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-   -   Date advice (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=33720)

Tampopo 11-30-2012 11:53 PM

Date advice
Hi everyone,

I would like advice on how to disclose I am married when on a date.

Our arrangement is that I can date women short-term and sleep with them once but not spend the night over.

I am probably going to go on a date in the next bit.

I have not disclosed I am married yet. I have not hid the fact - I have worn my wedding ring in front of her, but I don't think she has noticed.

I met the woman at a social dance and asked her to coffee when we dance. We seen each other a couple of times at social dance and traded some emails.

I am planning a cooking date at one of our places probably.

She seems pretty eager, in the last email saying I have made her smile and won her over.

I am leaving this city to go back to school 6 hours away in christmas and she knows this.

How is the best way (and least awkward way) to disclose I am married in your opinions?


polychronopolous 12-01-2012 01:44 AM

There are any number of ways you could bring up the fact that you are married. You could bring it up it casually in coversation to get the topic started. You might mention your wife likes X-thing that this woman likes, etc. But I would be sure she is aware that you are married and also that you do not plan to see her again after "sealing the deal." If you plan to be at all ethical you should be sure she knows exactly what she is getting into so she can make an informed decision on whether or not she wants to get involved in this situation, however temporary.


AnnabelMore 12-01-2012 06:13 AM

Oh, I actually feel rather sorry for this woman. :/ Here she may well think that you are pursuing her as a serious interest, and yet under the rules of your relationship, you and she can only be intimate once -- that's actually rather tragic in a way, if she's developing real feelings for you. I would tell her at once, via email, and let her decide if she wants to go any further. Also, I would strongly consider renegotiating your arrangement with your wife. It just seems cruel, to the other women if not to you. I mean, go to swinger's clubs if you're just going to sleep with a woman once and then never again, don't go through the motions of trying to develop something meaningful.

riftara 12-01-2012 07:03 AM

I have to agree with annabel.

Either hookup with woman at a bar or something, where they know there is nothing beyond the one-night stands you are allowed to have, or renegotiate with your wife.

At least tell this woman your arrangement with your wife BEFORE your date night! She may have hoped for at least a month long fling.

I know in the beginning, my husband and I were one night stands only as well, but as I've grown and our relationship has matured, I prefer the relationships I have now. And I prefer him to have relationships over one night stands, not that one nighters dont happen still occasionally but we both prefer relationships. The sex is better anyway!

Tampopo 12-01-2012 03:07 PM

Thanks for the input!
Hi guys, I appreciate the feedback, its easy to try and fool yourself to hold back on disclosing.

Anyways, I sent an email telling her that when I initially asked her for coffee, I was not sure of whether it was going to be a friend thing or something more than a platonic thing, but now because I sense its more than platonic, I told her I was married, I can only see women short terms and there are other rules if she wants to know more.

If she contacts back I'll explain the "sleep together once, but then it has to be a threesome with my wife".

Thanks for helping me stay transparent.

I was kind of shocked how strongly she came on because we haven't gone out yet and over the last month chatted once on the phone for 10 minutes and exchanged a couple of emails.

If you don't mind, could you give me advice on how to discuss this "one-night rule" with my wife or just share your experience?

Ideally, I would want to see women even up to having girlfriends. I don't just want to sleep with them, but also date them.

For me, ideally, I have a gf. For her, ideally our relationship is closed. We both thought this was a doable and a fair compromise.

My wife has said she can accept me being physically attracted and physically pursue other women, but doesn't want any emotions involved between the other women and I.

Basically, she says she is scared that I would develop feelings for someone else and leave her. She said in her personal experience that is how she operates.

I have explained that for me, its about a division between infatuation and love. Basically, I want to act on my infatuation with other women. For me, infatuation is 100% an emotional thing, while love is both emotional (but often more subtle as the chemicals have worn off) and a lot about choices and behaviour (choosing to build a life, commitment).

I have tried to explain to my wife that there is always going to be an emotional component when pursuing women - I am not looking to fuck a pretty robot with a nice pair of tits and a tight ass - there has to be some affection and general like of the woman too.

I try to explain that affection is not a finite resource for me - just because I have a crush or affection for someone else does not mean I have any less love for her.

Love to hear your comments and thanks for the advice. Don't have many immediate friends involved in this kind of thing, so its great to get advice from others who have experience in this,

Anyone been in this kind of debate?


AnnabelMore 12-01-2012 08:51 PM

Ok, you say that your wife doesn't want you to have feelings for anyone else. And you say that you realize that feelings will necessarily be involved. With you two still failing to see eye to eye on this, I've gotta ask, what makes you think it's time to take the step to involve another person? If and when feelings DO come into it, will your wife feel betrayed? Will she demand that you end it? How can you put another person in that position?

I really think you guys need to sort out this difference in perspective before you start courting anyone.

Also, this -- "sleep together once, but then it has to be a threesome with my wife" -- is just pretty messed up, I'm sorry. At least you're putting it out front, so it's not like it's unethical, but... it sure as heck is unrealistic, and even kind of creepy. I mean, what if a woman you're seeing thinks she'll be fine with a one-night thing, but then she comes to really like you, even love you. She knows that the "price of admission" if she wants to be intimate with you again is to be with your wife too. Maybe she likes your wife, maybe not. Maybe she's into women at all, maybe not. But have you considered the fact that this hypothetical woman you've been dating might agree to the threesome as a way to be with you, even if she *doesn't* like your wife, even if she *doesn't* like women? I mean, I know this isn't what you're trying to do, you're just trying to make a compromise with your wife, but when you say that women who like you get one chance to be with just you, and after that it's group sex or nothing, it sounds almost like you're luring them in to a situation where they may well feel pressured into doing something they don't really want to do. Why would you set up that situation? Doesn't that seem a little off to you?

And what is the point of that rule anyway? To avoid jealousy on your wife's part? Jealousy can certainly happen in threesomes. To make things "fair"? Wouldn't "fair" be that your wife gets to pursue people who are into HER, not people who are into you? To keep "too much" emotional intimacy from developing since some people (mistakenly, in my view) believe that threesomes are less intimate?

Yes, you can feel affection for someone without feeling less love for your wife. But if you court someone, date them, kiss them, hold their hand, and then make love to them, all within the context of an emotional relationship -- don't lie to your wife and pretend it'll just be about "affection", that no love will come into it, which seems to be what she wants and expects. You can split hairs all you like, but lots of people love each other deeply without building their lives together, so to say that it would be a matter of "infatuation", not "love" just because you're not making the choice to be committed to another woman is disingenuous, in my view.

Furthermore, do you really think that when it comes down to it, when you've been dating a woman for a while and you two really like each other, and you've finally slept together, if that other woman then tells you, tearfully, that she can't bear not to see you again but that she's just not attracted to women, that you'll really be able to look her in the eyes and say "Sorry, dear, either sleep with my wife or never touch me intimately again." Ugh. I think chances are much better that, if it should ever come to that, you'd go back to your wife and renegotiate. Which means you need to renegotiate now, because you're going into this with a plan that's built to fail.

Read www.morethantwo.com and some of the other great resources out there. Ask your wife to read them too. Explain to her that you believe that you can love -- not just feel affection for, but love -- someone else, and not love her less or dismiss your commitment to your marriage. Explain that you're not willing to put another woman in the cruel position of feeling pressured into group sex. And renegotiate. Maybe this will take a lot longer than you thought it would. Maybe it's not even really possible. But don't lie to yourself, and your wife, and other women, by pretending that you've actually reached a place where everyone is on the same page and you've set up a system that will work. If your wife won't budge, maybe you can go to bars and pick up women for one night stands, or go to swinger's clubs, but I really don't feel it's cool to "date" women that you can't have actual relationships with, for anyone involved.

Finally, I'm curious what you meant by "I was kind of shocked how strongly she came on". You said that she said that you "made her smile and won her over." That sounds to me like a pretty normal, unshocking thing for a woman who thinks she's being pursued for a relationship to say. Maybe she thinks she's finally met a man who might want to settle down. Anyway, I'm glad that you emailed her.

WhatHappened 12-03-2012 06:49 AM

Luring and creepy sprang to mind here, too. I'd be incredibly turned off by a guy telling me that.

Tampopo 12-06-2012 02:34 AM

Anabelle, thanks for the advice!
Yeah, I guess you were right - in attempt for my wife and I to find a compromise we totally overlooked the other person's interests and feelings.

Maybe even more importantly, I realized that maybe I was splitting hairs over the affection and love, either way its having feelings for someone else. I guess that means I can have feelings for more than one person and that makes me poly.

Anyways, it felt pretty good owning that and explaining that to my wife. It was a bit intense but I think we are cool with it and it actually made me even more positive about my marriage too.

We haven't renegotiated the rules but I see how the one-night threesome thing is kind of creepy. I guess I will focus on one-night stands for now and try to renegotiate in the future if I feel the need.

GalaGirl 12-06-2012 02:39 AM


I guess I will focus on one-night stands for now and try to renegotiate in the future if I feel the need.
Well... you could focus on getting into right relationship with your wife first. You have already started, so focus on strengthening the communication there?

Maybe don't even bother with one night stands if that is NOT the happiness you are looking for? You sound like you want the opportunity for serious dating and developing a serious girlfriend.

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Daysleeper 12-08-2012 04:50 PM

I think you and your wife can have whatever boundaries you want, but if it were me I'd tell people right away, like before or during asking them out. That way they don't get their hopes up. If you are not in a setting where you can explain, ask for a number or email. Tell them in the first one.

If you asked me out, I'd not only want to know the sexual boundaries, but also that you're not allowed to have a gf. You might run into a weirdo like me who likes threesomes and might be willing to try a relationship with mandatory group sex.

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