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Old 11-27-2011, 05:07 AM
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ChloeJane ChloeJane is offline
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Lightbulb What are your poly relationship rules or boundaries?

As someone who has just done a lot of revisiting and renegotiation of boundaries/agreements with my husband and girlfriend, and as someone who has been reading numerous threads about people trying to come up with a list of boundaries/agreements that work for them, I definitely thought it would be helpful to have a thread where people could share their current boundaries that exist in their relationships. I thought it would be particularly helpful for people newer to polyamory to see the wide variety of ways that people make polyamory work for them while they try to navigate their own way through boundary/agreements negotiations.

There are so many unique situations, with interesting and varied people creating boundaries/agreements that work specifically for their relationships, comfort zones and lifestyles. Arriving at a set of boundaries/agreements that work for everyone requires a lot of communication, negotiation, and a willingness to listen with an open heart. Some people like to write them out (even sign them!) others prefer verbal communication, some people have very few or no boundaries at all!
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Last edited by ChloeJane; 11-27-2011 at 05:24 AM. Reason: wanted to add the word agreements.
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Old 11-27-2011, 05:16 AM
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With my gf it's almost entirely unstated, but essentially that we practice safer sex, honesty, and respect. With my bf, all of the above plus that I not start any new relationships at the time being, and that when we decide together that we're at a place where that can happen we talk about the person in question first and he gets to meet and evaluate them before things proceed.
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Old 11-27-2011, 07:56 AM
AnotherConfused AnotherConfused is offline
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My mono husband is not so keen on poly, but after a year and a half we've negotiated ways for me to have relationships with two men. No penetrative or oral sex, no intimacy in front of others (even holding hands), no intimacy in my house, and no spending nights together. Also my husband doesn't want to be told what goes on or have either of the men talk to him about their relationships with me, and he's not keen on developing a friendship with the one he didn't already know before I got involved.

For the men, they've offered to tell me if they get involved with anyone else. They're also each mono so I expect them each to eventually find partners that can be more for them, which will change their relationships with me.

We've just reached this happy place in recent weeks, and it seems to be working for us. I've only seen one of them since this agreement was reached, and am extremely excited about seeing the other one in a week. Hopefully it will stay comfortable for my husband.
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Old 11-27-2011, 08:05 AM
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Default Similar discussions...

Here are some similar threads which you may find interesting:

Negotiating Rules

Rules and boundaries

boundaries - when are they ethical, when aren't they

Old rules - giggle with me!

Rules? Annoying or necessary?
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Old 11-27-2011, 08:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChloeJane View Post
As someone who has just done a lot of revisiting and renegotiation of boundaries/agreements with my husband and girlfriend, and as someone who has been reading numerous threads about people trying to come up with a list of boundaries/agreements that work for them, I definitely thought it would be helpful to have a thread where people could share their current boundaries that exist in their relationships. I thought it would be particularly helpful for people newer to polyamory to see the wide variety of ways that people make polyamory work for them while they try to navigate their own way through boundary/agreements negotiations.

There are so many unique situations, with interesting and varied people creating boundaries/agreements that work specifically for their relationships, comfort zones and lifestyles. Arriving at a set of boundaries/agreements that work for everyone requires a lot of communication, negotiation, and a willingness to listen with an open heart. Some people like to write them out (even sign them!) others prefer verbal communication, some people have very few or no boundaries at all!
Not many right now. My girlfriend and I are allowed to love each other and have a bit of privacy. And I give the same to the relationship between her and her husband.

No kinky bondage sex (i don't go for that anyhow). Other than that... not much.

I for one would not be in a relationship where I could not love. Where I had to have every action supervised by another. No way. Not even for a minute.

So I have boundaries of another kind. It would feel very much like a violation if her husband wanted to have full control over our relationship. And I would never try to demand to be given details of his relationship with his wife.

So.... May I politely suggest that you are not the only one in your little threesome who feels like your boundaries are being pushed. I feel for your unicorn.
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Old 11-27-2011, 08:58 AM
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For the time being I've asked that they refrain from any public declarations of love, which they've agreed to and upheld. My husband is not to exchange any pictures or video with anyone else but my metamour. That's it so far.
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Old 11-27-2011, 12:01 PM
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Here's a post about the power of respecting boundaries

http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=772
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Old 11-27-2011, 05:00 PM
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Hmm, had to think about this one because it has been a while since we've discussed boundaries. I would have to say that the two boundaries Runic Wolf still holds me to are

1) No sex in his car.

2) No making dates for alone time/ play time with Wendigo w/o discussing it with him first. IE: No sneaking your boyfriend into the house when I'm not home. And if Wendigo somehow manages to surprise me and stop by, I have to let Runic Wolf know it happened.

As for the other half of our quad, there are 3 boundaries in place that are for Pretty Lady's comfort because this is her first foray into poly and she believe's she is monoamarous and thus limits our relationships with her to FWB.

1) Wendigo and I are not to engage in BDSM activities with each other in her presence; though that boundary has loosened to allow him to claw me during sex.

2) Wendigo and I agreed to limit our declarations of love. When this all started 2 1/2 years ago, Wendigo and I tried pretty damned hard not to fall in love, failed miserably and got caught up in NRE for almost a year. For the first month of our relationship we were pretty lovey dovey verbally and over instant messanger; partly because we were held by a no PIV intercourse boundary by Pretty Lady. The night that we chose to break that boundary, we were somewhat drunk, but I won't use that as an excuse. We chose to break it and cried afterwards fully realizing what the consquences might be only after our hormones had cooled. Thankfully, Pretty Lady is an amazing woman and agreed that we'd all been a bit misguided to think that expecting Wendigo to only give me oral and not have any release himself was a fair agreement. So the boundary was changed from no PIV intercourse to no being all lovey dovey and limiting our declarations of love. This boundary is much easier for us to respect. We don't feel the need to be all lovey dovey now that the NRE is gone and we know how we feel about each other, so saying it less does not make it less so. Still I almost caught myself saying I love you when we hung up our Skype conversation the other night; partially because Wendigo hasn't had a phone in months and this was our first real life talk over Skype and I customarily say I love you and good bye to the people I talk to on the phone; my parents, siblings, Yoda, and Runic Wolf. So it was more out of habit than any need to say it; though I stopped myself just to be sure b/c I knew that Pretty Lady was a few feet away on her own computer and w/o discussing it first, I didn't want to put him in a position of saying it back even out of habit himself.

3) We have always had a privacy/ secrecy boundary. As in we will not do anything to draw attention to our quad or let on that we are anything more than good friends to those who are not already aware of the relationship and we will not come out to any more of our friends. This became even more important in January when Pretty Lady and I agreed to a one time only 3 some with one of our friends who was in on the secret and he agreed to secrecy and then was careless and left his messenger open for his fiance to read all about us.
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Old 11-27-2011, 05:10 PM
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Just a thought, it seems like boundaries are more common in primary relationships. Like, they might affect what happens in the secondary relationship(s), but their origin and purpose is usually to protect the primary relationship(s). Does that seem accurate?
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Old 11-27-2011, 05:36 PM
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I have to say, that we never really discussed any boundaries. I don't know why this is the case, but there never seemed to be a need for that. It was more the other way round: My husband was set as the one at whose pace we decided to move along (during the first weeks) and he was really fast. He never requested something like a set of rules and we naturally tend to check in with each other nowadays, if we think something feels awkward.

It would have felt really unnatural to me to set up restrictions for my relationships. It seems to be enough to bear in mind what would make me feel uncomfortable and ask the other parts about the specific point in question. We all seem to work that way and it works quite well. Maybe we will stumble at some point with this arrangement, but there are no rules or boundaries around at the time and we all feel comfortable with our situation at the moment.
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