When I came out as bisexual a few years ago, Andy and I sat down and talked about what it meant for our relationship. We were already living together, so we had already decided to be together for the long haul.
Neither of us had really considered ever dating or hooking up with anyone else. We just knew that we wanted to be together and we were happy with that.
When the topic of my bisexuality was being discussed, we talked about opening up our relationship and what that would mean for us.
We discussed this for months before actually acting on it. We pride ourselves on our excellent communication skills, so it was important for us to hash out absolutely everything we were comfortable and uncomfortable with before any actions.
We’re definitely not pros, and we’re still fairly new to being monogamish, but we thought our experiences might be able to helps others who are thinking about opening their relationships.
We consider ourselves to be monogamish. Monogamish means that we are a couple in a committed partnership that can engage in some sexual activities with others. We agreed that we would not date other people.
Dating vs Sex:
Something that you need to consider is if you’re hoping to date other people or just have sex with other people. There should be a clear discussion about emotional boundaries. If you’re looking at dating other people, there are whole other topics that need to be discussed that we won’t detail in this blog post.
Together or Separate:
You need to discuss whether or not your partner needs to be present during the sexual activity. Are you allowed to have a one-night stand with someone when your partner is sleeping at home? Are you only planning on having orgies together? Are you planning on swinging with other couples? Do you have to be in the same room or does the same house count?
If you’re planning on sleeping with other people with your partner not present, then you need to know if you need to get their permission first. Sometimes partners just want to be informed about what is about to happen. Sometimes partners want the final say about if you can go home with someone else or not. Sometimes partners don’t want to know about it at all or don’t care to know about it beforehand. You need to have a discussion about the level of permission you need to seek out.
You need to have a discussion about things that might be off limits. Some people have different associations with certain sexual acts. Sometimes you want to keep certain acts between the two of you as a couple. For example, maybe you can only have anal sex with your main partner but you can have endless oral sex with someone else. You need to find out what you and your partner are comfortable with.
The moment there is a new person involved sexually, you need to discuss safe sex practices. You should come up with a plan together on how to bring up the topic, as it can feel uncomfortable. You need to remember that you aren’t just protecting yourself, but you are also protecting your partner. If you haven’t been using barriers with your main partner, it might be worth discussing re-introducing them. Like we said, there needs to be a discussion with your partner about how to handle this topic.
Like we mentioned, we pride ourselves on communication. We talked to each other for months about opening up our relationship before we actually did it. We continue to talk to each other before any situation that might lead to sexual acts with other people. We re-confirm that we are both okay with it as it is totally okay to change our minds at any point. We also talk to each other during any activity to make sure that the other person is comfortable with what is happening. We then definitely talk to each other afterwards and go over every detail. It is fun to talk about it afterwards and it is a great way to learn if there is something to change for the next time.
Take it Slow:
You don’t need to rush into having an orgy or going on five dates a week. You can (and should) take things slow. You can start by chatting up people online, by reading up about non-monogamy and by flirting with people. You can even branch out to masturbation parties that can get you used to the idea of sharing your sexuality with others. It doesn’t matter how slow you go, as long as you’re going a pace you’re both comfortable with. It’s better to take things slowly than to rush into something you might regret.
There are a lot of things to consider and discuss before opening up your relationship, but all of these questions will make your relationship have a more solid foundation. Don’t be afraid to express any concerns. It is better to talk about it too much than not talk about it enough.
We’ve had some really fun experiences with our monogamish relationship, but we definitely credit that to our excellent communication.
Have you already opened up your relationship? Did we miss something important in the conversation? Let us know!