Sex issue: Keeping your friends with benefits

University is a busy time, so naturally, trying to keep up serious relationships can be hard. If you’re too busy for love, finding a friend with benefits can be a good alternative.

No-strings-attached relationships don’t work for everyone, but there are some sure fire ways to see if they’re right for you. If you can separate physical and emotional attraction, and are of the belief that sex doesn’t equate to love, then it’s safe to say you’re ready to find yourself a friend with benefits.

Keep in mind, they’re friends first, and the benefits come second. If you want to keep up a healthy relationship, you need to make sure that the person you’re sleeping with is someone around whom you feel comfortable, safe and never pressured. If you’re intending to sleep with a friend, make sure it’s one who is always willing to talk things through and be patient.

It’s always a good idea to keep a sort of verbal contract with your friend with benefits. Lay down some rules and be sure you’re well versed in what they will and will not do in bed. And remember, even though you may know each other well, things can always change -- consent is key, so always be sure to check in and revisit that contract. Sometimes amendments need to be made, and that’s okay.

If you want to try out something new in bed, a friend with benefits may or may not be the right person to do it with. Talk to your friend, and if they’re not on board, be sure not to try to pressure or coerce them. Don’t let bedroom affairs come between you -- friendship and security come first!

Another thing you want to keep in mind is how private you and your friend will be keeping your relationship. The best course of action is probably to tell a friend or two, just so you have someone to chat with if and when the going gets rough, but even that has to be a mutual agreement. Sex is a touchy topic -- no pun intended -- and your friend may want to keep their sex life behind closed doors.

Friendship and sexuality should hold equal weight in a friends-with-benefits relationship, so be prepared to come to mutual agreements on every aspect.