Open Relationships

Open Relationships

Eric wrote on 2007 December, 13

Ah, open relationships…the opportunity to date someone and fuck around on the side. While being able to have your cake and eat it too does have its benefits, it can also have its share of drawbacks and headaches. If you and your significant other are considering an open relationship, read on and then discuss - with the utmost care.

Why An Open Relationship?
There are several reasons why couples decide to have an open relationship. For one, it could spice up a relationship that has become complacent and boring. Another reason may be to simply satisfy the urges of cheating without the guilt. Perhaps it’s because one or both people are confused if the other person’s right for them. In order for an open relationship to work, both people need to want it – this won’t work if both of you aren’t on the same page.


Pros And Cons Of An Open Relationship
Aside from obvious reasons already stated above, most people in open relationships get “turned on” by the fact that their partner is sleeping around with others, which turn enhances the sex. One of the biggest cons of an open relationship is jealousy. Another disadvantage is that it could change the relationship forever or better yet – end it all together.


Discussing Open Relationships
Before even deciding to try an open relationship, discuss everything. Ask yourselves why you both want an open relationship and then set parameters (this is an absolute must). Talk about what you expect to get from the open relationship and from each other. Some topics to focus on include, but are not limited to:


- When an outside encounter happens, do you let the other person know? And if so, how much?

- Are there restrictions on where outside encounter takes place (the bedroom you share)?

- Are there certain things you and your partner can’t do with other people?

- What about fears of STDs?

- Will the primary relationship always take precedent over hook ups (spending time together)?

- Are there restrictions on certain people? (Exes, mutual friends?)


Most importantly, the key to a successful open relationship is being honest with each other and keeping the lines of communication open. If jealousy arises, address it immediately (but at an appropriate time – when you both can discuss calmly). In fact, it’s also a good idea to reassess your open relationship from time to time. Open relationships can be a beautiful thing, or turn into a living nightmare. Proceed with caution.

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