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Open marriages - SGB, can you help?

(104 Posts)
mysecretname Wed 05-Oct-11 20:24:53

Felt a bit bad PMing you, so am doing it kind of out in the open...except I've namechanged so...

Right, to anyone who isn't SGB, what I don't want is people coming on here and telling me why my DH and I shouldn't have an open marriage. Funnily enough, we've done all the talking and we're both very happy to have a 'see how things go' marriage with lots of communication and respect for each other. So don't tell me off please!

To SGB, and anyone with an open mind, or experience, I have a couple of technical questions...well, one big technical question:

When you meet someone you fancy, I would only ever be honest with them that I'm married. OK, now I have met someone, I have only ever been honest with him that I'm married. And we've flirted, and I'm pretty sure he feels the same way about me. But, if we kissed, I don't want him to think badly of me. I don't want him to think I'm the sort of person who cheats on her husband. And I don't want to kiss someone who is thinking that they're cuckolding my husband, who I love and respect.

But how on earth do you tell someone you're in an open marriage? Do you just say 'oh, by the way, I think you fancy me and I fancy you and my husband's fine with me having a fling'?? Which I don't think I could bring myself to do.

Can you help? Or at least point me in the direction of a good, trustworthy, non-weird website I could look at?

Xales Wed 05-Oct-11 20:38:04

No ideas or advice. It is a tricky one. As you say yourself you don't want to be doing stuff with some one who thinks what a cheap slapper or haha what a sap her DH is.

Even if you are honest and have a 'my DH and I have an open marriage I want to shag you' conversation they may not believe you.

Can you not have a coffee with DH there and get him to approve? grin

Good luck I hope it works out for you. Have fun smile

PurplePossum Wed 05-Oct-11 20:38:10

There is a book called 'The Ethical Slut' which will answer all your questions. It's available on Amazon.

Cheeptrick Wed 05-Oct-11 20:45:20

I agree with Xales - "I am in an open relationship with my husband and i fancy you would you like to have a drink with me on friday night?"

Then i guess he will ask questions and you will have the oppertunty to explain more and have a honest discusion about it.

You need to tell him your husband is your first piorty and you have no intention of leaving him and the affair between you will only ever be causual.

You need to communcate, be open and honest and be perpered to be insulted if he dislikes the idea of an open marrage.

mysecretname Wed 05-Oct-11 20:49:20

Oh thank you all so far for being so non-judgemental! Have been holding my breath since I posted!

Will get that book PurplePossum, thank you.

I am so anxious that he doesn't think I don't respect my husband, and also that this bloke doesn't respect him - want him to do the exact opposite, actually!

mysecretname Wed 05-Oct-11 20:51:00

Xales - don't think it would be at all possible for DH to meet him mainly because of the kids. But also because we're both really playing it by ear at the moment - just trying to listen to our hearts and our feelings, and DH isn't certain at the moment that he wants to even know this man's name. He knows how I met him and when I'm meeting him (in a totally innocent group situation), though.

Shakey1500 Wed 05-Oct-11 20:54:07

Could you not (at a particularly flirty exchange) steer the conversation towards marriage, openess etc then at an opportune moment, drop it into the conversation what the state of play is? Acheiving the objection in a roundabout way?

Xales Wed 05-Oct-11 20:55:02

Hopefully SGB will be along soon to help and I hope the book helps.

I think as long as you are honest and above board then even if it goes pear shape you can walk away with your dignity and head held high.

mysecretname Wed 05-Oct-11 20:57:42

Shakey - we did touch on threesomes last night, with other people involved in the convo, but lots of glances btw me and lovely-bloke...that might be the only way to steer it.

But also, I don't know if he'd believe me! I wouldn't want to kiss him without him knowing it was legit, because I wouldn't want to kiss someone who'd try and shag another man's wife IYSWIM.

Xales - if it went pear-shaped, I'd have to lose the group we've met at, which is really important to me...I guess I have to decide which is the most important thing...or if I could keep going and push through the awkwardness...

mysecretname Wed 05-Oct-11 21:25:39

If anyone sees SGB about, would you be kind enough to point her in the direction of this thread, please?

sunshineandbooks Wed 05-Oct-11 22:39:01

Why can't you just say "by the way, I think you fancy me and I fancy you and my husband's fine with me having a fling'??"

I think it's perfect TBH. Short and to the point. No long-winded explanations, which could either sound boring, or suspiciously like a woman trying to justify an affair, or encourage emotional intimacy (which you definitely do NOT want to develop if you go down this path).

Are you happy for your open relationship to be common knowledge in your social circle? I only ask because if you date other people locally, it's probably only a matter of time before it is common knowledge. Hopefully you have open-minded friends and don't give a toss what other people think. FWIW, if you were my friend and you told me your OP over coffee, I'd say go for it. smile

solidgoldbrass Wed 05-Oct-11 23:20:39

Helloooooo! Here I am. Someone's already recommended The Ethical Slut, which is very good. There is also Opening Up by Tristan Taormino, which is even better.

And one additional piece of advice, to counter one particular piece of crap advice you're going to get from monogamists which will be 'But what if it all goes horribly wrong? Think of the fallout in your social circle!' And this is: there are no guarantees anywhere with anything. Someone's feelings might get hurt. Someone might turn out to be an arsehole. Someone might take it upon themselves to meddle in the name of Protecting Monogamy. But monogamous relationships go horribly wrong sometimes, too. As long as you conduct yourself ethically ie no lying, no changing the rules without consulting other people, no spitefulness, then even if something does go wrong you can hold your head up and ignore any nonsense that comes your way. And it may well all go really right and lead to a wonderful enriched life. Best of luck to you.

boodles Wed 05-Oct-11 23:41:58

" just trying to listen to our hearts and our feelings, and DH isn't certain at the moment that he wants to even know this man's name."

I am slightly concerned about this. Is your husband really 100% into this? Sounds like he isn't too sure?

(this isn't judging btw, just wondering)

carantala Wed 05-Oct-11 23:59:38

my secret name You say that you love and respect your husband; sounds like b******s to me!

AnyCorpseFucker Thu 06-Oct-11 00:01:22

Swinger's club ?

Would that not be a better place to start, for the novice ?

Gotta be easier to manage than attempting this within your own social circle, whilst still < ahem > feeling your away ?

Has your husband got anyone lined up yet ?

solidgoldbrass Thu 06-Oct-11 00:01:38

Carantala: Not in the least. It's perfectly possible to love people without wanting to be in monogamous relationships. Just because something doesn't suit you doesn't mean it's impossible or wrong.

carantala Thu 06-Oct-11 00:28:39

sgb I must be weird, then! Can't see the point of shagging around when someone has a partner who is "loved and respected." Doesn't make sense!

Gay40 Thu 06-Oct-11 01:28:44

And thereby is the point entirely - it doesn't suit you, it does suit others. No-one is better than anyone else on the matter. Some people like monogamy, some don't.
No further explanation is necessary.

carantala Thu 06-Oct-11 01:46:03

Gay40 I would like some further explanation from your personal font of wisdom!

SlinkingOutsideInSocks Thu 06-Oct-11 02:03:32

Carantala - if it doesn't make sense to you, it doesn't make sense to you - what else is there to say, except that it clearly does make sense to other people, and since no-one is forcing you to partake in anything you don't want to, what is the issue? Nobody else has to justify or explain themselves.

OP - assuming your interest isn't aware that you have an open relationship, he's still flirting with a married woman, even if he isn't snagging one - so in a sense, he's still disrespecting your marriage to your husband. I reckon you probably need to work out a way to explain the situation to him sooner rather than later, TBH.

SlinkingOutsideInSocks Thu 06-Oct-11 02:04:55

shagging not snagging. grin

curious2 Thu 06-Oct-11 06:21:19

Hi SGB and OP and others
I too wonder about open marriages and how they work but the irony seems to be that to have an open marriage you actually need to get on with your primary partner very well.
I come from the position of having lots of problems in my non relationship with dh but we have three kids (5, 7 and 9) and so leaving seems to be not an option. I sometimes wonder about open relationships in the sense that if dh and I managed to talk (which we don't) then we could discuss how best to proceed so that we both are in the children's lives but so that we also get our emotional needs met (I don't know if dh cares about his, but the lack of cuddles, intimacy and kindness from dh really bothers me). I think the irony lies in the fact that if dh and I actually managed to communicate so successfully and non judgementally (or should that be judgmentally?), I would probably like him a whole lot more (he also has a short fuse and is very blaming but that's a different thread) and be perfectly happy to not look elsewhere iyswim. I am not being critical, just wondering aloud. I had a long crush on someone I don't really know which is waning now due to lack of contact (luckily as he is married and a charismatic character whom I suspect lots of people like)... but it did make me realise how in lots of ways I feel suffocated with dh.
OP, I totally understand that you don't want to go for a man who would be happy to be with another man's wife behind his back... it's kind of a difficult conversation to have isn't it, and I think whoever said that you should have it sooner rather than later, is right.
AF, at the risk of joining your hordes of admirers, I think you are great, why are you anyCORPSEfucker today grin???

curious2 Thu 06-Oct-11 06:52:37

So it seems that having an open marriage is by definition something that is possible within a good primary relationship and normally happens for reasons other than dissatisfaction or unhappiness.
OP, I realise I didn't refer to you by your name: mysecretname, I'm sorry!

AnyCorpseFucker Thu 06-Oct-11 07:17:03

curious2 Hallowe'en name change innit

mysecretname Thu 06-Oct-11 07:56:21

Carantala - you are a perfect example of narrow-mindedness. I don't pretend to know or understand everything, but I work a darn sight harder than you do not to be judgemental of something just because I don't understand it!

SGB - Thank you. Will look into getting that book.

Boodles - No, neither of us is 100% there - we're feeling our way, and listening to our feelings and to each other's feelings. We're unlearning a lot of cultural conditioning together, just like we have with the way we parent our kids. We're learning a lot about feelings we have that are genuine compared to those we have because we think we ought to have them.

AF - Love your new name! I'm not sure I'd feel comfortable with a swingers club. I guess what DH and I really want is not necessarily to sleep with who we like, but to have the freedom to explore what we want . I haven't worded that right. Put it this way: I downloaded The Ethical Slut last night, and stayed up late reading it and nodding the whole way through - it's saying all the stuff I feel within my bones.

Curious - My instincts tell me you're right, and reading The Ethical Slut tells me you're right too! Personally, DH and I have our problems, but communication and openness has never been one of them - it's more like not taking the recycling out etc. wink. We really do have a very strong relationship, and, together, are considering open marriage in the belief that it'll make us even stronger. I don't think it would ever work as a way of fixing a marriage with proper issues that aren't already being talked about IYSWIM.

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