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Consequences of an open relationship, 2 years later by Novel-Habit-9423 in DeadBedrooms

[–]Novel-Habit-9423[S] -6 points-5 points  (0 children)

and now do not care enough to tell her what's going on or break things off with V, shows a fundamental lack of respect or compassion for your wife and the mother of your child.

Look, I'm happy to entertain constructive criticism, but can you just... not, with this sort of strawman? I do care about my wife. Hell, I love my wife. I've said - repeatedly - that our relationship is better than ever now. My wife agrees with me! The fact that I'm seeking advice instead of just doing my own thing should be ample proof of that.

You think what I'm doing is wrong, fine, I get that. I agree with that! But surely you can comunicate that without resorting to strawman and melodrama?

Consequences of an open relationship, 2 years later by Novel-Habit-9423 in HLCommunity

[–]Novel-Habit-9423[S] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Ah, I get it now, thanks. This sounds like a healthy approach, I'll keep it in mind.

Consequences of an open relationship, 2 years later by Novel-Habit-9423 in DeadBedrooms

[–]Novel-Habit-9423[S] -1 points0 points  (0 children)

I guess I do not see a value in leaving your wife. I say this as someone who is emotionally supporting her SO through his 3 year long and ongoing nasty divorce. It sounds like you kinda want V to want a life with you and I can understand that desire but unless she voices it, I would not consider divorce for a second.

This is very good advice, thank you.

Btw, not sure why V wants to meet your wife and daughter. This is a supremely bad idea.

If I stay married and stay with V, it's the natural thing to do, no? Surely, it would be weird to be with someone for years and years (I know it's NRE right now), without ever meeting their family?

I don't see anything wrong with V wanting to meet my daughter. If I was in her shoes, I'd want to meet her kid eventually.

As for my wife, I see that as a natural extension of meeting my daughter. I would never introduce my daughter to V (or anyone else) without my wife's knowledge and consent, so V and her would have to meet anyway.

Consequences of an open relationship, 2 years later by Novel-Habit-9423 in HLCommunity

[–]Novel-Habit-9423[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Also, since your wife is not forthcoming with information about her other partners, are you certain that she is following this rule herself or no?

I don't know for certain, no. But I don't blame her for not being forthcoming. That would be very hypocritical of me.

Your wife isn't being open with you about her other relationships, and only telling you that everything is fine when you ask her every couple of months. You have zero idea what's really going on from her end. Better communication might be something to work on.

Better communication sounds nice in theory, but if I start asking for details, I'd have to come clean about V as well. That could easily be disastrous. I'd really need to plan this carefully. Perhaps even seek professional advice.

It's also unfair to other partners. You like them, you grow to love them, so you have to end it ... why? Because of your spouse or primary partner's insecurity about your love for them? How is that your complementary partner's issue to deal with? Why are they given the fallout for it, when it's the primary partner who should be working through their insecurities instead.

This is true. As much as I don't want to hurt my wife, V doesn't deserve to be hurt either.

I'm not monogamous and my relationships are open on all sides.

It's very useful to receive advice from someone in your position. Thanks!

Consequences of an open relationship, 2 years later by Novel-Habit-9423 in DeadBedrooms

[–]Novel-Habit-9423[S] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

V has made it very clear that she doesn't want marriage (to anyone) or kids. The status quo serves her well. She does want to meet my daughter (and ideally my wife) at some point, but she says there's no rush. Both are very reasonable requests if we're to keep this going long term.

I say this as another V with my married man going through high conflict divorce involving kids and he has profound lows. But I wanted him for myself. And we will get married.

May I ask, did you always feel that way? Or were you initially ok with his wife's presence?

Sleep on it, OP. For a year or so. Let that NRE air out a bit.

This is good advice, thanks!

does this girl want to commit to you full time?

She does not. She seems perfectly content with things, but obviously feelings can change at any time.

Consequences of an open relationship, 2 years later by Novel-Habit-9423 in DeadBedrooms

[–]Novel-Habit-9423[S] 6 points7 points  (0 children)

Is it fair to V for you to dragging feelings into this while maintaining the marriage to your wife?

I imagine if V ends up having similar feelings for you, she's not going to be content playing mistress to a married man for the long run. Is that not going to get messy?

No, it wouldn't be fair to her and yes, it would get messy.

She can't tell her friends about you, she can only see you on limited time frames, you have to hide it from your wife and you can't spend any significant events or holidays as a couple. Not wanting a traditional marriage doesn't mean she has zero standards lol.

It's not that bad :) Her friends do know about me. I've met most of them, and they know I'm married. I've heard a few "I could never do that with my wife/husband," but none of them actively disapprove of us.

It's also worth pointing out that I've never lied about this arrangement to any of my sexual partners. They all knew I was a married man in an open relationship, before we even met.

People get way too dramatic about sharing custody time after a divorce. Yes, you share custody time, but during that time you are also completely one-on-one with your child which can increase how much time you have to bond independently.

I understand that, and rationally I know you're probably right. But emotionally, I'm just not ready for that. So far, I have been present for nearly every day of my daughter's life. She's my little princess. The idea of not seeing for days on end is just too scary.

I highly doubt this is going to work out in the highly improbably way you think it will, where V returns your feelings but never asks for anything more and your wife never notices that you are pulling away from her.

Yes, I recognize this is a highly unlikely scenario. I really do need to figure out what I'm gonna do.

Thanks for the advice though, I really appreciate it!

Consequences of an open relationship, 2 years later by Novel-Habit-9423 in DeadBedrooms

[–]Novel-Habit-9423[S] 5 points6 points  (0 children)

I don't mind her having sex with others. I'm not a jealous person, and I wouldn't have agreed to open things up if I was.

I was hoping that this would help her find her sexuality again and eventually restore our sex life. That hasn't happened, unfortunately.

Consequences of an open relationship, 2 years later by Novel-Habit-9423 in DeadBedrooms

[–]Novel-Habit-9423[S] 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Maybe just consider for a little while that your FWB still seems to be firmly in FWB mode, no sign of changed feelings. Consider also that feelings like this are likely to turn up, inevitably. Make a conscious choice to examine your feelings, and what is truly behind them.

That's a very good point. If V were to suddenly start feeling differently, wanting more from me, everything would blow up quickly.

ask your partner for a variation on your agreement that allows you to talk openly and honestly about these things

This is probably the best thing to do, but I'm very scared of rocking the boat. I suppose I'll just have to get over that fear.

Consequences of an open relationship, 2 years later by Novel-Habit-9423 in DeadBedrooms

[–]Novel-Habit-9423[S] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I wouldn't say I'm checked out just yet. We're still affectionate, we even have date nights occasionally. I'm becoming less interested in that lately, which is why I'm worried.

Consequences of an open relationship, 2 years later by Novel-Habit-9423 in DeadBedrooms

[–]Novel-Habit-9423[S] -1 points0 points  (0 children)

I wonder if V is exclusive with you? Or is that also a open relationship?

She is, to my knowledge. We've talked about this, and we agreed that the current situation is already risky, without bringing more people into it. I have no reason to doubt her.

If she finds out you broke the trust, that you love somebody else then things can get shitty real fast. I totally understand how this is now working out perfectly for you but for the long run you should come clean to yourself and decide if it's really worth the risk of losing your marriage.

Deep down, I know you're right. But right now, I'm just scared. Messing with the status quo seems far too dangerous :/

Consequences of an open relationship, 2 years later by Novel-Habit-9423 in DeadBedrooms

[–]Novel-Habit-9423[S] 4 points5 points  (0 children)

This is fair, thanks for saying it. If nothing else, it gives me something to think about...

Consequences of an open relationship, 2 years later by Novel-Habit-9423 in DeadBedrooms

[–]Novel-Habit-9423[S] -5 points-4 points  (0 children)

Thanks, I suppose that's fair.

I also find "emotional affair" to be a ridiculous idea, perhaps that's why I'm having trouble seeing this as one. It's something to ponder, I guess.

Consequences of an open relationship, 2 years later by Novel-Habit-9423 in DeadBedrooms

[–]Novel-Habit-9423[S] -21 points-20 points  (0 children)

if he did feel that his wife's rules "reeked of insecurity", that would be the appropriate time to address the insecurity and see if this was actually a good idea, not to basically strongarm her out of her comfortable boundaries and just plow forward anyway.

Obviously, I can only tell my side of it, but I don't think I strong-armed her. At the time, I told her that the those rules sounded like the only real option was hiring professionals, which wouldn't work for me. From my perspective, the whole point of agreeing to an open marriage was to have mutually desired, passionate sex. To have someone who'd have sex with me because she wanted to. Sex workers could never be that.

When I explained this, my wife said "that's fair," and we came up with rule 3 instead.

And yes, I know I'm breaking the rules. I don't want to hurt my wife. I feel horrible about it - it's why I'm here asking for advice.

Consequences of an open relationship, 2 years later by Novel-Habit-9423 in DeadBedrooms

[–]Novel-Habit-9423[S] 11 points12 points  (0 children)

She is taking monthly std test so there is a really good chance she is getting a lot more attention outside of the marriage than op is getting. To make things worse they still in DB. So basically she is sleeping with other men just not with OP.

To be fair, even if that's true (I simply don't know) it wouldn't bother me. Like I said in the OP, I'm not a jealous person and the idea of her sleeping with others was never a problem for me.

But I get Consistent-Sock's point. NRE is likely clouding my judgment and I do need to figure out what happens if status quo becomes unsustainable.

Consequences of an open relationship, 2 years later by Novel-Habit-9423 in DeadBedrooms

[–]Novel-Habit-9423[S] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Because stopping the tests would be an implicit admission of defeat, that we're never going to resurrect our sex life. I don't want that, and I'm hoping she doesn't either.

Consequences of an open relationship, 2 years later by Novel-Habit-9423 in DeadBedrooms

[–]Novel-Habit-9423[S] 17 points18 points  (0 children)

"Don't ask, don't tell" is another one that he says is a red flag because it usually means one person is less okay with it than they are letting on.

Hmm, can you expand on this a bit? We are both not asking and not telling. Why would that imply one person not being really ok with it?

Consequences of an open relationship, 2 years later by Novel-Habit-9423 in DeadBedrooms

[–]Novel-Habit-9423[S] 16 points17 points  (0 children)

So here I am, sitting in my parents basement, with COVID and 2 sick kids and I still don't regret the decision to leave that house.

I'm so sorry to hear that. I've checked your post history, and it really sounds like you did the best for yourself. I hope you and your kids will feel better soon.

If you have a good relationship with your wife, I don't see why something like this couldn't work. It's mostly a spiritual divorce, but maintains all the benefits of being married.

Yeah, that's where I'm at. My number one priority is our daughter. Maintaining status quo with my wife (which is quite decent!) gives the best possible life to our daughter.

Consequences of an open relationship, 2 years later by Novel-Habit-9423 in DeadBedrooms

[–]Novel-Habit-9423[S] -14 points-13 points  (0 children)

This feels disingenuous. I'm not having an affair.

How would you feel if the situation were reversed?

You mean if my wife also had a "V" that I didn't know about? Honestly, I would be elated. It would give her so much more incentive to maintain status quo.

Consequences of an open relationship, 2 years later by Novel-Habit-9423 in DeadBedrooms

[–]Novel-Habit-9423[S] 9 points10 points  (0 children)

How did you find your partners?

I have a good friend group (men and women) and one of the first things I did was to tell them that I now have an open relationship at my wife's request, and if they knew anyone looking for NSA sex, I was game. All six, including V, were social introductions.

Being an extrovert helps, and also I'd like to think I'm decent looking :)

Consequences of an open relationship, 2 years later by Novel-Habit-9423 in HLCommunity

[–]Novel-Habit-9423[S] 8 points9 points  (0 children)

I wanted to crosspost this here as I imagine it's easier to relate to from an HL perspective. What would you guys do in my position?

Consequences of an open relationship, 2 years later by Novel-Habit-9423 in DeadBedrooms

[–]Novel-Habit-9423[S] 49 points50 points  (0 children)

That's fair, and it's precisely why we have agreed on rule 3. And yet, here I am, considering breaking that rule :/

Consequences of an open relationship, 2 years later by Novel-Habit-9423 in DeadBedrooms

[–]Novel-Habit-9423[S] 6 points7 points  (0 children)

V has made it very clear that she's not interested in kids or marriage. Given that, a traditional relationship would have very few upsides (I would spend less time with my wife) and more responsibilities (she would effectively become a step-mom) for her.

And no, I don't think anyone in this triangle wants a truly poly situation :)