Hello. My husband and I have claimed, off and on, to have an “open” relationship for the past 18 years. (“Open” is what we are calling it right now. I am a bit confused with some of the different definitions for relationship styles and hesitate to label because I think we may actually fall somewhere in a hybrid camp.) However, we have struggled and slipped in and out of a rather shaky agreement to be monogamous when things didn’t work out quite the way we had envisioned, which was almost every time.
Many years ago we didn’t really have anyone to talk to about our relationship style choice, and we weren’t sure where to go for support. We even went to a marriage counselor who would not even let us consider working on being “open” when we told him that was what we wanted to work toward. So, I feel as though I am actually new to this relationship lifestyle and so grateful for the technology that allows for forums like this to exist. I have read many posts here already and have learned a lot from all of you who have much more experience than I. It is really inspiring to see others who are managing their relationships so thoughtfully even with varying levels of success and have this support system for each other.
My husband and I are working from a place of healing now. I jumped the gun and wrote our story in the Life Stories and Blog forum already. I wish I could say for certain that things will be different this time, but I am not sure about that. But, I am ok with that.
I agree with the principles laid out in Ethical Slut. It has become a bit of a reference tool for me. I think it is a great guide for any relationship, whether it be poly or not, romantically inclined or not. I am ok with whatever works, including monogamy, but I would prefer a polyamorous, or open (?), arrangement, as long as it includes compassion and thoughtfulness. I am hoping to learn much more from those of you who have much more experience here.