The cardinal rules of friends with benefits

Justin Alvis | Columnist
You met he/she in your JAC 220 class and you decided to be partners for a group project. You meet up about three or four times in the library and you immediately hit it off and find yourself getting off topic to talk about various things.
They hit you up to come to their apartment to work on the project and next thing you know you’re in their bed and just had sex. Whoops. You still consider them a friend but you’re sexually attracted to them and continue to have occasional (and sometimes arranged) “accidents.”
 Urban Dictionary defines Friends With Benefits as: two friends who have a sexual realtionship without being emotionally involved. Typically two good friends who have casual sex without a monogomous relationship or any kind of commitment. 
You want to continue this special friendship but you’re not sure how to go about it. Follow my five cardinal rules to keep the sex and the friendship without losing your edges.
1. Set some rules
When you realize that this might be an actual thing, talk it out with them to make sure they are on board with continuing the fling with no strings attached. It will become extremely awkward down the line if you don’t establish a mutual agreement about this new relationship. Don’t be afraid to say what you want and what you don’t want. A good rule to start with is are you guys going to be exclusive? Is the other person allowed to have other sexual partners? Are you just going with the flow or are you establishing set days?
2. Don’t tell anyone
The first mistake you can make is telling someone about your agreement. Once you start to tell people that you’re a little more than just friends, the word will quickly spread and you just ruined the relationship. Tell no one not even your best friends. They may keep it a secret, but they will start to manipulate your mind into thinking you actually have a crush on the friend. Which leads me to rule #3
3. Do not catch feelings
Do not, under any circumstances, catch feelings for the other friend during this relationship. That will only make things awkward for them if the feeling isn’t mutual. You’ll probably also make them feel guilty because they’ll feel responsible for you catching feelings. Don’t try going through their phone, don’t worry yourself with who they may be dating or who you saw them talking to at 12-2. Y’all are just friends! In fact, to make sure you don’t catch feelings, make sure you keep options on your phone. You don’t have to have sex with them but maintain romantic connections outside of the fling.
4. Keep conversation at a minimum
I’m not saying you can’t be friends and share laughs or extremely intense pillow talks, but try to keep conversations outside of the bedroom short and friendly to avoid breaking rule #3. Once the fling is over, I doubt you’ll wanna be friends.
5. Have fun and be safe!
You’re young. Have fun with the fling and do not stress yourself out about it. You can end it whenever you feel like it and if the feeling is mutual down the road you can try and take it a step further. Always check in with the other person or try to feel their vibes. Use protection because it would be pretty awkward if someone got knocked up from a fling.

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