No Strings Attached

29 Jan

Friends with benefits, hook up buddies, FAFS- we have all been there, but the question is… does it work? I just returned home from seeing “No Strings Attached”, a movie whose plot is based on this entire premise. However, what I found very interesting, was that in this movie everything was initiated by the female character. She essentially took on the role of a man in this movie by instating the typical rules we associate with non committal males:

-100% physical no strings attached
– No snuggling
– No pet names
– Leave before breakfast
– Don’t list me as an emergency contact

….and so forth.

She is just a woman with needs that require fulfillment- and frankly who can blame her? But up until now I had never really given much thought to this kind of “relationship.” It is a known fact that women are emotional creatures and it would definitely take someone completely devoid of feelings to be able to maintain this kind of “arrangement.” In the movie, it is the man who takes on this emotional stereotypically female role.

He snuggles her, makes her soup when she is sick, freaken makes her a mixed CD when she got her period. I REPEAT …he made her a period mix (songs include: red red wine, bleeding love….hilarious).  Eventually predictably he falls for her but since she is in the role of the man she does what men usually do runs and is emotionally distant. Very interesting to think about in terms of our society since nowadays women are becoming increasingly more dominant.

Anyway the point is that this movie is a revelation and completely backwards kind of crazy role reversal scenario…but it worked. I love love loved it!

Especially the “WE ARE SLUTS EMMA!!!!” (@Theshoewhore) line. Very relate-able.

However, back to my main point. Friends with benefits- does it really work? It would seem that from this movie and countless other movies (i.e. When Harry Met Sally- probably the best movie known to mankind) that it is NOT possible. There is always a point in the “relationship” where someone feels something more in which case one of 2 possible outcomes arise:

1) The person confesses his/her love and the friend freaks out and the friendship can no longer be beneficial because of the extreme level of awkwardness.

2) The person confesses and the friend realizes that he/she shared the same feelings all along, and they live happily ever after the end.

In my opinion, the millisecond you begin the friends with benefits relationship, you are already admitting that you are more than just friends and have some kind of feeling/chemical attraction toward the other person. If you weren’t attracted to the person at all then why the heck would you enjoy hooking up with them? That makes no sense and is just plain weird. Clearly there is something else going on here…

Essentially, what happens is that one of you has feelings for the other and instead of just coming out in the open and saying it… they decide to take this carnally roundabout route. This can be explained by the initiator’s fear of rejection, laziness or dislike of the labeling which accompanies a real relationship.

Since I have minimal experience in this field, I cannot offer my personal take on the friends with benefits phenomenon. However, I do agree that it is very difficult for men and women to maintain strictly platonic relationships.

Why do I feel this way you might ask?

Despite the fact that I have man guy friends, if I suspect that their feelings are more than just friendly, I immediately back off. There is nothing that is more uncomfortable than the awkward confrontation when his feelings are not reciprocated. My best friends always make fun of me saying that I lead guys on and all that nonsense. The thing is, I don’t feel like I am leading them on at all, sometimes my friendly personality gets me in trouble. I mean its not my fault that I am irresistible to the freak population. I am very easy-going, witty and I can take it and dish it out which appeals to many guys.

I believe that this quote from “When Harry Met Sally” really sums it all up.

Harry: You realize of course that we could never be friends.
Sally: Why not?
Harry: What I’m saying is — and this is not a come-on in any way, shape or form — is that men and women can’t be friends because the sex part always gets in the way.
Sally: That’s not true. I have a number of men friends and there is no sex involved.
Harry: No you don’t.
Sally: Yes I do.
Harry: No you don’t.
Sally: Yes I do.
Harry: You only think you do.
Sally: You say I’m having sex with these men without my knowledge?
Harry: No, what I’m saying is they all want to have sex with you.
Sally: They do not.
Harry: Do too.
Sally: They do not.
Harry: Do too.
Sally: How do you know?
Harry: Because no man can be friends with a woman that he finds attractive. He always wants to have sex with her.
Sally: So you’re saying that a man can be friends with a woman he finds unattractive?
Harry: No, you pretty much want to nail ’em too.

 Which brings me to my next point…

The Mermaid Theory

Apparently, according to Barney Stinson, The Mermaid Theory is the reason why men cannot be friends with women.

He says that “every women no matter how initially repugnant, have a mermaid clock, its the time it takes for you to bone her. sure today you see her as a manatee but she ain’t gonna stay that way.”

This was news to me!!! And here I was thinking that men were shallow and visual creatures when all I have to do was just wait for the dude to see me as a mermaid… HA! Who knew??? I am sure a collective “woooooooooohooooooooooooo” just went out among the worlds single females.

To sum:
It seems that snagging a man is not as difficult as it seems. Just follow these steps and I am sure you will have yourself Mr.Right Now by Valentines Day:

Step 1: Find a man
Step 2: Become his friend
Step 3: Wait – Eventually he will either want you, or see you as a mermaid, it’s a win-win!

Good luck

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