When I met my husband he was in an open relationship. After some time, that relationship ended and we decided to marry and maintain our non-monogamous lifestyle. We did it because we both loved the freedom we enjoyed, as well as the level of trust between us. Of course, the fact we were able to hook up with other people was another benefit.
Our open marriage has never been perfect, but it works for us. By choosing this lifestyle I learned a lot of things about relationships and about myself.
You will have a partner for a wide range of activities
When I first learned about an open marriage I thought of sexual relationships with other people, outside your marriage. But the reality is you can do a lot of things with other people. For example, I love to go swimming, but my husband hates it. So, I go swimming with my other partner, who enjoys this activity as much as I do. We are both free to do things we love with other people, which increase our love and strengthen our relationship.
You will rely on other people to fulfill your needs
In a traditional marriage the two partners have to fulfill each other’s needs. In most cases, this doesn’t happen, which leads to problems. In non-monogamous relationships, you can go to someone else to fulfill those needs. For example, if you have a low libido or you like rough sex, you can rely on someone else to tend for these needs. From my own experience, this makes your relationship stronger, as it diminishes the number of problems in the couple.
You learn to communicate better
When you are in an open marriage you learn to communicate with your partner in ways you’ve never experienced before. You will talk about your other dates and your rules, as well as all the ways your open relationship impacts your emotions. All this communication is beneficial for the relationship, as you become more intimate with your spouse.
Some people will try to ruin your marriage
It sounds horrible and it is horrible, but you will find people who try to get you out of your open relationship. There will be people who will do this without even trying. For example, one time I had an alcoholic boyfriend whose behavior almost ruined my marriage.
If you let toxic people inside your relationship, you have to know how to manage this special dynamic, otherwise you might see it all blowing up.
You will learn who your true friends are
An open marriage is not everyone’s cup of tea and you will learn to keep your lifestyle secret from certain people. I learned this the hard way, after my best friend judged me very harsh for my open relationship. In time, you just learn who to tell. On the other side, it’s not always your decision – sometimes, people will find out and all you can do is hope they will understand you.
To sum it all up, an open marriage is not for everyone, but if you do love your partner and agree on this lifestyle, you will enjoy a lot of benefits.