If you’re single and engaging in casual sex, chances are you’ve had a friends with benefits situation at least once in your life. These setups can be hard to navigate, especially when you’ve got a hunch that the other person may want to date you rather than keep things casual.
Maybe you’ve caught feelings and you’re looking for signs to give it the go-ahead, or maybe you’re trying to avoid giving the wrong impression. Either way, being on the same page and having open, healthy communication is important even if the goal is just to hook up and keep things casual.
Addressing the standards and expectations of your relationship is a great practice to engage in regularly. Feelings can change, and people can grow more comfortable with each other — even if you might not want that. Keeping your own needs in mind should be your first priority.
Regardless of what you do with the information you gather, if you’re trying to get the lowdown on how your FWB feels about you, there are a few things to look out for.
1. You Always Spend the Night Together
Let’s face it — you could leave that booty call and return to your respective homes at the end of each hookup if you wanted to. However, if your FWB always asks you to spend the night at their place once the deed is done, it’s probably because they enjoy your companionship.
If the hookups usually go down at your place and they tend to stick around for a while because they never want to go home, they might just have a crush on you.
2. Cuddles are Always in the Mix
For a lot of people, aftercare is an important part of sexual relationships. For some, cuddling is only necessary when they want to express romantic affection. Chances are, if you know someone well enough to sleep together regularly, you know where they fall on this spectrum.
If you started out never cuddling after sex, but they’ve begun to initiate it regularly, it could be a sign that they like you on a more romantic level.
3. They Want to Hang Out Even When You’re Not Hooking Up
What better way to tell that someone likes you for your personality than when they want to hang out and spend time with you with no strings attached? It’s pretty straightforward — if they initiate casual hangouts or date-like activities, there’s a good chance that they like you.
4. They Aren’t Sleeping With Anyone Else
You might not always know your FWB’s whereabouts when they’re not in your bedroom, but if they make it clear that they aren’t sleeping with anyone but you, there’s a good chance it’s because you’re the only person they want to devote that kind of time and attention to. If they’re sure you’re all they need — even though they could sleep with other people — they might want more than just a casual relationship.
Another thing to note is how they feel about your additional relationships. Do they get jealous or ask not to hear about your external hookups because deep down it hurts their feelings?
5. You Talk Throughout The Day
It can be anything from little updates to in-depth conversations. Maybe they just text you the occasional meme. But if they’re starting to make an effort to chat on a daily basis, it’s probably because you brighten their day and they want to talk with you more often.
It’s lovely to know that someone enjoys interacting with you enough that they make a regular effort to hear from you, and it could mean that they like you as more than a FWB.
6. They Make an Effort to Engage With People in Your Life
Do you find your FWB making casual conversation with your roommate when they spend the night? Do they ask about your friends regularly? Have they built a friendly rapport with your cat? All of these things could be signs that they want to familiarize themselves with your world.
7. They Ask You About Your Day
While asking about your day is a simple act, it shows care, compassion and interest in your life. If your FWB regularly asks questions about your job, friends and family, it could mean they’re making an effort to know you better because they’re interested in pursuing a more serious relationship.
Modern romance is complicated, but it also offers the opportunity to find love in unexpected places. If you feel like your FWB might want to date, the best thing you can do as a pair is have a conversation about it.
If you find yourself wanting a more romantic connection, this could be the start of a great relationship. However, if this doesn’t interest you, addressing your feelings together can help you practice communication and resolve some tension. Friends with benefits situations are all about providing some level of connection in your life, and communicating honestly and openly is the best way to meet the needs of everyone involved.