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-   -   New person to polyamory/open relationship (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=42690)

tigerlilly 03-14-2013 07:11 AM

New person to polyamory/open relationship
 
are you automatically the secondary if you are dating one person in an open relationship?

JaneQSmythe 03-14-2013 01:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by tigerlilly (Post 190759)
are you automatically the secondary if you are dating one person in an open relationship?

No, not automatically (but it seems to happen quite commonly).
(Remember too, that not everyone uses the primary/secondary hierarchy.)

Say A and B have been dating for some time, but B is interested in dating lots of people and doesn't want to have any "primary-type" relationships at the current time. Say you start dating A, you two could develop a "primary-type" relationship while A and B maintain a "secondary-type" relationship. (Not saying that that is common - just that it could happen.)

Oftentimes, the relationship that has been going on the longest will have assumed "primary-type" proportions. Which doesn't mean that the newer relationships will necessarily remain "secondary" - but a "dating-partner" (trying the relationship on for size) is NOT the same level of involvement as a "life-partner" (relationship confirmed, committed to being together long-term). Which is NOT to say that that relationship is not significant - or that the individual does not deserve support and respect in their own right. If the "dating-partner" relationship grows and strengthens to "life-partner" - then you are heading towards "co-primary" regions.

JaneQ

learninginTN 03-14-2013 02:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by tigerlilly (Post 190759)
are you automatically the secondary if you are dating one person in an open relationship?

It really just depends on the nature of the relationship. If they are in an established relationship, and have shared goals, like common bills, common assets, raising children together, etc., and you don't share in those responsibilities, then yes, that would be a "secondary" role as most folks define it. You may not be labeled as such, but that term is useful is setting out the nature of your relationship with them.

Now, if you get to the point where you're living with them, sharing in the financial and child-rearing responsibilities, etc., you might become a "co-primary".

Try not to get hung up on the labels, though. In many relationships, a secondary is an extremely important part of the relationship, and in many cases, even if they don't share in the household responsibilities, may be "equals" of the heart in terms of the love that is shared.


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