Originally Posted by Marcus
I would agree that purely sexual associations aren't what most people would qualify as polyamory, and rightly so. However, conflating "friends with benefits" with casual, no strings banging is not necessarily accurate. Some people use the term FWB to refer to casual sex buddies but FWB starts with "Friends" which is important.
Not all loving romantic relationships need to be partnered, sharing expenses, interdependent, etc. I treasure my friends, and a friend I am sexual with is something FAR different from casual "solely sexual" associations.
Originally Posted by nycindie
Friendship takes emotional investment and I am very selective about whom I call a friend. I love my friends, and my relationships with FWBs are very loving and important to me for much, much more than just sex. My lover-friends are not required to bang me in order to spend time with me. Having casual relationships is not the same as having casual sex. While the parameters I prefer for relationships are rather casual, that does not mean I want "no strings" and no heart involved. I have turned down men I was very interested in because they thought that my wanting the freedom to be in multiple, casual relationships meant it was "no strings." A very incorrect assumption! Sheesh.
Totally agreed. To me, the core of polyamory is multiple emotionally intimate
relationships. They don't have to involve practical commitment (living together, sharing finances, etc.), nor do they have to be romantic (which means aromantics can be poly too).
Although I don't have FWBs in the sexual sense, my two non-primary relationships probably look pretty "casual" and not different from "just friends" to many people, because we're long-distance, don't plan to move closer, and only communicate via emails. I don't mind calling them "friends with romantic/emotional/sensual benefits." I'm also very picky about whom I call a friend, and a friend can be as important as a partner on an emotional level. I hate the expression "just friends."