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Wed Feb 7 5:25 pm  #1

Open relationships?

I just found a good deal of evidence that my husband of five years is either bi or gay. It does appear that he has pursued but not quite followed through on acting on this since our relationship though there is concrete evidence that he acted on it prior. He is traveling for work currently and I was hit pretty hard by it the first day I found the messages (I wasn't snooping they were left open, if that matters.) I told him not to talk to me until he gets back. Now that I have had some time to cool down and get over the shock of what I found, I have been thinking that we love each other very much. Clearly neither of us is sexually satisfied (we haven't had sex in more than 2 years and never really great sex.) While I would have been horrified by the idea even 5 years ago, I am considering offering him the idea of an open relationship. I do not want threesomes etc, but I would like to feel sexually satisfied and frankly I want him to be as well. But I do love him very much and we are very compatible in every other way. What kind of rules have other couples established? Am I insane to think this could work? How do either of us find partners anyway? (He was my first partner and only partner ever and I was super shy before... and I think both of us would be very unhappy with an STD situation.) He doesn't really express much interest in sex with me these days but in all MOMs is a sexual component important? Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated. Also what do you tell family and friends. I live in an extremely conservative community. My parents would probably rather I be dead than be in an open relationship. But I am comfortable with the idea. (I still don't know if he will be... we will see.)


Wed Feb 7 5:54 pm  #2

Re: Open relationships?'s up to you to make such a decision. I've heard it works for some MOMs. 

My partner and I had an open r'ship for 4 years (this was before his admission of a desire for more 
experimentation with men) The biggest change was in me....when I no longer wanted others in our 
sex life, and for a few years he continued to bring the subject up...of play with others.. 
...til I said "never...ever" 

Having been in an open r'ship....and enjoying the NOT wanting it, to hating the memory of the low feelings it left me with, and the realisation I would never have trust in my man ever again..taught me that while wants, needs and desires can change over time...
... I can never go back and un-live those 4 years. I can't go back, with hindsight, to say "omg! this open relationship will ruin us"


*between a rock and a hard place*

Mon Feb 12 1:35 am  #3

Re: Open relationships?

Gatona - I've seen a lot of variety in open relationships.  The couples that seem happiest and healthiest to me are the ones who are brutally honest at all times.

Having been the man attracted to other men in a "don't ask/don't tell" MOM from the ages of 26 - 43, I now see our MOM as a weak decision that only delayed dealing with the fundamental problem in our marriage. 

For most of those 17 years, I believed the connection we had was far more important than sex or sexuality; marriage is not based on sex - it's based on love, values, day-to-day compatibility and shared long-term goals!  And although I still believe those qualities are the foundation for a successful marriage, I now add another: authentic desire.  A "best friends" marriage isn't such a bad thing (especially if you feel you have no other choice), but a marriage without mutual authentic desire is not something any young person should settle for.  You are not meant to be a piece of art that hangs on the wall for your husband to admire from a distance.  You are meant to be loved, body and soul, with unbound intimacy.  If you do not receive ALL of that love and intimacy, you will gradually devolve into a shriveled, malnourished house plant - alive, yes, but really only existing.

Maybe an open relationship is an easier way to transition out of a "good" but unsatisfying marriage.  Maybe it's a way to move on in the short-run without completely blowing up your lives.  For both my wife and I, looking back, I think we regret spending too many of our younger years together.  When I came out to her at 26 we should have split up.  Yes, it would have been ugly and painful and horribly, horribly humiliating for both of us...but looking back...we each sacrificed 17 years to the other and that was a much higher price to pay.

If you want to offer an open relationship to your husband, I encourage you to think less about what you're saving and instead think more about what you'd be sacrificing.  Don't hide from the ugly stuff.  You can't make a good decision unless you're both honest with each other and yourselves.


Mon Feb 12 8:50 am  #4

Re: Open relationships?

Gatona.  I think Cameron made some very valid points.  I found out my husband of 17 yrs is probably gay after snooping in his pc and phone a few years ago.  He acted "suspicious" which lead me to the snooping and I discovered some nude pics and solicitation on Craig's List.  When confronted, he adamantly denied and it took a long time for me to work through horrible anger discovering it was the betrayal of trust and the deceit that angered me more than the possible discovery of him being gay.  I also entertained thoughts of maybe seeing men outside of this "relationship" but quickly realized that I would look like the deceitful one knowing NO ONE knows of his "secret".  I would look like the cheater even IF he would agree to an "open marriage" so those thoughts quickly disappeared. I have to add that I don't have or even miss the sex at this point and I know he would NEVER agree to an open relationship and would feel jealous in spite of his own deceit and lies.  So for me, having that open relationship was never discussed.  I think in my mind the "affair" wouldn't be worth all the hiding and running around not to mention how all this would be discussed w/the other person I'm having this "relationship" with.  What kind of person would agree to this and it wouldn't be my choice of someone I would want to share myself with.  So, as Cameron mentions, it is up to you and what you want in the marriage and for me, it's what I'm willing to settle with bc for me, my husband has so many OTHER qualities that I actually love him for.  This lifestyle is never easy given all the deceit and you have to decide what YOU need and are willing to give up.  Hope this helped in some small way.  Do know that you are not alone and stay in touch your own feelings and needs.


Mon Feb 12 11:00 pm  #5

Re: Open relationships?


Personally, it helps me a great deal to hear the side of the story of the previously-GID spouse.  Disclosure (2 years ago) and divorce (1 year ago) are still fairly recent to me.  It helps me to hear from someone like you, who has been in the position of being GID.  Thank you for the time and care you take in posting here.

Last edited by jkpeace (Tue Feb 13 6:59 am)


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