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Bonny Albo

Can Casual Sex Turn Into a Relationship?

By December 5, 2008

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A challenging question and one that I get fairly often, although usually more from women than men. Other than for the obvious reasons, its challenging to answer a question about casual sex, if only because there is only so much information one can provide me with. For instance, you may know what you're thinking, but what about the person you're having casual sex with?

This week I've attempted to answer it, using one specific reader's question as a guide:

I met this guy about 5 months ago and we agreed that we were both not ready for a relationship (him just getting out of a serious relationship and me not ready for one at all), so we began having casual sex. We have since both admitted to having feelings for each other and have thought that there might be something else between us other than just casual sex. Does the fact that we know each other so intimately hinder our ability to get to know each other better on a more relationship-oriented level? I know that I am interested in him, and I know he is interested in me. But I want to build what we have beyond a purely casual sex. Is that possible?

My answer can be found here: Can Casual Sex Become a Relationship?

But, you tell me. What do you think?

December 5, 2008 at 7:12 pm
(1) SINgleGIRL says:

I’ve been down this path, and I am sad to report it was not a smooth ride. I was seeing this guy (it was strictly casual, which was what we both wanted when we met) for several months when he expressed an interest in more. And I thought, gee, that sounds nice. But it was too weird, to suddenly start spending the whole night and waking up together, to start meeting one another’s friends. To be completely in each other’s lives. I wish your reader luck. Maybe she’ll be able to succeed where I failed.

December 7, 2008 at 4:57 am
(2) Tibor says:


From man point of view…

I can’t see any reason why you could not have a great relationship.
It simply depends how you two feel together.

To start any relationship as a casual may have many advantages. Imagine yourself dating a guy for a year without being intimate.

You may love each other to death. Just to find out after a year that sex ‘sucks’.

Sex is as important as all daily activities, romance,work, living together… – simply life in general.

If you started from the other end (intimate) – you have an assurance that you will not fail in a ‘sex department’. During all this time you had chance to know each other.

Because you like each other more than just for casual sex you have no problem to develop it as far as you feel. As long you are both genuine (I mean you really think what you say to each other) – there is no need to speculate.

Past is past. Move on. Do what is the best for both of you. If you keep thinking you might miss a train.

And yes – it may work – it might not. There is no guarantee to any relationship.
It is for sure – it does not make any difference if you started casual or with dating each other for five years.

Love and compability are important.

Wish you best of luck.


July 7, 2011 at 10:03 pm
(3) Sara says:

it really depends on the guy himself

December 11, 2008 at 7:25 pm
(4) Leha says:

So my boyfriend and I went threw this same situation. We decided that just friends with benifits would be best for the both of us becuase niether of us were ready. After about 6 months things started getting more serious. Then about a year later he asked me to move in with him and so far so good. Becuase we were so compatable in the bed room everything after that seemed so easy. I didnt feel uncomfortable around him and we just have so much fun. I wish you the best of luck!

December 17, 2008 at 4:33 pm
(5) mod_mila says:

Apparently the latest thing with younger generations is intimacy BEFORE a relationship. It’s all about “hanging out” with no strings. I find this disconcerting.

Not being of that generation, I don’t see how this can work. I was brought up and have always been told to “get to know someone” before becoming intimate, unless of course, the goal is simply a sexual relationship with no commitment. Call me old-fashioned, but sex with someone is not only vulnerable, but one of the most intimate actions one can share. It only seems this a natural progression towards developing a relationship with someone.

And then there is the whole “male conquer” aspect. Not that women should play games, but rather keep a thrill of a little bit of chase. Let the person have something to fantasize about, look forward to, and…chase! After all, you can never take back your “virginity” with the other person. There is that wonderful sexual tension that is there before two people have been intimate. It’s such an amazing feeling that is not there after the ice has been broken…

January 20, 2009 at 12:30 am
(6) Justin Bailey says:


Geez, I haven’t heard advice like that since my days as an elementary student at church. Abstinence is great, sure. Save yourself for that one special person, and if they turn out to be a bad pick, just grin and bear it:)

No I don’t think it’s a good idea to sleep around just for the hell of it, but if two responsible adults can agree on terms of a sexual relationship that they can both live with there isn’t a reason in the world to fool around playing childish head games.

January 24, 2010 at 10:10 am
(7) Dena says:

Someone I was dating decided that he just wanted to be FWB. I knew he was afraid of his feelings and commitment. I decided to stick it out b/c I had feelings for him already but I decided that I would date others and not be a complete martyr.
Unfortunately he has been going through a very rough patch in his life and he has realized that I have stuck by him and supported him. He has since decided not to fight his feeling for me anymore and we have moved on to the next plateau. We both love each other very much and more importantly are in love with each other. I only pray our happiness continues.

March 11, 2010 at 9:49 pm
(8) Aden Ford says:

I really like your blog! Can you help me out with one, if I want to have sex with my neighbor is that bad? I donít want a emotional relationship, just a physical one.

May 2, 2010 at 5:08 pm
(9) Mpress J says:

I am currently in a relationship, going on 5yrs. Yes, it started off as FWB. It was very difficult for me because I started having feelings first. I noticed over time that it changed. It went from seeing him once a month to almost everyday. I also noticed a change in our lovemaking. Although it was good in the beginning, it has changed to being very passionate. He never use to kiss me, now he can’t hold me without kissing me & we think about and want each other constantly. As time went on our passion grew. We are deeply in love. I think the fact that we are so compatible in bed, along with the fact I stuck with him through the tough times our love just grew. Love is a gamble, anyway you look at it.

June 22, 2010 at 8:24 pm
(10) jay woman says:

I’m having sex relationship with one guy, We had arranged for a date for the first time but the date turned out to be sex. we are having great sweet sex and i hope it turns to be something more than good sex. He lives one hour far from me but when i need him he comes to me even if it’s so late at night and he asked me not to do it with other guys.
I have feelings for him but i don’t know if he feels the same way about me he told me once when he was drunk that he loves me but i did not take it serious becouse he was a little bit drunk……..
What should i do????? I want him to be mine

June 14, 2011 at 10:46 am
(11) SarahB says:

I have been with my husband for 6 years and we have a lovely 4 year old little girl. We meet and were FWB. Just casual fun and sex…. He made it clear that he didn’t want a relationship from moment we met and wanted just casual fun. I did want one in a way, (I was 30 when we met, he was 27) but at same time I was enjoying life and was in no hurry as had great life, job and own flat and friends. We became a bit of fun and we both dated and slept with other people. I really liked him and we used to speak every day and we were so close (I was sure and he later said) that he couldn’t be this way with anyone else and he wasn’t. although I do remember him saying that whilst he saw potential in us, he didn’t think casual fun was best foundation to build relationship on… how wrong was he. haha! we fooled around like that (casual fun) for about year, then one day he realised he loved me (I already knew I loved him) lots of things were changing in that year.. we would make love and be there through thick and thin and when he went through a bad time, I was there for him. So in answer YES it can! :)

May 8, 2012 at 3:48 am
(12) DaisiesnLollipops says:

I’m an older woman, I liked a co-worker for 2 years before I began showing interest in him. In time our casual office conversations turned a little flirtatious. We exchanged numbers and our first time together alone we had sex after a conversation that was mutual, where I learned that we had both divorced at the same time. We both were just looking for a casual sex partner. Its been 6 months and he is still a little shy, although he initiates calls every evening. I’m wondering if its time to have ‘the talk’ of where we stand.

May 31, 2012 at 9:38 am
(13) Laura says:

One of the few who can say it can work! Use the phrase,
‘If you walk away and he doesn’t come after you, keep walking.’
Because it took me a while to stop sleeping with him after i’d become emotionally attached, but as soon as I left, within a month he had come back and wanted to see what we actually had. And we’ve been together for a year now and I couldn’t be happier.
But remember that phrase! I have friends who in identical situations have been ruined, and in most cases I don’t think guys want anything more. And a year – eight months ago, I could not see any positive end to my situation. However, there is hope, walking away when I respected myself was the best decision I ever made, and with patience and getting to know each other, we were lucky we had a spark to ‘get us past the sex’. Really ask yourself, do you have a spark?

August 17, 2012 at 8:22 pm
(14) VenusStar says:

I’m in DaisiesnLollipops position. I’d love to see what others think of this too…

August 25, 2012 at 10:20 pm
(15) Mercurialqueen says:

Last week I had my first “just sex” encounter. I’ve been divorced for four years and hadn’t had sex with anyone even long before the divorce. It felt so good, he was so good that I want to see him again. I am a woman on my 50′s. I did it because I don’t want to die having had only one sexual partner (my husband) who left me very unsatisfied and I’m not sure if I want a serious relationship, I feel great on my own. I went out with this guy for drinks and he didn’t talk much. After the sex he went home and shook hands with me. I mean, I don’t want to pretend it is what it isn’t, but I don’t want it to feel it is like a business transaction. I know is only the first time we meet, but am I asking for too much?

October 29, 2012 at 4:43 pm
(16) svbrick says:

I am going through this thing now. I am 34 i have 3 children (14,12,8) i was with my childrens father for 11 years( 18-29). I left him and immediately began a relationship with another man who i was gonna marry but he turned out to be someone else the closer the wedding date became. I called it off. So that brings me to now i met this guy and immediately i told him i do not want a relationship with him now just casual sex. The sex is awesome and again im getting too close. How do i have a casual friendship with him without falling for him right now.

February 18, 2013 at 7:19 am
(17) BETTY96 says:

We’ve been good friends about 10 years, talk about everything. Now open sexual partners for two. Sometimes I feel I want more, but feel know each other too well and because of the open sexual part, when all is said and done, may NOT even befriends, afterwards.

October 29, 2013 at 3:54 pm
(18) Tiffany Nelson says:

I am going thru a very similar situation right now. I started seeing this guy I work with about a year ago and it remains a secret to all of our mutual firiends. From the first time we met we were drawn to each other and immediately became really good friends then about 3 months later we started our sexual relationship. I am 25 and have never been married he is 38 and has been married and divorced twice and has a daughter who has been out of the picture for some time. I went into this knowing one day I would want a relationship but was skeptical because of our circumstances. He, on the other hand, has been avid about not wanting something more. Our sex incredible, we are great friends, and we talk everyday. With that being said, a few months ago I told him I had strong feelings for him and he didnt reciprocate so a couple weeks later I decided to start seeing other people to try and get my mind off of him. When he found out he freaked and became very jealous then appologized and admitted to some of his feelings even tho he held to not wanting a relationship. He and I both have since then stopped seeing other people. I have noticed lately that he has become more involved and been doing little things like kissing me on the forehead, pet names, being very protective and putting a lot more passion into our kissing and sex. I am definitely feeling a lot from him but I am afraid to bring back up the relationship stuff ..I dont know if I should let him be, give up on the whole thing, say something….???? I am crazy about this man cant imagine my life without him but im so uneasy not knowing how he feels. He just makes it so difficult to talk about our feelings for each other its like when I did bring it up he got scared and just shut down. Other than that our relationship is perfect. …I need some help…what should I do????

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