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10 Friends with Benefits Rules You Both Have To Follow

Last updated on June 12, 2022 by Sonya Schwartz

So, I guess you’re here because you are getting into a friends with benefits relationships with someone. Congratulations – you are going to have so much fun! There really isn’t anything more freeing and exhilarating than having a purely physical relationship with someone, especially when they are a friend that you care about, and who cares about you. Some people would say that it’s the perfect scenario, and it can be, as long as you have some guidelines.

I have put this article together to give you a good idea of some of the rules both of you will have to follow if you are going to have successful and pain-free friends with benefits relationship together. If you aren’t sure that you’re clued up enough about these types of relationships, I would recommend taking a read of my article “What is FWB (Friends With Benefits)”. In that article, I talk about what this type of relationship is really about and the benefits and risks involved with one. If you have already read it and decided you’re ready to take a leap of faith into a friends with benefits relationship, let’s jump in together and see ten of the rules that you will both have to follow to keep the fun alive and hurt to a minimum.

Talk about these rules together before deciding to go ahead with any action.

Communication is key in any relationship, but it’s especially crucial in this particular situation. You need to both be on the same page for this to work out how you want it to. That means that before you hop into bed together, you need to speak. You need to speak openly and plainly about what you are both looking for from this relationship. It might be a good idea to voice anything that you definitely don’t want to do too. Being in a friends with benefits relationship means that you can be really sexually experimental, but if you don’t want to do something, don’t. For example, you might tell him that you will try pretty much anything but anal sex is just too far for you. Telling him what you aren’t into and don’t want to do is a good idea, just so he knows where he stands with things like that. Obviously, he needs to do the same.

The conversation before you get into the relationship is so vital because it sets the open and honest tone that will follow through the whole of the relationship you are about to embark on together. Also, it stops or helps to stop anyone from getting hurt if you have decided some things. For example, you will probably want to figure out if you are going to be monogamous or polyamorous. You might also want to think about how you will still find time to chill as friends if you tell anyone or keep it between the two of you.

Whatever happens in the conversation, you need to both have told each other exactly how you feel and what your expectations are. Discuss the list of rules that are written below too. You need guidelines to make it work.

1. Don’t cuddle.

So, you’ve just finished having sex and you’re both exhausted, you both lay back on the bed and that’s when you lean into each other for a cuddle. Stop yourselves. Do not do it. Instead, go to the bathroom, sort yourself out, get your things, say bye and leave.

An after-sex cuddle is bad news because it invites intimacy into the relationship. Your relationship is purely sexual, and cuddling is not sexual. Cuddling is cute and has meaning behind it, so don’t do it. Also, cuddling invites you to speak to each other afterward. It’s normally when people are cuddling that they open up and say vulnerable or romantic things. This kind of thing is completely banned in a friends with benefits relationship. If you want to open up, speak to them or another friend when you are fully clothed and in the right (a non-sexual) situation. If you want to be romantic, wait until a potential romantic partner comes along.

If you cuddle and talk post-sex, you will find it hard to stop yourselves from doing it. You’ll start cuddling, kissing and talking more and soon enough you will find that you are doing that a lot more often than you are actually having sex. This is a slippery slope and you will most likely develop feelings for one another.

2. Don’t speak more than you did when you were just friends.

You shouldn’t speak more than you did when you were just friends. Of course, you might send a text asking to hook up once a week, which is more than your usual text conversation. However, you shouldn’t have chats with them more than you were before. You have never texted them all day every day, so why would you even think of doing that now? Or why would you want to call this person three times a day now? Nothing has changed between you except for the fact that you have seen each other naked and liked it. You can’t open the barriers of communication too much, or you will start to find each other attractive in a more romantic way. If you talk and reveal personal details about yourself, you then become vulnerable to the other person. This isn’t a bad thing normally, but you aren’t in a normal relationship – this is strictly sexual. If you open up too much to them, it might be harder to stop yourself feeling things for them, and it will definitely make it harder to shut them out when things inevitably come to an end between you.

3. Don’t have sex too often with each other.

Obviously, the reason that you have chosen to be in a friends with benefits relationship is so you can have sex, whenever you want and quite constantly. However, you need to make sure that you are only having sex when you really want it. On average, maybe you should be seeing each other for sex once a week, or once every two weeks. This person isn’t your partner, and you can’t have sex with them every day. Even if you can, you shouldn’t. If you have sex too often with them, it will lead to you both wanting to be around each other more. Your minds will realize that whenever you see the other person, you get a certain kind of high. Therefore, it’ll want it more and more. You also can’t dedicate all your time to having sex with this person, otherwise, you are pretty much putting yourself into a relationship without knowing it. In addition to this, if you have sex too much, it will actually lose its hotness and spice. You might end up that you are just having regular, pretty boring sex.

You will also realize that you might be using sex as an excuse to see each other and hang out more. You need to limit the time that you spend with this person, especially in the bedroom, so you can both keep your feelings in line.

If he asks to have sex quite a lot, don’t feel bad about saying no. You are in this friends with benefits situation for your own selfish reasons, and you don’t owe him anything. Similarly, if you are asking him for sex too much, he should decline. You should also stop yourself from asking too much if you can control yourself. If you can’t, you’re probably already in a dangerous place.

4. Don’t stay the night.

In friends with benefits relationships, you should never, ever stay the night. Like I mentioned earlier, once you have had your fun and finished everything, it’s time to put your clothes back on, get your things and get out that door, until the next time you see each other. Under no circumstances should you stay the night, even if it seems like a good option at the time, it won’t be the next morning.

Sleeping next to someone is a particularly intimate thing, especially when it’s someone that you have just had sex with. During the night, you might cuddle, which is rule number one, don’t do it! The bigger problems come the next morning when you wake up next to this person. Waking up in the morning next to someone is a really sweet and loving thing. If you are attracted to each other, you might also want to have some glorious morning sex. Sounds great. However, do you notice that you have now also broken rule number three? After you’ve had your morning fill of each other and more post-sex cuddles, you will most likely speak to each other. Obviously, this isn’t a crime, you’re friends after all. However, speaking to someone that you have just had sex with and cuddled up to all night is a one-way ticket to feeling city. It’s just a bad idea. If you want to keep everything as purely sexual a friends with benefits situation should be, do not stay the night, ever.

5. Use protection.

This is an absolutely strict rule. You need to use protection when you sleep with each other. Firstly, no one in the situation is wanting to have a baby pop out in nine months. Secondly, neither of you will want to catch an STI. STI’s are no joke, and they should be treated seriously. Therefore, as long as you protect yourself then you’re fine. As this is ongoing sexual interaction, you might feel the need to speak to it with each other. You can go on a type of birth control, for example, the contraceptive pill or the IUD. However, those things are not going to protect you from STI’s. It is a good idea to have your friend wear always wear a condom. You can make sure that you always have some handy by both having a packet of condoms at your places. This way, it will never be an option to not use protection.

In addition to this, I would highly recommend both of you getting a sexual health check before you jump into bed together. You should then go back and get checked every six months. The probability that you might contract an STI from your friend will clearly be increased if the relationship between the two of you is polyamorous. So take extra care if this is the situation you are in. Be safe and stay protected.

6. If someone develops feelings, they need to say.

One of the most important rules that you need to set out together is that if one person catches feelings for the other, they need to be honest about it and speak up. You both need to agree that if you are even getting a hint of a romantic connection or feeling for the other person, you address it with them straight away. You will both need to swallow your pride in this kind of situation and speak up because that’s what is best for the two of you.

If the situation does arise where someone has feelings for the other person, the two of you need to discuss it to see how the other person feels. Unfortunately, a lot of the time these kinds of feelings are unrequited, and even though this can be really painful, you need to move past it. The two of you should stop seeing each other straight away. If you continue sleeping together, it won’t be fair for the person that has feelings because they will be falling harder for the other person. It also won’t be fair on the other person because they will feel guilty for not feeling the same, and they might be having unrealistic expectations set for them.

When you do speak about one of you having feelings for the other, you might actually find out that it is reciprocated. This is a really positive thing. Even though your relationship might not have started in the best way, you now both feel the same about each other and you’re attracted to more than just your friend’s body.

7. If someone gets jealous, they need to be honest.

This is similar to the point above, but if one of you starts to feel jealous at any point, you need to speak up and tell the other person. You might feel jealous of the other people your friend is seeing if you have feelings for them, or you might just be jealous over the fact they are hanging out with someone else rather than sleeping with you. Not only is it not fair to be angry at the person for something they didn’t even realize they were doing, but you don’t have the right to feel jealousy towards them. Both of you entered this friends with benefits relationships with no expectations towards each other because these types of relationships don’t have any emotional ties or attachment. Therefore, if one of you starts to feel jealous, you are not upholding the agreement of the relationship any longer. The relationship between you should be stopped, because you are either feeling something for the other person, or you are not understanding the basis of a friends with benefits relationship.

8. Don’t shut down the idea of someone else walking into your life.

Neither of you should shut down the idea of someone else walking into your life during the time you are in this friends with benefits relationship. If you do this, then you might realize that you were wasting so many good opportunities to get to know people, and you might have even met the love of your life.

You are both just friends, and therefore you still probably want to find someone more serious, and your friend will want that for you too. So, during your relationship, you should both still make yourself available to other people. You should still date other people. The only thing I would say is that your friend probably doesn’t need to know about it unless it’s getting serious with someone else. This isn’t to protect their feelings, because they shouldn’t have feelings for you anyway, but no one wants to hear that the person they are about to have sex with is really into someone else. It’s just not nice. If things then get more serious with someone else, it’s time for you to stop the friends with benefits relationship between you both and go back to just friends. Make sure you don’t then stray back to each other while you are in a relationship with someone else.

9. Don’t get mad if the other person is unavailable when you want them.

Neither of you has any right to get mad at the other person if they are unavailable to see you and have sex with you when you want to. They are probably busy living their best life, and that has nothing to do with you. You can’t get mad at them for it, and if you feel like you are, it might be time to check yourself and ask yourself if you are mad at them because you have feelings for them. You need to be on a schedule that suits you both. It’s always best to stay away from talking to this friend too much (see point 2) but it might be a good idea to text them a day or two before you want to get down and dirty with them. I have also heard of people texting at the beginning of the week to schedule some time in with each other. Whatever works best for you! If you both communicate with each other and see when is good for the other person, there shouldn’t be any kind of complication.

Problems will occur if you start to message randomly when you want to get some action. You shouldn’t booty call your friend too much, because they are still a person with a life. They might not be available at all hours of the day to come and have sex with you, and you need to understand that.

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10. Don’t date each other. 

You mustn’t go on dates with each other. Why on earth would you need to grab a quick coffee or go and see a new movie with the person you sleep with? You wouldn’t. You both decided to enter into this relationship knowing that it would just be for sex. If you want to hang out with a friend, call someone else. You don’t want to start hanging out with this person too much, because that’s when feelings will start to develop.

If you miss actually being friends with the person you are sleeping with, you can always schedule some real friend time. However, this is only normal if you used to see them quite frequently before you started sleeping together, otherwise you shouldn’t do it. You need to make sure that if you are going to be spending time with this person just as a friend, that you don’t have sex with them after or before. If you want some real friend time, schedule it in on a day where you won’t be having sex with them. 

Have fun.

Finally, I just want to say that you should have fun in your friends with benefits relationship. The whole point of the relationship is so you can both benefit from great sex when you probably aren’t getting any elsewhere. Enjoy it, embrace it and go with the flow. As long as you follow these ten rules, you should have an enjoyable and carefree sexual relationship with your friend.


I really hope that this article helped you if you’re looking to get into a friends with benefits relationship but you weren’t quite sure how to handle all of the parts to it. Enjoy yourself and stay safe.

Did this article help you at all? If it did and you liked what you read, please let us know in the comments. We would love to hear from you.

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Sonya Schwartz
A hopeless romantic that struggled for many years to find her Mr "Right" and made all the mistakes you could think of while dating. Known for always choosing the wrong guys or messing up relationships, Sonya was finally able to change her approach and mindset when it came to dating which helped her eventually find the man of her dreams and become happily married. You can read more about me here...

One comment on “10 Friends with Benefits Rules You Both Have To Follow”

  1. Great article! Still trying to figure out the relationship I have with my friend however. He has been sharing more of his personal business with me and makes time and requests to see me to go to movies and just to “chill”. Also makes sure to see me before and after any trip he takes. Not sure if we have passed the FWB relationship… confusion is real… thanks for the info!

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