Friends tool to get there, a means to an


Friends With Benefits

It is just sex. We are just friends. It is like playing tennis. We know the rules.  This is how Jamie and Dylan started their loving intrapersonal relationship in movie Friends with Benefits. The set up in this movie is a single man and a single woman emotionally damaged; two battered hearts and dumbed in their past. Jamie (Mila Kunis) is a New York-based executive recruiter who persuades Dylan (Justin Timberlake), an art director from Los Angeles, to take a job at the New York office of GQ magazine. Discovering that they have much to the same degree, the two become good friends. Feeling tired, by a number of broken romances, Dylan and Jamie decide that they are ready to quit looking for true love and focus on having fun even though Jamie really believed in true love. However, complications unfold when the two best friends add sex to their relationship. These two partners show that in a relationship it is possible that different love styles can change over time, can be blended in one, and can be beneficiary for long-term relationships.

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It is known that relationships are a principal base of human existence. A lot of relationships last and a lot of them fail. It is said that a relationship is comparatively more compatible if they have similar love styles. Jamie and Dylan go through different love styles in their relationship.  I think that in this most sequences of their relationship, Jamie and Dylan are influenced by Ludus (ludic). Ludus is defined by the sociologist John Alan Lee as a “love focused on play or fun.” Moreover, Ludus emphasizes the recreational aspects of sexuality. Persons engaged in this love style are not interested in serious relationships or commitments; they just want to have a good time. If establishing a physical relationship is a game, then communication is just a tool to get there, a means to an end, not a meaningful development of trust. The intrapersonal communication that is used by Jamie and Dylan leads that their relationship is based on Ludus. This can be seen straight at the beginning of their sexual engagement.  They defined their sexual engagement as a tennis game.  Dylan said that “Two people should be able to have sex like they are playing tennis. It is just a game. You shake hands, and get on…”  In addition, they agreed with each other to have sex without emotions.  While setting the ground rules for their new “sex with no relationship” relationship, Jamie and Dylan decide they need to take an oath. So Jamie pulls out her iPad and pulls up a Bible app that they lay both hands on, and Jamie says that ” No relationship, no emotions, just sex”. These scenes show that these pals were not interested in a serious relationship Moreover, in multiple scenes, while Jamie and Dylan move around to various sexual positions they were talking like a normal conversation, it was like a business for them.  This fact reinforces that the love style used by both characters in their relationship was Ludus.



How might different loves styles be blended in the example? 

Love is a compound and powerful force. It is a force that plays out in a number of emotional, cognitive and social ways.  There are six different types of love based on the research by John Alan Lee, a scientist who formulated his theories on love from Greek teachings and words. These types of love are Eros, Storge, Ludus, Pragma, Mania, Agape.  It is good not to forget that although these love styles can be seen as “types”, it is not necessarily to be locked into only one. People might have a predominant love style, but they can also have various elements of the other styles, and there is nothing wrong this that.  The predominant love style in this relationship is Ludus.  Ludus flirtation, game, and playful sexuality can be a part of a more committed relationship based on one of the other love styles. Also, it can be stated that effective and efficient communication is one of the ways to make a “friends with benefits” relationship work as a normal relationship.  Another reason the loves styles are mixed in this relationship is because of the temperament and past of the characters. Both of them were emotionally damaged when they meet; in cases like this, it is not easy to look for a serious relationship.


Similarly, our love style might change over time based on our experiences and interactions with our partners. In this relationship, the needs of Jamie and Dylan are fulfilled in symmetrical relationships. Symmetrical relationships is defined in Human Communication 6th edition a book by Judy Pearson and Paul Nelson and Scott Titsworth and Angela Hosek as “a relationship in which the participants mirror each other or are highly similar. A relationship between two intelligent individuals may reflect their need for intellectual stimulation. In symmetrical relationships,  conflict is inevitable and normal; indeed, conflict can be constructive and creative. Conflict can be healthy when it is used to resolve differences and to “clear the air”. As it was for Jamie and Dylan conflict helped them to see things with different perspective and to understand their feelings better. Also, conflict leads them to change their love style. They started as friends, continued with the predominant love style Ludus, and with conflict, they changed the love style into Eros. Eros is defined by John Alan Lee as a love style typically experienced as a romantic, fairytale-type love. Physical beauty is important to this love style. Attraction is intense and immediate (“head over heels”), and the Eros lover feels an urgent drive to deepen the relationship emotionally and physically. In the last sequences of the movie, we see many actions of Jamie and Dylan that are very similar with Eros. It is right to say that the love style for them in these sequences of the movie is the Eros.  During the conflict time, they missed each other a lot. They understood that they have the right chemistry between them.  When the moment comes, he catches up with Jamie and tells her how he really feels. Dylan declares his love to Jamie. Surprised and happy by this turn of events, Jamie tells him to kiss her. After sharing a passionate kiss, Dylan suggests going on their first real date. They to a coffee shop and although they attempt to keep the date casual and relaxed, the film ends with them in a sensual embrace and passionate kiss. The chemistry between them and the romantic and passionate events that happened in these sequences show that Eros is their actual love style. 











Considering we live in a time where most of the young people are busy with studying and working, being part of a “friends with benefits” relationship is very beneficiary because of an easygoing atmosphere of friendship, sexual desire, and a low level of commitment. These factors can offer a relaxing and enjoyable environment in which partners are able to enjoy and be open with each other. This does not mean that romantic love is a negative construct, but simply means it can be difficult to maintain. This type of relationship becomes more beneficiary when partners are able to maintain it and develop the real level of a relationship while making a transition in their love style.  Regardless of how the “friends of benefits” relationship is categorized, when you are sexually involved with someone you already care deeply for as a friend, emotions build, as does trust, intimacy, and familiarity between partners. These components provide the transition in the loves styles and prepare partners for a long-term relationship