Unexpectedly Poly

Magdlyn

Well-known member
On the topic of sex with one SO affecting the sex you have with your nesting ("primary") partner or 3rd partner...

My gf (been together 8 years) and I have joked from time to time about this. For example, we might have a little sex before one of us goes to meet a male lover, and say we are "fluffing" her for her guy. Or vice versa. If one of us has residual excitement after seeing another lover, he has "fluffed" her for when we come back together and have reunion sex. It's all just sort of a flow, not a competition. We find no need to pick it apart to determine just who has aroused either of us. It doesn't matter.

We also don't have any problem with either of us masturbating or looking at porn or whatever. We may have had a few glitches around this particular sex topic at the beginning. I did come from a 30 year mono relationship (despite being poly at heart), so I had a learning curve. But we have great communication skills and worked it out without blaming or harsh words, just kindness and openness and patience.

When I was mono, my ex was never my sole source of arousal. He may have gotten great sex one night because something I saw or did during the day turned me on. Or he might have gotten good morning sex because of a dream I had. Of course, I wouldn't tell him this, being as that could be read as "cheating" in mono culture. Thank god I don't have to pretend anymore.
 

Al99

Active member
On the topic of sex with one SO affecting the sex you have with your nesting ("primary") partner or 3rd partner...

My gf (been together 8 years) and I have joked from time to time about this. For example, we might have a little sex before one of us goes to meet a male lover, and say we are "fluffing" her for her guy. Or vice versa. If one of us has residual excitement after seeing another lover, he has "fluffed" her for when we come back together and have reunion sex. It's all just sort of a flow, not a competition. We find no need to pick it apart to determine just who has aroused either of us. It doesn't matter.

Please excuse the delayed reply - except for the occasional glance, I've been off the forum recently due to work and family.

The idea of Becky having sex with another man was my biggest issue in embracing poly for our marriage - so to help with coming to terms with the idea, we negotiated a couple of basic rules - and Becky had no problem with either of them.

First, she had to truthfully answer any questions I had about her sexual encounters with Ben - including the down and dirty details (and as I noted in my last post, it turned out that she found that she enjoyed doing so - and we actually worked it into our love play just as we had fantasy scenarios - and discovered the real thing to be even hotter).

Secondly, similar to Magdlyn's experience, we agreed that we would have sex on the night before she left for her over night (which helped me accept that she would be having sex with someone else the next afternoon or evening). And - we would have sex as soon as possible after her return to reconnect and to help me feel like she was still "mine" even if she did have sex with another man just hours before. And this actually turned our to be the spiciest part of all. For example, after the first overnight, Becky returned and we immediately made love, just a couple of hours after she had made love to Ben - and all the while, she was whispering to me about all the hot sex that she had with Ben - and then we had our own very hot sex. Becky texted me the next day from work that she was walking around just sort of dazed at the thought that she had two men in the same evening.

So, while we are still new to this (and since it is an ldr for Becky and Ben, their time is limited) - we have also made it more of a cooperative event than a competition. Al
 

Al99

Active member
I am adding this as an addendum to my original introductory post. I have posted these points before but would also like to add them here as well - as I have seen several other folks come into the Forum during my months here who are in a similar situation, and who might find the following points helpful.

My wife, Becky, did a number of things very right in approaching me about opening up our relationship - even though she has not actually "studied" poly. Which was interesting, since much of what she did right is what one often sees recommended on the poly forums and in the literature.

1. Made sure that I understood that it was not about me - no matter how much it might seem that way. There was nothing wrong with me and I had
not failed in any way. This was about her feelings and not a reflection on me.

2. Made sure I understood that it wasn't because she didn't love me as much as she ever had - but she believed it was possible to love more than one man at the same time without diminishing the love for either (the classic poly argument is to consider that a parent can love multiple children at the same time and still love any others than come along as well).

3. Made certain to emphasize that her relationship with Ben (her bf) would be "in addition to" - and not a replacement for - our marital relationship. And that our relationship would still be "primary" (after all we were married with a child in a home - with a mortgage, etc) - and that we could negotiate what exactly that would look like. I found the phrase "in addition to" to be particularly helpful in helping me come to terms with her desire to have a second relationship.

4. She was very patient - and did not try to push it along too quickly. We could take it one step at a time, and she agreed not to have sex until I felt I could accept the idea. And although she did want to include sex in their relationship eventually as a natural progression, for her it was much more about her feelings and her emotional involvement.

5. She was willing to talk about it as much as I needed to - no matter how long it took or how often - and to answer any questions that I might have - without any apparent frustration. She understood the need for me to process the situation. And she was very patient and understanding of my frustration and emotional turmoil at her request - very validating while still upholding her belief.

6. She went out of her way to reassure me of the depth of our relationship during this time - avoiding arguments, being especially loving and affectionate as well very open and honest about here thoughts and desires.

7. She agreed that being completely honest and transparent was absolutely essential - to whatever degree that I felt I needed that to be ok.

8. Made sure that I understood that I could also have another partner if and when I was ready.

And, I already understood from life experience that it is very possible to love more than one person at a time (acting on that is the issue) - and that one person cannot supply all of another's needs. These points may need to be discussed as well.

We also had an in depth discussion about sex when we reached the point where I was ready to talk about it - and agreed on the various parameters. This will obviously vary by couple - but we agreed on transparency and a willingness to utilize the sexual energy created by their relationship to enhance our own (as discussed both in "The Ethical Slut' and in "Opening Up".) This proved to be helpful when the time came - as I discussed in the comments just prior to this post on this same introductory post thread.

Opening up a mono marriage is probably more often than not a challenging proposition - especially if one of the partners is making the request of the other partner who would rather remain mono, and may object to opening up the marriage. Hopefully some of these points - gained from our personal experience in just such a situation - may prove helpful to those who find themselves in such a situation. Al
 
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Magdlyn

Well-known member
Please excuse the delayed reply - except for the occasional glance, I've been off the forum recently due to work and family.

The idea of Becky having sex with another man was my biggest issue in embracing poly for our marriage - so to help with coming to terms with the idea, we negotiated a couple of basic rules - and Becky had no problem with either of them.

First, she had to truthfully answer any questions I had about her sexual encounters with Ben - including the down and dirty details (and as I noted in my last post, it turned out that she found that she enjoyed doing so - and we actually worked it into our love play just as we had fantasy scenarios - and discovered the real thing to be even hotter).

Secondly, similar to Magdlyn's experience, we agreed that we would have sex on the night before she left for her over night (which helped me accept that she would be having sex with someone else the next afternoon or evening). And - we would have sex as soon as possible after her return to reconnect and to help me feel like she was still "mine" even if she did have sex with another man just hours before. And this actually turned our to be the spiciest part of all. For example, after the first overnight, Becky returned and we immediately made love, just a couple of hours after she had made love to Ben - and all the while, she was whispering to me about all the hot sex that she had with Ben - and then we had our own very hot sex. Becky texted me the next day from work that she was walking around just sort of dazed at the thought that she had two men in the same evening.

So, while we are still new to this (and since it is an ldr for Becky and Ben, their time is limited) - we have also made it more of a cooperative event than a competition. Al

I had a mental response to this post of yours when you wrote it, but I was too sick to write it out.

Becky describing to you, in detail, the sex she has with her bf... it works in reassuring you, and it also arouses both of you. Many poly people are like you 3. But for others reading this, rest assured this will NOT work for some poly people.

Al and Becky and Ben-- does she tell Ben about the recent sex she had with you, Al, to reassure and arouse Ben and herself when they have sex? Yes or no, why or why not, and how would or do you deal with her sharing these intimate details with another man? Are you fine with it, feel proud, aroused, or do you feel embarrassed and violated?

How does Ben feel about Becky sharing details of his sex with her, with you? Is he fine with it? Does he even know she does it, tells you about it in great detail?

Some poly people are much MUCH more private in how much they want to share about sex they have with one partner, to another partner. And some do NOT want sex with one partner immediately after having had sex with the other. What if there is a disconnect? We read that here. One wants to share details, but one or two of the others involved would rather die (or break up) than have those intimate details shared.

Of course, otoh, some people are into threesomes and there's no need to share details by talking about it after the fact, since everyone is fucking at once already...

tl/dr: What works for you and Becky, does it work for Ben? This "coping skill to decrease jealousy" won't work for everyone. It might cause just the opposite reaction.
 

Al99

Active member
Magdlyn wrote:
Becky describing to you, in detail, the sex she has with her bf... it works in reassuring you, and it also arouses both of you. Many poly people are like you 3. But for others reading this, rest assured this will NOT work for some poly people.

Magdlyn, thanks for making that important point - our negotiated arrangement would not work for everyone - although it works for us. Both "Ethical Slut" and "Opening Up" actually address this same issue - with the simple advice that it would work for some (primary) couples but not for others. While for some couples it can be a "side benefit" of poly - for others (as you noted) it would only trigger jealousy. It is obviously an issue to be evaluated and negotiated for a married couple opening up their marriage to poly.

And, of course, as you noted - there are concerns for the other party involved as well. In our case, Ben does not want to know anything about Becky and I's sex life. He does understand our negotiated arrangement about transparency but doesn't want to know the details (i.e - he doesn't really want to know if we discuss their sexual encounters - but has no issue with it in principle). And I would not care if Becky did share our sexual details with Ben. Becky says she has great sex with both of us - with each of us having a different style and emphasis. And I am genuinely glad that she does. As I have posted before, while poly may not be my first choice, I do believe that anything worth doing is worth doing right - so I have encouraged her from the beginning that when she is with Ben, to enjoy all the hot sex they can handle without reservation.

We have actually discussed a possible MFM threesome at some point and Ben has said he would be interested - at least for a one time experience - but the logistics of the LDR make it more difficult to actually set it up - so although everyone says it might be fun, no one is actually pushing to make it happen - so it will probably not be happening any time soon, if actually at all. Al
 

amit1235813

New member
Hi AI, thanks for sharing your personal experience. I like how you were both authentic and open about your feelings. I wonder if you are able to handle the arguments and the green monster better now.
 

Al99

Active member
I wonder if you are able to handle the arguments and the green monster better now.

Hi Amit - actually, jealousy is not much of an issue anymore. There may be an occasional twinge of jealousy (often called "wibbles" by poly folks, I believe), but real jealousy has not been a problem for some time.

I have stated a few times in my more recent posts that poly is still not my first choice, but that I have become reasonably comfortable with it. As I processed this transition, I came to the fairly firm belief that my preference for monogamy and my initial fear/jealousy of my wife having a boyfriend (and having sex with him) was primarily a result of my early conservative conditioning (growing up in the "Deep South" area of the US in a fundamentalist evangelical religion). And while I had left these early beliefs behind long ago at the intellectual level - and was certainly willing to acknowledge polyamory as a valid lifestyle choice for others, I did not believe it to be for me (thanks, but no thanks).

In order to counteract this conditioning, I made a purposeful decision to work on "de-conditioning" myself from these prejudices learned in my youth and certainly reinforced by our monogamy-centric culture. This intentional de-conditioning program has centered on a fairly serious study of polyamory and interacting with poly folks (primarily on this forum, but not exclusively). In addition to participating on this forum, I've also read several books on poly (working on #9) as well as a good number of web articles on polyamory, and listened to poly podcasts occasionally (I particularly enjoy "Polyamory Weekly" by Cunning Minx).

One of the things that I read early on was that our "natural tendency" to jealousy could be overcome - and that many poly folks were seldom jealous at all - even if they had started out as monogamous. While I was skeptical at first, I have found this to be true - as I have managed to let go of much of that early conditioning.

The general advice that I have encountered in my study is that if we should find ourselves feeling jealousy in our relationships, that we should look for the underlying cause of that emotion. Perhaps it is insecurity or fear or something else. We can then work on the underlying cause.

I know this is more than a simple reply - but I think this is an important issue in polyamory and worthy of a bit more discussion. Al
 
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Lea

New member
Al - I wanted to say I have always enjoyed your post and your journey and your words have been helpful for me - the wife on the poly side of the relationship.

Thank you!
 

Al99

Active member
Thanks for the kind words, Lea - glad to hear that some of my thoughts may been helpful. Al
 

Al99

Active member

Al99

Active member
I'm another whose life was Stranger in a Strange Land (and the people who introduced me to it). I was 17 then; now 66. Here's what I wrote, in some researched depth, about his influence on the poly movement:

Polyamory, Robert Heinlein, and his definitive new biography

Thanks for the link, Alan. As a life long "Stranger" fan, I very much enjoyed reading your article - as well as the various comments, particularly Zell's quotes from Mr. Heinlein's letters.

As I mentioned upthread in my reply back to Jane Smythe regarding Heinlein, it was not really the "alternative marriage arrangements" proposed in "Stranger" that intrigued me so much about the novel. Of course, I was aware of that element in "Stranger" and other Heinlein novels, but I just considered it part of the fiction, so to speak. My staunch southern fundamentalist evangelical upbringing and that the fact that I was only ten years of age when I first read "Stranger" probably contributed to my lack of attention to the "free love aspect" as an important part of the book.

However, despite my youth, what did radically engage my interest was the fictional metaphysics. While, even at ten, I realized that that the various "powers" were based on a fictional Martian language, I did find the various metaphysical elements very intriguing, despite my fundamentalist indoctrination (which was quite thorough and embedded, even at ten). Ultimately to whatever degree the various metaphysical suggestions had any merit was relatively irrelevant - what was accomplished was coming to understand the possibility that there were other ways of looking at Reality than those the fundamentalists held forth, and that was to become very much a life changing concept. Although - the idea that: "The universe is a thing we whipped up among us and agreed to forget the gag” really stuck - and I'm certain eventually contributed to my own personal Platonic-Gnostic based thought system.

It is perhaps just a bit ironic that 40 years after first reading "Stranger", it came to play a role in my eventual, albeit initially reluctant, transition to polyamory. Al
 
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Al99

Active member

Al99

Active member
Haha, yeah... where's the bootcamp version? I need some paradigm shift asap!
:eek:

Find a girl friend - get laid. Probably the quickest way to make it easier for you to deal with the thought of your wife having sex with another man. I know - easier said than done. I will share a few other thoughts a bit later as time permits. A couple of quick starters, though - read up on polyamory - you can start with the links that Kevin gave you. Have lots of long talks with your wife.

And welcome to the Forum - transforming a dishonest (cheating) situation into a polyamorous relationship is not as obvious a solution as it might seem and is certainly not the best way to transition a marriage to poly - but it has been done. Polyamory only exists with the knowledge and consent of all involved.

Best of luck on your journey! Al
 

HurtandConfused

New member
Find a girl friend - get laid. Probably the quickest way to make it easier for you to deal with the thought of your wife having sex with another man. I know - easier said than done. I will share a few other thoughts a bit later as time permits. A couple of quick starters, though - read up on polyamory - you can start with the links that Kevin gave you. Have lots of long talks with your wife.

Haha, I suppose that would change my point of view.... If that is where our relationship ends up, I have serious doubts that would happen even if I tried. We live on a tiny island in the Caribbean; I'm sure this is feeding a bit of my jealousy/envy and other issues I'm working through.

But I also kind of hope we are exclusive; at least for a while until I can look at t his situation outside of the current one.

And welcome to the Forum - transforming a dishonest (cheating) situation into a polyamorous relationship is not as obvious a solution as it might seem and is certainly not the best way to transition a marriage to poly - but it has been done. Polyamory only exists with the knowledge and consent of all involved.

Best of luck on your journey! Al

Well, nothing like a challenge to make life interesting ;)

I moved from Alaska to the Caribbean, I can over come this too.

Thanks for the advice, lots of reading and talking in my/our future.
 

Al99

Active member
HurtandConfused -

But I also kind of hope we are exclusive; at least for a while until I can look at this situation outside of the current one.

After reading all the posts on your main introductory thread, I understand that the affair-relationship has now ended (or is at least on hiatus) and you are going to work on being exclusive for the moment - nothing wrong with that and perhaps the best thing you could do to heal the hurt from the dishonesty of an affair. If you choose to remain together, as you noted, you can always take a look at the poly possibility later. So I will leave any thoughts I might have on how to embrace poly to that future time. But, it still wouldn't hurt to do some reading on the subject. You have Kevin's topic suggestions and I will suggest one book for the moment as a good book for those who are just considering poly and want to take a look: Opening Up: A Guide To Creating and Sustaining Open Relationships by Tristan Taormino. It is somewhat dated in some of its technological references, but imo remains the best introductory overview on poly specifically and consensual non-monogamy in general. (Available as an ebook as well).

You might also enjoy Cunning Minx's semi-weekly pocasts on polyweekly.com, where she also has 500+ archived podcasts free to listen to.
I also recommend her book Eight Things I Wish I'd Known About Polyamory: Before I Tried It and Frakked It Up for those who have made the definite decision to transition to poly (only a hundred pages and reasonably engaging - also available as an ebook).

Again, best of luck on your journey. Al
 

StrangeMagic

New member
Just another Heinlein fan

Ai99, like you, I read all the Heinlein I could get my hands on. I started in jr high with "Have Space Suit, Will Travel," and never looked back. I now live in Independence, about an hour from where RAH was born in Butler, MO. I think the only fiction of his I've not read is the last one, "For Us, The Living." And that's just because of time constraints.

Anyway, I grew up reading his books and, being gay myself, saw nothing wrong with the relationships he depicted. I knew they were outside the norm, but was also realizing that I was, also. I was especially happy when he introduced Galahad and Ishtar who decided to sleep together without actually being able to know each other's sex. I felt like "my people" were being represented in literature, finally, if only obliquely.

Anyway, I've had a vision of a poly relationship my whole life but never achieved it. And I've only admitted that to myself in the last year. I commend you on your being able to give your wife what she felt she needed, and she handled things very well so as not to make you feel "less than." I can only hope I find partners as mature and giving as you two seem to be.

May you both find all the happiness you can stand, LOL! :)
 

Al99

Active member
Hi Again StangeMagic - always good to meet another Heinlein fan! I don't know if you read JaneQSmythe's reply to my original post (it's on the first page), but she is also a lifelong Heinlein fan as well. She shared the link to this interesting article on "Heinlein and Polyamory" with me: http://www.polyamoryonline.org/articles/heinlein.html

It is interesting to see how Heinlein's references to sexuality evolved - as he gained editorial license following the phenomenal success of "Stranger". Although a successful SF author prior to Stranger, well known for his "juveniles", he lacked the "editorial power" to write freely and even had to tone down his original draft of Stranger - as one can see when comparing the 1961 version (edited down) and the 1991 version (the posthumously published original draft). And certainly in the adult novels that followed during the latter part of his career. Al
 

Polyluke

New member
Just wanted to say, love your post (thanks for responding to me the other day) really insightful and surprising how similar your introduction was to mine (apart from the book part, I hadn’t read that but previously looked at various relationship models.... )

Just wanted to say thanks 😊
 
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