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#1
Old 11-19-2010, 04:10 PM
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Friends with Benefits Boundaries?

What are the general boundaries of an FWB relationship? I know they vary couple by couple (ARE FWB's a couple?), but I'm trying to get a sense of what the norm is. I read an earlier thread initiated by Ladymarmalade, and there was a post there about an FWB starting with a make-out session. But on other websites, I see posts that claim kissing is not the standard nor a wise idea in an FWB; apparently, some people view it as more intimate than sex, or as something that should be reserved for a romance, not an FWB. On one board, someone said that kissing is out for the same reason prostitutes don't kiss: it connotes emotional intimacy. (I always thought the ban had to do with cold sores and bad breath.) How about hugs? Do FWB's usually socialize with each other? If not, are they just FB's?

I've been in an FWB for about six weeks with a guy I've worked with (and have had a good, friendly working relationship with) for years. I love kissing and find it great foreplay, but he is not very into it. That's what got me wondering. I'm not in love with him (and vice-versa) but do like affection. I don't want to overstep the boundaries of how this sort of relationship works, and I don't want him to think that by pushing for kissing, I'm really pushing for love. ( I'm not.) The sex is great, BTW.

Do women tend to want kissing (I've read that male saliva contains traces of testosterone, which acts as a mild aphrodisiac.), while men do not?Is it off-limits in most FWB relationships? What's been your experience?

I need to know
#2
Old 11-19-2010, 04:40 PM
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Maybe you are just not compatible kissers. My husband is a very different kisser than me. So we will have the occassional makeout. But not often. I just don't think he is a great kisser. He always wants to use too much tongue. Yuck! But of course we have talked about this in detail, so no big deal. There is no mystery. And we are hugely "ahem" compatible elsewhere.

Not to say that I think you are a bad kisser. But it might be a possibility that the two of you are just not compatible that way.
#3
Old 11-19-2010, 04:43 PM
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Part of me wants to say, that's a nice problem to have. Another part of me wants to say, WTF!? Isn't the point of FWB to not have to deal with this stuff all other couples do!?

But I have no experience and no useful advice, and I apologize.
#4
Old 11-19-2010, 04:44 PM
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That's an intriguing possibility, but I'm not sensing that's the case. Neither one of us is into tongue. When he has kissed me, he kisses like I do, I think. Just wondering if no-kissing is standard FWB procedure, as I'm new to this.
#5
Old 11-19-2010, 04:47 PM
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[QUOTE=bup;13162502]Part of me wants to say, that's a nice problem to have. Another part of me wants to say, WTF!? Isn't the point of FWB to not have to deal with this stuff all other couples do!?

Hey, could you clarify for me, Bup? What other "stuff all other couples do" are you referring to? Kissing? Is it nice not to have to deal with kissing? Just trying to get what you're saying. Thanks.
#6
Old 11-19-2010, 04:47 PM
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I have had fuck buddies and serious relationships where the kissing varied from a ton to not as important. I think it had to do with how much each of us liked it as part of foreplay. If it got our motor running. I don't think it had anything to do with the level of intimacy.

But, implicit in the fuck buddy arrangement is that you are engaging in it for sexual gratification. If you get sexual gratification from making out, that should be something he is willing to provide.

If you leave 10 minutes after sex is over, the 30 minutes of kissing beforehand isn't going to make him think you are angling for a ring.
#7
Old 11-19-2010, 04:50 PM
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[QUOTE=taffygirl;13162522]
Quote:
Originally Posted by bup View Post
Part of me wants to say, that's a nice problem to have. Another part of me wants to say, WTF!? Isn't the point of FWB to not have to deal with this stuff all other couples do!?

Hey, could you clarify for me, Bup? What other "stuff all other couples do" are you referring to? Kissing? Is it nice not to have to deal with kissing? Just trying to get what you're saying. Thanks.

I think he's referring to the hand-wringing and worry. FWB relationships are supposed to be low-stress all around.
#8
Old 11-19-2010, 04:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bup View Post
Part of me wants to say, that's a nice problem to have. Another part of me wants to say, WTF!? Isn't the point of FWB to not have to deal with this stuff all other couples do!?

But I have no experience and no useful advice, and I apologize.
Friends-with-benefits are not the same as fuck-buddies. FWBs imply affection and the desire to see one another independent of sex, while FBs simply use one another to alleviate the need to go to a bar and pick up a stranger. FWBs simply decline to be exclusive; that is, both disavow any claim to be jealous if the other starts a relationship with another person

I had a FWB before marriage. We had sex, but the friendship was far more important. She could, for instance, call on me to come babysit her kids, or cry on my shoulder if her ex-husband was being a bastard without any expectation on my part that I was going to try to fuck her. I'd never do that with any woman I've used as a fuck-buddy, because I didn't care about them.

I used the word used on purpose there, by the way. Fuck-buddy is a basically I-It relationship; you're not treating the partner as anything but a free hooker. It's callous and I think, basically wrong, but also less emotionally perilous than a friendship-with-benefits.
#9
Old 11-19-2010, 05:01 PM
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I agree with skald. For FB's, there should be no hand wringing. But FWB's are just that, friends first. As such, there is a lot more opportunity to cross that threshold of feeewings. But you should be comfortable enough to broach the topic.
#10
Old 11-19-2010, 05:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Bob Ducca View Post
I think he's referring to the hand-wringing and worry. FWB relationships are supposed to be low-stress all around.
Correct. If I wanted politics in love, I'd get married (oh, wait, I am).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Skald
Friends-with-benefits are not the same as fuck-buddies.
Oh. Well, I said I have no experience. Now I learn yet again I should keep quiet in those situations.

Last edited by bup; 11-19-2010 at 05:08 PM.
#11
Old 11-20-2010, 10:34 PM
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Kissing has been involved in all my FWB/FB "relationships," and my perception is that making out with FWBs is a pretty normal thing to do.

If you're worried that he thinks you're falling for him, a good way to prove him wrong would be to sleep with one or two of his friends, and make sure he finds out right away. :-)
#12
Old 11-20-2010, 11:46 PM
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Originally Posted by taffygirl View Post
On one board, someone said that kissing is out for the same reason prostitutes don't kiss: it connotes emotional intimacy. (I always thought the ban had to do with cold sores and bad breath.)
Actually I think it has more to do with Pretty Woman. Movies and TV shows tell us that prostitutes don't kiss their customers. And a lot of prostitutes in turn don't kiss their customers because they heard on movies and TV shows that prostitutes never kiss their customers.

It's the same thing with criminals. The criminals you see in the movies and TV are supposedly based on real-life criminals. And those real-life criminals are acting like the criminals they see in the movies and TV.
#13
Old 11-21-2010, 09:48 AM
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You're FBs if you just shag; that person may also be referred to as your "Booty Call." If you are actual FWBs, then you are precisely what the name describes. You do whatever it is you do with the rest of your friends -- go to movies, have drinks, bitch about work -- except at some point, you make the beast with two backs. I prefer choosing a friend to have sex with to having a strict FB because 1) an FB is harder to come by. Some will say, "But it's so much easier for a young woman!" Yes, it is, but what am I supposed to do? Go up to random guys and be like, "Eh, you want summa this? Yeah?" I'm so not gonna do that. 2) I feel much more comfortable taking my pants off around a friend of mine who I know is not some creepy weirdo, and it's much easier for me to get into it with someone I know and like, than would be the case with some random.

I don't know if kissing is a gender thing or not. I've only had one plain FB ever, and we didn't kiss. I'm not sure if it would have been awkward if we had; it never came up. With FWBs, we've kissed all the time. It's fun, and we both liked it. If he doesn't like kissing, then don't kiss. No big deal. If it really turns out that he thinks you're falling in love with him, I'll let you figure out how to make it clear to him that you're not.
#14
Old 11-21-2010, 10:03 AM
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I don't know how people can have sex and not kiss. YMMV.
#15
Old 11-21-2010, 11:14 AM
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I'm not sure it's helpful to ponder the boundaries of of some hypothetically typical FWB relationship, I'm pretty sure there's no such thing. People and relationships and their boundaries are infinitely variable.

Break it down, and it's "I want to kiss him, and he doesn't want to kiss me". While context can certainly be relevant, what it really comes down to is "I want something from him that he's not willing to give me. Is it something I'm willing to live without?" Check yes or no, and proceed accordingly.

At the end of the day, no matter what kind of relationship it is, it has to meet your particular needs. As mentioned above the only thing that's relevant about this particular type of relationship is that it's meant to be easy.
#16
Old 11-21-2010, 05:40 PM
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The boundaries aren't about what you do during sex, they're about what you do when you're not having sex.
#17
Old 11-21-2010, 06:03 PM
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Interesting anecdote about the sanctity of kissing.

Aria Giovanni is an adult film actress, who's performed in dozens of hard-core sex scenes. But I saw her doing a non-porn movie where she was supposed to kiss her co-star. And in a "behind-the-scenes" feature you saw her telling the director that she had never kissed anyone onscreen before and she wasn't sure how to do it.
#18
Old 11-21-2010, 06:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MeanOldLady View Post
You're FBs if you just shag; that person may also be referred to as your "Booty Call." If you are actual FWBs, then you are precisely what the name describes. You do whatever it is you do with the rest of your friends -- go to movies, have drinks, bitch about work -- except at some point, you make the beast with two backs. I prefer choosing a friend to have sex with to having a strict FB because 1) an FB is harder to come by. Some will say, "But it's so much easier for a young woman!" Yes, it is, but what am I supposed to do? Go up to random guys and be like, "Eh, you want summa this? Yeah?" I'm so not gonna do that. 2) I feel much more comfortable taking my pants off around a friend of mine who I know is not some creepy weirdo, and it's much easier for me to get into it with someone I know and like, than would be the case with some random.

I don't know if kissing is a gender thing or not. I've only had one plain FB ever, and we didn't kiss. I'm not sure if it would have been awkward if we had; it never came up. With FWBs, we've kissed all the time. It's fun, and we both liked it. If he doesn't like kissing, then don't kiss. No big deal. If it really turns out that he thinks you're falling in love with him, I'll let you figure out how to make it clear to him that you're not.
Preach.

I have no desire to be in a relationship. None. Could that change? Sure! But right now, no. What would be nice to have is a FB. Problem? It always seems like they eventually want more. I've heard men complain about this with women, but it goes the other way as well. I don't know if it becomes a possessive thing or what, but it sure would be nice to find a guy who fits the bill without wanting more.

/hijack
#19
Old 11-21-2010, 07:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Sleeps With Butterflies View Post
Preach.

I have no desire to be in a relationship. None. Could that change? Sure! But right now, no. What would be nice to have is a FB. Problem? It always seems like they eventually want more. I've heard men complain about this with women, but it goes the other way as well. I don't know if it becomes a possessive thing or what, but it sure would be nice to find a guy who fits the bill without wanting more.

/hijack
I really DON'T want more, if "more" means a romantic "dating," possessive kind of relationship. This is actually more of a WFWB (work friends with benefits); we don't socialize much outside of the office (unless you count sex as socializing). I'd be OK with being FB's, if that's what it is when there's no kissing, but like most women I know, for me kissing is a very effective form of foreplay. Yowza!

I'd think guys would like kissing just because it gets a woman's motor running--if he's a good kisser, that is.
#20
Old 11-21-2010, 07:59 PM
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My long-time FWB didn't like kissing, unless it was undeniably foreplay. No making out session, no random kissing while watching movies or hanguing out in the bar, nope. Just for the purpose of foreplay. He was a good kisser, too.

Some of my FBs kissed, others not, but in their case, again, it was strictly as foreplay. And I didn't get (nor want) to hang around them long enough to try a make out session.
#21
Old 11-21-2010, 08:31 PM
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Huh. So, for some of you, is FWB like dating without the exclusivity?

I just got out of a FWB relationship (we're still F) and we always kissed before sex. I can't imagine not kissing at least a little before sex. How else do you get the motor running? Groping and such?
#22
Old 11-22-2010, 02:11 AM
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So, out of curiosity, when you're saying "sex without kissing" are you talking about no kissing on the mouth, or no kissing at all? Because while I imagine sex-without-mouth-kissing would be largely unsatisfying, at least I can sort of understand the mechanics of it. But if there's no kissing at all -- not on the neck, chest, or other obvious erogenous zones -- well, I just can't figure out what the hell you'd DO with your mouth during that entire time. Yes, there's oral (although I'd argue that involves kissing of erogenous zones too), but that leaves you with a rather limited repertoire. During PIV, do you... what, just stare at each other? Stare at the ceiling/pillow? Lie back and think of England?
#23
Old 11-22-2010, 10:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Gestalt View Post
Huh. So, for some of you, is FWB like dating without the exclusivity?
Not for me. It's a friend who I fuck. We happen to be exclusive, but nothing about the definition of that term to me means necessary (lack of) exclusivity.
#24
Old 11-22-2010, 01:45 PM
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Originally Posted by FoieGrasIsEvil View Post
I don't know how people can have sex and not kiss. YMMV.
Happens all the time. In some ways, kissing is more intimate than fucking.
#25
Old 11-22-2010, 01:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Kaio View Post
So, out of curiosity, when you're saying "sex without kissing" are you talking about no kissing on the mouth, or no kissing at all? Because while I imagine sex-without-mouth-kissing would be largely unsatisfying, at least I can sort of understand the mechanics of it. But if there's no kissing at all -- not on the neck, chest, or other obvious erogenous zones -- well, I just can't figure out what the hell you'd DO with your mouth during that entire time. Yes, there's oral (although I'd argue that involves kissing of erogenous zones too), but that leaves you with a rather limited repertoire. During PIV, do you... what, just stare at each other? Stare at the ceiling/pillow? Lie back and think of England?
Oh, definitely lie back and think of England! Basically, no kissing..lots of smiling and eye contact and...um...talk.
#26
Old 11-22-2010, 05:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Skald the Rhymer View Post
Happens all the time. In some ways, kissing is more intimate than fucking.
Oh, I'm sure it happens but in my own personal experience, the two go hand in hand. Kissing before, during and after.
#27
Old 11-22-2010, 05:35 PM
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Originally Posted by FoieGrasIsEvil View Post
Oh, I'm sure it happens but in my own personal experience, the two go hand in hand. Kissing before, during and after.
Bear in mind that I wrote fucking, not making love (or even having sex). I suspect kissing is the exception rather than the rule in one-nighters.
#28
Old 11-22-2010, 06:37 PM
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My ex and I hang out socially, have some of the same friends and occasionally go catch a show or have dinner. We also occasionally have a nice romp in the hay which includes kissing and everything else. There is mutual affection for sure. I always assumed this was a FWB relationship but as I write this out it sounds more like an open relationship, but neither one of us has interest in 'dating' the other.

So to answer the OP my experience has been we just go with the flow. Sometimes there is sex, sometimes not, usually kissing and groping and sometimes she/I just want a warm body next to us. Or sometimes just some company without any social pressure of a date. I guess there really isn't a solid definition just an experience. The boundaries would be by mutual agreement.

Last edited by Rack-a-Bones; 11-22-2010 at 06:38 PM.
#29
Old 11-22-2010, 07:56 PM
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I don't like mouth-kissing anymore. The last two partners I've had (first for 7mos and dating the second on-and-off for a month-ish) were extremely poor kissers. I tried to teach the second one but he still ended up defaulting to fat whale tongue, and now thinking about kissing kinda sicks me out.

I'm content to stay single for the moment, or look into obtaining a booty call if the need arises in the future. No kissing will probably be a rule of mine from now on.
#30
Old 11-22-2010, 08:00 PM
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Before I was married this last time, I had several FWB. Many of them are still very good friends, though I would be lying if I said I didn't miss the F part. But, as with all my friends, what they want comes first to me (this is a personality flaw that I am working on fixing).

As with most relationships, I let the other person dictate the level of involvement. If she wants kissing, GREAT, if she doesn't, well, I will be a bit sad, but I will not giving up a chance for a good F if I can't get a kiss in the process.

I don't think I've ever had a Fuck Buddy. Those few that I could have had, ended up being friends too. Go figure!
#31
Old 11-22-2010, 10:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rachelellogram View Post
I don't like mouth-kissing anymore. The last two partners I've had (first for 7mos and dating the second on-and-off for a month-ish) were extremely poor kissers. I tried to teach the second one but he still ended up defaulting to fat whale tongue, and now thinking about kissing kinda sicks me out.

I'm content to stay single for the moment, or look into obtaining a booty call if the need arises in the future. No kissing will probably be a rule of mine from now on.
They must have been REALLY BAD kissers to turn you off permanently. Weren't there any melt-your-lips kissers in your more distant past?

If I were a guy, and I knew how much most women get turned on by kissing, I'd work on perfecting my technique night and day.
#32
Old 11-22-2010, 10:34 PM
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Originally Posted by taffygirl View Post
They must have been REALLY BAD kissers to turn you off permanently. Weren't there any melt-your-lips kissers in your more distant past?

If I were a guy, and I knew how much most women get turned on by kissing, I'd work on perfecting my technique night and day.
I've heard that a lot. Why are women particularly turned on by it*? What does it bring? Why would women be more fond of it than men?





*Taking into account that some women don't like it. It seems to be accepted that women like it more than men.
#33
Old 11-22-2010, 10:47 PM
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Originally Posted by MeanOldLady View Post
Not for me. It's a friend who I fuck. We happen to be exclusive, but nothing about the definition of that term to me means necessary (lack of) exclusivity.
Well for me, usually the major practical difference between dating someone and only being friends is the fucking. Other things that are different are the frequency of interaction and quality of interaction, as well as the amount of one-on-one time.

So how are your dating relationships qualitatively different from your FWB relationships?
#34
Old 11-23-2010, 12:20 AM
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Originally Posted by taffygirl View Post
If I were a guy, and I knew how much most women get turned on by kissing, I'd work on perfecting my technique night and day.
Grand mastery in this area is one of my life goals. Tutors can be difficult to find at times, though. The normal method of consulting some old Tibetan guy in a mountain hut turned out to be a huge mistake . . .

Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelEmouse View Post
Why are women particularly turned on by it*? What does it bring?
It brings a language, or maybe a (silent) soundtrack. It provides context to whatever else you’re feeling and doing. Playful, intense, worshipful, silly, hungry, teasing, pursuit, surrender, joy, and everything else.

It also adds a set of sensations. The lips, tongue, face and neck are sensitive, and it forms a nice chord when mixed with whatever the genitals and hands are doing. (Also the ropes, in the ideal scenario) The additional contact area increases awareness of the whole body.

Plus, it’s kind of fun for it’s own sake, and has nice, romantic connotations. And many women have ‘weak spots’ around the face, neck, ears, and throat, which are never going to be found unless looked for.

He who holds the land, can conquer Heaven.

--
Note: Ura is a guy, and thus any hypothesis given in regards to feminine sensation is the result of theory, backed by observations both casual and experimental, as well as additional data gleaned through research and interviews.
#35
Old 11-23-2010, 12:25 AM
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I'm not MeanOldLady, but I'll venture that the difference is that the 'dating' relationships have the potential to become actual, long-term, exclusive relationships, as opposed to the FWB relationship, which is static.

On the other hand, I'm still trying to absorb how an FWB relationship can be 'exclusive'. That one blows my mind. I understand if not actively looking for anything more, but I can't understand ruling it out for the sake of an FWB thing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rachelellogram
I don't like mouth-kissing anymore.
This may go on my list of "Top Ten Saddest Things I Read on The Straight Dope".

Last edited by DianaG; 11-23-2010 at 12:26 AM.
#36
Old 11-23-2010, 08:59 AM
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[QUOTE=MichaelEmouse;13173067]I've heard that a lot. Why are women particularly turned on by it*? What does it bring? Why would women be more fond of it than men?




The most scientific explanations I've read (and sorry, I can't remember where I read these) is that 1) During the kiss, the woman is soooo close, she can take in some masculine pheromones. Supposedly, there can be something about the scent that will cue her system whether he'd be a good mate (in the reproductive sense). 2) Men's saliva contains trace amounts of testosterone, which acts as a mild aphrodisiac. But I think it really has more to do with the zillions of nerve endings in the lips, etc.
#37
Old 11-23-2010, 09:07 AM
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Also, it's fun.
#38
Old 11-23-2010, 02:08 PM
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Originally Posted by DianaG View Post
On the other hand, I'm still trying to absorb how an FWB relationship can be 'exclusive'. That one blows my mind. I understand if not actively looking for anything more, but I can't understand ruling it out for the sake of an FWB thing.
FWB as exclusive enables unprotected sex if you're both clean. So you want to have unprotected sex(assuming non-barrier contraception) but you don't want to have to interrupt your source of unprotected sex periodically while you get re-tested after having a fling or one nighter. If relationship material comes along, then you end the FWB, but until then the fun/convenience of barebacking balances out the exclusivity.

Enjoy,
Steven

Last edited by Mtgman; 11-23-2010 at 02:09 PM.
#39
Old 11-23-2010, 02:55 PM
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Originally Posted by DianaG View Post
I'm not MeanOldLady, but I'll venture that the difference is that the 'dating' relationships have the potential to become actual, long-term, exclusive relationships, as opposed to the FWB relationship, which is static.
More or less. With a FWB, there is no relationship and no desire to be in a relationship. We're friends like anyone else, except after the movie is over, we shag furiously.

Quote:
On the other hand, I'm still trying to absorb how an FWB relationship can be 'exclusive'. That one blows my mind. I understand if not actively looking for anything more, but I can't understand ruling it out for the sake of an FWB thing.
What Mtgman said, plus if I'm getting some decent action from my friend, I'm happy, and don't really need or want to go hunting for strange. When I meet a boy who may be relationship material that I actually want to date, the FWB goes back to being just the F.
#40
Old 11-23-2010, 05:59 PM
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Originally Posted by DianaG View Post

On the other hand, I'm still trying to absorb how an FWB relationship can be 'exclusive'. That one blows my mind. I understand if not actively looking for anything more, but I can't understand ruling it out for the sake of an FWB thing.
(
Did anyone say that they were in an exclusive FWB relationship? I agree that that doesn't make sense.
#41
Old 11-23-2010, 06:58 PM
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Yeah, it happens all the time, doesn't it? You and your friend decide to bone, and become each other's partners. You don't go looking for tail, because you already have some. When someone comes along who you like, you and your friend stop boning. Ya?
#42
Old 11-24-2010, 10:30 PM
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Originally Posted by DianaG View Post
This may go on my list of "Top Ten Saddest Things I Read on The Straight Dope".
Me too. I've had my sad face on for the rest of the thread.
#43
Old 11-24-2010, 11:48 PM
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Oh sorry for the sadface making. I wasn't looking for pity, I'm not sad about it or anything, just stating a preference. The only really good kisser I've been with was my first boyfriend back in high school, and he turned out to be gay. XD
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