Ah, friends with benefits: the conjugal equivalent to having your cake and eating it too.
And now we've got the stats to back it up.
To study the dynamics that can affect the outcome of a FWB relationship, researchers surveyed 171 young adult volunteers who’d had sex as part of a FWB relationship within the past year. For their evaluation, the researchers attempted to identify a correlation between a couple's self-reported “sexual satisfaction” and a number of other variable that describing said couple's level of commitment to one another (how the couple “labels” the relationship, whether they make sacrifices for one another, the availability of other sexual partners, etc.).
What the results of the study — which was published in the Archives of Sexual Behavior — indicate is that the individuals who were involved in FWBs situation where both participants exhibited couple-like behaviors were more sexually satisfied than ones who didn’t. Meaning: to make a FWB-ship work, it needs to be treated like a relationship with a partner.
The issue is, what’s the point of being a couple with benefits instead of just a couple? None, we would argue.
“The results suggest that it is important for young adults to be aware of commitment as they enter these FWB relationships,” the study says. “The fact that satisfaction with sacrifice seems to play a vital role in FWB relationship adjustment suggests that young adults should be aware of the investments they have in these relationships.”
The takeaway: If Jerry and Elaine couldn’t pull it off, you won’t be able to either, Costanza.