Me and my partner have recently decided we are going to have an open relationship. We are very happy with each other and have complete confidence in our relationship but want to explore a different type of relationship.
We have had other partners with us in the bedroom and it has been a lot of fun, this seems to be the next step.
We are smart about it and have some ground rules in place and are planning on being very open with one another about how we feel and what we do.
Wondering what everyone’s thoughts are on this type of relationship – have you had one? are you in one? has it been good/ bad for your relationship.
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I’m not sure if I could do the whole open relationship thing, just thinking about a dude getting intimate with my girl would kinda trip me up but that could be because of what I am conditioned to believe. I haven’t tried it and haven’t really heard of to many people trying it but like everyone else says good luck and let us know how it goes. On the flip side would you sleep with someone who was in a open relationship? I don’t think I would have a problem with that just wouldn’t want to be in one.
Ok so I thought I would give a bit of an update although it is a little earlier than I was planning to.
Things are going really well. We haven’t done a lot separately yet but what has happened so far has been fine :) both of us are still very happy in our relationship and are still very much in love.
So far there has not really been any issues with Jealousy as we are both being very honest with each other and as long as it stays that way I don’t see any issues arising any time soon.
I’ll get back to you all about it again in a few months time :)
I have been in an open relationship and personally believe that they do not work very well. Once you start setting rules to a relationship, one party starts to deny their true feelings and emotions to abide by these rules. I don’t know your relationship so I can’t speak on your behalf, but in my experience, open relationships usually begin “mutual” and end with one party feeling really hurt. I feel that in open relationships, one person is not 100% committed and has doubts but isn’t ready to pull the trigger and break up with the other, and the other person agrees because they don’t want to lose what they have left.
All i have to say is be careful and communicate.
What sort of ground rules have you put in place?
@bobbylloydxd, well we both use protection and are very careful so I think there is little to no chance that that would happen – as I mentioned before the people that we sleep with are to know exactly what the situation is so they should be using contraception too and be well aware that sleeping with us does not mean we are in a relationship with them.
IF it were to happen which I highly doubt it will then we will deal with it however we can but the main point here is the WE – we choose each other as partners and we will work through anything together.
Talking about children, it’s better for a child to grow up with 1 parent in a loving environment, or with 2 parents who are fine with each other having different partners and having separate lives where they both don’t care (so the environment is not hostile)…. rather than the child growing up with two unhappily married couple who fight all the time and the dad spends his time watching porn and the mom is looking for someone else to fuck but she will feel guilty because of a bullshittery concept called ‘marriage’ or ‘monogamy’ or whatever.
@bobbylloydxd, ps..i love this website, because i can display my opinion and have a friendly argument without being bashed and told to go somewhere else. i wasn’t calling the person ignorant. all i was saying is the thought of an open relationship is. once again..just my opinion.
@antoker, “just thinking about a dude getting intimate with my girl would kinda trip me up but that could be because of what I am conditioned to believe” –thank you for saying that. The issue here within this entire discussion isn’t a matter of it being right or wrong, it’s all a matter of opinion (personal/subjective morals), which I think totally stems from what people have been conditioned to think. Had the majority of people been raised & conditioned in a polyamorous environment, the concept of monogamy would seem silly to them.
@bobbylloydxd, I’m not like most people… truthfully, if someone I was in love with, got someone else pregnant, this wouldn’t bother me. Not even getting onto the topic of abortion, but say the child was born… If I loved someone, I would absolutely also love their child. Of course the dynamics in these types of situations would be unique to the particular situation & people involved. Just because a child isn’t mine, doesn’t mean they’re “tainted” or are a “symbol of something awful.” As a single mom of an 11-year-old, I can tell you it can be exhausting raising a child on your own….the more people in a child’s life that love and care for them, the better.
My sister started dating her boyfriend right around the same time he knocked someone else up. They’re now living happily, taking care of his 1-year-old daughter together when it is his turn to have her. It’s completely possible to live outside of the normal family structure. I’m not saying it’s any better or worse…but the possiblity of having children in polyamorous relationships is as real as it would be in a monogamous relationship.
@ellesoul, in any relationship, monogamous or with multiple partners, you’re always looking to fulfull YOUR needs. Always. If your needs aren’t met, then there’s no point. If the other person isn’t okay with it, and you’re lying to them, that would be selfish. But loving someone, and wanting them to be happy, no matter what that entails, I think is extremely unselfish.
“sleep with who you want, but come home to me, make sure i know about it, i want to meet the person, i want to like them too..” < ----I wouldn't tell someone this. The dynamics of an open relationship are whatever the people that are involved decide for them to be.
@kidvisions, check out the article…people don’t always get hurt. People can be extremely happy that way.
@lozzjd – Hello LJ. This is my first HighExistence post. It is great to hear that things are working out so well with you and your partners after a month :)
I am a male, and have been in a polyamorous relationship for 9 months now. It is the best thing ever and I wouldn’t change it for the world – but not for the reasons most people would think!
I came into this style of relationship spontaneously and with little consideration. It just sort of appeared out of nowhere and, suddenly, we were open. I am glad everything came together in a smooth flow, because this approach has become foundational in my approach towards poly relationships — Go with the Flow. It is the only way.
I am glad I can post on this site in particular, because many people don’t understand what I am about to say. The best part about polyamory is that it is a constant exercise in mindfulness and non-attachment.
Don’t mind when jealousy appears. And definitely do not deny it when it does. Jealousy will NEVER go away – it is an innate and primal brainstem instinct we cannot control. As conscious individuals, what we can do is learn to accept jealousy in the same way that we learn to accept any other emotion by acknowledging its transient nature and knowing that whatever it is we may be feeling, our inner core remains unchanged. Jealousy happens. These days, I actually look forward to the feeling of jealousy because it gives me great insight as to where my fears and insecurities are. Jealousy (like all “negative” emotions) allows us to discover where blockages lay, and thus what we need to work on as we progress in our spiritual journeys.
So, being successfully poly forces us to constantly examine ourselves, acknowledging that emotions happen but being OK with that, and growing from it. If there is CONSTANT and RELIABLE communication between everyone as to how they are feeling (yes, even the icky feelings) then we learn to TRUST our partners deeply. In my relationship, we give each other notice before any sexual acts with a new partner – this communication must be consistent or the trust fails. *It is SO important to honour your partner(s) with by continually respecting whatever ground rules you have laid out together.*
The feeling resulting from having such a solid foundation of trust in your partner that you are OK giving them free reign in the world is completely unparalleled, and is something monogamous partners will never experience.
The Buddhists often speak about “non-attachment”. There is absolutely nothing permanent in our lives. The only everlasting thing is the divine presence within and around all of us. Thus is it unwise to attach ourselves to anything (as in “my car”, “my money” and even “my girlfriend”) as these attachments can only result in suffering once time erases it all. The paradox is that by learning non-attachment we actually begin to Love everything more intensely. For example, by allow myself to accept the fact that one or both of my partners may very well find someone else and leave tomorrow, I can embrace the pure magic of every moment – what a miracle it is that we are together on this planet at this very moment! Pure love and light can enter the relationship without being dulled by expectations and egoic attachments.
…In theory, this works well. In actuality, I am not enlightened, and so my mind cannot remain in a state of no expectation constantly. Thus I do find myself becoming more attached to my girls, and the thought of being torn apart can hurt. HOWEVER, it is still so, so, so, so very useful to practice mindfulness/awareness of transience/non-attachment constantly. Even a few seconds per week of pure, Present Love with your partner, unburdened from expectation, is enough to remind you why you are poly.
Wow, that was a big ramble. To summarize, I would say: Jealousy is normal. Communicate when you are feeling jealous. Actually, communicate constantly. Do not let anything bottle up, ever, or you’ll get destroyed by how fast emotions can spiral out of control in poly relationships. Go with the flow! Poly is all about embracing change and letting life do what it will. Don’t even resist non-polygamy if it happens to come along. Just embrace, embrace, embrace, and keep growing. Communicate.
You will find by living the poly lifestyle that you will mature and grow faster than others because the love and value of the core relationship(s) will push you to open the mind beyond societal barriers and into a more holistic and spiritual approach to love.
Oh god, I have more to say. Consider this a P.S.
Love is Infinite — and anyone every telling you that you can’t love more than one person has their head up their ass. The only barricade to our potential to love is (a) the capacity of our soul to channel divine energy (hint: we can take a lot, just ask Krishna) and (b) whether there are the right humans in our physical environment that we can connect with on a deeper plane. Sometimes we just aren’t in the right place at the right time. Patience.
Love, although infinite, is also TRANSIENT. It comes and goes. Falling in love with a person does not mean this love will remain forever and ever, amen. (This is why marriage is fucked – but that’s another story.) Accept the fact that you could possibly stop loving your partner tomorrow, and don’t take it for granted today! This allows us to surrender to the beauty of every moment and be completely dazzled by how powerful love really is. If love departs a relationship, both sides will feel it, and it will only be fear and attachment holding them together – can you say destructive? So be courageous enough to accept what is going on in ever moment, and noble enough to respect your soul in doing what is right for you.
@lozzjd, I wasn’t trying to pry at you, sorry. I had just never thought of that in previous conversations with advocates of open relationships. I wanted to see what you would say.
Good for you on the whole thing. Maybe i’m not the type, or maybe I get tied in with girls that aren’t the type, but I’ve never tried it. I’ll be hoping for the best for you guys. You should let us all know how it is working for you around christmas time. It would be great to hear some insights.
@buddha, I have to agree with that. I discussed this option with my partner and he told me that one should think well about the consequences. Why the need for an “open relationship”? What does being in a relationship mean to you and what is really different between an open and an exclusive relationship? Can we fall in love with more people at the same time? Is it going to be fair to all parties? How different is it from polygamy??
@kidvisions, It’s not like legitimatizing cheating. More like making lust a good thing. And the selfish part is when people want to have fun, and having fun is having fun, it could get bad if it’s too much. Really simple! No matter what people believe, a lot of them try to make others like them – that’s the selfish part. No need to say that some people are just not looking or thinking so much about relationships and sex because they have other interests. If someone really likes someone else and wants to fuck their brains out, it would be really bad if the horny one can’t dedicate themselves to one person because their natural nymphomania doesn’t let them, so society is something they’d like to blame. If something doesn’t seem natural for some, it would seem natural for others. No one really gives a fuck as long as people are sexually educated and in good relations. We all know that there is much abuse with sex and people are just using others, even emotionally blackmailing them, no one should put their needs first – that leads to being selfish and ignorant.
There are couples that aren’t miserable and aren’t in open relationships so there’s no need to say something that simply isn’t. :D
Just my quick two cents…
Personally I’ve always been very pro open relationship. I won’t lie, I’m a nympho. There is a line I’ve drawn mentally between sex and between a relationship. whenever I’m in a relationship I love that person unconditionally. However, I can’t do monogamy… I don’t know if I haven’t found a partner good enough at sex, or if I’m just not wired that way. I refuse to get into a relationship unless it’s open because I know at some point I will get bored with the sex with this partner.
As for sex with other people I always be honest with them too. I let them know I am in an open relationship and this “roll around in the hay” is only for enjoyment and that there is never anything serious that will come from it. I’ve had outside people try to push back but that’s where you have the chance to really stand your ground and say No! I love this girl. She means everything to me and she let’s me be me.
For me, an actual relationship is way different then sex. Sex is just sex.. (not to mention in an open relationship you have sex more which makes you better at it, keeps you active, and makes you want it more). It really depends on the person but really as long as you can realize that sex is just sex and that your relationship is so much more. It’s a connection on a much deeper level, then you have nothing to worry about.
Just make sure your girl knows that you have a deeper connection with her then just sex. As long as she knows that you won’t have anything to worry about.
@bobbylloydxd, Not a problem at all I am more than happy to answer any questions about it – It’s interesting to see the different points of view that need to be considered.
I was just thinking I should maybe start jotting down what happens from the beginning for a few months to see what obstacles/feelings/positive experiences come up and then come back and update everyone who is interested. Sure thing I will jump on this thread again in a few months and update everyone on how we are going :)
This is basically about two people letting each other to be as selfish as they make it to be. Giving each other the freedom to be selfish. Isn’t that the deal? I’m also curious about these rules. If the couple is in an open relationship they must share that with other people, and have fun only if the others are okay with it. It won’t be only about the couple anymore when others are involved. I guess if those in open relationships find others in open relationships, it would work. You can’t exactly lie to someone that you’re single while you’re in an “open relationship”, unless you find people that love whores!
I have always wondered, what exactly happens when you are into a relationship. One of the first things that comes to mind is preoccupation. Your mind is heavily preoccupied with the concept of sharing everything (everything that you are comfortable sharing). So I guess in the neurology of it, probably the neurons containing the image of this person in your mind (what you think the person is, will be, your general beliefs about where it can go, how far/deep etc.) try to link with all the neurons containing your daily thoughts, beliefs and activities. Its kind of like a dam being opened and the water from the 2 sides mix into each other. Its literally the merging of your individual identity with another person. I guess the reason its so pleasurable is because of a fundamental longing for a oneness experience. This longing seems to be the deepest longing in the human race but it might manifest itself in a multitude of forms we see today such as friendship, sex, family, other relations etc. We define identity by the memory of experiences and concepts formed out of that. So identity seems to be maintained by different kinds of memories alone. By this logic, our whole identity is derived from our past. I would presume our capacity for future projections too is heavily influenced by our past too. Merging identity is making you larger than yourself. You have a brand new set of things to explore, kind of like a child seeing a new toy for the first time which may explain why there is this initial burst of curiosity and attraction which fades slowly as familiarity increases and converts itself to a general attachment. I guess the root of this attachment is because we are attached to our identity in the first place. So when we merge someone else with our definition of self, we get attached to this person as much as we were to ourselves.
But in the field of spirituality, Ive noticed that there is a completely different take on this matter. They debunk the notion that identity is real in the first place. Also, if identity is an illusory thing then there is no need to be attached to it in the first place. This is a completely radical line of thought since if you are not attached to your identity itself, then you would not get attached to anything for that matter including relationships, experiences etc. Once you remove all attachments, what remains? Regarding there is a unanimous agreement that what remains in unconditional love and compassion.
I sometimes feel we are greatly restricting ourselves by loving only a few special people in our lives. I guess the reason for this is attachment to our own identity and only the people who conform with that are loved by us. We may call them different names such as family, friends, romantic partners etc. but they are all just labels pointing towards a single experience.
I think you can argue both ways, (see the following thread with an in depth discussion), the only way to find out if it’s truly what you both want is to try it out. This of course involves a risk.