Living in an open marriage

Living In An Open Marriage Account Options

She operates from the assumption that most couples who are curious about or engaged in open marriages are in fact more like her,normal people who question​. Open: Love, Sex and Life in an Open Marriage (English Edition) eBook: Block, Jenny: sparrownest.se: Kindle-Shop. Open Marriage: A New Life Style for Couples. Cover. Nena O'Neill, George O' Open vs Closed Marriagethe Guidelines. Living for Now and Realistic. 1 Why save marriage at All? 2 Who has the open Marriage? 3 Rewriting the Contract. 4 Open vs Closed MarriageThe Guidelines. 5 Living for now​. characters already living in an open marriage: "I. Akt. Schildert das vollkom men freie Leben der beiden" (Zwei Ehen plan, 4). Furthermore, the sketch for Act 2.

Living in an open marriage

1 Why save marriage at All? 2 Who has the open Marriage? 3 Rewriting the Contract. 4 Open vs Closed MarriageThe Guidelines. 5 Living for now​. Open Marriage: A New Life Style for Couples. Cover. Nena O'Neill, George O' Open vs Closed Marriagethe Guidelines. Living for Now and Realistic. Open: Love, Sex, and Life in an Open Marriage von Block, Jenny bei AbeBooks.​de - ISBN X - ISBN - Seal Press - Top Antonyme für open marriage (das Gegenteil von open marriage) sind genetic marriage consisting of only two parties two partners living together. Living apart together (LAT) – decouples intimacy from co-residence. In the UK, some D'Angelo wrote: 32 They see "open marriage" as a code word. In their. Open: Love, Sex, and Life in an Open Marriage von Block, Jenny bei AbeBooks.​de - ISBN X - ISBN - Seal Press -

Living In An Open Marriage -

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I introduce my husband as my husband, and my girlfriend as my girlfriend, and answer any questions that might arise. But unless friends and neighbors and colleagues read my work, they might not have any idea about the way I live.

We are neither out nor closeted. In a way, it's terrific that it then is no big deal, because why should it be? By the same token, it would be nice to be surrounded constantly by like-minded people with whom I could discuss freely the ins and outs of living openly.

I will say, though, that in certain venues and events, my situation is readily accepted, particularly in the LGBTQ and arts communities.

We now know that non-monogamy has a long, long history; it's just that it hasn't always been referred to as "open marriage.

Along with soaring divorce rates, more and more people are defining for themselves what their families will look like, and open relationships are gaining traction.

In my very humble opinion, this has a lot to do with people's wising up. Many thinking men and women find themselves reflecting on why their marriages aren't working, and what marriage might need to look like in order for it to succeed.

And for those people, who want to retain a relationship they value but that is lacking something, be it large or small, open marriage can be a long-term, happy, and healthy solution.

It's the smart way of approaching something that deserves more reliance on logic and less on magic. It takes a heck of a lot more than fairy dust to hold a relationship together.

So, back to the things you need: Number one is support from your spouse. Open marriage is productive only if both partners are onboard. And because the rules can morph and change, it requires ongoing attention and communication.

I remember when the need for Christopher and me to support each other, unconditionally, first became abundantly clear to me.

It was after our first major "bump," which happened early on with Lisbeth. It was after she decided she no longer wanted to sleep with me, but did want to continue sleeping with Christopher.

I specifically asked him not to have sex with her one night, but he did it anyway. I was crushed. His explanation? He thought my request was silly.

I was astounded. His behavior showed a blatant disregard for the boundaries we had set. And what's the point of setting boundaries if they're going to be so casually dismissed?

Without at least some sort of guidelines, our open marriage simply wasn't going to work. When I found out that he had specifically ignored my very simple wish, I felt compelled to leave him--not because he'd slept with her, but because he'd betrayed me.

My anger and frustration weren't about sex; they were about trust. I reminded him how betrayed he had felt when Grace and I were together, and with that, he was able to see my perspective.

He apologized, but I still felt torn. It was obvious that he was genuinely sorry, but I was also incredibly upset. The bottom line was that we were just beginning to navigate how our open marriage was going to operate, and it dawned on me that the only way it could work would be if we caught each other when we stumbled, even if that meant supporting each other in what seemed like unusual ways.

I had to juggle being the hurt wife and the friend to the guy who'd hurt his wife. It wasn't easy, but it also turned out to be a very deep way of better knowing someone I already loved.

Because most people consider being in an honest open relationship living alternatively, it's not always easy to get the support you need.

I've been lucky enough to find it through the friends and family members I've told, as well as from online communities like Polyamory. You'll find a more complete list of sites and publications in the appendix and the Works Consulted pages of this book.

No one has rejected me because of my choice to open my marriage. I also know that not everyone understands. Through the friendship grapevine, it has gotten back to me that some of my friends can't completely wrap their heads around it, but they have been supportive nonetheless.

I believe that's because Christopher's and my friends genuinely care about us, even when they need some help understanding our choices.

People who choose open relationships have to be prepared to stretch a little, too, both to help other people understand and to support one another within the relationship.

Sometimes the only person you have to talk to about what's going on is the very person you are having the relationship with, and you can often talk to each other in ways that might not be possible in closed relationships.

For example, people in traditional marriages may not be "allowed" to express love or sexual interest, or perhaps any feelings whatsoever, for anyone other than their primary partner.

Being closed necessitates hiding. Being open necessitates revelation. Christopher and I recovered from our first big debacle almost instantly, simply because we decided we would.

So much of navigating a new lifestyle involves letting go of the "norms" and "meanings" to which people have grown accustomed. We were figuring things out together, and we had to learn to talk to each other and to listen--not to what we thought the other person was saying, but to what they were actually saying.

We continue to work at that. Of course, people in monogamous relationships must work at this, too, but because of the intricacies of open marriages and polyamory, being extra communicative becomes, or at least feels, more crucial.

Even though we know that talking is paramount, it's not always easy, especially for Christopher. For example, when things ended with Christopher and Lisbeth and we all went back to being "just friends," it was tough for all of us, as any change is.

When I told him what had transpired, he just looked at me and said, "Well, she thinks you are sleeping with her husband.

You might as well. But I couldn't shake the idea. A couple days later, Nick asked me if the woman had called me again and it led to a discussion about sleeping with other people.

It was clear that it was something he had thought about. Usually if I said something like that, Nick would know to close the conversation, but he just wouldn't let this go.

You obviously get along with him," he said. Did my husband just pick out a guy for me? At first, I was adamant that no, this was not going to happen under any circumstances.

That's just not me, I thought. Firstly, people in open marriages are swingers, right? They go to sex clubs and it's all very Eyes Wide Shut.

And secondly, I always pictured people in an open marriage as being much older. But here I was, only in my late 30s, having a conversation with my husband about opening up our marriage.

I agreed to think about it for a week and let Nick know my decision. And after a couple days, the idea started to intrigue me.

Nick and I had been together for so long, the sex was good, but predictable. After some time, you develop a rhythm, and nothing is really spontaneous.

A new lover is thrilling and there's also a heightened sense of urgency because you don't know if or when you will ever be together again.

As my deadline approached, I told Nick, "I'd be into opening our marriage and would like James to be my first. Neither Nick nor I were jealous people , but obviously, we needed to establish some ground rules.

For one, we decided we aren't allowed to tell anyone else, not family or friends, mostly for fear of judgement. Note: I've used a pen name here to keep that promise.

We also decided that we should not meet one another's partners, our hookups should be limited to no more than once a month, we can't hookup in our home, and friends are off-limits.

Finally, we committed to telling our secondary partners from the beginning that this is a friends-with-benefits situation only.

We want to be clear there's no chance of either of us leaving our spouses, and neither my husband or I would ever go out "on the prowl" without our wedding rings.

With all that in mind, I decided to bring the idea of no-strings sex up the next time I saw James, which was two months away at a work event out of town.

I found myself giddy and nervous. How would I even broach the subject? What if he said no? Could we still be friends and work together? And what if he said yes?

How would I feel parading around nude with a new person? Should I get waxed? Better safe than sorry, right?

While it might not be the most fun thing to talk about, it's important to make sure that each partner is going about their non-primary relationships in a way that doesn't put either party in any type of danger.

And for a different kind of bedroom safety, here's what you should never say to a naked woman. Just because you expect your open marriage to be a certain way doesn't mean that's definitely how it will turn out—for better or worse.

Sometimes it's the opposite. You may have problems that you never anticipated. While it's not required, it can make the transition from closed to open a whole lot easier.

Doing this with a trained professional can help the couple be mindful of concerns that they may miss.

And here are some more good reasons for seeking out marriage counseling. For example, maybe you have set the rule that you don't want to meet your spouse's other partners, but you accidentally run into them.

What do you do?! Having friends that are in the same boat can make a world of difference, says Turner. Get to know these people. They're a good social support, and you can learn a lot from watching other people navigate similar issues," she says.

If you look forward to having "check-ins" with your spouse, they'll be easier to get through and much more likely to actually happen.

Many couples have found success tying it to something they enjoy: Relationship processing during a nice dinner or over drinks, or combined with going to the zoo or on a nice nature walk.

Something that's a treat for you," she says. That way, you'll be happy to have these conversations instead of dreading them.

It might seem better to keep in any bad feelings you have about being open, but Bahar says they could potentially snowball and cause major problems.

Be willing to see both the pros and cons of being open.

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Fueled by frequent appearances of the O'Neills on television and in magazine articles, the redefinition entered popular consciousness, and open marriage became a synonym for sexually non-monogamous marriage.

As she later said, "The whole area of extramarital sex is touchy. I don't think we ever saw it as a concept for the majority, and certainly it has not proved to be.

The meaning of open marriage can vary from study to study depending on how the particular researchers have set their selection criteria.

Individuals might claim to have open marriages when their spouses would not agree. Studies and articles that interview individuals without taking their married status into account may not receive accurate information about the actual "open" status of the marriage.

Blumstein and Schwartz asked more than 6, couples whether or not they had an understanding allowing sex outside their relationship.

Interviewed individually, the partners in some couples gave very different responses to this question; the respective replies from one married couple were.

Couples may have an open marriage in principle, but not engage in extramarital sex. Studies that define open marriage by agreement alone will tend to report a higher incidence than studies that define open marriage by agreement and behavior.

Spaniel and Cole found that 7 percent of couples would consider participating in an open marriage, but only 1. Researchers have applied open marriage in overly narrow terms, as when Hunt used it specifically to mean swinging couples who meet with other swinging couples to swap mates.

Open marriage is usually defined in terms of legally married, opposite-sex partners, and thus data collected may not generalize to other kinds of open relationships.

For example, cohabiting couples tend to show higher levels of involvement in extra-relational intimacy compared to married couples.

There is a lack of content regarding studies and educational programming in open marriage and diverse relationship structures. Common misconceptions of nonmonogamy [11] include that it violates principles of all religions, and that it is equivalent to polygyny one man having multiple wives or polygamy a marriage of many.

The impact of open marriage on relationships varies across couples. Some couples report high levels of marital satisfaction and have long-lasting open marriages.

These couples may continue to believe open marriage is a valid way of life, just not for them. The extent to which open marriage actually contributes to divorce remains uncertain.

Blumstein and Schwartz note a slightly higher risk of divorce among couples who engage in extramarital sex, even if the couples agree to allow extramarital sex.

A study concluded that around 80 percent of people in open marriages experienced jealousy over their extramarital relationships.

People who experience normal jealousy have at least nine strategies for coping with jealousy. The problem-solving strategies include: improving the primary relationship, interfering with the rival relationship, demanding commitment, and self-assessment.

These strategies are related to emotion regulation, conflict management, and cognitive change. Couples in open marriages may prefer different kinds of extramarital relationships.

Couples who prefer extramarital relationships emphasizing love and emotional involvement have a polyamorous style of open marriage.

Couples who prefer extramarital relationships emphasizing sexual gratification and recreational friendships have a swinging style of open marriage.

These distinctions may depend on psychological factors such as sociosexuality and may contribute to the formation of separate Polyamory and Swinging communities.

Despite their distinctions, however, all open marriages share common issues: the lack of social acceptance, the need to maintain the health of their relationship and avoid neglect, and the need to manage jealous rivalry.

Many open couples establish rules that forbid emotional attachment, extramarital children, extramarital sex in the marital bed, extramarital sex with those known to both partners, or extramarital sex without the use of barrier contraception.

Some open marriages are one-sided. Some situations giving rise to this are where the libidos of partners differ greatly, or illness renders one partner incapable of, or no longer desiring, sex.

The couple may remain together while one partner seeks out sexual gratification as he or she sees fit.

The difference between these situations and a cheating situation is that both partners in the marriage are aware of, and agree to the arrangement.

Extramarital relationships vary in terms of the degree of sexual involvement desired and the degree of emotional involvement desired.

Polyamory is motivated by a desire to expand love by developing emotionally involved relationships with extramarital partners. Swinging is motivated by a desire for physical gratification by engaging in sexual activities with extramarital partners.

The distinction between polyamory and swinging applies to open marriages. Delineation of polyamory and swinging has appeared in academic literature, [23] [24] [25] [26] popular media, [27] [28] and Web sites devoted respectively to polyamory [29] [30] and to swinging.

A polyamorous style of open marriage emphasizes the expansion of loving relationships by developing emotional attachments to extramarital partners.

A swinging style of open marriage emphasizes physical gratification by engaging in recreational sex with extramarital partners.

The preference for a polyamorous versus a swinging style of open marriage may depend on many psychological factors. One factor may be sociosexuality , [34] an individual's willingness to engage in sexual behavior without having emotional ties to the sex partner.

Individuals who are very willing to engage in sexual behavior without emotional ties are said to have unrestricted sociosexuality.

Individuals who are very unwilling to engage in sexual behavior without emotional ties are said to have restricted sociosexuality.

Individuals can vary along a continuum from unrestricted to restricted sociosexuality. Couples with different styles of open marriage tend to self-segregate in order to find others who share similar philosophies and interests, which has likely contributed to the development of separate polyamory and swinging communities.

These offer informational resources and support, even if a given couple in an open marriage cannot see themselves joining either community.

Some couples may not have a strong preference for either style of open marriage, feeling equally at home either community.

The partners within a couple may differ in their respective preferences. One partner may prefer a polyamorous style of open marriage and participate in the Polyamory community, while the other partner may prefer a swinging style of open marriage and participate in the swinging community.

Variations in couple preferences and individual preferences thus can result in overlap between the polyamory and swinging communities.

Some critics object to open marriages on the ground that open marriages violate religious principles.

For example, open marriages contradict traditional Christian doctrine. Open marriages also violate the prohibition against adultery in the Ten Commandments.

The definition of sexual immorality in christianity includes the practices of open marriage and therefore it is considered an immutable reason for a dissolution of marriage.

The Jewish religion hold similar values as Christianity in these matters. Muslims or Islamic teachings however allows for polygynous marriages albeit for the male partner only.

Islam prohibits this practice for the female partner. The perceived validity of these objections depends entirely on individual faith. Arguments about faith , faith and rationality , and belief systems lie outside the scope of this article.

Generally, non-monogamous people tend not to be very religious. A review observed that, across the various studies, most swingers approximately two-thirds claimed to have no religious affiliation.

Surveys show consistently high disapproval of extramarital sex. Hunt mentions three general-population surveys conducted in the s in which large majorities disapproved of extramarital sex under any conditions.

Widmer, Treas, and Newcomb surveyed over 33, people in 24 nations and found 85 percent of people believed extramarital sex was "always" or "nearly always" wrong.

A few studies have shown more direct disapproval of open marriage. In a national study of several hundred women and men, Hunt reported that around 75 percent of women and over 60 percent of men agreed with the statement "Mate-swapping is wrong.

Engaging in sex with a greater number of partners increases risk of contracting sexually transmitted diseases. These concerns do not apply to open marriage alone, which would affect only 1 to 6 percent of the married population.

The risk of sexually transmitted diseases can be greatly reduced by practicing safer sex. However, the percentage of people in open marriages who practice safer sex remains disputed.

Anecdotal observations range from claiming no one at a swing event practiced safer sex to claiming everyone at an event practiced safer sex.

The two most frequently mentioned changes were being more selective with whom they swung and practicing safer sex e.

Finally, one third said that they had not changed any of their habits, and, of these respondents, more than a third said nothing, not even AIDS, would get them to change.

Many people are not aware they are infected, and no outwards signs of infection may be visible. One psychological study suggests people may not be particularly good at detecting lies about HIV status.

Several authors consider open marriages to be psychologically damaging. They claim sexual non-monogamy proves too difficult for most couples to manage, and their relationships suffer as a consequence.

This disrupts couples' sense of security in their relationships and interferes with their sense of intimacy. Consequently, these authors view open marriage as a "failed" lifestyle.

Other studies have found that couples report high levels of satisfaction and enjoy long-lasting open marriages. These couples may continue to view open marriage as a valid lifestyle for others, but not for themselves.

Strong social disapproval of open marriage may lead to a loss of psychological and health benefits. People in open marriages may hide their lifestyle from family, friends, and colleagues.

Openly non-monogamous married and cohabiting couples often feel they are thought of as bizarre or immoral by the rest of their world.

They have to work out their sex lives in opposition to the rest of society. They may have an understanding with each other, but they usually keep it secret from family, friends, and people at work.

Keeping their lifestyles secret reduces the amount of social support available to people in open marriages.

In , Blumstein and Schwartz [5] determined that out of 3, married men, had an agreement with their spouses allowing extramarital sex; of these, 24 percent men actually engaged in extramarital sex during the previous year, and overall 6 percent had been actively involved in open marriages during the previous year.

The number is only slightly less for women, where of 3, married women, had an agreement with their spouses allowing extramarital sex, and 22 percent or women actually engaged in extramarital sex during the previous year.

This means about 5 percent of married women were actively involved in open marriages during the previous year. Those estimates are slightly higher than those from other researchers.

Following the publication of Open Marriage , the popular media expressed a belief that open marriages were on the rise. However, Hunt concluded the incidence of extramarital sex had remained about the same for many years:.

Among wives under 25, however, there is a very large increase, but even this has only brought the incidence of extramarital behavior for these young women close to—but not yet on par with—the incidence of extramarital behavior among under husbands.

Hunt, , page [7]. Hunt attributed the mistaken impression of increasing open marriages to a barrage of books, articles, and television shows dealing with the topic.

He also notes that speculative comments about increases in open marriage would sometimes be repeated often enough that people cited them as evidence.

Nearly twenty years later , in a national study of sexual behavior, Janus and Janus likewise denied that open marriages were on the rise, and suggested the number of open marriages may have declined:.

Despite popularization in a book of that title in the early s, open marriage has never become as prevalent as nonconsensual extramarital activities, and its popularity seems to be waning even further today.

A large amount of media interest can mislead people into thinking the incidence of open marriage is on the rise. Conversely, media attention given to the marriage movement can mislead people into thinking the incidence of open marriage is declining.

Weiss notes that "there is no scientific basis for concluding that these patterns increased in popularity earlier or that they have become less common in the s and s.

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Cicisbeo Concubinage Courtesan Mistress. Because most people consider being in an honest open relationship living alternatively, it's not always easy to get the support you need.

I've been lucky enough to find it through the friends and family members I've told, as well as from online communities like Polyamory. You'll find a more complete list of sites and publications in the appendix and the Works Consulted pages of this book.

No one has rejected me because of my choice to open my marriage. I also know that not everyone understands. Through the friendship grapevine, it has gotten back to me that some of my friends can't completely wrap their heads around it, but they have been supportive nonetheless.

I believe that's because Christopher's and my friends genuinely care about us, even when they need some help understanding our choices.

People who choose open relationships have to be prepared to stretch a little, too, both to help other people understand and to support one another within the relationship.

Sometimes the only person you have to talk to about what's going on is the very person you are having the relationship with, and you can often talk to each other in ways that might not be possible in closed relationships.

For example, people in traditional marriages may not be "allowed" to express love or sexual interest, or perhaps any feelings whatsoever, for anyone other than their primary partner.

Being closed necessitates hiding. Being open necessitates revelation. Christopher and I recovered from our first big debacle almost instantly, simply because we decided we would.

So much of navigating a new lifestyle involves letting go of the "norms" and "meanings" to which people have grown accustomed.

We were figuring things out together, and we had to learn to talk to each other and to listen--not to what we thought the other person was saying, but to what they were actually saying.

We continue to work at that. Of course, people in monogamous relationships must work at this, too, but because of the intricacies of open marriages and polyamory, being extra communicative becomes, or at least feels, more crucial.

Even though we know that talking is paramount, it's not always easy, especially for Christopher. For example, when things ended with Christopher and Lisbeth and we all went back to being "just friends," it was tough for all of us, as any change is.

But Christopher suffered a different kind of loss than either Lisbeth or I did--and, I believe, a more difficult one.

She and I fell back into our friendship easily, but he had had no real relationship with her before our sexual one started, and so he was left feeling like an outsider.

He had been intimate with her, as physically intimate as any two people can be, and then suddenly he was back to being the husband of her best friend.

We were talking as we never had before. Christopher's loss was real, but it was also strange and uncharted in terms of my helping him to work through it.

How do you comfort your husband when he has broken up with his lover? The same way you would help anyone else you love survive a difficult time: You listen and love them and appreciate what they are experiencing for what it is.

And you don't insert yourself. It would have been easy for me to say, "How can you be so upset if you love me? And seeing him through it--watching him, listening to him, helping him--helped me, once again, to see him as a whole person, and not just as who he was in relation to me.

It's a marvelous human and intellectual challenge to think solely of someone else, and to not interject yourself into their particular scenario. It is not something we do often enough.

Open marriage and polyamory have given me that opportunity at many turns, but it's not for the faint of heart. If you do want to give open marriage a shot, you have to be strong enough to deal with all of the new feelings, problems, and experiences that it might throw at you.

You have to know that jealousy is bound to rear its ugly head. This is the second issue on my list, because it's the unfortunate sibling of the supportive lover.

It's a dangerous relation, and you'll need to decide what you will do with it when it inevitably arises: allow it to eat you up or make you question yourself and your relationship?

Or can you use it as a chance to address why you're feeling jealous in the first place? We feel jealous when we feel insecure, so it's imperative that we examine our relationship's security, or lack thereof, and where it's coming from.

Is it you? Is it your partner? Exploring your reasons for feeling jealous can help you gain some perspective on it. I'm not suggesting this is easy--not by a long shot--but I do believe that it will allow you to see yourself and your partner differently--as individuals, not as wholly defined by each other.

And that can result in your creating a space where more love can grow, instead of one in which resentment insinuates itself as it does when jealousy, rather than understanding, is your guide.

Not being jealous has to be a conscious choice, and it's a choice I have to work at and remind myself of, one that requires years of deprogramming.

Acknowledging, assessing, and discussing each issue, challenge, and question as it comes up has taught me things about both Christopher and myself that I could not have otherwise learned, and that, to an extent, I did not previously imagine were possible.

It's not easy work, but the pleasure is in the challenge. When Socrates was on trial for heresy for prompting students to think for themselves and challenge what they had been told, he responded by telling the court, "The unexamined life is not worth living.

It might seem easier, but what's the point? When I started looking at my own life and my marriage was when I figured out how to get to where I wanted to go--that is, how to continue my journey toward having a happy partnership.

Even when you do have a relatively easy time transitioning into an open marriage, it's highly unlikely that everyone around you will see your choice as something they understand, or even consider legitimate, either socially or romantically.

Despite having my family's and close friends' backing, I have had plenty of experience with people whose responses to my lifestyle have been anything but supportive.

These include being aggressive, condescending, and just plain mean-spirited. As I mentioned earlier, people who see open marriage as deviant feel perfectly comfortable labeling me a whore.

It makes it easier for them to rationalize and compartmentalize my life. Thinking of me as a bad person and a bad wife and a bad mother is convenient and facilitates their separating themselves from me.

Otherwise, they could be just like me. And that's simply too scary a proposition to address. The best thing I can do for myself, then, as well as for others who choose to live in open relationships, is to own being open, and to respect it as I would any more traditional arrangement.

Normalizing open marriage among its participants is the first step toward gaining acceptance in the community at large. For me, it's not so important to meet the standards that other people impose upon me as it is to be able to live in harmony with my neighbors and friends and acquaintances, particularly where Emily is concerned.

The scenario I fear most--which, thank goodness, hasn't happened and I pray never will--is that people will stop letting their children come over to our house to play with our daughter.

One of my very closest friends, Alex, ended up taking issue with my lifestyle at one point in our friendship.

She was worried that her children might "see something" when they were playing at our house. She felt unnerved by my own comfort with my open relationship, and because she and her husband and I had experimented a bit together at one point, she lashed out at me, rather than talking through her reasons for feeling upset or regretting her choice, or whatever the issue was for her.

I respect my partners' privacy just as I expect them to honor mine, but other people can be unpredictable, to be sure, and that is one of the greatest hazards of being in an open relationship.

That risk can require significant management, and it cannot always be controlled. Alex and I ended up having a long talk and working out our problems, though I don't know that we ever quite got to the root of her discomfort.

The problem stemmed from her not being able to wrap her head around what had happened. There was no tidy little box into which she could fit our liaison--or me, for that matter.

I had no problem with what had happened with Alex and her husband, and I didn't want us or our children to lose out on the friendships that were at stake.

But without the box, she questioned her own acceptance of me. It's sad when we question our own judgment, our own gut instincts, because they don't mirror what everyone else is saying or doing or believing.

Making an open marriage effective means being prepared to work through any rough spots with your friends, surrounding yourself with as many enlightened people as you can, and setting an example for people of just how normal and reasonable an open marriage can be.

I feel like I'm finally at a pretty good point with most of my close friends, but there's always the potential for missteps with them, and then there are the issues that arise when I meet new people or acknowledge my circumstances to current acquaintances, particularly people I know through Emily's school.

It's a calculated risk. But I can think of few things in life worth doing that aren't. Things are different for me now because Jemma is the only person I see outside of my marriage.

Without doing a lot of dating and having various relationships, I have less potential for turmoil, to be sure.

But it's still hard to juggle. I want to be with Emily and Jemma and Christopher all the time, yet I can't because Jemma doesn't live with us.

And that makes me sad sometimes.

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Living In An Open Marriage Video

OPEN MARRIAGE: Should We Try It?

1 Gedanken zu “Living in an open marriage”

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