Open marriages/open relationships

@Ravenladyj (22937)
United States
July 8, 2007 6:19pm CST
So I started a thread about cheating and my curiousity of a possible reason as to why some do it but during my original post I mentioned that my husband and I have an open marriage and I wouldnt worry about him cheating BECAUSE of our agreement...I think though that some ppl are confused of what an open marriage/relationship is....I get the impression that ppl think we sleep around wiht whomever, whenever and thats not the case at all...Some open marriages (such as mine) are NOT free loving, multiple partners week after week etc..to me that is swinging (which I've not been a part of for YRS since long before even meeting my husband actually)... In our marriage, my husband is monogamous which is what he chooses..I on the other had have another man in my life and have the entire relationship with my husband (actually a yr longer)...I have never nor would I ever want to be with anyone else...its my husband and my other man...they are the ONLY men in my life and the only two I'd EVER have in my life... Some open marriages ARE about dating this person and dating that person etc and some open marriages dont have many rules if any rules at all...but that isnt always the case with every open marriage.. All that being said..and now that I've HOPEFULLY cleared the air on the differences in open relationships....How do all of you feel about them? Would you ever consider beign in an open relationship? If so would you want specific rules to be firmly in place? and if so, what types of rules would you want?
6 people like this
20 responses
• United States
9 Jul 07
In my youth, I may have entered into such a relationship with my best friend and her husband. We did discuss it at length and I did give it great thought. The only reason that I chose not to was because neither of them wanted a "steady" 3-way partnership. They wanted the "free-love lifestyle" of having me (and my small children of course - they also had small children and we were best friends) come home with them for a week or so, then we would go to my place for a random amount of time; then they would pick another third person to be with for awhile. Being a part of a "rotation" was not something that I thought that I could live with. There were times when I almost regretted it because I dearly loved both of them. The problem happened when a man became a part of their triangle and my young woman friend became pregnant. This was something that had not been planned on, nor expected. Her husband had had the surgery (old woman can't think of the word moment) so he could not make babies, so they knew the child could not be his. Their relationship then ended in a horribly ugly divorce with all of the many lovers coming out in court and them doing battle over custody of the children. ~Donna
3 people like this
@Ravenladyj (22937)
• United States
9 Jul 07
OH WOW! what a mess!! I could never live in an arrangement like that...thats just far too tricky and complicated..plus the whole constant 'moving' would drive me nuts...I need the stability of having MY HOME LOL hell I cant even go away for a week without missing my home but i think that has a lot to do with my being homeless as a teen ya know...No no there is no way I could do that whole rotation thing....that would drive me bonkers.. its a shame what happened to your friends without a doubt but I guess the first thing I thought of when I read that is "well why hadnt this been discussed" but i'm big on that (talking about EVERYTHIGN LOL)...are you still in touch with any of them? thanks for your input kitchen :-)
2 people like this
• United States
9 Jul 07
No, when their marriage broke up, it was the thing that happens quite frequently with broken relationships - they needed to divide friends as well. I could not un-love either one of them; so found it easier to just make a clean break from them both. We were all so young..................... ~Donna
@Ravenladyj (22937)
• United States
9 Jul 07
that makes sense...but a shame too though since you cared so much for both of them....but yea I can see how it'd be a hellish position to be and why you made the decision you did...
@Marie2473 (8519)
• Sweden
9 Jul 07
I would not wanna have this for myself, but I do not judge the people that do. We all have to do what is best for ourself AS long as we do not hurt someone and since your husband is ok with it and u and the other man are - noone gets hurt. I would be... I have been cheated on and I would have a very difficult time to actually let my man be with someone else and I think that if I would I would feel as if I cheated. Is there no jealousy at all? When u go to meet this other man , or when u leave him to go back home, are there any arguments at all? Just curious =)
2 people like this
@Ravenladyj (22937)
• United States
10 Jul 07
"i'm guessing he hides part of his true feelings in order for her to feel that what she's doing isn't hurtful. yet she chooses to believe that her choice isn't hurting anyone because "all the cards are on the table" well i'm betting that one day she will learn what pain she has caused her own husband over these many years that he's kept to himself for her own happiness" LOL well SHE and her husband talk extremely openly about it...so SHE knows that when her husband says its fine then it REALLY IS fine....I know my husband and if he were lying I'd know ;-) "one day" I'll learn?? Well lets see, this has been going on for 10 yrs now so I doubt very much "one day" will ever come.... Please keep in mind that we arent young newlyweds...I'm in my late 30s and both of the guys are in their 40s...Also please keep in mind the fact that the relationship my husband and I have is NOT one you'll ever have come across..Due to all that has gone on in our lives as a couple, a family unit and individually we have incredible communication skills, we learned long ago that hiding things be it thoughts or feelings etc does more damage than good so we just dont do it....If my husband were bothered by it (and I asked him, talked to him about it yet again when my other came back into my life recently after a 2 yr span) he would be comfortable enough to tell me...so I doubt very much that "one day" will ever come...And like i said, this was originally HIS idea and at first sure he was jealous BUT we know both know there were other factors that contributed to that...that was 9 and 10 yrs ago...but he isnt jealous and has no reason to be and he knows it ;-) Believe me, we've talked at GREAT LENGTH about this over the yrs..there is no "hidden" feelings at all....and if anyone is jealous it'd be my other man because he's so far away and doesnt get to see the kids and I nearly as much as he'd have liked over the yrs which I know has bothered him...Thats also one of the reasons my husband has taken me to see him or sent me there on the bus (driving is a 14 hr round trip for him so that didnt happen often) I think one thing ppl need to understand is, my husband and I have a very unusual and unique relationship...Its nothing like what most ppl have...For example, we dont share a room let alone a bed...havent for yrs and we like it like that...We are brutally honest with each other on all levels...there is no candy coated nonsense in our relationship..I have final say when it comes to the kids (which of course is logical since they are my kids) even though he's been like a father to them since they were young, sure I ask his opinion but bottomline I over-rule..we like it like that... so you see, though its hard for ppl to grasp...we are FAR FROM your typical couple...we dont do things the way most couples do...but we like it like that cause for us it really works...Thats very obvious when you look at the statistics for example...Statistically speaking we should have seperated YRS ago numerous times due to major trauma in the family etc..but here we are happy and healthy and still together...So maybe ppl dont understand it (our open marriage) but the reality is, ppl dont understand anything about us ya know LOL We are FAR FROM a typical couple..
2 people like this
@ZenDove (698)
• United States
9 Jul 07
I honestly can't say out of hand that I would not share an "open" marriage with my husband. Because I do love him and I am confident of my place in his heart and in his life, I don't imagine jealousies or insecurities. I am not vain enough to say "Hey, if you need that, too damned bad!" - at least, not on this topic.;-) He's my husband but I don't think that it is my role in life to corrale and rope him in. "She" would have to meet my critieria as well as his, though. I couldn't be left out of the decision-making process. I mean, she would have to be mature and respectful. After all, I am still his wife and she would be the mistress, the other, the also - not the main event! I wouldn't want the energy of our home to be lessened or degraded by this other relationship. But, if he were able to maintain a balance and was a happier person because of it - I wouldn't be adverse to trying it. I don't define my marriage by ownership of genitalia. He wasn't a virgin when I met him and I didn't marry him for those few inches of flesh. Life is just so much more than that. Besides, an open marriage is not cheating. Cheating is hurtful because of the lies and disrespect, the cheapening of one's character. That I could not tolerate. I like to think that my current marriage is "open" in that we can talk to each other about anything and that we respect and trust each other ultimately. Those are the things that really define marriage for me.
@Ravenladyj (22937)
• United States
9 Jul 07
" I like to think that my current marriage is "open" in that we can talk to each other about anything and that we respect and trust each other ultimately. Those are the things that really define marriage for me." nicely put and very true...its the same with us too I can talk about everything with both my husband and my other man....and the trust is there too MIND YOU my other has had some issues over the past couple of yrs and he's in the process of earning my trust back right now LOL
1 person likes this
@Mare73 (1335)
• United States
10 Jul 07
I've had the pleasure to meet Raven and J in person and the kids. They are a wonderful bunch of folks and no, they are not your ordinary people. One thing I truly admire and respect about them and their relationship is their openess. There are no secrets, no threats, no demands, no disrespect. They all truly love and care about one another.
2 people like this
• United States
9 Jul 07
i would never go for an open relationship or an open marriage. That is just not for me. i am completely into monogomy. That is very important to me. i could never be with a man who asked me for an open relationship, becuase i would say no and then i could never trust that he didn't end up with someone else. Being with only one person and being the only person they are with is icredibly important to me. i don't want to share and i don't want my significant other to want to share me.
2 people like this
• Australia
9 Jul 07
That's a pretty provocative point. I've always felt that marriages are meant to be reserved for one person and one person only. If not, what's the point of getting married? but to each his/her own, and i'm not one to judge especially since i've never quite been in the same situation. if the arrangement works out for you, then terrific!
2 people like this
@syndibee (799)
• United States
8 Jul 07
i feel that having a relationship with any partner outside of your marriage is cheating, so i'm firmly against "open marriages". no matter if there are rules set for the relationships, i believe having an open one where you have a second partner devalues the marriage and thus dissolves the vows. i think it's very disrespectful of you for your husband to keep this other man in your life...that is just my personal opinion. i would never tell someone else what they should do and how to live, but when you ask for my opinion i hope it doesn't offend you, it's not going to change... i personally frown on open marriages.
@Ravenladyj (22937)
• United States
8 Jul 07
"i think it's very disrespectful of you for your husband to keep this other man in your life" How is it disrespectful though? Especially considering it was my HUSBANDS idea in the first place...and actually my other man isnt even in the same state as us so its not like I see him often at all...and thats with me living here...when I lived in Canada still it was even harder for me to see him...So we rely on phone calls, letters etc and my husband has actually taken me to see him on more than one occassion so I dont see how its disrespectful if my husband was the one to suggest it and he is totally fine with it... It doenst offend me at all btw..just so you know...believe me many ppl including some of our friends and family, just dont get it ya knwo and I'm aware that ppl may not understand open marriage/relationships at all let alone ours LOL
3 people like this
@syndibee (799)
• United States
9 Jul 07
it is my feeling that if you feel the necessity to turn to another man at any time during your marriage, even at your husbands suggestion, it's downgrading your commitment to him, you should be able to turn to him in all circumstances. this is where i come up with "it's disrespectful of you to your husband". yet my view on marriage is obviously different than yours and your husbands and as i stated earlier, i would never tell someone else what to do, just state my opinion when asked.
@Ravenladyj (22937)
• United States
9 Jul 07
I understand what you are saying and of course our opinions are obviously different but I have to say that though it may not work or even be fathomable to everyone....its obviously right for us ya know..We've been like this for 10 yrs now..(well I've known my other man for 11 yrs actually)..and all the cards have always been on the table which is maybe why it works for us... Thanks for responding and sharing your thoughts on the topic :-D
@bigmacnc (142)
• United States
9 Jul 07
Open marriages or relationships are not for everyone. First of all the couple needs to be secure with their relationship with each other.
1 person likes this
@Ravenladyj (22937)
• United States
9 Jul 07
Oh absolutely! Its not for everyone at all and yes if there is any doubts or trust issues etc etc OR if the couple arent secure in being able to put all the cards on the table then no it wouldnt work at all IMO...
1 person likes this
• United States
9 Jul 07
I personally am not up for open marriages that is what works for me. With that said though I have no problem with other people who do. What other people do is completely up to them. If it works for them great :) All I care about is peoples happiness. I even have to problem with the idea of polygamy - though it's something I could not do myself. I'm too selfish LOL.
1 person likes this
• United States
9 Jul 07
Sorry that's suppose to so I have NO problem with polygamy. Typeo.
@sunshinecup (7881)
9 Jul 07
How do all of you feel about them? For me personally, oh heck no! I had that before, it was called dating. As for others, now you know I don't care what others do. I think if it makes them happy and it doesn't involve me personally, more power to them. Would you ever consider beign in an open relationship? Nope, nope and double nope! I give my complete heart and soul to hubby and I expect the same in return. I like the idea it's him and me and everyone else can step a side.
1 person likes this
9 Jul 07
I had to take the kitten (the one that tried to kill us a few month back with the stove) to the vet this morning. I was in the middle of answering your post when I was alerted she was sick. Sorry if my post seems cold or insensitive towards you I kind of just submitted and flew out of the house with her. Anyway I just remembered and thought I come back and read it again. I didn't like how I sounded and I hope I didn't offend you in any way. You know I don't care what other's do. If you both are happy then who in the world am I to judge them? BTW - Won’t know about the kitten for a week when the blood work comes back :o(
1 person likes this
@Stiletto (4584)
10 Jul 07
Hmmm interesting. A monogamous husband AND a bit on the side - you certainly cut yourself a good deal there lol!!! I'm kidding, I'm kidding. Seriously I think if it works for you all then that's fine. I know others who have similar arrangements and for some people it works well. Personally I don't think I would ever consider being in an open relationship. I guess the thing for me is that I've been single for most of my adult life simply because I DON'T want to be committed or "stuck" with one person and to be honest "open" relationships don't really make much sense to me. I mean why be in a marriage or committed relationship then - why not just stay single and then you can have as many partners as you want? ... I'm not specifically asking you these questions by the way - I'm just sort of musing out loud lol!!
1 person likes this
@wiccania (3360)
• United States
9 Jul 07
I have no problem with open marriages. I would consider being in an open relationship, but I think the rules would depend on the mutual wants/needs of myself and my partner. It's my personal opinion that if you're in a commited monogamous relationship, then going outside of that is cheating. But if the rules change and your and your partner agree to the terms of one side or both not being monogamous, it's not cheating -- as long as the behavior is within the bounds of the rules that have been established.
1 person likes this
• United States
9 Jul 07
Well to each its own really. I could NEVER have an open relationship or marriage becuase I have to feel that I am the main and ONLY dish at all times. I wouldn't want anyone else either aside from my boyfriend becuase he is all I want and need. So I would never be okay with it but I don't judge those who do.
1 person likes this
@jal1948 (1360)
• India
9 Jul 07
frankly speaking i would not like to share my wife with anyone even though i would not like to miss an oppurtunity for an extra marital relationship so in this case it would not be open but one sided as my wife would never accept the fact of sharing me with another woman.so the rules would be total secrecy,maximum once a week.the thought of a nother woman waiting would definitely give my relationship and performance a boost.
• Indonesia
9 Jul 07
I don't like sharing,....Especially sharing a husband,,...so definitely no to open marriage/relationship.
@pendragon (3352)
• United States
9 Jul 07
I feel very bad for your husband.You just want your cake and youe want to eat it too.Why call it marriage at all?You have two lovers.Open-marriage is an oxymoron.If i make a commitment to someone, they better do the same.
@Mare73 (1335)
• United States
9 Jul 07
He has the option to "have his cake and eat it too" he chooses not too. He is openly aware of the doings and he has no problem with it. Open marriage/relationships are not for everyone. Both people must be in agreeance and on the same page. Obviously they both are.
1 person likes this
@Mare73 (1335)
• United States
9 Jul 07
Although I wouldn't be in an open relationship/marriage, I think it is very mature and responsible that you have this kind of communication with J. I think that if both people are in agreement and understanding than that's all that should matter. I'm glad that you are firm in your beliefs and you don't get sucked into what "society" deems right or normal. What is right or normal anyways? As long as you and he are happy - to heck with what the norm is or supposed to be!
@beyonce03 (2331)
• Canada
9 Jul 07
If your husband is ok with you having another man in your life, I don,t call that cheating. Cheating for me i playing in someone back. It,s lying to someone. You are not lying about it, your husband knows it and he's ok with it.
@Mare73 (1335)
• United States
9 Jul 07
I'd love to have an open marrige with Andy Garcia and say Boris Kidjoe OR Malik Yoba. OR Andy Garcia and Gina Gershon. OR Bill Gates and Donald Trump! hahahahaha
• India
9 Jul 07
fkjsdfjdsfsdfsdfsdfsdf