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If Zac Efron & Vanessa Hudgens Are Hooking Up But Not Dating, Our Expert Says It's Totally Fine!

Fri, January 28, 2011 2:13pm EDT by HL Intern Add first Comment
Getty Imagaes

Getty Imagaes

We were worried when we heard Zac & Vanessa were still hanging out even though they’re not officially back together — but an expert doesn’t think it’s a bad idea!

When Zac Efron, 23, and Vanessa Hudgens, 22, broke up in Decemeber, we figured they wouldn’t be able to stay away from each other for too long, and we were right! They’ve been spotted together recently and sources have said that they are friends with benefits. Although a lot of people think it may be emotionally damaging to continue hooking up with your ex, we found a relationship expert who disagrees entirely!

“This just seems very age appropriate and stage appropriate,” relationship and marriage expert Pat Love says. “Emerging adulthood is about trying different experiences before making a commitment and settling down.”

Pat goes on to say that since they are so young, it makes it okay. “In your 20’s, this is what it’s all about. The tasks of the 20’s are to try out different roles in relationships, different roles in your life. That’s just how you learn, is by trial and error in dating. To say that they should just split and go their separate ways… they may have a lot of friendships. I think most people consider this normal in your 20’s.”

So why did Zac and Vanessa break up if they’re just going to continue hanging out and being friends with benefits?

“They wouldn’t be doing it if it weren’t to both of their advantage. They’re both getting something out of this,” Pay says. “To say you should do it one way and stick with it, we know the outcome of that.”

However, Pat does say that this break-up doesn’t say great things about Zac and Vanessa’s future together. “The break-up predicts more break-ups. The more you break up, the more you’re ultimately going to break up.”

What do you guys think: is being friends with benefits a healthy thing to do for someone in their early 20’s?

— Jessica Booth