Laura E. VanderDrift and Janice R. Kelly, Department of Psychological Sciences, Purdue University; Justin J. Lehmiller Department of Psychology, Colorado State University.
Commitment in friends with benefits relationships: Implications for relational and safe-sex outcomes
Article first published online: 9 DEC 2010
Copyright © 2010 IARR
Volume 19, Issue 1, pages 1–13, March 2012
How to Cite
VANDERDRIFT, L. E., LEHMILLER, J. J. and KELLY, J. R. (2012), Commitment in friends with benefits relationships: Implications for relational and safe-sex outcomes. Personal Relationships, 19: 1–13. doi: 10.1111/j.1475-6811.2010.01324.x
- Issue published online: 1 MAR 2012
- Article first published online: 9 DEC 2010
The present research sought to explore the antecedents and consequences of commitment in the context of friends with benefits relationships (FWBRs). Data collected from an Internet sample of participants (all of whom currently had an FWBR) revealed that these relationships do indeed uniquely combine aspects of both sexual relationships and friendships. In addition, results indicated that satisfaction, investment, and alternatives were predictive of commitment, consistent with the antecedent factors specified by the Investment Model of C. E. Rusbult (1980). Moreover, high commitment was associated with desiring a transition into a more interdependent relationship (i.e., a true romance), as well as reduced condom use during intercourse. These findings have both theoretical and practical relevance to understanding relationship transitions and safer sex practices across many different types of partnerships.