Where do we fit in?
I came to this site because my marriage is not conventional and we hit a snag. As I read some of the threads on here, I am confused and don't know if I'm in the right forum or if there even IS a forum for my relationship.
My husband and I have an open marriage. I see many threads on here the go on and on about the importance of trust and communication. I completely agree and these two well repeated foundations are in line with what we are dealing with. Then we come to the points on wanting your partner to be happy and be happy yourself. Right there with you still.
But we are not seeking an external love relationship with anyone but each other. I don't know if I would ever be happy and he says he too would not likely be made happy at the idea of either of us cultivating love outside of our primary bond.
So where do we turn when we hit a bump or snag? Is everyone on this site trying to convey they only have sex that includes love and commitment? Is this some way of trying to get your lifestyle to be more palatable to conventional folks? Like when we were in high school and everyone cared too much who everyone else was having sex with while using the justification for our own sexual activities to be that we were in love and that made it okay?
I am aware that a love bond can be forged out of physical interactions and pleasure, but I have also enjoyed sex that did not include love. My friends are my friends because I enjoy their company, but I don't have sex with my friends and I don't romantically love my friends. I have never experienced misplaced or "forbidden" love. I have never been in love with two people before nor wanted to.
We are clear about things with the people we have seen. We do not restrict ourselves to ONS only and have a set of rules we both felt would be reassuring. Still, this is new to us and we'd love to have a place to look to for guidance while navigating our newish circumstances.
I realize this kind of circumstance is a fluid one and that no one can really predict where it will lead to in life. We both are people who think with our heads more than our hearts, but who knows - maybe we will be different in the future. Maybe it will lead us to poly and we will live our last years shacked up with another fully incorporated couple. For now though, where do we fit in?
The world of non-monogamy includes those who swing, those who have open relationships with a single partner, and those who have multiple romantic relationships. These boards are intended to discuss the latter--having multiple romantic relationships--which is known as polyamory.
Some poly folk *also* swing. Others *also* have open relationships where they're free to date or fuck people with whom they're not romantically involved. Some poly folk also do both.
"Is this some way of trying to get your lifestyle to be more palatable to conventional folks?"
No. That's discussion of how we have romantic relationships with other people. We don't talk about having wives and girlfriends or husbands and boyfriends in an attempt to be accepted, we talk about them because those are the people with whom we're involved.
For example, my wife and I are poly. Although I do not currently have a girlfriend, I have in the past and will in the future (same for my wife). We are also open, so we can date and/or sex up somebody with whom we're not romantically involved. So, we do poly and we do open (we don't swing).
There are lots of folks here who also have open relationships, though they also do poly relationships. You're welcome to hang out and chat with us, though I don't expect there to be a great many threads just on open relationships. There are enough of us here who do that, though, that you should be able to find people to talk to about it.
There are plenty of swinger websites. I'd recommend swingersboard, as it has plenty of thoughtful forum topics.
As previously said, it sounds like you are swinging.
In swinging, the emphasis is on the physical aspect of the relationship and no love needs to be involved.
Polyamory is more about the emotional aspect of a relationship and in some cases doesn't involve sex.
They overlap to some extent, but I would say your case is into swing territory. You might want to look up "swinging" or "swinger" and see if you find something that fits your situation.
Good luck! :)
Yeah, I looked into that. It didn't really seem reflective of us either. We don't play with a tit for tat angle (if you sleep with my wife, I get to sleep with your wife) and we don't not get to know who we see or not care who they are as a person.
I'm feeling pretty discouraged. It feels like the monogamy troupe and the poly troupe are rife with judgment and lacking in acceptance. While I can understand why the people who think monogamy is the "right" relationship model will struggle with remaining objective about people who don't practice monogamy, I'm a bit dismayed to find it it seems that way on this site too. I'm finding it hard to believe that everyone who is into poly loves who they have sex with before having sex with them.
I don't wish to be disrespectful of anyone's lifestyle choices. In reading some stories on this site and on the swinger site, I found this one to have more I can identify with. I'm sorry. I tried to take our issue to an advise forum and all I got was judgment.
Maybe I'll just poke around and keep to myself so no one is offended. Thanks.
While I don't swing I have been in an open relationship. Some people consider what I was doing swinging. Just a matter of perspective I suppose.
And as any fyi, not everyone on this site says sex has to come with love. Poly to me simply means I can love more than one. Which I am full capable of. I am also capable of enjoy the company of a woman without having to love her :)
Cheers, welcome to the forum
We're not kicking you out or anything! If you feel you can relate to what we're talking about, by all means you're free to stay.
I was just worried many of us might not relate to your experiences, and as a result would be unable to give you advice.
For instance, personally, the way my relationships work is:
A) I fall in love with someone, usually to my greatest surprise.
B) I try to pursue said person, first by being close as a friend then by confessing I like them or asking them out.
C) If they feel the same, date them. If not, cry.
D) At some point along the relationship, sex occurs (if B was successful, that is).
So giving advice about casual sex is pretty much impossible for me, since it's not part of my life. Of course, not everyone follows my pattern either, and those who do don't always do for every relationship.
I'm just acknowledging that I'm no help here, and certainly not trying to kick you out. I hope you can still feel welcomed. I for one don't see anything wrong with casual sex, it's just not for me. I tried it and disliked it and I have no interest in trying again.
So, I can't help you, that's all I'm saying. Welcome here either way :)
I will say this as well.
Stick around. Most of us fall into poly face first from being open/swinging. You are preparing yourself. I think thats very healthy and mature
Welcome to the forums, hope you enjoy the view :)
Ari, glad to see you hopped on this one, too! :D
Welcome, Vinccenzo! Please don't feel discouraged. While some of the conversations on this forum may exclude you simply because of how your lifestyle works, it is not intentional. About the only intolerance I've seen on this board is for cheating and dishonesty with no intent to change. I would be "guilty" of that intolerance myself. But, you've already made it clear this is not the case!
I can probably relate to your situation. I am open as well as poly. Currently I'm not sleeping with anyone other than my fiancÚ and boyfriend, but I have this option if I choose to exercise it.
I do find I have a different MO than many around here. (Different, not better or worse!)
A) I go looking for a relationship, whether it's strictly sexual or more.
B) I meet a person I am interested in.
C) If I feel comfortable with them and they are completely open to me and my questions, I fall in lust with them.
D) We have sex. This could be it. Usually it is not.
E) We continue to chat and get to know each other.
F) From this, either we part on pleasant terms because something is not "there", or some sort of friendship or more is established. It really depends on what both of us were looking for and if we're compatible.
When I was single, this variation also occured:
A) I want sex.
B) Call a friend.
C) Have sex.
D) Continue on with life.
So ask away!
Sorry I'm being so sensitive. What we are currently dealing with, I took to a regular advise forum and got blasted pretty badly over what I shared. We were seen simply as feckless cheaters lacking in morals with me so naive for thinking any thing but the end of our relationship could come from our behavior.
Should I start a thread about the issue or can I just include it in this thread. the other site had very strict rules and gave infractions to posters about what you could and could not post in particular forums. This being an introduction sub forum of this site, I don't want to break any rules or receive any infractions for posting incorrectly.
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