Hello, bit of a newbie but want to learn!

ReturnMetoEarth

New member
Hello everyone! I'm sorry this is going to be a long post. I hope that's acceptable!

I'm new to both this board and the poly-open world of dating I've always had traditional relationships until now. It started as an attempt at a monogamous relationship between me and a man I originally slept with because I'd never just done something like that.

We both wound up really liking each other considerably and when I sought a relationship he stated he couldn't do anything monogamous. I was discouraged for a while and it ended up getting us into spats often. We always kept coming back. I've always been insecure about being replaced in all of my relationships. It stems from years of once being someone's best friend or love and then all of the sudden they find someone else and it's like I didn't exist anymore.

After having yet another spat over it I was about to leave forever, I could only see it from one side because Monogamy had always been pushed on me my whole life. He's told me before when I tried to make him choose between being with me and making us official (even though in reality he was only sleeping with me anyway) and that "fantasy" he'd say I was the only girl he wanted to actually date and be with in that capacity, but he didn't want to compromise who he was too. Which was his desire to sleep with other women.

He abstained from that desire because he didn't want to hurt me but he was miserable all the time. I've never considered myself a jealous person, I didn't care that he had female friends and that he hung out with them or even that he was sexually attracted to them. After really thinking hard and knowing I needed to change something in my life and soon I realized I didn't actually care about the sex. It's the fear he'll decide he likes someone else more and I'll be pushed aside.

But he abstained this whole time and lived through misery and still treated me well. I finally broke down and discussed it with him about my insecurities and said if it could be just sex and I would be the main person I actually wouldn't be bothered by it.

I told him I needed to buildup that trust to reassure me and as long as I felt secure that I wasn't going to get thrown away I could give him what he wanted too. I really just want him. He makes me happy by himself. I want him to be happy too but I want to set those boundaries. I'm new to this and I know honesty and setting those boundaries we can both agree on is one of the most important things when getting started.

I don't want to just come at him with a list of rules I made for him and it feel like I'm dictating what he can and can't do but I also have boundaries I'd like to set to make it more comfortable for me.

I've come to this forum with the hope that I can get some advice and what has worked or hasn't for others. My intial knee-jerk reaction is to set boundaries that limit intimacy like staying the night, kissing, or date-like occurrences to kind of safety net myself but I also don't want him to feel like I've got him by the neck and he feels tied down like I own him.

I want to set boundaries that put me at ease but don't make him feel smothered I guess? I'm still so new to it and before anyone says I'm doing it to fix something... I'm not. I genuinely want him to be happy like he tries for me. I'm just struggling with putting my needs and his together instead of one of us being happy and the other miserable. We both care for each other deeply and want to work something out that makes us both happy.

I'll happily accept any advice this lovely community has to offer! I'm sorry this post was so long! I just wanted to make sure there was enough information and insight to base advice. Thank you so much if you took the time to read this!!
 

GalaGirl

Well-known member
Welcome!

I've always been insecure about being replaced in all of my relationships. It stems from years of once being someone's best friend or love and then all of the sudden they find someone else and it's like I didn't exist anymore.

This sounds like it was a crappy break up where they just lost interest/ ghosted on you. I'm sorry that happened.

Not sure why you are letting it cast shadows on your subsequent life. I suppose you could address it now. You seem to want to.

Is it really you being insecure about being replaced? Or do you accept that sometimes people break up... you just don't like being treated crap in a break up?

Have you though about what a GOOD break up would be like for you? How you would like to be treated?

Not that anyone loves break ups... but if they have to happen... what behavior or treatment makes a "good, respectful" breakup different to you than a "bad, disrespectful" one?

I told him I needed to buildup that trust to reassure me and as long as I felt secure that I wasn't going to get thrown away I could give him what he wanted too.

So... maybe you want to come to agreements about how to break up decently? Then you aren't just "thrown away" and discarded like you have no value. But are let go gently and respectfully because you DO have value... the relationship just has come to an end point. It's sometimes the last loving act that is done. And it can be done in a loving way.

I've come to this forum with the hope that I can get some advice and what has worked or hasn't for others. My intial knee-jerk reaction is to set boundaries that limit intimacy like staying the night, kissing, or date-like occurrences to kind of safety net myself but I also don't want him to feel like I've got him by the neck and he feels tied down like I own him.
Those aren't boundaries. You set personal boundaries for YOU to obey to help keep you safe.

What you are asking there is for him to agree to rules you made up for his behavior that limit him. If he's struggling now with the monogamy thing? Telling him you will do poly but then not really... how's that gonna work?

It makes no sense to (protect yourself from him dumping you in a crap way) by (trying to prevent him making any significant loving connections with others) right? Cuz he could date nobody and still dump you in a crap way.

You CAN ask for reasonable agreements around safer sex practices, time management, how you want to be treated etc. If he cannot meet those? You can say "Well, then I can't do a V with you. I think we best part ways decently and skip this trial run."

But whether or not you try the mono-poly route? I suggest you deal with your actual fear directly rather than "from the side."

Like here...

I've never considered myself a jealous person, I didn't care that he had female friends and that he hung out with them or even that he was sexually attracted to them. After really thinking hard and knowing I needed to change something in my life and soon I realized I didn't actually care about the sex. It's the fear he'll decide he likes someone else more and I'll be pushed aside.

You don't sound like you have huge problems with him having another partner. Do you have problems sharing him emotionally or mentally? Like him sharing sex is not a bother, but him sharing his inner life, thoughts, and feelings with someone else bothers you? Or maybe that doesn't bother you either. You just don't want to be pushed aside and dumped crap if a break up has to happen?

You could reflect and do your soul searching.

Then you could both talk about how this ends.

  • Maybe it ends well. You find it best to just SKIP trying the mono-poly thing because you can't make agreements around that. So you part respectfully.

  • Maybe ends well. You TRY the mono-poly thing. But it doesn't pan out. It has to end because you find you don't like a V thing, and he can't go back to monogamy and him miserable. The most loving thing is to let go and be exes and friends instead. But a GOOD parting can go a long way in helping you to stay good exes and friends, where a BAD parting just kills that.

  • Maybe it ends well. You CAN make agreements around the mono-poly thing. And he ends up a hinge with two partners. Some adjustment time, but no major drama. Safer sex agreements in place, sharing the hinge's time fine, etc.

So my suggestion is to talk to him and make agreements for the emergency plan. "Not that we want this, but if we DID have to break up... what would be a good break up for you? A bad one? I would want...."

See if that helps you feel more secure/safe participating here with him if you open up for him to be the hinge in a V.

Have the conversations you need to be having so no matter what? It ends WELL. No crap break ups.

Galagirl
 
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ReturnMetoEarth

New member
Welcome!



This sounds like it was a crappy break up where they just lost interest/ ghosted on you. I'm sorry that happened.

Not sure why you are letting it cast shadows on your subsequent life. I suppose you could address it now. You seem to want to.

Is it really you being insecure about being replaced? Or do you accept that sometimes people break up... you just don't like being treated crap in a break up?

Have you though about what a GOOD break up would be like for you? How you would like to be treated?

Not that anyone loves break ups... but if they have to happen... what behavior or treatment makes a "good, respectful" breakup different to you than a "bad, disrespectful" one?



So... maybe you want to come to agreements about how to break up decently? Then you aren't just "thrown away" and discarded like you have no value. But are let go gently and respectfully because you DO have value... the relationship just has come to an end point. It's sometimes the last loving act that is done. And it can be done in a loving way.


Those aren't boundaries. You set personal boundaries for YOU to obey to help keep you safe.

What you are asking there is for him to agree to rules you made up for his behavior that limit him. If he's struggling now with the monogamy thing? Telling him you will do poly but then not really... how's that gonna work?

It makes no sense to (protect yourself from him dumping you in a crap way) by (trying to prevent him making any significant loving connections with others) right? Cuz he could date nobody and still dump you in a crap way.

You CAN ask for reasonable agreements around safer sex practices, time management, how you want to be treated etc. If he cannot meet those? You can say "Well, then I can't do a V with you. I think we best part ways decently and skip this trial run."

But whether or not you try the mono-poly route? I suggest you deal with your actual fear directly rather than "from the side."

Like here...



You don't sound like you have huge problems with him having another partner. Do you have problems sharing him emotionally or mentally? Like him sharing sex is not a bother, but him sharing his inner life, thoughts, and feelings with someone else bothers you? Or maybe that doesn't bother you either. You just don't want to be pushed aside and dumped crap if a break up has to happen?

You could reflect and do your soul searching.

Then you could both talk about how this ends.

  • Maybe it ends well. You find it best to just SKIP trying the mono-poly thing because you can't make agreements around that. So you part respectfully.

  • Maybe ends well. You TRY the mono-poly thing. But it doesn't pan out. It has to end because you find you don't like a V thing, and he can't go back to monogamy and him miserable. The most loving thing is to let go and be exes and friends instead. But a GOOD parting can go a long way in helping you to stay good exes and friends, where a BAD parting just kills that.

  • Maybe it ends well. You CAN make agreements around the mono-poly thing. And he ends up a hinge with two partners. Some adjustment time, but no major drama. Safer sex agreements in place, sharing the hinge's time fine, etc.

So my suggestion is to talk to him and make agreements for the emergency plan. "Not that we want this, but if we DID have to break up... what would be a good break up for you? A bad one? I would want...."

See if that helps you feel more secure/safe participating here with him if you open up for him to be the hinge in a V.

Have the conversations you need to be having so no matter what? It ends WELL. No crap break ups.

Galagirl
I see where you took what a said misleadingly. However it's not a break up issue. We tried just being friends, we tried just being sexual partners and it never works. We always wind up being more on both fronts. And it's much deeper than a fear of being broken up with. It's this slow drawn out process of being seen as less significant when someone assures you you are. Like getting a new puppy for Christmas and dumping the old one in the pound. The sex is not an issue it is the emotional connection. The affirmations. I want to be the primary choice. My true issues stem from never being made a priority even while dating. And I never said I wouldn't participate he mentioned similar guidelines for me as well if I decided to participate as well with other men which he has admitted would bother him but realizes he needs to be fair and open both ways. He says he worries about other men "disrespecting" me. I just want to get myself comfortable enough intially, once I feel secure Im much more open and flexible. I want tips on how instead of avoiding jealousy completely I can ease myself into this new thing.

We both want to avoid a break up, we've both already agreed to that. We both go out of ways already to try to stay together and because intially I'm the one that's dog paddling while he's completely ready is why I want help.

How can I talk to him and alleviate that anxiety is really I think what I'm asking. Cause if I can get past that insecurity and that fear and ease it I truly believe we can both get what we want. He can have the sexual part and I can have the emotional part. I get to be the "girlfriend" in a solid position there's not a "side piece" he spends so many nights a week with or goes on trips with just sexual partners.

I want to know what tips we need to follow to get there. That's where we want to be. I hope I'm making more sense? I want the sex to be supplementary and improve our relationship but I need to get past the fear of just him finding someone else he likes having sex with often and becomes too emotionally tied to and I'm no longer the priority. I want to balance that. He's also never been in a poly or open relationship. I guess how do you help with the "instantly comparing yourself to your partner's partners and worrying they're better and they're just going to leave you the second they find someone who might be better at x,y,z.

I truly feel it is an irrational fear. However, I wanted to know if there are steps we could both take to put me at ease with it? I just wanted advice perhaps on what is too far? Do rules on establishing what's ok sexually with partners even work or make things worse? I just want to know where a good line is. I just want the sexual stuff to be nothing that directly takes away from "us". I really hope I'm making sense with that?

How to approach it in the way of being the priority, like I'm the girlfriend, so how to make my needs of being a priority over potential partners not sound like I'm dictating everything. Like not choosing the sexual partner over me if that option were to arise and cause issue.
 
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kdt26417

Official Greeter
Staff member
Greetings ReturnMetoEarth,
Welcome to our forum. Please feel free to lurk, browse, etc.

I think what you need to do, is sit down with your partner, and come to an agreement about what rules the two of you can live with. He suggests his rules; you suggest your rules. Each of you has a safe space to say, "That makes sense, I can abide by that," or, "That makes me uncomfortable, can we come up with an alternative rule that accomplishes the same thing?" You could even print the rules you decide on, and hang them on the fridge. Then, have follow-up discussions, like say once a month, where you both express which rules are working for you, and which rules are not working for you. And then, maybe some rules you will revise. Other rules you may discard. And if you find there's a new rule here and there that you need, you can add that too.

Most people find that they need more rules in the beginning (of open/poly arrangements), to help mollify their worries and insecurities; then, as their trust level improves, and they process their insecurities, they often find out that some rules are no longer necessary. This may be what you experience, but if not, that's okay too, the point is to sit down together, and come to an agreement about which rules you will and won't have, and that you continue to have ongoing agreements with each other going forward. This is the advice I would give you for the moment.

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!
 

ReturnMetoEarth

New member
Greetings ReturnMetoEarth,
Welcome to our forum. Please feel free to lurk, browse, etc.

I think what you need to do, is sit down with your partner, and come to an agreement about what rules the two of you can live with. He suggests his rules; you suggest your rules. Each of you has a safe space to say, "That makes sense, I can abide by that," or, "That makes me uncomfortable, can we come up with an alternative rule that accomplishes the same thing?" You could even print the rules you decide on, and hang them on the fridge. Then, have follow-up discussions, like say once a month, where you both express which rules are working for you, and which rules are not working for you. And then, maybe some rules you will revise. Other rules you may discard. And if you find there's a new rule here and there that you need, you can add that too.

Most people find that they need more rules in the beginning (of open/poly arrangements), to help mollify their worries and insecurities; then, as their trust level improves, and they process their insecurities, they often find out that some rules are no longer necessary. This may be what you experience, but if not, that's okay too, the point is to sit down together, and come to an agreement about which rules you will and won't have, and that you continue to have ongoing agreements with each other going forward. This is the advice I would give you for the moment.

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!
This is exactly what I needed to hear (read?). Thank you so much. I have also been talking it over with some friends who have been in/are close to people in them (open/poly relationships). I was worried about having a lot to help myself feel secure in the beginning but it's great to see this wasn't just my worry. I want it to work. I truly do. Though we've never actually spoken the word due to our circumstances I do love him, he's shown me he feels that way too. I think we can pull it off if I can just get comfortable or feel secure in the beginning. And he's still willing to make those adjustments.

Thank you so so much! This was truly liberating advice and I'm going to think carefully about what I need to make me secure and see what he needs so we can come together on it!
 

kdt26417

Official Greeter
Staff member
I'm glad I could say something that was helpful. The thing I always keep in mind is that anything is permissible if it is done with mutual consent.
 

GalaGirl

Well-known member
Thank you for more info. That helps clarify. Let me repeat back what I understand so far to make sure I get it how you meant it. I don't know if it helps you any to see it organized like a bullet list. Blue just to visually block it off.

You correct me, if I missed anything or got anything wrong, ok?

BACKGROUND

  • Started as a one night stand, but stayed together
  • Never actually said "I love you" to each other
  • You have been doing monogamy, but it turns out he's miserable doing that.
  • You want to try doing open/poly if you can get past your fears
  • Neither one wants to break up
  • Neither of you have ever been in a poly or open relationship before
WHAT YOU WORRY ABOUT / STRUGGLE WITH
  • Partner developing an emotional connection with someone new that will lead to you being demoted/dumped.
  • You want to be his priority and the “bonus sex” with other people to be secondary/supplementary.
  • Comparing yourself to your partner's partners and worrying they're better than you
  • Worry that the sexual stuff between (partner + X) might directly takes away from (partner + you)
WHAT HE WORRIES ABOUT
  • Other men “disrespecting” you
WHAT MODEL YOU’D BE UP FOR
  • A primary-secondary model because you want to be his primary girlfriend
  • A model where both your partner and you get to share casual sex with other people
  • A model where his other partners can share sex with him, but not do GF type things like go away on trips together
  • A model that gives you some accommodation at the start, that could be let go of as time passes and you get more comfortable/feel safer doing this
WHAT MODEL HE IS UP FOR
  • ???
WHAT YOU WANT TO AVOID
  • You and your partner both want to avoid breaking up.
  • You don't want him to feel like you've got him by the neck
  • You don't want him to feel tied down like you own him.
  • You don't want to come across like you are dictating everything
WHAT YOU WANT HELP WITH / HAVE QUESTIONS ABOUT
  • How can you ease into this new thing? (Doing open/poly)
  • How you can talk to partner and alleviate your anxiety about being demoted/dumped in favor of the new shiny person?
  • What tips can you follow?
  • Do rules on establishing what's ok sexually with partners even work or make things worse?
  • What goes too far?
  • Where is a good line is or examples of healthy agreements?
Is that about it? If so?

I think you could both do some general reading and some preparation work and not just jump into dating other people.

You might consider reading the pitfalls to help you stay out of common mistakes.

https://practicalpolyamory.com/images/A._Wagner_-_Avoid_the_Pitfalls_of_Polyamory.pdf

Might also think about the work of detangling.

The Most Skipped Step When Opening a Relationship


Here's some other links. Not comprehensive, but a start.

Practical Polyamory

kathylabriola.com - Articles


These are the worksheets from the "Opening Up" book.

Wayback Machine
Creating Authentic Relationships

Wayback Machine
Open Relationship Checklist

Wayback Machine
Reflecting on Change

Wayback Machine
Self Evaluation

HTH!
Galagirl
 

ReturnMetoEarth

New member
Thank you for more info. That helps clarify. Let me repeat back what I understand so far to make sure I get it how you meant it. I don't know if it helps you any to see it organized like a bullet list. Blue just to visually block it off.

You correct me, if I missed anything or got anything wrong, ok?
Yes, that is all correct and thank you so much I have been reading and making notes of the links you've provided a lot of it is very helpful!

We've both been really busy with work and me with school at the moment but as soon as we are both free we are going to sit down and read over my notes and talk out what we want and expect and what we need to do to make it a good experience for us both.

I'm battling a lot internally as this is so new and I'm really scared by a lot of it. I know I have a lot of insecurities but I also really want to make this work. He's been my main support for a long time and has always been there for me when I was at my worst so I feel pretty confident he'll be willing to be patient and accept a lot of my "security blanket" rules until I can feel confident and comfortable and ease away from them, which I know will just take time and a lot of open communication.

Thank you again! Everyone so far has been very helpful!
 

GalaGirl

Well-known member
I'm battling a lot internally as this is so new and I'm really scared by a lot of it. I know I have a lot of insecurities but I also really want to make this work.

It's ok to feel scared about new things. I don't know if reading Polysecure would help any.

He's been my main support for a long time and has always been there for me when I was at my worst so I feel pretty confident he'll be willing to be patient and accept a lot of my "security blanket" rules until I can feel confident and comfortable and ease away from them, which I know will just take time and a lot of open communication.

I will gently suggest calling it "security blanket agreements" since you wanted to avoid dictating everything or like you have him by the neck or something. When it is "agreements" it is something you and him come to make together. Rather than "rules" like you set them and he has to obey or else.

And once one of you actually does get involved in dating, these new people might ask you "Do you have any agreements with other partners that might affect me?" or you might just want to tell them up front.

Basics like safer sex practices such as "We agree to use condoms with all partners" might be healthy and reasonable agreement to have in place. I don't think many new people you date would object -- they prob have similar in place for their own sex health hygiene. And you can ask them if THEY have agreements with other partners that might affect you too.

"You can only share sex with other people if I'm there..." maybe not a great agreement. Esp if the other person didn't have a voice in the agreement making.

HTH!
Galagirl
 

Magdlyn

Moderator
Staff member
I noticed that right now, you seem to want a "sex only" with outside partners agreement, with a guarantee that you remain primary. Therefore, you want rules in place like "no kissing," no dating someone else (or more than one) multiple times a week, no taking trips with other partners.

If you want a "sex only" agreement, you do not want polyamory. Remember, amory means love. It means several loves. When we practice polyamory we are well aware and approving of the fact that our partner may fall deeply in love with other partners. However, some people do try to practice a primary/secondary model of polyamory, where the main couple always comes first and all other partners have no chance to become as deeply enmeshed as the primary couple is.

You could read more about this model here. https://www.morethantwo.com/polyforsecondaries.html
 

MeeraReed

Active member
I cannot imagine any circumstances in which I would have sex with someone who has a "no kissing" rule set by their partner.

Like, how would that even work? Would he be allowed to kiss other parts of my body, just not my mouth???

And from your partner's point of view, if he wants to have sex with other women, I'm guessing he would probably want to kiss them, too.
 

ReturnMetoEarth

New member
I noticed that right now, you seem to want a "sex only" with outside partners agreement, with a guarantee that you remain primary. Therefore, you want rules in place like "no kissing," no dating someone else (or more than one) multiple times a week, no taking trips with other partners.

If you want a "sex only" agreement, you do not want polyamory. Remember, amory means love. It means several loves. When we practice polyamory we are well aware and approving of the fact that our partner may fall deeply in love with other partners. However, some people do try to practice a primary/secondary model of polyamory, where the main couple always comes first and all other partners have no chance to become as deeply enmeshed as the primary couple is.

You could read more about this model here. https://www.morethantwo.com/polyforsecondaries.html
I wrote this post initially before I did my own research what I want is more of an open relationship. I referred to it as "Poly" only because I didn't really understand the terminology being such a newbie and my partner has never been in this type of relationship either and also referred to it as "Poly" when he mentioned it which is how the word Poly came into the conversation, just a lack of knowledge. He has expressed his biggest issue is that he wants to have sex with other women but I'm the only woman he wants to date. When I mentioned kissing I don't mean during sex but outside of it in a romantic way, like being out in public with these other women in a dating capacity and kissing in that way where it means more than just in the "heat of the moment" situations. I'm not saying I'd never be completely open to it eventually but for right now I'm trying to get the monogamous way of thinking in regards to sex and being romantically involved. I'm prepared to allow him to fulfill those needs sexually but the idea of it being romantically at the moment is at my very limit.

This is something that's very difficult for me as is as I've never gone this far for anyone I've been with, this is a huge step for me and the agreements aren't meant so much to restrict him but kind of a proof of trust in the beginning for me. I feel trust is something you have to show not something you can just say. I have a lot of trust issues from a previous relationship after experiencing abuse so severe it caused PTSD I had to be treated for and am still being treated for (There are still things I can't do, songs I can't listen to, places I can't go, and although I've healed considerably there are still things that are very difficult for me to handle). This partner helped me get better and survive my PTSD, because there were points when it got so bad I wanted to take my own life. This is why I'm willing to evolve for him in this way because I feel like he is worth at least trying this for, but I can only take what I can. I'm taking it slowly.

Even attempting to pull off just a sexually open relationship has been the hardest and most adaptive thing I've ever been willing to do for a partner. It's truly terrifying to me but I also don't want to give up without trying. I want to give him everything I've got and getting the advice and support of friends and the advice that kdt26417 had given me and the links Galagirl sent that I was able to research have made me feel much more confident that I could at least try.

Those agreements, rules, boundaries, etc are things I need to bring me to a sense of security and allow me to ease into the transition of this new type of relationship and I will express that to him when we have our sit down talk. They're more for me to be able to make sure its not too much all at once, to help quell my anxieties and not make me succumb so easily to jealousy and not even allow it to evolve. Its hard because I feel like I'm not enough, and I feel these will help me build enough confidence in our relationship because he is willing to make them work and a lot of them can be reevaluated later. It's not so much I think he's going to just going to mess around and use me but more of I'm doing something I once thought that was never in my realm of possibility for a relationship and I want to make sure that limb is sturdy enough to support my weight. I want those "Training wheels" to make me feel like I can do it before I take them off.

I hope that makes sense.
 

Evie

Kaitiaki
Staff member
Could you please take a moment to consider the other person in this scenario. He might find someone who is up for just a quickie now and then, but honestly, it's not how many women are wired, at least not those who engage in ethical non monogamy. If you would feel the need to cancel your experiment at any time, you could really be messing with another person, leaving them with PTSD. I'm sure you wouldn't want to be responsible for that.

It sounds more like you'd be okay with him having a discreet affair than ENM. That's sometimes a thing, where you turn a blind eye and don't ask if he's late home. But so is paid services. Perhaps that might be more comfortable at first considering there will be absolutely zero attachment (and extremely high levels of safety precautions) if he engages a professional.

What is least likely to cause harm to anyone, you, him, the yet to be found her?
 

ReturnMetoEarth

New member
It's ok to feel scared about new things. I don't know if reading Polysecure would help any.



I will gently suggest calling it "security blanket agreements" since you wanted to avoid dictating everything or like you have him by the neck or something. When it is "agreements" it is something you and him come to make together. Rather than "rules" like you set them and he has to obey or else.

And once one of you actually does get involved in dating, these new people might ask you "Do you have any agreements with other partners that might affect me?" or you might just want to tell them up front.

Basics like safer sex practices such as "We agree to use condoms with all partners" might be healthy and reasonable agreement to have in place. I don't think many new people you date would object -- they prob have similar in place for their own sex health hygiene. And you can ask them if THEY have agreements with other partners that might affect you too.

"You can only share sex with other people if I'm there..." maybe not a great agreement. Esp if the other person didn't have a voice in the agreement making.

HTH!
Galagirl
Thank you I will definitely take that advice and call them agreements as for the last agreement you mentioned.

Its more of we meet at some point before the sexual relationship is formed so that all parties acknowledge there is a relationship there. It's something he's agreed to already actually when we first discussed it. He doesn't have one night stands, it would be girls he actually talks to and knows (some are friends already he has expressed interest in this is why I need those rules to be the way they are because he's already established a friendly relationship with them.) Though we're still going to sit down and iron it out. He also likes the idea because he felt he could make his presence known to any male partners I had as more of a "warning" (I guess?) as to not disrespect me (Something he feels strongly about).

He has expressed that he feels guilty that it would be hard seeing me with someone else which is why he was never the one to really push the open relationship idea he knows its unfair for him to feel this need for other sexual partners but feel uncomfortable for me to. So I'm sure when we talk about these agreements he will have some of his own as well that may be just as, if not potentially more, restrictive (He may restrict certain sexual acts, where as I am not because the sex itself doesn't bother me. It's just the emotional, romantic attachment.)

Thank you for all of your input! I can't even tell you how much better I feel about after speaking to you! You're really a lifesaver! 😊
 

ReturnMetoEarth

New member
That's a great idea.

You might consider making these talks regular and add some structure along the lines of what is described here: Multiamory RADAR
I'm going to make it a point that we have to sit down and talk about it at least once a month and rediscuss and see how we feel. It'll be a process for both of us but I think as long as we can stay on top of it we can do it. I had started discussing it with him here and there so it's not all one big shock when we sit down and talk about it and he has acknowledge we definitely need to keep discussions open and non-judgemental and not hold it all in. Our problems in the past is he didn't feel like he could talk to me about his feelings about it because he didn't want to upset me and I didn't want to express mine to him because I was worried he'd feel like I was nagging or trying to just be jealous and controlling and it would just blow up and cause arguments. So it will definitely be something that is at the forefront of this new relationship change.

Thank you so much for your input and then link!
 

ReturnMetoEarth

New member
Could you please take a moment to consider the other person in this scenario. He might find someone who is up for just a quickie now and then, but honestly, it's not how many women are wired, at least not those who engage in ethical non monogamy. If you would feel the need to cancel your experiment at any time, you could really be messing with another person, leaving them with PTSD. I'm sure you wouldn't want to be responsible for that.

It sounds more like you'd be okay with him having a discreet affair than ENM. That's sometimes a thing, where you turn a blind eye and don't ask if he's late home. But so is paid services. Perhaps that might be more comfortable at first considering there will be absolutely zero attachment (and extremely high levels of safety precautions) if he engages a professional.

What is least likely to cause harm to anyone, you, him, the yet to be found her?
He's expresses he can't just sleep with girls he doesn't know. So the girls he says he has actually wanted to sleep would be girls who would be aware of what is going on. This is also why I wanted the agreement of meeting the others potential sexual partners. This way all parties are aware of the situation, are aware that him and I are in a relationship and that there are boundaries there. It's something both he and I have actually already agreed to in previous conversations. He has turned down other girls before because we were together so I am confident he would be able to if they began to become too attached.

As it was expressed to me he's not intending to sleep with other women often enough for it to become as big of an issue, and most of the girls he does want to with don't want relationships. Most of the agreed upon rules will be to help with our own personal anxieties about the whole thing and ease us into it.

I hope that clears things up!
 

Evie

Kaitiaki
Staff member
It does, so all the best with your way forward, it sounds like you have some people lined up.
 

ReturnMetoEarth

New member
It does, so all the best with your way forward, it sounds like you have some people lined up.
Not per se, but I'm trying to keep myself open to it. I have wondered if it would be a good show of faith to him if I initiated first as some of his few kind of more quiet objections so far have been he's worried he'll be the only one participating and I'll just be sitting around being jealous. But I'm worried about who I choose as he has his own hang ups about seeing me with someone else (Primarily men, he doesn't seem to have any issue with me sleeping with women at all) so I have a female friend I'm very close to and actually sexually attracted to and have discussed it with previously. We both are interested and she's with a man now who has expressed he's not threatened by it in any way. So I figured it could kind of ease us in, and would show I'm willing to go through with it and I'm not all talk.
 

Magdlyn

Moderator
Staff member
I understand this does not come naturally to you both. You're already jealous of his hypothetical partners, and he's ready to fight any guy that might, accidentally or not, make you feel bad in some way. This is a shaky foundation for trust indeed. You're taking on a lot just to please him. Generally polyamory doesn't work well unless both partners are equally excited about the experiment and lovestyle.

In case you don't know, given our patriarchal culture, it's a huge step for many, if not most men to consent to "their" women having sex with other guys. It is seen as a sign of weakness to "allow" this, and has been for millennia. Therefore, unless guys are kinda "woke," it can blow up. As you Open, and word gets out that you're poly, you may be approached by a lot of men, some that you may find very attractive and compelling. (Sign on to a dating site and check the flood of messages.) This happens a lot. It's just something to be aware of. Your guy may need to let go of his possessive nature. (This isn't easy but it is definitely doable.) Most successful poly men learn to see their female partners differently, as independent women with the right to choose partners of any gender, and with the intelligence and discrimination to choose them wisely, in order to decrease the risk of being hurt. And if they do get hurt, poly men expect their female partners to roll with the punches and learn from their mistakes. Trying to preemptively prevent the risks by forbidding a gender or a certain sex act often backfires.
 
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