The world of dating has changed. With more people focusing on careers, solo travel, and other personal goals before deciding to settle down, fewer people are looking to start serious relationships until their late 20s, early 30s, or even beyond. Of course, as a human being, you still have needs. Before you jump into a friend with benefits situation, make sure you’re doing it the right way.

Understand the Different Between FWB and NSA

Friends with benefits typically refers to an acquaintance. You may go out to bars or enjoy each other’s company outside of sex, but you probably wouldn’t call him or her first if you have a bad day. No strings attached refers usually refers to somebody you never see outside of the goal of hooking up. Chances are you meet at hotels or one of your apartments and don’t speak to each other much outside of setting up times to meet for sex. Know which type of non-relationship you want before you start sleeping with someone outside of a romantic relationship.

Talk Beforehand to Make Sure You’re Both on the Same Page

Have a serious discussion before you begin sleeping together to ensure you’re both on the same page. You should both understand how physical you want the relationship to be and whether you will only meet for sex or you can be friends who enjoy the occasional night out. It is also important to discuss how you will handle the situation if one of you meets someone they wish to pursue an actual relationship with.

Prepare to Have Safe Sex

When in a non-exclusive relationship, you absolutely must practice safe sex. You should know your own STD status and ask your partner about his or hers. However, keep in mind that partners can lie. For this reason, it is always important to carry condoms with you. If you are a female, you probably don’t want to become pregnant so use a second form of birth control, too. Never have unprotected sex, no matter how hot the heat of the moment is.

Avoid Sleeping Over

Sleeping over is dangerously close to relationship behavior, so always plan to go home or send your partner home after you’re done having your fun. Similarly, don’t leave toothbrushes, clothes, or other hygiene products in each other’s homes. The key is to keep separate spaces, which will help to prevent a sense of attachment from developing.

Make Sure Your Needs Are Met

What’s the point in having a friend with benefits if you aren’t reaping any of the benefits? Having a friend with benefits is all about being sexually open, which means you should be vocal about the type of sex you want to have. Don’t be afraid to give directions and never fake an orgasm. On the other hand, though, try to make sure your partner is satisfied as well. After all, they are probably interested in a friend with benefits for the same reasons you are.

Monitor Behavior to Detect Changes

No matter how hard two people try, sometimes they will grow attached to a friend with benefits or develop more serious feelings. It is important to monitor your own feelings as well as the behavior of your partner for signs that feelings are progressing. Perhaps one of you feels jealous when the other go on a date with another person. Maybe cuddling or kissing, especially in public, has become more common.

Regardless of whose feelings seemed to be progressing, it is important to discuss the situation. If you are both having more serious feelings, a relationship could develop. However, if one of you isn’t feeling as strongly, it is important to break things off before they become too complicated.

Think Carefully About Where You Find Your Partner

The thing about a friend with benefits relationship is that it will eventually come to an end. For this reason, you should consider how often you’ll have to see the person you choose once the electricity is gone and the benefits stop commencing. It is probably best to avoid neighbors, people you work with, or people in your friend circle who tend to show up at every outing.

Because an FWB relationship is purely physical, it’s a good time to seek out your preferred type. Maybe you’re into ultra-muscular men or perhaps you’ve always been enticed by MILF area. Consider your options before jumping into the sack with the first interested person.

Remember, you are under no obligation to continue sleeping with someone. When the relationship ceases to meet your needs, cease to be in the relationship.