Tag Archives: Open Relationships

Today’s Bisexual Thoughts: Bi and Open

Does bisexuality lend itself to open relationships? Sure it does… since there are other reasons why opening up a relationship sounds good on paper (at the least) and sex isn’t always the main reason.

Bisexuals in a relationship are faced with a major problem: They want to do something about it and they can’t since the rules of monogamy apply whether you’re legally married or not. Given this, they’re faced with yet another problem: Either continue to do nothing or step to the side and get it done and then hope like hell you don’t get busted.

It gets even worse for some bisexuals in that they want to do something but don’t want to cheat in order to do it which, more often than not, leaves them horribly frustrated and can tend to set the stage for changes in mood and attitude that I’ve seen take place and not lend themselves to a happy relationship.

Indeed, anyone in a relationship who isn’t getting what they need knows what this feels like and while there are folks who can push this frustration to the side and keep moving forward, there are many folks who can’t; eventually, all that frustration piles up and a sense of self-preservation kicks in and the person not getting what they need in the relationship is looking for it elsewhere. And not always “deliberately;” some will decide that if an opportunity presents itself, the go/no go decision will be made at that time – if it happens, it happens. But, yeah, some folks in this situation – and folks who aren’t bisexual, by the way, will now make it a mission to get what they need since they can’t get it at home… and like they’re supposed to be.

Stepping outside of the relationship, even when not legally married, is a very big no-no; you just don’t do it and if you feel the need to, well, pack your bags and secure another place to live and, sure, a lot of people do just that… except – and as I’ve scribbled at times – leaving the relationship is actually a dumb thing to do.

So… now what? Leaving the situation unattended ain’t working and leaving the relationship ain’t gonna work. A lot of couples are discovering – and this ain’t anything new under the sun – that you can have your cake and eat it but there’s one nearly insurmountable problem with this: Convincing the person you’re in a relationship with that opening things up is going to benefit them as much as it will benefit you.

Yeah… good luck with that one. Being and staying monogamous is a matter of personal honor; you gave your word that you’d keep only unto yourself (and even if you’re not legally married) so to go back on your word ain’t cool… but neither is being in a relationship that is devoid of those things that go with maintaining a relationship. Yep – could be sex but could also be emotional content and connection.

The rules are what they are and there’s a bit of a disconnect happening in that we hold true that the rules should always be obeyed and adhered to but we accept that rules are also made to be broken… or, in this situation, modified.

A lot of couples – and sexuality notwithstanding – have figured out how they can have their cake and eat it while maintaining what’s known as the core relationship. They’ve figured out that both people in the relationship can get whatever they need, not only from each other but from, ah, outside agencies, and without trashing the core relationship. There are even forms of open relationships that are, for lack of a better phrase, one-sided; that’s when one person is having cake and the other is just find not having any cake other than what they already have.

But you still have to convince your partner that this would be a good thing for the relationship. One can sit down and put together the perfect and most logical argument in favor of doing this and utterly fail because you’re asking someone to do something that, morally, is never supposed to be done for any reason. I’ve heard such eloquent arguments and have heard the partner actually agree with everything presented and the proposition is rejected.

Sometimes, it gets rejected because the person making it often isn’t prepare or willing to offer whatever it’s gonna take to get their partner to agree because one of the questions that gets asked is, “What’s in it for me? What do I get out of it?”

The “proper” response is – or should be – “Well, what do you want? What’s it gonna take to make this happen?”

And then it’s on the partner to say what it’s gonna take; maybe they will, maybe they won’t and what they usually want is for things to stay just the way they are… except it’s now known that the way things are has become a problem.

Now… add bisexuality to this and you’ve just made shit even more problematic. Not only are you asking your partner to disregard the rules and even participate in a way that the rules don’t allow, now the reason why you want to open things up is because you crave pussy or dick on top of craving the person you’re with?

Can you see the cluster fuck beginning to take shape? And can you see the inherent flaws in the tenets of monogamy? Boy meets girl (or, yeah, boy meets boy, girl meets girl), they connect, fall in love, decide to share their lives with each other and in the beginning, things are going great but over time, shit changes and I’m not saying this in a bad kind of way – it’s just a fact that people change over time. We get… complacent in a relationship and behave as if things are gonna just take care of themselves and that neither person would ever have a reason to want something more than what they already have… and humans don’t work like that; we are, as a species, dynamic – always changing and adapting to whatever environment we’re in but being in a relationship makes people static: They get in one and they become stuck with it and even when a change is required to make the relationship run smoother, there is resistance… because we – humans – don’t like change a whole lot even if it’s a change for the better.

You tell your partner you want to try an open relationship because, you hate to say it, you need more than what they’re willing and/or able to supply or, as I’ve said in a bisexual context, when you need pussy/dick, um, your partner doesn’t have one. You’ve just told them that they’re not enough for you and they’re not gonna take this implication well at all. You’ve also told them that what you need is pussy/dick and that goes against everything they believe – and reinforces the implication that they’re not good enough for you. So right off the bat, you’ve just fucked shit up because even if the proposal gets rejected, the partner is going to always remember that they’re not everything you need in life to be happy with them.

And people wonder why bisexuals are said to have mental/emotional issues? People wonder why the person they’re partnered with will cheat on them? People wonder why so many relationships wind up going down the drain? It’s because it’s not easy to modify the rules – well, wait a minute: It is easy to do that; it’s not easy to get a partner who believes in monogamy and doesn’t believe in same-sex stuff to agree to such an arrangement.

Which doesn’t change the fact that some people have figured it out and have modified the rules so that the relationship can go on about its merry way and with both people getting whatever they need from each other as well as anyone else they may get involved with. Not only do some bisexuals get permission and, as such, opens the relationship, their partners are just as involved as they are and, again, some partners are like, “I can live with this… I just don’t need to know what you’re doing and if I’m doing something, well, let’s keep that under some hats.”

Which, personally, I think is a mistake but, sure, people do make it work like that.

Bisexual or not, if you want the relationship to be open, you first have to put together a good argument in favor of this and that argument should also contain anything that could go sideways – some of those things are obvious, some not so much. You have to, with your argument, convince them that being open doesn’t mean that you don’t love them and that you don’t need them; you have to convince them that whatever your reason for opening things up doesn’t mean they’re some kind of fucked up individual.

And you sure as hell have to be able to explain to them what’s in it for them if this happens as well as being willing to give them anything they might want and I do mean anything. Your argument should also contain an “outline” that explains how this open thing is going to work – a set of potential rules that, hopefully, allows things to work in this new environment while not fucking the whole thing up.

Your argument shouldn’t be just about you; it should be about “us;” how will this make us better together? Even if the partner isn’t of a mind to do anything with anyone else, your argument should point out that this arrangement leaves plenty of room should the partner decide that, yeah, I wouldn’t mind engaging with someone else. That’s kinda hard because you’re trying to “predict” the future by telling them that you might not want to do anything yourself now… doesn’t mean that someone could come along and change your mind about it.

And you gotta leave room for change and especially in any rules that get set up. One mistake people make is coming up with a set of rules and wind up making them unchangeable which might sound like a good idea at the time but can fuck shit up down the road because ya didn’t factor in that people do change and can change their minds… that and shit happens.

And, in your argument, you have to make it very damned clear that if things open up, you’re gonna abide by the terms the partner puts on the table. It’s about you… but it’s also about them as well and before you even bring this to them, you should think long and hard about what, if anything, is going to benefit them if they go along with this.

Good luck with that one, too; this is usually the part of the program where you find out that you don’t know your partner as well as you think you do and, yeah, bisexuals have a harder time with this because you can be with someone who doesn’t “have a problem” with bisexuality… as long as it has nothing to do with them… and here you are proposing an open relationship based on the fact that you want and need pussy/dick to make you not only a happy camper but more engaged and gung ho about the relationship.

Being bi and open – shit, even being gay or straight and open – makes a lot of sense on paper because, well, it makes sense. How do you stop someone from cheating? You remove the reasons why they may be compelled to cheat by giving them and yourself permission to do whatever needs to be done while making damned sure that the relationship doesn’t wind up suffering because of this.

Most people ain’t gonna do this; they’d rather let the relationship go down the drain than to do whatever they can do to make sure it doesn’t go down the drain. It’s why I tell people who ask about this that if you’re gonna put this on the table, everyone involved is going to have to forget everything they thought they knew about love, sex, and relationship so that they can learn a new way to do these things and be deliriously happy doing it.

It’s not impossible – it’s just very damned hard and, sorry to say, a lot of people aren’t capable of this depth of thinking; it’s too complicated, too many variables, way too many unknowns… and I’m the guy who’s telling you that it’s a bitch to end all bitches to do… and people do find a way to do it. Why?

Because if they don’t, the relationship will eventually wither and die and no one really wants that to happen… yet, this is exactly what a lot of people will do and, I hate to say it, usually because they’re more concerned with their own ass than the ass of the person they’re with. It’s that thing where we will tell our partner that because we love them, we’ll do anything for them, will give them anything that’s within our power and ability to do so… and this situation can definitely prove that what we really say to each other in this is, “I love you; I’d do anything for you… but.”

And people will let their relationship die even when they know that, for them, yeah… this could work… but the rules mandate that they can’t ever be broken and the best thing – the only thing – to do is to let the relationship die… and one should ask themselves if this really makes sense.

I don’t believe that it does and more so when, up to this moment in time, the relationship has been all that and a bag of chips. I can’t begin to tell you the number of times I’ve heard or have been asked, “How can we make things better? How can we spice it up and recapture – and relive – the early moments of our relationship where we were batshit crazy about each other and our growing love for each other made us do some delightfully silly shit?”

The rules, such as they are, don’t allow for extra spice to be added and believe me, many do try to spice it up without “outsiders” being involved. Some are successful, some aren’t; the added spice eventually fades into the background and things go back to the way they were and more spice is needed and, yeah, sometimes, that added spice comes in the form of being involved with someone and still being involved with the partner you have so much love for.

What would you do to keep your relationship intact and working? If you’re straight (or even gay) and you learn that your partner needs something you cannot give them, would you allow them to have it so that they can get back to being the happy critter you love… or would you dispose of them even if it’s not in your best interest to get rid of them?

What would you do? Would you be insulted if your partner asked to open the relationship? Get it in your head that they don’t love you, that they think that they’re not satisfied with you? Hold onto the lie that you’re all they’re ever gonna need – and even if you damned well know that you’re not of a mind to be everything they’re ever gonna need? Would you recognize that if your partner needed pussy/dick to make them a better person and a better partner… or would you be so pissed off that all you wanna do is break up the relationship?

Is it a matter of honor? That you promised to keep only unto yourself and let no one put asunder? That you promised for better or worse? But letting the relationship die also, in a way, besmirches your honor because there is now something you’re not gonna do for them even if it benefits you in some way?

This is what bisexuals – and, again, anyone in a relationship – faces. The way it’s supposed to be isn’t always the best way for it to be. Do you have a responsibility to make and keep the relationship the best it can be or are you of a mind that in this situation, it ain’t your problem and you ain’t gonna deal with it?

What would you do to keep the person you love by your side and for long as humanly possible?

Would it surprise you that a lot of people wouldn’t do a damned thing except let the relationship die when it doesn’t have to? And do you see how bisexuals in a relationship feel some kind of way because they need to do something but the rules don’t allow it and they’re with someone who firmly believes that the rules should be obeyed at all times and at any cost?

Do you see why bisexuals – or anyone, really – decide to cheat? Do you see that most of us live by a set of rules that serves to make us stagnant and unfulfilled? And do you believe – can you believe – that it is possible to have your cake and eat it, too – and even if you don’t want any cake at the moment… but ya might want some in a future you cannot see?

It’s complicated. We are conditioned to not break or otherwise modify these rules for our own benefit. Being single and alone just sucks… but being in a relationship that’s not providing things that you need – or could potentially need in that unknown future – also sucks. Breaking up and even cheating might make sense but at great cost.

But what if you could have your cake and eat it as well as giving your partner some cake as well? Would you do it, even for the sake of love and the continuation of the relationship?

Most people won’t. Think about that while I go run some errands. I understand that a lot of people will read this and wholly disagree with it; they don’t believe in it; the rules say it should never happen and that you should never want anything or anyone other than the person you’re with.

And you gotta (well, you don’t have to if you don’t want to) ask yourself if this really makes sense to let someone you said you love with all your heart and soul not only suffer with being deprived but let them get away from you… and because you can’t or won’t modify the rules.

My very wise mother told me, the day I told her I was getting married, that the relationship/marriage is only going to be as good as the two of us are willing to make it and it was on the both of us to make things as good as they can be.

And sometimes, in order to do this, you might have to break, modify, adjust, tweak, or just throw out the rules in order to be happy together and by any means necessary.

Would you do it? Could you do it? Would it bother you to know that there are couples who can do what you are incapable of doing – and they’re having big time fun doing it… and you ain’t having much fun being stuck where you are because you believe in something that doesn’t really work the way they say it’s supposed to? Willing to let someone you love suffer with not having what they need to make them better and, in turn, be a better partner? You willing to let yourself suffer and be unfulfilled? Willing to just walk away and start over because that’s what you’re supposed to do? And, yeah, worried that you’re gonna get cheated on… but it’s within your power to make that not happen?

Most people won’t. Most people can’t. Most people are pretty fucking miserable in their relationship as it currently stands; not enough sex, not enough intimacy, little or no emotional connection. Wants, needs, and desires being ignored and because we’re all about “me” and not so much about “us.”

Think about it, if you dare to and then not only think about why you wouldn’t – look at what you’re thinking about that’s making you say you would never do this.

Maybe you’ll see what I’m talking about and how bisexuals get all fucked up in the head and how willing we are to let them suffer and even throw them away.

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Posted by on 9 December 2019 in Today's Bisexual Thoughts


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Because She Asked

I made a comment on a post written by DDJennifer ( and she suggested that I copy and paste it into a blog of my own… so here it is:

Methinks some people see the phrase “open marriage” and immediately fear the worst right along with not understanding what this really means. In my first marriage, I went through the “process” from being monogamous to being open to being poly and it was one hell of a trip and experience and while no relationship is immune to the problems inherent in having a relationship, it is about equity more than equality and, as I like to say, being able to adopt a mindset where the relationship is about “us” and not about “me” so much.

And while you can never discount individualism in any relationship, being open is about everyone involved working toward the same goal and with the same shared vision. It’s certainly about the core relationship and the mindset of, “What can we do to make our lives together the best it can be?” and then doing whatever that entails and, importantly, remaining vigilant and determined to make it work.

By the time I got to poly, my god, I learned so much about love, sex, and relationships that it wasn’t funny just as I learned that living and loving like this is actually harder than being monogamous – in this, you only have one person to deal with as opposed to dealing with two or more other people in the mix. I learned that you cannot treat your partners under the auspices of equality – that’s a nightmare waiting to happen that, um, sure, I’d wish that on my worst enemy and it would serve them right for being dumb enough to think that equality, as we understand it, can be easily established. Being open/poly is an investment that requires equity and creating an environment where one and all can flourish and as comfortably as humanly possible.

It’s still not easy to do… but it can be done and once you’ve learned how to live like this, you never want to go back to being monogamous if you can avoid it.

When people would question how and why we were living the way we were, the answer was always, “Because we want to and it just works for us and it makes the most sense.”

Now for the other side of this thing, namely, how people who attempt this get it wrong more often than not.  In previous writing about this topic, I’ve repeatedly said that in order to be in an open relationship, you first have to unlearn everything you’ve ever learned about love, sex, and relationships so you can learn another way to do these things.  Monogamy is mandated and to the point where people who aren’t married carry on relationships as if they were married; the same rules, the same restrictions, and the same problems married folks experience except folks in an unmarried relationship can usually walk away from it without getting any lawyers involved.

One of the other things I learned and, again, said a lot in previous posts on this, is that being in an open and/or poly relationship isn’t for the weak at heart or those folks subject to experiencing and displaying certain negative emotions – jealousy and possessiveness among them; I’ve also said that when considering being open/poly, the rules of monogamy are, in essence, null and void because, duh, you can’t “keep only unto yourself” if you’re considering expanding what will hopefully become what’s known as the core relationship.

And I’ve said that if you don’t think you can do any of the things necessary, don’t even try it.  You see, we barely understand what it takes to be in a relationship with just one person and the tenets of monogamy are hammered into us almost as soon as we are able to understand them and said tenets are assumed to be inviolate and, importantly, the right thing to be done at all times… except, don’t we find out that this doesn’t work as advertised?  I’ve said and asked not to be taken wrong but for many, being monogamous works and works well but for others?  Eh, not so much.

Relationships erode, decay, become stagnant and wind up ending because, seemingly, there’s no recourse or other alternative to breaking up when, in fact, there’s always been another course of action a couple can take:  Open the relationship and more so when it becomes apparent that there are needs that should be taken care of but monogamy (and a few other things) doesn’t allow for any, ah, outside assistance.  People fret over cheating and I’ve read other blogs about this and their authors asking what, if anything can be done to prevent cheating and other than being single and by yourself, the answer is found in yet another thing I’ve said a lot:  It’s better to beg forgiveness than to ask permission… but what if you could get permission?  How does a couple combat the ever-present threat of infidelity?  Remove the mindset that suggests that infidelity is always a bad thing.  The bad part is that getting permission is deemed to be impossible given what we – as a whole – tend to believe.  But getting permission brings a new set of issues, namely, ya just don’t know how to have a relationship that involves more than one person.

But it can be done, as DDJennifer’s blog indicates.  It’s not without some issues but as I said in my comment, it’s about having a shared goal and vision – everyone should be on the same page while doing their best to avoid the negative emotions.  For instance, I read someone’s blog a few weeks ago and the author said that her and her hubby were now in an open relationship (and she asked for it) but there were times when she felt the need to stake out her territory and even admitted that she felt… neglected at times when her hubby and their new female partner would interact. It’s actually a normal kind of reaction, given what we’ve been taught about relationships… but harboring these kinds of feelings can, eventually, slam the door on an open relationship.  You quickly learn some shit that’s hard to process:  The open/poly relationship is about you… but not really and I’ll keep right on saying that in these things, if you are unable to think “us” more than “me,” you’re usually gonna fail in your attempts to find happiness in this arrangement – and an arrangement that’s a lot more involved than just sex, you know, just in case you were of a mind that these things is purely and solely about sex.  Again, it is… but not as a main focus of being open and poly; the purpose of the open relationship is to improve the core relationship or being able to answer this question:

“What can we do to make our lives together the best it can be?”  Sadly, this question is often difficult to answer because we – on the whole – tend to think in terms of what we’re not going to do, even for the sake of love… and as long as your mind is stuck in this place, being open/poly just ain’t gonna work.  I’ve said that being open/poly is even harder than being monogamous and I’m being nice about it when I say it… but it can be done.  As DDJennifer wrote in her blog, being open/poly isn’t about equality – it’s about equity and it’s an investment of the highest order.  I read and know of single folks who are poly and while I’d not say that, for the most part, they’re not successful at having multiple partners, many of them manage their relationships while employing the rules of monogamy and finding that doing this is kinda hard when you don’t have that one person at your side who not only shares this vision but is willing to stick by your side as part of the core relationship.

Which is why it’s my belief that openness and polyamory works best for couples who are already in an established relationship; the core is already present and, importantly, the core partners are secure in their relationship and their love for each other… and even more important, they are dedicated to doing whatever’s necessary to make sure that core relationship lasts as long as humanly possible… and even if that means adding as many other people as they can and implementing a plan that makes sure that everyone involved shares the investment, goals, and vision of the expanded relationship.

Equity… not never equality and I say this because it’s virtually impossible to establish equality when you’re dealing with different personalities as well as different wants and needs and that, my friends, is the really hard part.  You can’t show favoritism and you do your level best to not to try to treat everyone the same way – equally – but according to who they are; if you think communication is important in a “normal” relationship, you can’t begin to believe how very important this becomes when two becomes three or four; if you suck at time management, problem and conflict resolution, um, you’re already behind the eight-ball.

If you’re reading this and you’re thinking that, fuck, this open/poly thing is a pain in the ass, you’d be right – it is and unlike anything you’ve ever experienced.  At the same time, it can be the most liberating thing a couple could do but as I say, you gotta really and seriously be grown up enough to do this.  Like in any other relationship, you’ll have regrets, problems, and other things that make the day-to-day management of the relationship a bitch to deal with and even I’ll admit there were times in my experiences when I asked myself – and a lot – “Why did I agree to do this crazy shit?”  But I’d remember why I did – because it made sense to.

Is there a sure-fire way to do this and have it work?  Uh, no; the bad part is that while there’s a lot of information available as to how to accomplish this, you’re gonna have to find your way in this.  Hell, if I knew the definitive answer to getting it done and correctly so, I’d be rich beyond the dreams of avarice.  What I do know is how not to do this, what the pitfalls are and, if nothing else, what the basics are.

After that, you’re on your own.

So, Jennifer – how did I do?

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Posted by on 23 June 2018 in Life, Living and Loving


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More About Being Open

I’ve had reason to think about this some more and the one thing I gotta point out that if you’ve opened up your relationship to other folks, um, this ain’t a competition, something I’ve found that causes people to fail in this.  Being open just isn’t about who’s having the most fun or successes and who’s not having that much fun and being successful seems to be a pipe dream.

It’s about experiencing an unorthodox way to grow as individuals and as a couple and turning this into a competition will only foster a lot of resentment.  If your being open isn’t about “us” then I feel you’re doing it for all the wrong reasons; being open is an extension of what you already have and, as such, still requires for your relationship to be worked on… constantly because just like being monogamous, your open relationship will not run all by itself.

Yep, you go open and you start laying down rules and stuff – there’s no way I know of to be open and without a foundation of rules.  However, a lot of people fail in this because they never factor in the fact that things change and when you don’t allow for change in any of this, well, drama will always happen.  And, of course, communication – open and honest communication – becomes even more important because if you’re not in touch with what’s going on in your minds – thoughts, feelings, stuff like that, you are royally fucked if you aren’t able to share everything you’re experiencing in this and no matter if it’s good, bad, or indifferent.

Other than what I like to call Rule Number One – “Always take care of home first” – the next important thing is having a shared vision in this and one that encompasses your whole relationship and not just individual wants and needs.  It’s not that those wants and needs don’t ever form the basis for being open but if you’re not thinking about how your individual wants and need can benefit your relationship as a whole, you’re just not doing it in what I’d have to say is a smart way; if you’re not truly together in this, yep, you’re fucked and not in a good way.

Not only is it not really all that easy to get the ball rolling in this, it’s not easy to get everything “settled in” to where everyone is comfortable; again, this takes work and just will not happen on its own and it most certainly isn’t going to happen quickly – this shit takes time as well as effort and if you’re not of a mind to take/spend the time to make sure things do settle in nicely, you’re doing it wrong in my opinion.  Until y’all get settled in, everything is trial and error and you have to accept that, yep, you’re gonna make mistakes – then the trick is not letting those mistakes make you fail.  If you don’t support each other in this, ya might be doomed because I can’t say it enough:  This ain’t just about you – this is an “us” thing.  How can we be better with and for each other?  How can what we experience in this give us both individual growth as well as continued growth as a couple – and then in as many positive ways as we can manage?

You talk, openly and honestly… and talk some more, and keep talking because it’s not really one’s activities that causes a terminal failure – it’s that lack of effective communication that’ll do it.  Every concern needs to be addressed when it comes up; holding shit back from the discussion is beyond self-defeating.  In the beginning, yeah, it’s kinda easy for resentment to sneak into things and it’s not just one person’s job to deal with this – it takes a combined effort so that any resentment and all those other negative feelings are squashed – and then always keeping in mind that negative feelings are always gonna crop up and you just need a good plan on how to deal with this.

Being open is a terribly severe test of your love for each other as well as the strength and security of your relationship… and I can’t emphasize enough how important it is that you both become proof against the things that can cause doubt, mistrust, and a lot of other shit that could destroy your relationship.  If you don’t realize that there are a lot of occupational hazards that go along with any kind of relationship, well, I’m telling you that there are.  You just cannot ever question or doubt your love for each other!  Being open, well, it’s not just about the sex that can be had although a lot of people believe this to be true and because they do, they try to go out of their way to prevent feelings of attachment to other folks and, honestly, while this can be done, I personally think it’s a mistake and one that’s self-defeating because, uh, if you’re not allowed to feel anything for someone else other than lust, why are you even bothering to do this?

If you’re gonna experience being open, experience all of it and not just the parts that have the most appeal.  Maybe you think such… extra attachments aren’t supposed to happen and if you do, I’m here today to tell you that being cluelessly in denial about this isn’t going to help at all because if you’re human – and I’m assuming that you are – then you have the ability and capacity to feel something other than lust for someone else – and, yeah, even when you’re already madly in love with your partner.  Love has never been a “one and done” kind of thing but if you think it is, go ahead – keep thinking like that and find out how things will work… or stop working.  When my [then] wife and I first went open, yeah, I was worried sick about her falling in love with someone else and losing her… until I realized that this same thing could happen even if we weren’t open and it didn’t make any sense for us to make rules that served to prevent other feelings from taking place – and, exactly, how does one go about doing that?  You can tell yourself that you’re not gonna fall for someone else… but you just never really know – it’s impossible for you to know and if you do, um, can you pick out all of the winning lottery numbers for me?

Maybe other feelings won’t happen… but you’d better be aware of the fact that they can happen and have a plan, however tentative, for dealing with the probability of this.  Know that even if you or your partner begin to feel things other than lust for someone else, that doesn’t mean your relationship is doomed or that you’re gonna suffer loss because, bluntly and honestly, if you have fears of loss, you need to not be doing this and maybe shouldn’t be in a relationship at all:  Nothing is forever.  If you dare to love, you also accept the risk of loss… but you don’t have to fear it.  Prevent it, yes; let the fear of loss drive things?  I wouldn’t do that…

Okay, time for me to get off my soapbox and find something else to do…

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Posted by on 3 June 2015 in Life, Living and Loving


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Improvise, Adapt, and Overcome

I haven’t written much about this lately and after reading a blog written by a guy about being able to deal with things like trust, fear of loss, and jealousy in (I presume) their budding poly relationship, I got to wondering about a few things connected with this.

For a lot of people, having an open relationship is anathema to them; the thought of having to share their partner with someone else is enough to trigger projectile vomiting and can make one’s bowels quite watery.  I cannot begin to give voice to all of the horrible thoughts going on in someone’s head when faced with this drastic change in the relationship dynamic and I’d have to say that, usually, if someone put this on the table for discussion, a shit storm of biblical proportions is going to take place.  Things like a lack of trust, that fear of loss, jealousy, insecurity, and a few intangible emotions come to the front and I can tell you that none of these things feel good, not when you were raised to believe that monogamy is the best and most right thing.

A lot of people totally and utter fail to open their relationship because they have no idea of what has to be done in order to make it work; it requires some very serious changes, not only in the relationship’s dynamics but at the person level and once you firmly (and even rabidly) believe in monogamy, making these changes can seem to be impossible… and it’s not impossible… it’s just very damned difficult for most people to do.

Here’s the rub:  If you love them – and I mean you really love them and, going into the relationship, you know in your heart that you (a) love them unconditionally (most people can’t do this, by the way – there’s always a “but” somewhere) and (b) you know that short of doing something highly illegal – like committing murder – you’d do anything for them, when hit with the open relationship/swinger/polyamory things, you have some choices:  Do nothing and let whatever is driving this change continue to poison the relationship; divorce or otherwise leave them because your personal values are more important than the joined goals of living long and prospering with each other come hell or high water; or you can improvise, adapt, and overcome the difficulties in this because your love for each other demands that doing nothing or dissolving the relationship is not in the best interest of things for either one of you.

As I’ve written about in the past, I had to get through this change in the relationship dynamic and it wasn’t even close to being easy to do.  I learned that instead of approaching this from a purely emotional standpoint – and that’s the “normal” reaction, I had to approach this in a way that would bring every bit of intelligence and logic I possessed to bear.  Once I got over the initial emotional tidal wave, I asked myself a question:  “If you love her (and there was no question whether I did or not), what are you willing to do to keep her and to keep the relationship alive and as well as possible?”  The emotional side said, “Not one damned thing!” and went on a rant about being betrayed and all that… but the intelligent side said, “Well, now, there is a way this could work and here’s what I’m thinking about…”

Was this a trust issue?  Nah, not really because I’d routinely trust her with my life and not give much thought about it.  Was this about fear of loss?  Oh, hell, yeah it was!  Emotionally, my gods, that’s a bitch (putting it mildly) to have hammering at your but, logically, I realized that I was getting upset about something that is an occupational hazard of being in a relationship with someone:  There is no guarantee (and despite marriage vows) that you cannot lose them to someone else and, really, nothing is forever – everything ends at some point.  For me, it became an issue of whether or not I wanted to continue to be bothered by this fear when, in the face of cold, hard, unemotional, logic, there’s not a whole lot I can do about loss other than do whatever I could to prevent a premature loss or, if I did lose her to someone else, it wasn’t going to be because I did (or didn’t do) something to precipitate it.  And, my mother was quite right when she once told me, “There is always someone out there better than you…” and, yep, emotionally that is so fucked up to get a grip on but, logically, it makes sense so if you think that just because you vowed to keep only unto ourselves and this will prevent this loss, you’re just sadly mistaken and pretty damned arrogant to believe that you will always be everything they’re ever going to need in life.

But because we do tend to think like this, we’re ill-prepared to deal with things; there’s the way things in this are supposed to be… and then there’s life’s harsh reality that’ll let you know that you are really clueless if you really believe that something can’t change or shouldn’t.

Was my reaction a jealous one?  I’ll eat a little crow at this point and say it probably was even though, in my mind, it didn’t “feel” that way.  Was I pissed because she wanted more than I alone could give her?  Damned right I was!  Was I scared and worried about what would happen if I didn’t “cave in” to her demands?  Oh, you just have no idea and even I can’t begin to put into words what was going on inside me.  I asked myself, “What’s going on with you about this?” and, nope, it wasn’t an easy question to answer but I had to question whether I was more insecure than I believed myself to be – emotionally, the answer was, “No fucking way!” but, intelligently, the answer was, “Yeah, you are…” and then figure out how to banish jealousy or anything that resembled it because as long as I was feeling these things, all the other fears would just feed off of it.

I can “simplify” this:  Emotionally, does changing the dynamic make sense?  Nope, it doesn’t.  Does it make sense logically?  Yes, the logic isn’t all that hard to figure out:  If you don’t, you’re gonna lose them because you’re either going to leave them or they’re gonna leave you and if you forbid this, fuck, they’re just gonna do it anyway.  If you do, yeah, you could still lose them – remember, there’s always someone better than you and nothing is forever – but, ah, is there a way to do this and (a) keep them by your side (b) make the bond you share stronger while (c) not letting everything go down the drain?  Yeah, there is but even when the logic is sound – and in order for it to be sound, it cannot be tainted with emotional input – there’s still one very important thing that must be done:

Communicate.  And I mean communicate like you’ve never done it before and you’d better be ready to talk about shit that (a) couples somehow never really talk about in-depth and (b) that just pain cause you some emotional pain along the way.  And this is just in the beginning – should things get off the ground, communication becomes even more important and any failure in this is, bluntly, just gonna fuck all your shit up.  I know some folks get into the open/poly thing and invoke “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” and this is an act of self-preservation… and a mistake that shouldn’t be made.  Through our communication process, I saw that while this push to be open was “about her,” there was a way to make this about “us” – it was something we could experience together and I worked out the “growth factors” and some other really deep shit – but the thing here is that if we didn’t redefine the meaning of “open communication,” then I would have no information to work with; were I to invoke DADT, I was really disconnecting myself from everything and then only to preserve my own sensibilities.

Emotionally, that makes sense… but intelligently/logically, it doesn’t – well, it didn’t to me because I’ll admit to being a bit of a control freak and the fear of not having any “control” over the whole thing scared me more than anything else did.  The real challenges for both of us were (a) are we smart enough to make this work and (b) are we – can we – be grown up enough to not only make it work but make it a thing about us instead of just a me thing.

You improvise, adapt, and overcome because if you don’t, you will make your lives miserable at the least or lose them at the worst.  There are many people who just cannot do this; their own mindset about love and monogamy can instantly put them in a defensive posture.  I’ve heard other who have been faced with this accuse the asking partner of being selfish – they’re only thinking about themselves – and being greedy – what, I’m not enough for you? – and one of the things that has to be taken into consideration – logically, not emotionally – is whether or not your rejection of this is, in fact, you being selfish and only thinking about yourself.  Of course, most of us wouldn’t think that we’re being selfish if we pitched a royal bitch about this but, yeah, step back from the emotional storm for a moment and then think about what you’re seeing.

This is not an easy thing to do and I strongly suggest to anyone thinking about doing this not to do it unless you seriously have your shit in order before you open your mouth to your partner about it.  But if you believe your shit is together and your love for your partner is strong and true and you can argue logically and your logic – your overall plan – is sound  and you are willing and able to talk about everything that has to be talked about, then together you will be able to improve, adapt, and overcome the hardships so that your relationship and life together will continue to grow and not become dangerously stagnant.

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Posted by on 7 April 2015 in Life, Living and Loving


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