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Old 01-16-2014, 12:35 AM
TurquoiseMouse TurquoiseMouse is offline
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Unhappy Confused & new, any advice appreciated!

I'll try to make this as NOT ridiculously long as possible, and thanks in advance for reading!

I'm a bi woman in my late twenties who has been dating a fantastic guy for 6 years. He has given me permission to kiss my close girl friends who he is also friends with and can "trust," friends of mine that I used to make out with (and sometimes a little more) when I was single, but was never in any kind of structured relationship with any of them, other than just being best friends. Good, right, boundaries and all. I totally agree with him. However, we've lived in a state far away from friends and family for a few years, so I haven't had any close girl friends that he can trust for a while, if you get my drift.

We went back to our home state for Xmas this year to visit family and friends, and he came down with a stomach bug so I hung out with most of our friends without him. I kissed one of my close girl friends a few times, that was great.
There was also a party with a lot of my friends that I've known longer than I've known BF, mostly guys. One guy used to date one of my very close friends for a long time before they broke it off (he was also okay with his GF and I kissing). He's now in an open relationship with a new girl. I knew this guy and his previous GF, still one of my best friends, both before they knew each other. Long story short, lots of drinks were had, and my guy friend surprise kissed me, and wanted to do more. I told him no, that my BF wouldn't approve, and that was that.

The next day I told my BF what had happened. BF laughed and didn't seem upset, said "people do stupid things when they're drunk," and that "it probably wasn't the first time one of your guy friends have tried to kiss you," and that was that.

But of course, here's the part I'm confused about: I really like that he kissed me. I didn't let anything else happen because I wouldn't cheat (have been cheated on before), but I really wanted to. And the more I've been thinking about it, I realize I've lived away from my best friends for a while and haven't kissed anyone but my BF in 2 years. I LOVE kissing my boyfriend, but I also just love kissing people--other people, it's different. Everyone's different.
And, since I'm bi, in my head, kissing my girl friends is no different than kissing guy friends would be--but to BF, it is, which I totally understand from his perspective (that was the whole thing that guy friend was saying though, he knows I'm allowed to make out with my close girl friends, "so why not me?" he asked. I said, because I hadn't been approved to, haha).
So, do I secretly just really like my guy friend? We are very close friends, and he is attractive, but he was always one of my best girl friend's boyfriends, so I never even entertained the thought of kissing him.
Or, am I just having some kind of mid-life crisis as I'm almost 30 and am getting cold feet about "settling down" in my long-term relationship?
Or, am I not content with just kissing/being with one person--and does that A) make me selfish, or B) mean that I'm just not very monogamous?
When thinking about having some sort of open relationship, I'm not sure how I feel yet. I feel like I WOULD be jealous if BF wanted to kiss other people, but maybe that's just because I WAS jealous when I was cheated on by ex-boyfriends in the past. Permission wouldn't be cheating and I might be okay with that. But that's what makes me feel selfish; I would like to kiss other people but not sure I want my BF to, ha. I would never want to hurt my BF, and I also don't want to make him insecure or want to leave me (I've never been the kind of girl who can't wait to get married, but if he asked I would say yes--love him to bits). I don't want to ruin things, basically. But I feel like there's some part of me telling me I would be so much happier being a bit more of a free-spirit.
I've been trying to do some research on my own, but I'm still so confused and full of lots of mixed up and changing feelings. I also hope I don't come off as insensitive to anyone here, I'm pretty new to all these ideas (aside from making out with my girl friends, which I just never really stopped and thought about, I suppose).

So thank you again to those who got through this mess of abstract thoughts and to anyone who can offer me insight and advice.
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  #2  
Old 01-16-2014, 03:23 AM
JaneQSmythe JaneQSmythe is offline
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Hello and Welcome!

(I have a couple of thoughts/comments. In cutting and pasting your post to reply - please let us know if I take anything out of context...)

Quote:
Originally Posted by TurquoiseMouse View Post
He has given me permission to kiss my close girl friends who he is also friends with and can "trust," friends of mine that I used to make out with (and sometimes a little more) when I was single, but was never in any kind of structured relationship with any of them, other than just being best friends. Good, right, boundaries and all. I totally agree with him.
Discussing boundaries - totally awesome! Communicating and understanding people's limitations and what they are comfortable with and UNcomfortable with - very good!

The word "permission" does make me squirm a little bit, but I take it to mean "we have discussed this and he has said that he is not uncomfortable with me kissing these people under these circumstances." Which is fair enough...but do realize that you (as an autonomous adult person) do not need to get anyone's "permission" to do anything. You may agree limit your behavior because the outcome (he would be uncomfortable, he would break up with you, etc) of not limiting your behavior is not worth it to you - but the choice is always yours.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TurquoiseMouse View Post
...Long story short, lots of drinks were had, and my guy friend surprise kissed me, and wanted to do more. I told him no, that my BF wouldn't approve, and that was that.

The next day I told my BF what had happened. BF laughed and didn't seem upset, said "people do stupid things when they're drunk," and that "it probably wasn't the first time one of your guy friends have tried to kiss you," and that was that.
Yes, people do stupid things when they are drunk! (Boy, how well I know this...)

So far, so good though - you know where your BFs boundaries/comfort zone is and did not, yourself, try to cross it. Someone else did, you stopped, and told BF about it (and he did not act like a flaming ass-hat - awesome )

No harm, no foul - then we get to the real crux of the matter:


Quote:
Originally Posted by TurquoiseMouse View Post
But of course, here's the part I'm confused about: I really like that he kissed me. I didn't let anything else happen because I wouldn't cheat (have been cheated on before), but I really wanted to. And the more I've been thinking about it, I realize I've lived away from my best friends for a while and haven't kissed anyone but my BF in 2 years. I LOVE kissing my boyfriend, but I also just love kissing people--other people, it's different. Everyone's different.

And, since I'm bi, in my head, kissing my girl friends is no different than kissing guy friends would be--but to BF, it is, which I totally understand from his perspective (that was the whole thing that guy friend was saying though, he knows I'm allowed to make out with my close girl friends, "so why not me?" he asked. I said, because I hadn't been approved to, haha).
I think that this is where more conversation/understanding has to occur. I am also a bi-female, and for years and years my boyfriend-now-husband was fine with "whatever" with girls (not limited to kissing ) but boys were off the table. And for a long time, this was not an issue...until it was.

I think the discussion at this point turns to "WHY" (from his perspective {purple}) is it ok for you kiss girls but not boys... (when, from YOUR perspective, there is essentially no difference {red})?

Gender-specific rules...hmmm:

Could be because he doesn't feel that girls are a "real" threat, besides it's "just kissing". You would never form a "real" relationship with a girl (because you haven't before? Does that mean you never could?)

Could be because he feels that girls and boys offer you different things and therefore are not "in competition" with each other - but he would feel like he was competing with another male...at least in the kissing department.

Could point out to him that different people are...different, regardless of their gender {green} (or lack there-of for the pan folks here).

Could do a bit of reading around here about OPP (one-penis/pussy-policies) for lots of perspectives on this topic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TurquoiseMouse View Post
So, do I secretly just really like my guy friend? We are very close friends, and he is attractive, but he was always one of my best girl friend's boyfriends, so I never even entertained the thought of kissing him.
I can't say for certain - perhaps it was only because he was "always one of your best girl friend's boyfriends" that you never entertained the thought...or maybe he is a just an "attractive friend". At any rate I wouldn't read too much into the fact that you enjoyed the kiss and would have liked more. It was risque, he is attractive, you feel relatively "kiss-deprived"...whatever. I don't think that means you have some hidden secret longing for the guy...I think it means you are a functioning sexual person.


Quote:
Originally Posted by TurquoiseMouse View Post
Or, am I just having some kind of mid-life crisis as I'm almost 30 and am getting cold feet about "settling down" in my long-term relationship?
I don't know that it means anything in particular - if this had happened 6 months, or 2 years, into this relationship, would it really have been any different?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TurquoiseMouse View Post
Or, am I not content with just kissing/being with one person--and does that A) make me selfish, or B) mean that I'm just not very monogamous?
Being "not content with just kissing/being with one person" could mean that you are not very monogamous (i.e. potentially poly)...or lots of other things. Not ready to limit your options. Not ready to "commit". I don't think that it necessarily makes you "selfish" - it's how you feel, that's just a fact to take into consideration. Feelings are not right or wrong, they just happen and we don't necessarily have control over them. ACTING on those feelings without ironing things out with your sweetie...THAT would be selfish. (IMO )


Quote:
Originally Posted by TurquoiseMouse View Post
When thinking about having some sort of open relationship, I'm not sure how I feel yet. I feel like I WOULD be jealous if BF wanted to kiss other people, but maybe that's just because I WAS jealous when I was cheated on by ex-boyfriends in the past. Permission wouldn't be cheating and I might be okay with that. But that's what makes me feel selfish; I would like to kiss other people but not sure I want my BF to, ha.
This definitely deserves some more thought. Asking your BF to be OK with you kissing girls (and boys, maybe), but not extending him the same freedom would be selfish (and hypocritical). Regardless of the "reason" (cheating behavior on the part of males who are NOT your current BF). What's good for the goose is goose is good for the gander! Limiting him to kissing boys (like you can only kiss girls) doesn't hold water if he is straight (which you haven't said)...(lots of conversation on this in the OPP threads - will leave it at that).



Quote:
Originally Posted by TurquoiseMouse View Post
I would never want to hurt my BF, and I also don't want to make him insecure or want to leave me (I've never been the kind of girl who can't wait to get married, but if he asked I would say yes--love him to bits). I don't want to ruin things, basically. But I feel like there's some part of me telling me I would be so much happier being a bit more of a free-spirit.
So...that's a hard limit - you don't want to hurt your boyfriend (whom you love). So don't! You talk, you discuss, you come to agreements, you abide by them...and see how that goes. If you need to be more of a free-spirit to be happy... and he can't tolerate that?...then maybe you end up breaking up because you have different needs in life to be happy? It doesn't have to be ugly. But wouldn't you prefer to know this NOW rather than 20 years and 3 kids down the road?

If any of this is helpful - great! If it doesn't apply...oh well, someone will be along with a different opinion...

JaneQ
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Me: poly bi female, in an "open-but-not-looking" Vee-plus with -
MrS: hetero polyflexible male, live-in husband (together 21+ yrs)
Dude: hetero poly male, live-in boyfriend (together 3+ yrs) and MrS's best friend
Lotus: poly bi female, "it's complicated" relationships with Dude/JaneQ/MrS
TT: poly bi male, married to Lotus, FB with JaneQ
VV and MsJ: bi-women with male primaries, LTR LDR FWBs to JaneQ


My poly blogs on this site:
The Journey of JaneQSmythe
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Last edited by JaneQSmythe; 01-16-2014 at 03:25 AM.
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  #3  
Old 01-16-2014, 03:33 AM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is offline
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You sound like you are getting yourself all tangled up by putting evaluations like "am I selfish?" on there. Could not do that.

As far as I understand it here's where you are at:
  • Under my current relationship agreements, I can kiss my women friends. BF is fine with that.
  • At this point in time, I would also like to kiss men, not just women.
  • Conclusion: I could ask my BF if he's up for renegotiating that agreement or not at this time.

Separate But Related Issue:
  • I'm not sure I want my BF to kiss other people. So call it a "working no." No, I don't want my BF kissing other people.
  • If he brings this up in renegotiation as a condition to him granting his blessing/goodwill for me to explore kissing men...
    • Yes, I am willing to go there and give him my blessing/goodwill to kiss others. Because then I can have his blessing/goodwill to kiss men friends in return.
    • No, I am not willing to go there and give him my blessing/goodwill to kiss others at this time. Because my want to kiss men friends is not as big as my want to not have to deal with the idea/realities of my BF making out with other people at this time.
  • NEW CONCLUSION: So I could ask BF if he's up for it. If he makes him kissing others a condition, then I could just let it all go and stick to the agreement we currently have.

There. That's where you seem to be at this point in time.

Anything less than a "joyful yes" you could call a "working no" to help you think things out faster/more decisively. None of these are "Hooray! Yes!" --
  • "No way in hell" = "working no."
  • "No, thanks." = "working no."
  • "Meh" = "working no."
  • "I dunno. Not sure." = "working no"
  • I guess so, maybe yes = "working no" because it is not joyful "Hooray! Yes!"

Makes decision making a lot easier.

So could ask him, but be prepared to just let go of (the want to kiss men friends) so you can (be free of having to deal with BF kissing other people) if he's not up for changes to agreements.

The only other way to (be free of having to deal with BF kissing other people) but KEEP (the want to kiss men friends) is to break up with the BF and accept you want different things in relationship.

It is not "selfish" to (acknowledge what you are willing and able to deal in at this time) and (what you are NOT willing and able to deal in at this time.) That's called discernment, so you can be self-aware and know where you stand at this point in time.

Merely asking if he's up for that kind of arrangement is not "selfish." He can say "No thank you. Not for me."

TELLING HIM that's how it is now, you are off to get your jollies whether he agrees or not and screw his opinions or input -- that's selfish!
Or saying nothing and sneaking off to cheat on agreements to get your jollies at his expense -- that is also "selfish."

Because how you behave can put his physical health at risk if you are careless.

Your BF is also free to tell you what he's up for and what he is not up for at this time. If he presents you an counter-offer you are not up for in negotiations? You are not up for it, plain and simple. That's not selfish -- that's back and forth negotiation. If a new idea doesn't jive?

You both could keep the original agreements unchanged and continue as before.
You both could agree to part ways.

This part...

Quote:
(I've never been the kind of girl who can't wait to get married, but if he asked I would say yes--love him to bits). I don't want to ruin things, basically. But I feel like there's some part of me telling me I would be so much happier being a bit more of a free-spirit.
To me that sounds like you want to marry him at some point, but you two haven't discussed what KIND of marriage arrangements you want to share.

Things like...

Will you still keep dating/having kissing friends after marriage?
Have a more traditional marriage agreement instead?
How does "marriage" take away from "free spirit" to you?

What is currently stifling your "free spirit-ness?" That you can't make out with a guy without checking in with BF? Well, that's part of the price of admission to date your BF - keeping your shared agreements.

If you don't want to pay it any more and keep your shared agreements anymore? Could work to change them over time or cut the BF lose because you are not long term compatible. You want different things.

Hard to feel maybe, but pretty straight up.

HTH!
Galagirl

Last edited by GalaGirl; 01-16-2014 at 04:07 AM.
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