Confused

Ashlee

New member
Greetings!

My husband and I have talked about an open relationship many times. Except he would be the only one exploring. In no way do I think it's wrong for people to have more than one relationship, I do however have a problem with him wanting it. Here's the reason why. We have been together for 13 years, married 10, and through these years he cheated on me multiple times with different women. I always thought I would be one of those women who tossed the guy to the curb after the first time but I just couldn't. I loved him and still do so much. A year or two ago we tried to open the door and didn't talk at as much length as we should have beforehand and not long after (hours) we did he went online, found someone to meet and met her. When he came home I was extremely upset for many reasons. One being that it felt like he didn't have a care in the world and ran out with me and our kids at home. While he was gone I was angry and couldn't stop thinking about what was happening and things that happened in the past. We eventually talked about it and laid down some rules including having a designated night to go out but in the end he didn't like that so it didn't continue.
I want to be ok with this, I really truly do. I've always been go with the flow, not clingy by any means, and don't care what he does otherwise. He would completely agree with me as well. He knows when he wants to go hang out with a friend he doesn't have to ask because I'll tell him I don't care. And not the "I don't care but you're going to be in trouble later." I just can't help but feel he will fall for someone, get a disease, get someone pregnant, etc.
As much as I would like to be ok with this I don't know how to handle my feelings and not have pent up anger, explode with anger, or sink into depression.
He has no jealousy issues and would love for me to have open relationships as well but it's not me, I would feel guilty and I've told him that. We have also discussed me just being in the room while he does what he wants with someone but I wouldn't be able to handle it.
I'm sorry for rambling on and I really hope I don't offend anyone. I'm really just confused, scared, upset, and lost.
 

mf1438

New member
You’re not ready

You’re not ready for polyamory and open marriage. It requires mutual consent. You say you don’t care but everything you write says you do care. Work with someone to help you set up boundaries. Are you journaling? Since you sound like the only grown up in the room, it will require a strong constitution and some discipline to set things right. There is a way to make it work. Don’t give up. Love conquers all. Good luck!
 

GalaGirl

Well-known member
Welcome.

It sounds like there was a lot of cheating past that you and spouse are not totally healed from. Open/poly is not a "solution" to cheating and trust issues. Open/Poly is not magic. One can also cheat on their open/poly agreements agreements too. The ability to keep one's Word and agreements is more about the character of the person.

You are ok with people having more than one relationship. You just don't want one for you. And you are not crazy about husband having them and you being in husband's open or poly network. Because so far his track record has been...

1) Cheat on his previous agreements.

2) A year or two you talked about Opening the marriage but didn't finish the talks. Mere hours after the conversation he was online trying to find someone to meet. And he did. You are still mad about it because it felt like he didn't have a care in the world and ran out with you and the kids at home. Maybe jumping the gun.

3) You tried to work it out with agreements and having a designated night to go out and sharing the childcare. (?) He didn't like that so it didn't continue.

Well... if it didn't continue why not stop there then and just be Closed? Is he not willing or able to be Closed and stop with the cheating? :confused:

I just can't help but feel he will fall for someone, get a disease, get someone pregnant, etc.

Sounds like you don't trust him to be responsible at this time given all his past actions. Like he's kinda reckless in his practice maybe?

If you share sex with him you might consider using condoms/barrier methods. You cannot tell him what to do with his body. You CAN protect your own body.

Polyamory means many loves. Are you not up for polyamory where he shares love with others? Are you only up for Open -- like he shares sex with other people but not love? What kind of open marriage would this be? IF you even go there?

As much as I would like to be ok with this I don't know how to handle my feelings and not have pent up anger, explode with anger, or sink into depression.

Maybe it is ok and appropriate to just have the feelings you have? I mean, you basically are ok with people having other relationship. You just don't want one for you.

And you don't love how your husband approaches having other relationships. He either cheats on agreements, jumps the gun, or goes about reckless. It's ok to feel those things if someone who is supposed to care about you and love you is behaving all reckless. It's ok to not like that way of going!

I identify as poly. And I still wouldn't want a cheating partner or a recklessly behaving partner. There is nothing wrong with wanting your own life to be low drama.

He has no jealousy issues and would love for me to have open relationships as well but it's not me, I would feel guilty and I've told him that.

You are different people. It's ok for you not to want other relationships. Is he trying to "bargain" by "letting you have other relationships too?"

We have also discussed me just being in the room while he does what he wants with someone but I wouldn't be able to handle it.

Groups sex or voyeuring is NOT a requirement for open or poly. It almost sounds like he's bugging you and trying to bargain his way to Open marriage or his fantasies.

Is he? Is that the problem? He's pestering you about it?

I'm sorry for rambling on and I really hope I don't offend anyone. I'm really just confused, scared, upset, and lost.

It's ok to feel however you feel.

But keep it easier on you. If you just don't want to do Open Marriage with this partner? Don't. And be clear you don't want to and it is a dealbreaker. /B] You don't have to bend yourselves into pretzels to do this. It's ok not to want to.

I always thought I would be one of those women who tossed the guy to the curb after the first time but I just couldn't. I loved him and still do so much.

This sounds like the bigger problem.

Ok. You love him. Are you finding out that love isn't enough for deep compatibility or sustainable marriage? And that causes you unhappiness?

Do you trust him? Feel safe in this relationship? Are happy participating here like this?

I'm really just confused, scared, upset, and lost.

Sounds like no. :(

Do you trust yourself to take care of you and keep you from harm?

Are you putting your love for this partner ahead of your own well being?

Those are hard things to think about and you do not have to answer them here. But I encourage you to do some soul searching.

It sounds like not just once but several times of cheating. If you keep sticking around, what prompts him to change behavior? Or is it that he knows you will complain but ultimately keep staying? Is that a healthy situation for you?

If you guys plan to stay together, I suggest working on healing from the past cheating and trust issues rather than jumping ahead into Open Marriage.

Then be REALLY honest with yourselves and then each other.

Are you happy being partnered with a chronic cheater? Someone who doesn't consider you and the kids?

If this is a case of you love each other, but he really wants Open and you really want Closed? The most loving thing you can do might be to let each other go because you are not actually compatible. Then he is free TO do whatever open/poly stuff he wants to do without cheating. And you are free FROM open/poly stuff you do not want and no more cheating.

That is hard to come to terms with. But better to solve that first than than drag it out... maybe with collateral damage. Right now it sounds like it is taking a toll on your mental and emotional well being. :(

I don't know if this helps you any in assessing.

https://www.scarleteen.com/article/relationships/should_i_stay_or_should_i_go

I am sorry this is happening though. I can only imagine how hard it is right now for you.

Galagirl
 
Last edited:

kdt26417

Official Greeter
Greetings Ashlee,
Welcome to our forum. Please feel free to lurk, browse, etc.

It sounds like you are truly sincere, about wanting to be okay with open/poly ... but maybe you are starting to realize, that, the way your husband is acting, and has acted, makes it impossible for you or really anyone to be okay with this. It seems that your husband has a very cavalier attitude about meeting other women, and cheating. Has he ever apologized to you about his past actions? Has he ever tried to make amends? You might want to consider taking open/poly off the table until his behavior shows some improvement. Right now he does not seem to have much incentive to improve, I mean he knows you are always going to forgive him, because you love him. Maybe it's time for some tough love?

I feel bad for your situation, you have been a totally faithful wife to him, and have accepted an open/poly arrangement that only benefits him, it does not benefit you. He does not seem to appreciate you, maybe he just doesn't realize how hard this is for you, and maybe he doesn't realize how good he has it with you. Does he seem to have remorse for the times he has cheated and hurt you? What are some of the things you love about him? He must have some redeeming qualities. What do you have in common with him? What kinds of activities do the two of you enjoy doing together? To summarize, why are you still with this man? So far you just seem to be venting, but maybe it's more than that?

I hope we can help.
Sincerely,
Kevin T., "official greeter"

Notes:

There's a *lot* of good info in Golden Nuggets. Have a look!

Please read through the guidelines if you haven't already.

Note: You needn't read every reply to your posts, especially if someone posts in a disagreeable way. Given the size and scope of the site it's hard not to run into the occasional disagreeable person. Please contact the mods if you do (or if you see any spam), and you can block the person if you want.

If you have any questions about the board itself, please private-message a mod and they'll do their best to help.

Welcome aboard!
 
Top