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The USP: Gives you the chance to tell your friends (rather than strangers) that you want to sleep with them.Pros: There is a strange thrill in being able to 'swipe' that acquaintance you've always fancied, asking them for a date (up) or telling them you want to sleep with them (down). Cons: It pulls in every single woman who happens to be your friend on Facebook, even if they haven't joined Down yet (your cowardly come on will be waiting for them if they ever do), making it rather pointless.That doesn't mean all casual lovers feel emotionally bereft in the wake of a purely physical rendezvous, mind you.Many say they're getting exactly what they want and need.Whether it's matching you on your favourite interests or finding someone who you share mutual friends with.Here, we take the biggest alternatives to Tinder and give them a spin to find out what (if anything) they do differently and what sets them apart.
They feel protective of their privacy and peace of mind, but they haven't become eunuchs or hermits. But offered a chance to reconnect with someone from your past — dinner with your high school steady, for example — you might just surprise yourself by winding up in bed.
Can a casual sexual relationship exact an emotional toll?
For sure, people who associate intimacy with commitment are ill-suited to sex that's as meaningful as a summer breeze; for them, the FWB arrangement would be a bad idea.
The next morning (or even that night) come the recriminations: Was it wrong to give that person the sexual green light when you had no intention of rekindling the emotional side of the relationship?
Marilyn, a 57-year-old single colleague of mine, recently reconnected with someone she had worked with many years ago. "No," Marilyn said with a laugh, "it's better than that: I'm in like with him — and that's exactly where I want to be." She further confided that they planned to make their reunions "a regular thing — if four times a year can be called 'regular.' But I think that's about all I really want." Marilyn's casual approach to maintaining a friendship with benefits typifies the mindset of older folks who have reconciled themselves to having "great fun" even if it's "just one of those things." And episodic pleasure-seeking may be more common than you think: In The Normal Bar, a book I wrote last year with Chrisanna Northrup and James Witte, we reported that 61 percent of female survey respondents who had partners fantasized about someone they had met.