looking for help with incompatible sexual tastes
I have not been posting until now, but have been reading quite a few threads and seeing much wisdom in them.
While both my husband and I are open to the idea of some form of open marriage, I think what we would each want from an open marriage is very different.
My husband is more looking to have sexual experiences (with at most some casual friendship component).
I on the other hand, am much more wired to have what I think would be called polyfidelity type of relationships. I don't see a need to go actively looking for a deep secondary love relationship, but if one came my way, I would be happy to explore it - not really much appeal to me in casual sex.
I also feel like while I do not need to be involved deeply with everyone my husband might be involved with, I would need to at least know them at a friendly level to feel that I trust him with that other person or persons.
As mentioned in my intro, we are currently pregnant with our first child, and not looking to make any drastic changes to our currently monogamous style, until we have integrated our new little person into our lives - but we are trying to work out some of the emotional issues the discussion of open marriage and our different inherent styles have raised.
Would appreciate as much input as possible!
Hi and welcome to the board. :)
I'm not really sure what kind of input to give necessarily, because I'm not quite sure what you're asking or what you want help with. It seems to me that you know that you and your husband view sexual connections differently and that you're open to discussing that and setting some guidelines and boudaries in place.
So ... that sounds about right. :) What particularly are you looking for help with and maybe I can amend my comments to offer better advice! :)
:) What particularly are you looking for help with and maybe I can amend my comments to offer better advice! :)[/QUOTE]
Maybe I should give you more of the background story!
Neither my husband or I had much sexual experience before we married. The previous experiences that I did have were essentially not much good, because I did push myself into having them before I felt emotionally safe with the boyfriend I had at the time. (I don't think he or I did anything "wrong" in the moral sense, but it did teach me that casual sex is just not for me).
I happen to have a male friend that I have had a major crush on for years, but he is married. I don't really think he has ever reciprocated romantic feelings and I would worry about losing his friendship if I approached him about my feelings, and (I like and respect his wife a lot), so doing anything other than being good friends remains in the realm of fantasy. (My husband knows about this crush - talking about opening the marriage has really deepened our relationship which was already very open in communication, and says he would be comfortable if that relationship did develop, or if some other friendship of mine were to deepen into the realm of sexual intimacy).
One of the worries that I had when my husband approached me about open marriage was that it was because our sex life was not that great because neither of us really knew what we are about due to lack of experience (and we have been remedying this with some instructional DVD's) and lack of time because of my work schedule (and more recently now that his student days are over, his work schedule) - and one of my conditions was that we had to have a better sexual bond (in what is otherwise an excellent "soulmate" marriage) before we introduced others into our relationship in even a casual way. Another worry was, especially with a brand new baby to add to the mix in just a few months, was that it would be too stressful to deal with both that and the additional time demands that outside sexual exploration would put on us -which is why we decided we weren't doing anything until we had figured out how the brand new parent thing works, other than talking with each other (and experienced others) about what we eventually want.
Ok that said, my husband would like us to have some of our eventual sexual adventures to be together (but the obstacle to that would be my discomfort with the whole casual sex thing -knowing some one one or two dates just doesn't do it). Also I think the people who turn me on as physical types and the people who turn him on don't overlap that well!
Basically, what my husband is hoping is that we could do some swinging together as a couple. I feel comfortable for example going with him to off premises clubs, but would probably try the patience of most swinger couples with my need for emotional connection. Otherwise, I think things will work out okay, because we have set down some fairly clear starting rules for what we can each do individually.
Hopefully I haven't made all this clearer than mud with all my detail!
Hi Athena & welcome,
Well, it seems you two have a pretty healthy and logical approach to this whole process. You've put a couple very important pieces in proper perspective.
1> His preference for just some 'sexual' variation - as long as handled respectively and safely is not in conflict with your bond. It's just 'sex' !
2> Your desire to prefer to at least know and have some level of trust and respect for his partners is very reasonable and we'd say desirable. It adds to the openness and honesty which is just a much better environment for everyone.
Now..........that all being said.....
There's a couple pieces of the evolution we'd recommend you explore before you get too deeply committed to going down this path.
1> He needs to understand your needs & preferences about your own potential partners and that your requirement for a deeper bond - dare we use the "L" word - is something he needs to start processing in advance. I.E. Am I going to be able to feel good about my wife loving (and having sex with) someone else ? Easy to say when it's not real and in your face :) Process now rather than later.
2>You have to acknowledge, depending on your - particularly his - lifestyles, that there's always going to be that possibility that he might find himself in a situation where sex would be an option without - if we want to call it - 'pre-approval'. For example, if he has to travel a lot for business etc. This is part of the trust issue you need to develop between you. You have to trust and believe that your feelings and concerns are foremost in his mind and that he'll use his best judgment as circumstances arise.
Personally we prefer this approach to rigid 'rules'. Although we have a 'desire' that we both know each other's partners in advance to just get second opinions if you will, we also acknowledge that we know & trust each other well enough to let things develop as they naturally will which means some 'activity' might occur before we all get to meet - at least in person. We proceed with the idea that the 'plan' is for us all to be 'together' in this, but that we're not going to get hung up over the chicken/egg syndrome.
Good luck. KISS (keep it simple, silly)
I'm runnign out the door right now and don't have time to put in a long response ... which I will later ... but I definitely understand your concerns better now. :)
I'll tell you that right now I'm in a relationship with someone who swings with his wife. I don't swing - I'm like you and need the emotional connection. It doesn't bother me that he swings - with or w/out his wife - and he understands that I prefer a stronger emotional bond. It's something that we've done a LOT of talking about A lot. And then even some more talking. :)
I have more thoughts about where my guy and I have come to some realizations and I'll post them later tonight when I have more time ... but yeah. It's workable (or has been so far for us). It just takes a lot of self-knowledge and communication.
I think you might be underestimating how hard it is to maintain one relationship with a small child, much less start new ones. I can't even express how hard it is to maintain intimacy with a baby in the house. If I had to deal with all of the poly issues that I've encountered over the past year while my children were babies...oh boy. Single mom, anyone? I hope you guys will give yourselves that space.
As for the rest of it...well, I'm just as interested in the answer as you are. I'm polyfidelitous, and I have no desire for casual sex or anything without an emotional bond. My husband is more casual but not really interested in trying to find anything outside of what he has. My boyfriend might not be my boyfriend because he can't decide if he's monogamous. His wife, our girlfriend, doesn't equate sex with emotions and we are currently trying very hard to make our views mesh. When we began the relationship, we negotiated (what I thought was) permanent polyfidelity, but here we are a year later renegotiating. It might just be a situation of trial and error compromises to find out what works.
Personally we prefer this approach to rigid 'rules'. Although we have a 'desire' that we both know each other's partners in advance to just get second opinions if you will, we also acknowledge that we know & trust each other well enough to let things develop as they naturally will which means some 'activity' might occur before we all get to meet - at least in person.
Actually GS our rules are relatively simple (and the only one that does not have exception is to practice safe sex). In terms of notification... prior is preferable, but in cases where the individual is likely to never be seen or heard from again, post can be ok.
I have also really pressed my husband on how he would feel if I developed an emotional bond to some one else, and he is pretty convinced that as long as the new bond remained a 'secondary' one he would be ok.
Thanks to all who are posting!
can i suggest that you read another thread? It may NEVER be an issue-but the issue its about came about due to some serious miscommunication of personal boundaries (where he felt more comfortable with casual sex then she did).
That said-you're on a good track taking time to decide how you want to do things. I can't give specific advice, as we are (as someone else mentioned) polyfidelitious (how the heck do you spelll that it always feels like I spelled it wrong!) but I'm very interested in answers!!
A couple I know...Well, I'm dating him. She strongly identifies as poly, is very interested in relationships, has 2 boyfriends, one of whom lives with them, and had a girlfriend for several months....He's apparently been a bit more casual in his approach, and hasn't had any officially-labeled relationships, but he seems like if he likes someone enough to have sex with her, he's going to want to have sex with her again, on a regular basis, for a long time.
So, they have different ways of doing the ethical non-monogamy thing. One of her boyfriends had even posted in his blog (awhile before I met any of them) about how most of their "tribe" was poly, but her husband wasn't, but that he was very respectful/cool/supportive about the whole thing....and it's not like he exactly goes out of his way to avoid emotional involvement.
So, it doesn't seem like it matters much to anyone that they have slightly different styles.
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