Originally Posted by WhatHappened
Here's another, joining in.
After a year of being half in this poly world, here's the thing I still don't understand, and maybe you can explain. Judging by the sounds of it, you already have permanence, affection, and love from your wife. Why are you seeking it from a second person? What do you hope to gain by having these things from your wife and another woman? What will it add to your life?
Perfectly legitimate questions. I would get much tougher ones from relatives and friends were I to reveal my polyness to them!
Three answers, without too much elaboration:
1. Variety, just as nycindie suggests. I like my wife's cooking too, but still like to try other peoples' (and restaurants') cooking.
2. An affirmation that I can (still) get somebody to fall for me.
3. It's an adventure. In an analogous way, I am happy in Vancouver, it's safe and pleasant, so why would I want to go to explore Brazil and Japan, as I almost certainly will? It's not that I want to leave Vancouver permanently, but I would like the adventure of exploring a foreign place.
Plus, although this is not a reason, I now have the time. Until last year I worked full time, until a few years ago we still had children at home who needed my constant time and presence. That didn't leave much time for extracurricular activities.
Originally Posted by WhatHappened
I completely get an open marriage and swinging if it's the desire to have sex with other people. I completely understand happening to meet a second person, falling in love, wanting to be with them, a relationship developing, and not wanting to lose either person. (For reference, my bf has come to this much more as having been a swinger, then transitioning into him and his wife dating separately, but in reality, they've been doing this for 15 years and I'm the first genuine real-life relationship he's had, and I think it took him by surprise.)
But I have yet to understand why people decide to deliberately seek out a second relationship when they're married.
I'm just curious about your reasons for doing so.
Well, I haven't actually sought out anything yet. I go to parties and scan OK Cupid, even send little e-mails, but none of this is particularly noteworthy. (I know, many wives wouldn't see it like that, but then my wife is not like most wives).
I don't even know if I would actually go through with it if the occasion presented itself. Maybe I'd chicken out. Not to mention whether I could... (at my age, you never know, although it's not usually a problem). Wouldn't that be embarrassing!
But what I wanted to avoid is exactly the kind of situation you describe. If I wait with my declaration of "poly-hood" until I meet with someone and form some kind of emotional rapport, it is bound to become messy. Either my wife will be upset about being presented with a fait-accompli, or I hurt the other person by leading her on then backing out because I don't want to damage my marriage, or both. Of course, it could still become messy, but at least I have done some pre-thinking.
I know that this sounds cold and calculating, but I prefer to plan for contingencies rather than be the victim of circumstances.
Now that I have answered why at least one happily married man would look for a poly "affair", let me ask you why do you think an unmarried (or even married) woman would enter such a relationship? This was my purpose in starting this thread, after all. Don't most women want more from a relationship than what a married man can give them? Onoma seems to think that there are lots of women like that, all I need is a confident approach, less intellectualizing and maybe dress better. What do you think?