And sure, when he would get a girlfriend I would be a little bummed out—I’m (unfortunately) not a sociopath—but it didn’t cause me to spiral into an emotional cyclone the way I would have if I’d been cheated on by a boyfriend. We could spill our guts to each other because we didn’t have anything to lose.Boyfriends and girlfriends have come and gone, but my friends with benefits have stood the test of time. That’s longer than I predict my first marriage will last.And while I can’t imagine being with my Cuba date “for real”—I mean, he’s a low-key homeless anarchist who once took me on date to his Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous meeting; there are red flags—I still value our relationship immensely.Unsurprisingly, it was literally awful, but now at least I can say I’ve done it?)One of the most masterful fuck friends I know is my friend Casey, a 26-year-old Ph. candidate in English, who until recently had a FWB for .Like, who do you want to bring to the sex party—your boyfriend or your fuck buddy? I’ve done so many things with fuck buddies that I never would have tried with partners, because I was too much of a jealous monster.(Like once I let Malcolm tie me to a dresser while I watched him have sex with my best friend.“When you’re in a friends with benefits situation, you don’t have go to the other person’s awful friend’s birthday party. But if you change that dynamic into being a real relationship, then those games might not seem so sexy anymore.”In other words, your fuck buddy gets all the good stuff about being in a relationship—the wild sex, the cuddles, the juicy dark secrets—minus all of the boring, would-rather-die activities that go hand in hand with commitment, like having to help assemble your boyfriend’s IKEA bed, or having to watch your girlfriend stab at the ingrown hairs on her bikini line while she watches the Kardashians.But if you behave like that within a conventional relationship, it causes problems. (That’s me—I’m the girlfriend who does that.)Essentially, you’re taking a relationship and removing the creepy ownership of another human being, which leaves more room for hedonism and sexual exploration.This arrangement would generally be called a friend with benefits, or a fuck buddy, or a romantic friendship, or perhaps even a relationship—with “no strings attached.” But let’s be real: There are always strings, aren’t there?It was while planning this vacation that it hit me: The two longest relationships of my life have both been with men who I was never officially dating.