There’s nothing quite like feeling a spark of attraction between you and someone you just met. But is it OK to date at least somebody you have known longer than just a couple of weeks, and who knows more about us than just your name and phone number? Is dating a friend OK? Sure, the transition from friend-to-boyfriend might feel a little sticky at first, but here are five benefits that overrule the awkwardness:

1. He’s familiar with your bad side.

Let’s face it, during the first few months of dating someone new, it’s easy to hold yourself together and pretend like you don’t have a dark side (everybody has one). With a friend-to-boyfriend, he’s not only aware of your personal weaknesses, but he knows how to respond to them in a way that is constructive to the relationship and to your desire to improve yourself.

On that same note, you’re already aware of his bad fashion sense, his corny jokes, and his strange fondness for period pieces. Heck, you realize you like him all the more for the quirks you might find annoying in someone else.

2. You’re more or less aware of each others relationship history.

You have probably discussed your past relationships with the ease and honesty that friends share, which means you’ll have a very clear idea of what to expect if indeed your pal becomes your main man.

3. You’re comfortable with each other.

It takes a few weeks (if not longer) to feel completely relaxed around someone new. Should you eat ice cream from the container in front of him. When dating someone who started out as a friend, you can skip the neurotic and just relax into your dates together.

4. It’s exciting.

Dating a friend might seem less glamorous than falling in love at first sight, but what’s more suspenseful than decoding a friend’s flirty mixed signals for signs of romantic intentions? If the relationship goes well, you’ll be swept away at how a good friend turned out to be an even better boyfriend.

5. There’s always something to talk about.

We’ve all dated someone with whom we spent more time getting hot-and-heavy than in conversation. The moment of truth inevitably arrives during a long car ride, when you have no choice but to put on the radio because the two of you have no common interests.

Start out with somebody that you respect and that you trust so that when you hit the bumps that are inevitable you always have that foundation ‘ It’s hard to stay mad too long, when the person is someone you like.