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There are so many reasons to love Ryan Reynolds. He’s handsome; he’s funny; and he values the friendship he has with his wife, Blake Lively. In fact, the Deadpool star recently told Entertainment Weekly that the romantic sparks between the two didn’t happen overnight, and that he and Blake were “buddies” for a while after meeting on the set of Green Lantern.

“For about a year Green Lantern had come and gone, we were both single,” Reynolds said on SiriusXM’s Entertainment Weekly Radio. “We went on a double date; she was on a date with another guy, and I was on a date with another girl. That was the most awkward date for the respective parties, because there was just fireworks coming across.”

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The 39-year-old added, “We were buddies for a long time, which I think is the best way to have a relationship, to start as friends.”

Five years later, the former Green Lantern costars are happily married and proud parents to baby girl James. We’d say the actor was definitely on to something.

In fact, here are six reasons why being friends first can be a great start to a successful relationship.

1

You take sex out of the equation

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Which we all know can make things oh so complicated. 

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2

You can test compatibility

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When you hang out with someone sans sleeping together, you'll find out quickly just how much you have in common.

3

You can be yourself

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Dating often comes with a lot of unnecessary pressure. Being buddies first will allow more opportunity for you to act like your authentic self.

4

You'll build trust

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The same way you do with your BFFs. We all know that is an amazing thing.

5

You'll see their true colors

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And won't have to worry if they're putting up a front to try to impress you.

6

A strong shot at a meaningful connection

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Without sex and all the games that come with dating, you'll have a chance to build a strong and meaningful bond, and that, after all, is the best foundation to any long-lasting romance.