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poppet 03-09-2013 04:47 PM

I think that I have found the most wonderful person to create a life with. I have never been shy about having multiple partners and laid my cards on the table with him. I believe that I can love many people at the same time. I believe marriage is a hold out for property and reproductive rights. I believe sex does not always equal intimacy, but intimacy can be a part of sex. To my delight, he said that he feels the same way about love, relationships, and sex.

He is 12 years my senior. He is approaching his 54th birthday (which I don't think of as all *that* old) and has a keen interest in finding me “another boyfriend.” His criteria for this bf: employed, humble, cute, attentive, and no drugs/alcohol/smoking. His concerns are in the immediate future, I will be provided with additional sex partner for when he is unable to perform (his words). He also wants to make certain that I will have someone to care for me in his absence due to ED, dementia, aging, death…

I have only one problem with this and that is I am no longer interested in a FWB or sexual relationship with out intimacy, love, or trust. I have explained that I am not satisfied with just an orgasm and that connections are more important to me. Because of this, I am very happy with our relationship, even if he is not able to have sex every day. I told him that although it is important to have sex, it is not the only thing that I enjoy about our relationship.

What I have not told him is my very confusing feelings from my previous relationship still exist. My ex and I discussed open relationship, polyamory, and FWB. After a few years, we decided to include others in our relationship. His idea of an open relationship was his rules, without much discussion. One of the rules was if I had sex with someone else, I had to have sex with him to keep things in balance. He didn’t want me to have sex with anyone at our house, in our bed, etc. And I could not talk about any complicated feelings that may have come up. Eventually, he discovered that he was not interested in an open relationship, but he was interested in cuckolding. This sorta explained all the rules, but didn’t help me much with the emotions. And I had a few relationships that were primarily sexual encounters with others that I then described in detail with my ex. When I became attached or felt anything more than lust for the other person, my ex would be confrontational with my other partner and they would (eventually) leave.

I have explained some of this to my current partner and I think he understands, having met my ex. And I do appreciate that he wants to find more support and open our relationship up to others. I get a little anxious when he describes the additional person in terms of how he could be included in sexual activities. I mentioned that I don’t think I am capable of having sex, without being attached and in a loving relationship with anyone. He is accepting of this and said that’s okay.

So, great, what’s the problem, right?

The problem is me. I worry about the arguments and/or endings that I experienced with my ex. I want to include another partner in all aspects of my life and not having restrictions/rules. Too soon to include someone else? Cold feet?

Suggestions on next steps welcome.


AnnabelMore 03-10-2013 12:12 AM

"The problem is me. I worry about the arguments and/or endings that I experienced with my ex. I want to include another partner in all aspects of my life and not having restrictions/rules. Too soon to include someone else? Cold feet?"

Have you just laid this out to him, straightforwardly? It may be too soon to include another partner in your life in the way you seem to be describing, but it's not too soon to be talking about it. I mean, could you just show him your thread here?

kdt26417 03-10-2013 02:54 AM

I would assume the next step would be to have a heart-to-heart with your partner to find out what kind of rules (if any) he will establish. During this discussion, ask him if he is willing to refrain from establishing any rules that would hamper your ability to form a close emotional relationship with other people. And tell him that you are struggling with some anxiety due to your experience with your ex.


"I want to include another partner in all aspects of my life and not having restrictions/rules."
Is any of this negotiable in any way?

I am in an MFM "V" where we all live together, share a lot, and have easygoing routines that can be flexible. We still have a few "rules," some dealing with privacy, some with outside relationships, etc.

What I am saying is, sometimes people have rules or boundaries even when they are closely emotionally bonded. This can be true in a monogamous relationship, as well as in a polyamorous relationship. There's a difference between having a few rules and having a *lot* of rules.

Having thought about that, if you still conclude that the ex's rules caused too much trauma and you *absolutely* need/want/require an absolute absence of poly relationship rules, then, make that fact crystal clear to your current partner when you talk to him.

I would hold off on seeking a new partner until you and your current partner have firm and comprehensive agreements about what you're both comfortable with. When you do seek a new partner, bear in mind that he will be a unique person with needs/quirks of his own. So you may need some flexibility in order to meld the new person into your life.

You'll have time to think, talk, ponder, and study; take advantage of that opportunity. Examine your needs, determine what wiggle room you have, and hypothesize about where you could bend.

Hope this helps,
Kevin T.

nycindie 03-10-2013 04:52 AM

Well, I would just tell him that no one is going to be finding your other boyfriend, or setting any criteria for a boyfriend, but YOU!!! It's rather ridiculous that he thinks he gets a say in who you would form another relationship with. Is he in charge of choosing your friends, too? Will he be telling you what members of your family you are allowed to see? If not, why does he think he is in charge of how you choose to share your body and life? It isn't up to him, honey, it's your life!

You're not saying you need help picking out drapes for the living room, you're saying you want another lover. If he thinks he has to tell you what to look for, he doesn't trust you or your decision-making process. Is he wiser than you are? Does he know better what (who) is good for you? Go cautiously into this situation - you seem to pick men in your life that like to be dictators and boss you around. I think it is time you stood on your own two feet and were more self-determining in your life. Remember it is YOUR body, YOUR heart, YOUR life - YOUR choices to make!

poppet 03-10-2013 01:19 PM

Thank you all for your responses. Very much appreciated.

"could you just show him your thread here?"
Yes, I did. Well, I created my post in a document a few days ago. I sent the document to him and posted it here. After he read it, he said 2 things. 1. "I am not Mark." 2. "You do not have to do anything you are not comfortable with and we can talk about anything that may come up for you."

As for rules, I am not willing to set down rules. Boundaries I can live with, but rules I cannot. For me, it is if you do not have equal input and agreement about wording, it is a rule. Teachers lay out rules for classroom behaviors. Some teachers create rules together with their students and ask for input and write out what the students say in their own words. Other teachers ask for input, then say, "OK. Why don't we make the rule "Be respectful." This later approach I find is not truly in the spirit of collaboration. I think of boundaries as negotiable limits, things that can be disputed or redrawn. It seems to allow for more flexibility and communication possibilities.

And nycindie, you are absolutely right about my decisions and his inclusion in that. Of course, I would not agree that he is a dictator or bosses me around. As for the criteria that was a discussion I started about what would be "deal breakers" for him, if I wanted to have another person in my life and living with us. I asked because of my ex's hostility towards others. And I asked because he seems to have an exact idea of what this additional person should be like. He has these romantic notions of finding the right person for me based on his conceptions. Without further clarification, I can only guess at what these things are. So, I question these things, such as his idea of "humble." (I picture Wilbur the pig from Charlotte's Web.) So I ask - What does that word mean to you because to me it sounds like you don't want competition, is that correct? It happened to not be accurate on my part, but it did lead into further discussion about his ideal partner. His idea of humble is the opposite of arrogant + a healthy dose of respect. I frequently say, "When you say ___, do you mean ___?" I ask clarifying questions about lots of things, "When you say you are going to take out the trash, what is your timeframe on that?" or "Is it mort important to do this or to finish that?" I guess this is just another area that I am asking about.

So I tentatively continue to explore the idea of another person in our relationship. I ask too many questions and have way too many discussions. I am not really in a hurry to expand this relationship, but if someone were to come along, I would like to have some of the opening questions out of the way.

His response to what boundaries he would want is he would not want to be excluded from the conversations or activities, but he did say he doesn't need to be involved in everything. Followed by, he would not want to lose our connection together. My response was that will happen, if we stop talking about stuff or begin/continue to make assumptions. Thank you for assisting me in exploring this with you.

kdt26417 03-10-2013 07:46 PM

The idea that boundaries are mutually decided and open for renegotiation is a good one. I would stand by that.

Communication is a big deal, so I am glad you are talking a lot with your current partner, and getting things figured out.

Good luck, and keep us posted on how things are going.

Kevin T.

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