookup culture and being virgin in the wedding night is normal here. And many young man around my age do dream about finding the right girl and spending the rest of life with her. So If I cant understand what many guys think ( my response to Tim comment before ) I’m sorry, because maybe I raised in a different culture so I have different mindset with majority of men here

      • Herschele says:

        I think it would be safe to say that men who can obtain sex easily are in a much better position to decide whether they want a relationship or not.

  11. Not buying it says:


    I know I wasn’t necessarily unique, in my thinking among males (not necessarily alpha only) or even females nowadays at an ever increasing number, sign of the times, I admit it’s not very common for either genders more so females but with the social realities nowadays it’s becoming more so, it seems the person or persons giving advice to (Dwayne) are basing it on the notion that for a relationship to be healthy it’s somehow has to be exclusive, on top of that any males who prefer it are sociopath or psychopath! !! As much as I truly get more attached to the person the more times we have sex & plus the length of time it continues, I am aware that to care for someone & be cared for it doesn’t to be stuck to them in the complicated ways that exclusive /committed relationships requires.

  12. Atypical says:

    Oh my, I’m not even sure where to start here. For myself, (female, late 20’s) I am not interested in a committed relationship at this point in my life. I am living away from home going to school and will be returning home upon graduation so I don’t want to get attached to anyone out here as more than a friend. That being said, does that mean I can’t be intimate with someone simply because I don’t want a relationship. No, it does not. And I don’t make that a mystery either. I explain my situation thoroughly before pursuing any sort of physical contact. Whether or not the guy “falls for me” is out of my hands at that point. Now, am I a villain when said guy falls for me and I am still not interested in a relationship? Absolutely not. I play with all my cards on the table and if he can’t accept it then he needs to move on. And I tell him that. I do not need to be in a situation where I have to answer to someone about my actions or desires, I do not need that added stress in my life right now. Have I fallen for a guy who I was FWB with? Of course. And when it was obvious that I was never going to get to be his girlfriend because of his actions as well as how I feel about relationships right now, what did I do about it? Did I get pissy or sad or mean? Did I demand that he be my boyfriend because I wanted him to be, regardless of his feelings about it? No. I enjoyed the time we did have together, continue to enjoy our friendship, ignored the sting of him getting a girlfriend, and moved on! Maybe I can compartmentalize my emotions better than most people but how can you judge that? Perhaps my ability to be as liberal as I am with my sexuality lies in the fact that I don’t see getting married and making babies as a way to gauge my success in life, nor anyone else’s, and therefore don’t always attach some huge meaning to any relationship whether it’s casual or committed.

    The argument of “well we have sex so she/he must like me, why won’t she/he be my girlfriend/boyfriend?” is very frustrating. This is an issue of people not being able to distinguish “sex” and “love”. You can love someone you don’t have sex with, you can have sex with someone you don’t love, love can lead to sex, and sex can lead to love. There are multiple scenarios that can arise because we’re human. But in order to avoid getting hurt and hurting other people we have to be honest to ourselves and the individuals we include in our lives. Having a pity-party because someone doesn’t want to commit to you is a waste of time. If you can’t handle it you need to walk away, as hard as that may be, because if you’re hurting now it’s just going to hurt worse the longer you wait. Finally, you can’t make someone like you. No matter how much money you spend on them, how much you change yourself for them, how much you do for them, or how much you love them or care about them. If they don’t like you they don’t like you and you have to realize that even though it can hurt pretty bad. You pick yourself up by your bootstraps and keep on truckin’. The world isn’t going to stop just because someone doesn’t like you the way you want them to!

    I could write a book about all of this…I haven’t even touched on the idea that women having multiple partners is still not okay but it’s okay for men. Not trying to start a war with that comment, I’m just saying that that idea is out there, even in some of the other comments by other people in response to this article.

    These are just my opinions based on my own experiences. I’m not saying they’re right or I’m right or this is the only way to live, etc.

  13. Not buying it says:

    Sorry for the typing errors, Camping in the woods with some friends & in a tent using a cellphone to type this at night, 🙂 🙂
    I meant to say many alpha males, in control of, …, all I am trying to point out is not all alpha males, I know are necessarily savvy or use common sense in matters of the heart.

  14. Not buying it says:

    I have seen or met one so called alpha males that I thought were in control of every aspects of their life but I personally haven’t met one that could fake it in matters of the heart for to long, that’s if any of us can agree on what an alpha male is, for the simple fact I have close friends who fit that definition in my humble opinion yet their main weakness was emotional intelligence, when it comes to women.

  15. A lot of “fake” alpha males love to talk about how they “never” feel anything for the women that they’re having sex with. Then, one day, they finally meet a woman, start sexing her, and find out TOO LATE that they’ve suddenly gotten emotionally attached!

    And when that happens, you usually have to take their tie, belt, and shoelaces—lock’em up in a rubber room and put’em under 24-hour suicide watch—just to keep them from killing themselves.

  16. I agree with this article. As a young guy ( early 20s ) , hookup culture and FWBs are something I cannot understand. Maybe because I’m not casual sex type of guy. But it would be so hard for me to have sex with a woman without having any emotional connection with.

    Seriously I’m tired with all these stereotypes about how men want sex and women want love. I think we , men and women are not different in what we want and need. If there are some people who can have sex without emotional connection, its not based on their gender, its just everybody are different.

  17. Not buying it says:

    Hook up culture is not just a new fade, it is based on the way we live , fast, mobile, open, association with other people that usually develops into (friends with benefits), usually do to the yearning as we age to more heart felt intimacy, balanced realistic emotional security without the old rules of stick together forever mentality, specially at a time were the real numbers of a broken marriage or dissolved long term exclusive relationships (common law or otherwise) are actually on the increase exponentially & as a matter of fact a life time relationship (25 years or more) have less then 10% chance of lasting, if memory serves me right.

  18. Bay Area Guy says:

    Maybe I’m just speaking for myself here, but I think the overwhelming majority of men would prefer a FWB zone over the regular, affectionless Friend Zone any day.

    Whatever the drawbacks may be, they’re better than most other options for most men.

    • @Bay Area Guy

      You would be correct! I know this man does.

      I don’t do the Friend Zone thingy.

    • “Maybe I’m just speaking for myself here, but I think the overwhelming majority of men would prefer a FWB zone over the regular, affectionless Friend Zone any day.”


      I wholeheartedly agree with this.

      However, the guy who wrote in, and many other guys just like him—want the third option in-between. They want NO PARTS of the friend zone, but MUCH MORE than to just live perpetually in the FWB zone.

      Whenever men settle for “less” than what they really want in any relationship—the nagging ticks of dissatisfaction that they feel is similar to the ticking of a Doomsday Clock:

      Which means: It’ll only be a matter of time before “whatever” kind of relationship it is they’re in—SELF-DESTRUCTS.

  19. Not buying it says:

    @ NM

    Who said you can’t have genuine, heart felt, love & empathy for some one without the need to own or have them to yourself only, where do you go assuming that an adult cannot care about somebody without having them to live with them, specially in this day & age in which a fair number of adults are commitment shy , marriage or otherwise as long as it’s based on exclusivity that is historically derived from religion !!!

    The simple fact is people will always get into relationships & adjust it to the time & place to go along with the socially accepted norms, I believe it’s way more accepted nowadays that relationships regardless of sexuality is what the two (or three,…etc) persons decide

  20. The issue here is also about age and energy. As I turned 35, I began to notice that I desired less “options” and more quality in all my relationships. It was like shopping for a car. No matter how I found it and decided that this is what I want and like, I felt solid in my decision. As opposed to life in my twenties where anything shiny caught my attention. Then there is quality. I like substance over form. Sex is form. Connection is substance. At some point our sexual selves need more than to bust a nut. Even for the man who has many options, he too desires an option that nourishes him, not just relieves the hunger.

    • @NN

      “Sex is form. Connection is substance. At some point our sexual selves need more than to bust a nut. Even for the man who has many options, he too desires an option that nourishes him, not just relieves the hunger.”

      I say hogwash! Dream on my friend.

  21. wellokaythen says:

    Ultimately, it’s a question of plusses and minuses. “With benefits” has never meant “without drawbacks.” If you go into ANY relationship assuming that it’s the perfect scenario, then THAT is a major reason why that relationship crashed and burned: unrealistic expectations. Every relationship scenario has its plusses and minuses. You have to decide on an individual basis what weight to put on each one.

    Besides, I don’t see why sustainability or long-term potential is necessarily a key measurement of a relationship. A relationship that ends awkwardly is not always a sign that the whole thing was a terrible mistake. And, it’s odd to criticize a relationship that was meant to be temporary for being temporary.

    The larger lesson is that there is no one-size-ftis-all relationship for every person. (That’s why it’s also silly to say that any particular kind of relationship “always” crashes and burns.)

  22. This guy’s real problem seems to be a lack of other dating options.

    I know of some guys who fell for the girls they were FwB with. These are the (handful) of guys who go on to tell men that becoming attached / getting feelings hurt / feeling used etc can happen to men as well, in Fwb situations. There is one thing they all have in common with each other….they were exclusive with the FwB girl, while she was probably banging 10 other dudes.

    I have NEVER seen or heard of a genuinely attractive guy who has a dozen F-buddies and FwB’s, who got attached, got his feelings hurt, or ended up feeling USED for sex.

    I can only sense the frustration and powerlessness of a guy who only manages to attract, say, one woman in a goddamn year and realizes she is in a FwB with other guys, WHILE HE ONLY HAS HER. I know the feeling when you’ve had the taste of being with a woman but don’t know the next time she’s gonna be with you again; or the feeling when you realize SHE can end this arrangement anytime she wants; or the feeling of powerlessness upon realizing that you always get together at her convenience, when she decides, while you go running at 11pm banging at her doorstep.

    Men with a lot of options, men who are in CONTROL of their dating sex life, men who can attract a lot of women, men who HAVE several FwB’s rather than being an FwB of girl who has 10 others; rarely have this problem. But I understand its an anomaly. Men shouldn’t have so many options. It can spoil them. Men shouldn’t have that much control.

    It is such an inconvenient politically incorrect truth isn’t it. That a lack of options can subconsciously transform you into a different man…a more vulnerable, dependent man; a man who can become attached quickly and easily hurt by women.

    So yeah, it can happen to guys as well. I can even see that happening to me. But give me a lot of “options” and I’ll be a different man.

    • Nailed it! The words you speak here are far closer to the truth than many men suspect.

      Also… deeply resent the false dichotomy presented here.

      So if I can’t maintain an extended FWB situation without losing control of my emotions and falling too hard for a girl, then I’m an “normal, emotionally healthy man.” But, if I can maintain an extended FWB situation without losing control of my emotions and falling too hard for a girl, then I’m a “sociopath or psychopath [who’s burned my conscience beyond recognition].” Right.

      I would think being “emotionally healthy” would mean being able to sustain a level of emotional investment that’s appropriate for the type of relationship that you’re in. Being overly invested in a woman who’s clearly not that into you seems like a sign of emotionally unhealthiness. Emotional investment and level of commitment or exclusivity are not the same thing, and you can be plenty invested in a woman and still not necessarily want to be in a monogamous, exclusive relationship with her. Monogamy and commitment are cultural memes; not biologically supported human bonding mechanisms.

      Men and women who are in control of their dating lives really can have the best of both worlds. I’ve moved freely between long-term monogamous relationships, multiple long-term FWB type situations, short-term hookups, and periods of extended singledom throughout my life, and have never felt worse the wear for any of it. The important part is that you find a relationship that works for both you and your partner. The idea that the only “healthy” relationship is a long-term committed, monogamous one is largely BS.

      • @DD

        “The idea that the only “healthy” relationship is a long-term committed, monogamous one is largely BS.”


    • How do you know that if you are not one of those attractive guys with lots of option? Honestly I disagree with you. I think men are no different than women, we do have same ability to love someone, one woman or one man, not because we dont have any other options. We just love her. We felt “that” connection we dont get from other women. And of course it will hurt if we want to pursue “real” relationship while she just want to have FEB relationship. And I’m sure even those highly attractive men or super rich men have the ability to fall hard to one women, even if they have other options.

      I cant understand how you wrote those guys felt used just because they dont have other options.

      Do you never fall in love???

      I’m serious, if I were a woman, I will be afraid to have a relationship with a man who think like you. Its scary.

      • Bitterness aside, Tim’s post is not completely without merit. A LOT of things change when you move from a guy who’s only moderately (or not at all) successful with women to being one whom women regularly pursue. One of the first things that happens is that you begin to realize that women are largely the same and that it doesn’t make sense to continue pining over one girl when you can go out and meet another one just like her in a week’s time. Having that level of power and influence over your dating life really does change who you are at a core level. It’s not that you don’t love the women you’re with, or that you don’t feel a deep sense of loss when they’re gone. Those things still happen, but they aren’t multiplied by the sense of powerlessness over your sexual life that Tim describes.

        The one common thread between almost all (Western) men’s complaints about women have to do with their lack of power and influence within these intersexual relationships. There are a lot of factors that contribute to this, both on a cultural and individual level, but the culture isn’t going to change any time, so it’s up to the individual to do so. There’s nothing inherently “scary” about what Tim posted. He’s just speaking to an obvious truth: that the lack of power is at least as devastating, if not more so, as the loss of love is in these types of relationships.

  23. OirishM says:

    I think far fewer people are capable of FWB than they think, but I’m not convinced the alternatives are either lovey-dovey or sociopath.

  24. This article seems to be an attempt to portray that men and women have it the same.

    Seriously, how many guy are lucky enough to get into FwB arrangements? When it becomes a fkn epidemic then we’ll talk.

    • wellokaythen says:

      I don’t understand. Are you saying women have more FWB relationships than men do? Who are these women having these FWB relationships with if not with men?

      Is there some hot, casual woman-on-woman fad out there that’s way more common than hetero FWB relationships? If so, please go into explicit detail. If not, don’t be afraid to make it up. ; – )

      • @wellokaythen

        “Who are these women having these FWB relationships with if not with men?”

        Many of them are having sex with the same guy!!!! So, it is not a unique 1:1 mapping my friend.

        Women talk among themselves and it can be very explicit. If a woman finds a guy who gives them good sex, but she does not want to date, usually she is going to share this info with her friends. Guess what? The next thing you know her friends are also sexing the guy. Why? Because in her mind it is just sex and good sex! And she does not care because he is not dating material. Just screwing material.

        I have know this to occur with several women. There was a woman who screwed the maintenance guy in her apt building. She told a few other tenants that the guy was great and had a big dick. He ended up doing 4 other women in the same complex! This is how it works in real life.

        • wellokaythen says:

          The maintenance guy?

          Dammit. I’ve never chosen the right job for myself. Not once. I even tried pizza delivery for a few years, and the porn scenarios never ever happened. Maybe if I installed cable?

          : – )

          • I once heard a comedian joke to an audience full of guys about what the TRUE definition of “Porn” is.

            I can’t remember exactly which comedian it was, but the gist of what he said was:

            “The definition of Porn is — Sex escapades that NEVER happens to “you”. Lol…

        • Sharing is Caring! says:

          How dare my friends never share any of their boytoys with me! Those good-for-nothing b*tc#3$! Friendship over! Sharing is caring, and this means that they never really cared about me!

      • There are a lot of women who are having a FwB thing because they have a crush on the guy. They are not the FwB type to begin with .Barring these women I can tell you that more women than men are in control of their FwB situations. Do you want me to elaborate on that?

        • Joanna Schroeder says:

          How can you know this? Is there data? I have never heard any assertion about women having control in FwB situations.

          • @Joanna…


            In these FWBs situations, usually it is the woman or women who set the parameters. Since from my perspective, the sex is guaranteed I could care less.

            It’s just like booty calls (never been there) but my friends say it is the woman who makes the call.

            Just saying.

            • Joanna Schroeder says:

              I know no women who “booty call” men. I’m sure it happens, but it reminds me of Emily McCombs’ article about being “Fuck-Zoned”


              • are you serious Joanna? In most FWB situation I know, men and women “booty call” each other. If you said you dont know any women who booty call men, then there are no men who booty call women either.

              • Joanna

                I read Emily McCombs articles too. She said that when she used to be obese she had crushes on several lean fit good looking guys way out of her league. She easily had sex with all of them but couldn’t date them. That is what she is referring to in the ‘Fuck-Zoned’ article.

                But she is also into intentional FwB and booty calls (by the dozen). You can read about her and her minions’ sexual escapades on that website.

                • Bay Area Guy says:

                  Let’s see, which one is better: a completely affectionless Friend Zone where you at most maybe get two hugs, or a f*ck zone?

                  Such a tough call!

                  • Yeah they aren’t comparable. Fuckzone gets some intimacy, they’re a step ahead. Both may hurt but you’re still getting laid.

                    I wonder how many obese men can have sex with several lean fit good looking girls “way out of his league”?

                    • Bay Area Guy says:

                      I wonder how many obese men can have sex with several lean fit good looking girls “way out of his league”?

                      Unless he has game or social skills of a god, not very likely.

                • @ Tim

                  She said that when she used to be obese she had crushes on several lean fit good looking guys way out of her league. She easily had sex with all of them but couldn’t date them.

                  What are you trying to imply here?

                  • @Nina K, isn’t it obvious? Reverse the genders and it’d be very very hard for an obese man to get 1, let alone several good looking, way out of his league women.

  25. Dude, the thinking/analytical part of this seems easy and I think you already know the answer. Getting laid can be fun but if the whole interaction is not making you happier, there is your answer: move on. The end goal is being happy with a woman, not getting laid. If you look at things that way, you will probably value and may find a good relation with a good woman that is good for you. You will be happier and the sex can be even better when you connect with a woman you like/love overall too.

    If you choose to, you can even have FWB or just sex; I just would do it with anyone except for her. She is the only one (of the single women – I would always advise against married women) that I think you should stay away from. The sex is coming at a very high emotional cost. Do some other girl if you feel like it, but let go of this one that is causing you pain and disappointment.

    My interpretation is that the true issue here is more emotional — you don’t want to let go and face the fact that this is not what you want. You want to postpone letting go because letting go is sad and the sex is good — I get it: been there, done that — but it will get better and I think you will be happier. Man up and do what your brain is already telling you to do.

    Hope this helps.

    Best of luck to you,


  26. Not buying it says:

    Relationships that are defined as “friends with benefits” are not necessarily a negative thing for men, as a matter of fact it can last for years & amount of care & attention we give each other when needed is I believe more genuine, sincere & without fear of let downs as in tie down relationships, to describe men who prefer it as ” emotionally unavailable human beings with burnt out beyond recognition consciousness” is over the top & passing judgment on an ever increasing number of people (men & women) who chose to do away with old fashion hang ups of couples relationships, in this day & age of disillusionment & gender warfare paradigm, it provides financial security & ability to care about some one without being taken for a ride, to pass judgment the way this article does shows inherent ideological bias against that, just because more men seem to prefer it.

  27. I see two important facts in the story that should make the decision easy. I realize it ISN’T that easy to make cold, hard decisions based on facts, but it makes life and relationships so much simpler if you can commit to a few governing personal and relationship principles that you never violate.

    Personal Value #1: “I’m not really the casual sex, F-Buddy, hookup-type of guy”
    Statement of fact. It is a yes or no question. You are NOT that guy. Simple, no? So why are you hanging around one minute longer?

    Relationship Value #2 (suggestion): “I will NOT waste my time trying to build relationships with people who behave like they do not want a relationship with me. Life is short and I deserve SO much more than a lukewarm effort.”

    With these two guiding principles and the balls to operate by them without apology, a guy can avoid a whole lot of time and analysis. If he is a good man, he will find his match in the pool of good ladies who actually want to be with a guy just like him.

    This same pattern is seen in married men whose wives continue to reject them and act uninterested in emotional and physical affection. But why do so many of us continue to crave, hound, and beg for her attention? WHY would we be attracted to a woman who clearly is NOT attracted to us? That in itself is unattractive behavior and is guaranteed to get continued rejection.

    When a guy finds himself in a situation where others are not attracted to him, his best course of action is to stop the train, move on, chin up, keep working on himself, and he will attract someone who deserves him. In a marriage, this action is probably the only thing that will reignite his wife’s interest in him again. He “wants” her, but does NOT “need” her. Now THAT’s attractive.

    • Great Point, GoodGuys2GreatMen!

      I’ve found that the more a man can force himself to view his interactions with women through the “goggles” of objectivity, the better the decisions that they make. When a man can successfully (even if just briefly) take his own emotions out of his relationship evaluations, the more clearly he’ll be able to see what’s in HIS long-term, emotional best interest.

      Unfortunately though, the world is FULL of men and women who want people who don’t REALLY want them.


    • “I will NOT waste my time trying to build relationships with people who behave like they do not want a relationship with me. Life is short and I deserve SO much more than a lukewarm effort.” Oh my God. THIS. When will I learn it? Going through exactly this, for 2 years now. I gotta say, it at least gives me hope that not all men are EU. I just hope I can muster something worthwhile from my wreckage for when the right guy shows up. I’m afraid this crap has made me a little EU myself. FML.


  1. […] Sometimes friends with benefits can go seriously sideways for bros too. (Good Men Project) […]

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