Are “Friends With Benefits” Ruining your Supper?

The definition of “Friends with Benefits”  is two people who choose to share the physical aspect of a relationship with no strings attached. A set up where you can get the physical urges “taken care of” without the work or emotional cost of building a deeply committed relationship. While this set-up sound like it can be pretty appealing, it actually leaves both people with an emptiness that can’t be filled by just a physical act. It is kind of like Thanksgiving day, when you know there is going to be an amazing meal served – a juicy turkey, with all of the fixings. The stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy and cranberry sauce…and don’t forget to finish it off with a big old slice of pumpkin pie with whip cream! All you have to do is holdout until it is ready….but instead, you start snacking cause you are bored, or maybe even slightly hungry. So you eat a few crackers. Then maybe a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Then a few stale cookies – cause you are craving something sweet and that is all you have in the pantry. Then you see a pre-packaged burrito in the freezer, so you heat that puppy up and shove it in your pie hole.

Before you know it, you are stuffed, and the timer goes off notifying you the meal of a lifetime is ready to be served. The problem is, you have been focusing on meeting your immediate needs versus waiting for the real deal and you miss the delicious pleasure of that Thanksgiving dinner- or in the dating world, you are so busy chasing tail that you miss connecting with that special someone.

Also, having a “friends with benefits” relationship while you are looking for a serious committed relationship makes it difficult to connect on an emotional level with one person while you are sleeping with someone else. It is kinda like you are starting out your new relationship having an affair. Talk about a rocky start! To take it back to a food analogy, it is like saying you want to eat healthy, but you have a box of Twinkies and a can of frosting hidden under your bed. Now, I know that a broiled piece of chicken won’t be emotionally devastated when it finds out about the Twinkies and frosting, but humans are much different. If there is someone who is willing to open up and be emotionally vulnerable, finding out there is a “friends with benefits” relationship going on will be crushing to them.

A healthy, deeply committed relationship does take work, but the benefits are exponential.  They range from increasing your lifespan to better emotional health to improved social coping mechanisms. And it also leads to better sex with your partner!

I know it may sound difficult to curb the physical pleasures in the now; but by choosing to do that, you will get to enjoy the fullness and tastiness of a full turkey dinner with dessert versus getting full on a frozen T.V. Dinner. Who knows, you might even be able to top off all of the goodness with a little bit of “whip cream!”

Create the best relationship you can….or not…the choice is yours!

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