Updated: Oct 14
When Adrianna contacted me in early 2021 she had found herself in an all too common situation. She wrote:
"I had never seen myself as someone who would choose coaching for assistance with my love life, but I am so glad I did, last year I got talking to a guy on a dating app, to be honest I wasn't really looking for a relationship, having broken up with someone two months before, I was still processing my break up and contemplating what I wanted out of life. When Andrew messaged me he used a really funny and cute approach, it made it clear he had read my profile carefully and had tried to engage me in his message, he was also seriously cute (although perhaps not my usual type- very easy on the eyes) I was easily pulled into a conversation with him, to my surprise we ended up texting most days. I was still in two minds though, my breakup had hit me hard and I had recently heard that my ex had started seeing someone new, news that was crushing to me. So when Andrew asked to meet, I hesitated. My friends had other ideas though! they encouraged me saying it would be great to just go along, to have fun, that maybe it would be good for me. They were right. Andrew and I met up and went for dinner, which turned into cocktails and then dancing, we had an amazing time, I hadn't laughed so much in ages, plus he had the moves. I don't think I thought about my ex once that night. Conversation flowed so easily and soon turned into flirtation and then kissing, before I knew it we were rushing to get a taxi back to my place. Although I wouldn't usually move this fast, I was having a brilliant night that I didn't want to end.
The next morning I was called into work so I barely had time to consider the implications of what I had done the night before, But I hadn't even left the office when I got a text from Andrew asking if he could see me again soon. We went out again a few evenings later and it went down pretty much exactly the same way as the first date. The sexual chemistry between us was irresistible and I felt comfortable with him. It also felt safe to me as he was a genuinely nice guy and I was still secretly quite hung up on my ex, so my heart wasn't really invested, I was simply enjoying the fun company and great sex it was definitely helping me to move on, I didn't feel sad as often. Andrew seemed to be enjoying a more casual arrangement too, he was a bit of a lad who partied with his friends often, we both still had our dating profiles up, we even talked openly about others we had talked to, and shared tragic date stories.
Forward about five weeks, I got into a huge argument with my sister and was so upset, oddly my first instinct wasn't to call my best friend, but to call Andrew. He came over with my favourite drink and we sat together talking about life, he gave me a big cuddle and some comforting words, it was then that it hit me...I had feelings for Andrew! It was a really vulnerable place to be as I really wasn't sure how to manage these new found emotions. From there on I wasn't sure how to act around him, it was difficult to be the carefree person I had been before with him. I even started turning down dates and stopped texting as much, to my dismay he seemed quite unaffected.
A good friend of mine had been having sessions via Goddess Vibes for about four months, I had watched her get a hot and cold, casual and uncommitted guy to literally worship the ground she walked on, and I was tempted but I decided to meet up with Andrew first and see if I could find the courage to tell him how I felt, maybe he would feel the same way as I did.
We met for dinner that week, he seemed happy to see me but the energy was weird, I wasn't sure if it was because of me, how I was feeling, because he was sensing that I had been different lately or something else, but I didn't feel as connected to him as before and yet now I longed to be close to him, not just physically but emotionally. For the first time we only made small talk, with lots of long awkward silences in between, I was trying to summon the right words to tell him how I felt but I froze up, I was worried he would think I was demanding some big commitment from him when really I just wanted to the opportunity to ask if we could consider the possibility of more than casual hook ups over time. I noticed that by now Andrew had zoned out a bit and was scrolling through his phone, I must have looked down because he caught my eye and gave me an exaggerated smile, then he said "My mate Dan is having a party, do you want to go?" I was a little surprised by this, but I really wasn't in a party mood so I told him to go without me and I would catch up with him later. He offered to stay out with me but I reinforced that I was going to get a taxi home, he saw me into the car and he was off. I felt so stupid, why was I making things so difficult? Why couldn't I just tell him how I felt? The fact was I had fallen for him and the idea of rejection was more than I could handle. I felt sure I had messed things up for good.
Andrew and I continued to text but it felt forced, and difficult, our communication had become wooden, yet I couldn't stop thinking about him. Finally I applied for coaching via Goddess Vibes and I had an appointment set up with Jade within 3 days. Jade really put me at ease immediately, she helped me see the lighter side of my situation and to consider things from Andrews point of view, then she helped me to devise a plan of action to test the water with him and to start moving the connection into more romantic territory.
The results were fast, she even helped me to compose a couple of texts that got an immediate and very hot response! she is like a dating wizard honestly! we worked first to reframe my mindset and energy and then to create more warmth and happiness between Andrew and I, then we went to work on communicating with him in a way that felt safe for me but was highly effective. Andrew and I have been in a relationship now for 3 months and things couldn't be better. I am a true convert to dating coaching now, it's so nice to hear a sensible voice among hundreds of nonsensical ones ie all the conflicting and confusing plus generic advice I found online. Thank you Jade for helping me to overcome my fears and for guiding me into the relationship of my dreams. Love Adrianna."
Every situation is different so the advice I gave to Adrianna may be completely different to what I might advise you to do personally.
Still, here are some general tips you can apply right away...
Have you fallen for your casual hook up? Please don’t worry this is a really common situation.
There are a few reasons why we might find ourselves in a Friends with benefits type situation, these days dating culture is much less traditional, we don't necessarily wait to be asked on a formal date anymore, sometimes we meet a guy socially and connect but things drift and we fail to define the situation. For some women career or other matters are the focus so they choose a more casual situation for this stage of life to suit them, only to find out later that their hook up is actually the perfect guy and have no idea what to do.
Other women may have ended up in a FWB because her heart was already enthralled with the man and she was afraid that if she didn't settle for what he was offering she may lose him completely...which is not great, but ladies it still doesn't mean the situation is hopeless.
In fact I speak to women in this position all the time and have helped many of them to turn their booty call in to a boyfriend.
In my experience one of men’s greatest fears is the death of possibility and variety, but they will generally get over those concerns quickly when he meets a “show stopper” type of woman,
So what should you do? And should you talk to him about how you feel?
it is totally acceptable and encouraged to have a conversation with him about this. A lot of people will give you advice like: “if he doesn’t immediately commit to you, he’s not the one” but advice like that isn’t actually helpful. Think about it from the man’s point of view…generally men are quite pragmatic, if he thinks Friends with benefits was agreed and you were both happy with it, he may be thrown slightly off guard and he probably will want to spend some time weighing up whether he wants things to change, don’t expect him to just know how he feels instantly.
If you are unsure of how to talk to him, I would keep it light if possible for now, perhaps wait for a very positive moment with him and just say something like: “I have such an amazing time with you, I know I wanted something casual before but you’re so nice you could make me want more” then smile and let it go and let the idea sit with him as you follow the steps below.
Try not to push him for a response or to have a debate unless he wants to... Remember that ultimatums never work If you put him on the spot and try to bind him in to more of a commitment than he is ready for either he will step on the brakes due to the sudden change of lane, or he will agree to a deeper commitment half-heartedly and resent you for pushing him in to a more serious situation than he was ready for. In other words, you will start out the relationship with him already having one foot out of the door.
However it's important too, not to let the situation drag on as it is, because the longer it does the more difficult it becomes to alter the relationship dynamic.
The trick as always is to handle this with confidence…
Firstly, resist making him the centre of your universe
One of the fastest ways to empower yourself in this situation is to knock him off the mental and emotional pedestal you are keeping him on and to realise there are a lot of amazing and interesting men out there, potentially even men who could make you much happier than he does! Now I know...I know, you probably don't want to meet others at this time, but by allowing him to be your only option you risk perpetuating the situation and his lack of commitment.
Don't allow yourself to be 110% devoted to a man who is treating you as an option. But don't get resentful either.
Although A lot of women realise suddenly that they have real feelings for their casual hook up and quickly start to feel that they have given their power away by ever agreeing to a FWB situation but it's not true, honestly the chances are you have way more romantic options than he does, you are far from powerless, we only give our power away when we falsely assume that we are at the other persons mercy, that they are our only possibility in receiving the type of love and attention we truly wish for. We then treat them with more importance than they have actually earnt.
This isn’t about making the other guy jealous, it’s about not settling for less than you really want. However by simply building our options, by switching gears and giving him a little less attention and our social lives more, and by being open to other possibilities, we are able to develop the confidence to either realise we deserve better or for him to identify quickly that we are high value, rare and probably quite easy to lose without the right level of effort. Meaning he just steps up for more with you naturally. This is such an attractive approach...so much more so than pining for him or making him feel guilty.
If you find yourself in a casual situation, use that time to explore your dating options, to have fun with the girls and say yes to other dates, spend some time living a little wild and a lot wise. Yes actually allow yourself to enjoy the freedom of having the attention of this man and options too, you literally have permission to have your cake and eat it too.
(Note: I am not talking about sleeping around, I’m talking about being open to talking to others and accepting dates, exercise common sense here, if you meet someone else you want to sleep with, stop sleeping with the current guy) Most women tell me “But I only want him! I don’t want options” it’s pretty much essential that you don’t pin your entire hopes on this one person who hasn’t committed to you, not only will it alter your vibe around him but it will make it so much more difficult to accept if he doesn’t wish to progress things in the end. Know that even if you want him, you don’t need him.
I have helped many women in this situation and we have seen wonderful results but never did those results come from clinging, pining, or pitying ourselves. Know your value and be confident in it.
Use this time to observe who he really is, has he actually got real boyfriend potential? or are you intoxicated by a powerful sexual attachment that has got you idealising him? Try and imagine realistically what he would be like as a partner, be honest with yourself about whether you would be a good match beyond the bedroom.
Stop trying to "audition" for the Girlfriend role.
Seriously! I don't care how cute or funny he is if you are spending every night or most nights of the week chilling on his sofa then stop it, get up and go home. Don’t allow him to dominate your time or just hang out there for the sake of it like part of the furniture. This creates zero mystery and enables him to become unappreciative quickly.
Worse still if you are trying to "audition" to be his girlfriend ditch that mission quick. What I mean by that is if you are putting in work to win him over or competing over him.
I know it seems logical that if you want a guy to be your boyfriend you want him to know exactly what a beautiful, caring, ride or die woman he would be getting in a relationship with you. But generally trying too hard just turns the guy off... Look honestly I have seen women trying too hard to impress a man, either over social media or otherwise...usually she ends up attracting every guy on earth except the one she wants, because she isn’t that bothered about them but her laser focus is on him and he just plain senses it. This simply leads her to become more disheartened.
Trust in all that you have to offer and know that he is likely realising it too, no need to be over eager to impress.
Instead allow him to notice all the facets of you naturally and without forcing it.
Have a great time together
It seems really obvious but often when we realise our feelings have deepened, we can become a little too serious, insecure about who he may be dating or talking to, worried that we won’t get the outcome we wish for with him, suddenly things stop being as much fun, you feel withdrawn or sad inside, you stop enjoying him and relating to him in a playful way.
Men aren’t the un-emotional robots that many women claim they are, at least the majority aren’t, if you two are having a blast together as well as an amazing time in bed then of course he is going to develop some type of feelings for you. We are energetic beings, sex is one of the more powerful ways we connect but so is laughter, communication and adventure so don’t be afraid to have a great time when you are together. Give him less of your time but ensure that it is quality time you do spend together. You may even find that this combined with the other steps here mean the relationship will deepen naturally and very quickly simply because you are both enjoying yourselves so much without pressure. Raise the standard
Try not to be at his beck and call but also avoid game playing or manipulation even if your friends tell you it’s the best way to get him to take notice of you. It always backfires long term, there is no need to go to extremes, instead be fair and balanced with him while being true to yourself.
Should you continue sleeping with him?
If you feel comfortable with being intimate and enjoy it there is no harm in continuing -if you want to, but if physical intimacy is making you feel upset, resentful or used then take a step back from that side of the connection, get busy with other things but stay in touch loosely, instead focus on allowing emotional attraction to develop, something I delve into in this video.
Don't accept being unappreciated.
If you feel that you have tried everything and are still no closer to transitioning your FWB into a boyfriend then it may be time to try a different approach, this means making a firm statement about your position. Something that can get him taking notice and set a boundary that is very emotionally attractive, this will reveal once and for all if he would ever have been available to you for a commitment and a loving relationship.