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Old 03-10-2012, 02:42 PM
noob noob is offline
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Default fluid bonding

Hi! I bet there are other threads on this topic, but the search function wasn't working for me, so feel free to point me in the direction of other threads.

Anyhow, I have a question about when and how you guys choose to fluid bond with a partner. I had a fluid bonded secondary partner for a few months but ultimately decided the risk was too great for me. He was given to/interested in taking many partners, and even though he used condoms with everyone but his primary and me, I just wasn't comfortable with that--and I wasn't sure what his primary was up to; when we first started, she had no other partners, but then she took a partner I found sketchy and that altered my risk assessment. We've since stopped having sex. There's a chance we may resume sex again, but protected only.

I now have a very close, loving secondary relationship with another man (in addition to my marriage). My secondary currently has no other partners and is STI free, as am I. My only other partner is my husband (we are fluid bonded part-time but often use condoms for contraception), who currently has no other partners. Pregnancy isn't a concern with my secondary, as he has a vasectomy. I'd really like to fluid bond with him, and he with me. But my worry is...will I change my mind later if he adds partners? Will he change his mind if I do? And does that matter?

He says it doesn't, that we can always shift back to using barriers later if need be and we shouldn't take it personally if one or the other of us wants to do that. However, practically speaking, I found it to be an utter shitshow to try to revert to condom use after fluid bonding with my last secondary--he took it really hard and didn't want to go back to barriers. We did, but I feel like making that switch damaged our relationship.

Basically, do you view fluid bonding as a permanent choice, or (pun!) fluid? In a way it feels like an emotional commitment to be barrier free with a partner, and revoking fluid bonding can feel like a step away from your partner and away from deep connection...but in another way, I feel like the issue of fluid bonding is a health issue, and partners shouldn't make it into an emotional issue if barriers need to come back into the relationship. In other words, I'm worried about going barrier free, needing to go back, and the effect this could have on our relationship. I don't want a repeat shitshow, but this is a different partner...Thoughts?

Last edited by noob; 03-10-2012 at 02:49 PM.
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Old 03-10-2012, 02:47 PM
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NovemberRain NovemberRain is offline
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Personally, if it became a shitshow, I would take that as a sign that person was not the partner for me.

It makes absolute sense to go back and forth, when other circumstances change. How could it be permanent when other partners, unknown to you at time of bonding, are involved? Fluid-bonding is not just with your partner, it's with all their partners, and all their partner's partners. That's a lot of fluid.
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Old 03-10-2012, 02:55 PM
noob noob is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NovemberRain View Post
Personally, if it became a shitshow, I would take that as a sign that person was not the partner for me.
Honestly this is a lot of why I am not sure if I want to be sexually involved with this person ever again. I love him, but my gut feeling is that that shouldn't have been the issue he made it into.

Quote:

It makes absolute sense to go back and forth, when other circumstances change. How could it be permanent when other partners, unknown to you at time of bonding, are involved? Fluid-bonding is not just with your partner, it's with all their partners, and all their partner's partners. That's a lot of fluid.
Right. This is how I feel, but in practice, it didn't happen that way before I feel like you can't really commit to fluid bonding forever, and you can't even commit hypothetically to which situations you'd stay bonded in (e.g. "I'd stay fluid bonded if you took another partner but used condoms with her")...because it honestly depends on who the partner is, who her partners are, and how many people are involved with it all, and their fluid bonding.

***

Slightly related note: is it strange that I would rather be fluid bonded with my secondary even if it means forgoing other opportunities? For example, if I knew that he'd want to go back to barriers if I started sleeping with my ex, it would influence my decision of whether to sleep with my ex...

Please forgive me if I'm asking dumb questions. I'm still fairly new to poly.
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Old 03-10-2012, 06:42 PM
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nycindie nycindie is offline
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Hi, I don't know why you had problems with the search function but I have a few links for you.

Incidentally, I shared these with you back in December when you started a thread called "safe sex circles." Were these, or any of the other feedback you got, not helpful? BTW, one of the link urls in my original post has changed, I've fixed the quote below to show the corrected url:

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Originally Posted by nycindie View Post
Here is one short article about fluid bonding aka "condom contract" and poly: Safer Sex Options

Here is another interesting short article about it (substitute the author's term "two people" with however many people will be bonded with you): Fluid Bonding

Here's another discussion thread on this site about fluid bonding: fluid bonding/bareback

You may also be interested in this thread: Safe Sex - Standards, Practices, Information & Resources
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Old 03-11-2012, 04:26 AM
noob noob is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nycindie View Post
Hi, I don't know why you had problems with the search function but I have a few links for you.

Incidentally, I shared these with you back in December when you started a thread called "safe sex circles." Were these, or any of the other feedback you got, not helpful? BTW, one of the link urls in my original post has changed, I've fixed the quote below to show the corrected url:
Ah! I forgot about my December post when my ex and I were considering a safe sex circle. Ultimately we just went to barriers. Then we broke up.
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