We’ve learned how in some ways many of us live friends with benefits lifestyle without really intending to.
We’ve learned how easy it is to fall in love with someone you are physical with and end up getting hurt.
We’ve learned how perhaps the idea isn’t so bad for some because it helps remove expectation.
And we’ve learned that the friendship is what the real benefit to any relationship is. In fact, the “benefits” pale in comparison to any real deep friendship. But they are important. They do draw us closer and are essential to a healthy romantic long-term relationship.
Which leads me to introducing a revolutionary idea. What if marriage was more like friends with benefits? What if the expectations were removed and replaced with a deep close friendship? What if people looked to marry their best friend instead of someone who met a check list?
What if marriage was essentially a really close friendship? With benefits?
This wouldn’t leave out the romance. In fact, the romance could be increased because friends often feel more free to be open about the silly romantic things they like, because they aren’t trying to impress anyone. They just are.
You see so many of us hype up relationships. We watch Hollywood and read Christian marriage material that cause us to think that we need to have this magical falling in love with someone who will be our soul mate for life and meet all our needs. Happily ever after.
I’m not downplaying romance. I’m not trying to suggest that chemistry isn’t important. I’m not saying you can’t fall in love with someone.
But in the long run those things are a part of the relationship but should they define it? Some days you won’t feel romantic. Some days you just won’t have that spark. Sometimes you will find that person annoying.
At the end of the day they can still be your best friend. Regardless of the feelings or lack thereof. And that should be at the core of a successful long term relationship. And yes the benefits are important. They are a part of what makes the relationship work because they require us to be vulnerable and intimate with our partner.
I think it’s time we rethink friends with benefits in a new light. Maybe we could call it:
Best friends. With benefits. For life.