Anyway. On to the actual entry.
The August issue of Marie Claire has this article entitled, "The Happy Hookup." It's only two pages long, but was apparently important enough to include on the cover.
The tl;dr before I begin breaking this down into little rage-inspiring bits: The author doesn't like the term, "friends with benefits" so she decides to use the term, "taking a lover" instead. It means exactly the same thing, but it sounds so much fancier!
*cracks knuckles* Here we go.
I know the concept [of friends with benefits] works for a lot of women, but to me it suggests resignation: getting it on with a dude who's only around because you both lack better alternatives.
Being somebody who is particularly squelchy about the way I define myself and the way I interact with others, I completely get the desire to use a term she feels comfortable with to describe what she's doing. However, I'm not okay with the judgmental assumption that people that use...that other word...are somehow intrinsically less happy. The "lack[ing] better alternatives" bit sets off right from the beginning that neither person is really invested in the other. Which, I thought being interested in each other was sort of a cornerstone to being friends with somebody? There's a lot of confusing information about what exactly it means to be "friends" with somebody in this article. We'll get to more. No worries.
Friends with benefits are the frozen pizza of sex, and aren't any sexier than their name, even when portrayed in a Justin Timberlake movie.
She's of course talking about this movie. There was also No Strings Attached released in the same year. Neither of which I saw, because the previews were enough to let me know that the main characters eventually fall in love with each other and do the "exclusive" relationship thing because it is literally impossible to have sex with somebody without developing romantic-type feelings for them. We're still riding the idea that any sex you have in a FWB-type situation must be the most disappointing sex you've ever had. Still unclear as to whether this is because you're actually "friends" with the person or if there's some deeper, undisclosed reason things are so unfulfilling. But mostly I take offense to this sentence because she insults pizza. Also, I googled "sexy pizza" and this was the first result.
Bless you, Google.
"Taking a lover" feels sophisticated and daring, womanly and seductive, the opposite of being taken for granted.
She mentions a sentence before this about how the main difference between "friends with benefits" and "taking a lover" is semantics. And it's entirely true. She also compares it to, "changing from flats to heels," which makes me want to vomit with the implications about what's considered "sexy" when you're a woman, but I digress. In Sign Language, there are what are known as directional verbs. Help, ask, give, etc. The motion of the sign varies depending on who you're talking about. "Help me" and "help her" are essentially the same sign, only in different directions. This is what the difference is between being "taken for granted" and "taking a lover." In the former instance, you're the one being taken. In the latter, you're doing the taking. That's it. It's just a matter of switching the direction of your verb. If that makes you feel better, so be it.
...they gave as good as they got...
Because somebody doesn't have an inflated ego about things at all.
Having just weathered a painful breakup from a guy I'd thought would be my forever man, I wanted solace and took the initiative.
The first time he made me come, it was hard and fast, the way I had seen it be for boys, my jeans tugged down, my shoes still on.
This particular sentence just makes me think the author is some sort of creep who owns a telescope for the sole purpose of spying on men having sex.
Unlike those friends with benefits who share little beyond proximity and sex, we often stayed up talking and listening to music until dawn.
Again, reeeeealy confused about what exactly constitutes "friendship."
Marguerite Duras had lovers. Patti Smith had lover. I had a lover.
Name drop, much?
Having both men in my life made me feel like I didn't have to adhere to either one's schedule. I was taking what I wanted, filling my nights with all of the talk and sex I could desire.
I enjoy the implication that if she was dating either partner in a more serious fashion, it means she'd have to be part of his schedule automatically. All plans or interests she may have had would inherently come second place if this were a "relationship."
When I last saw both men, long after our original interludes, there was a fondness and sparkle between us, along with the sweet, salty ease of old lovers - everything that ever passed between us still there.
Sweet, salty ease... *giggles*
But not all encounters need to be about romantic love. And not all casual hookups need to lack intimacy.
Damnit, fine. I'll agree with you on this point. I guess we can be friends. That means we have to have disappointing sex together, right? I'm still a bit unclear.