What are your thoughts on open intimate relationships?  If you don't know what these are they are basically a regular boyfriend girlfriend, boyfriend boyfriend, or whatever relationship, but one or more of the people has multiple sexual partners.  I myself have only been in open relationships since highschool, and I feel that both partners in a relationship should have the option of other sexual partners until it is stated otherwise that the relationship is exclusive.  I also do not feel that it is necessary to know about all of the other persons sexual partners unless you agree to that or if the relationship becomes exclusive.  

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As for myself I like the idea of total consensus regarding the introduction of new sexual partners. I also think that it may be wise to have ground rules to limit exposure risk of STI's. 

It depends on what works for you, but you have to have some ground rules. Avoid pitfalls and diseases, etc.

Several years ago in Texas I met a woman who (like myself) had recently became single. Once we discovered we were an item, she decided that I had to tell her names of everyone I had ever had sex with. I refused and told her I would never ask her those things at all.

It should be the same in an open relationship unless it's by agreement and a part of that relationship.

Absolutely not, Not up for negotiation. You want to go mess around? Find somebody else who wants your rent money.

It's a bad idea, IMO. If the time comes where it hits you that monogomy is what you really want from the other person, you have a relationship already filled with history of what you don't want from the relationship. It's doomed to fail at that point. Relationships are hard enough as it is.

I have talked with a few people that have had open relationships and even swinger relationships and it starts to fail when one party no longer wants to participate. That leaves everything open to lies and deciet that is detected by the other party. Most often this leads to divorce or a parting of ways.

As for relationships being hard enough as it is, no truer words were ever spoken.

What ever you like. If you can find others that want to be in such a relationship, I wouldn't let the nay sayers stop you. People engage in various voluntary relations of one sort or another, that others may, or may not, or refuse to try, and understand. I'm a heterosexual, and am not sexually attracted to other males. Who the hell am I to tell two (or more) gay men they can't have a relationship?

Like any other relationship, 1st things 1st. Be respectful of one another. Work out what ever rules or boundaries you're both comfortable with. And, if over time, it doesn't work out, look back, honestly analyze why it didn't, learn from it, and move on with your life.

Good luck to you what ever you decide.

I've been in relationships where I thought I didn't really care about the other person monogomously, only to find out too late that I did. Better off avoiding that position, because it sucks. The negative outweighs the benefits.

Same here. The important thing, now that they are over, is what we learned from it.  If, in your case or mine, it meant to never do it again, we actually got something from it, painful as the lesson may have been. 

Wanted to add that you might consider reading The Ethical Slut, by Dossie Easton and Jane Hardy. I found it to be an enlightening book discussing the ups and downs of various types of open relationships.

I'll heartily second your recommendation of The Ethical Slut. Easton and Hardy seek to reclaim the term "slut", to be a positive term for someone of any gender who has the courage to live by the conviction that "sex is nice and pleasure is good for you."

Sexual relationships between consenting adults is no business of anyone outside the relationship/s. If two people, hetero- homosexual, want an open relationship, that is up to the parties involved and is none of my business. If two people want an exclusive relationship and want to marry, then I expect them to adhere to the agreement of exclusive marriage. I don't know if there is such a thing as an open marriage agreement. If one person wants out of the agreement, it needs to be faced and dealt with. 

The only concern I have is that anyone who has a child has to have the commitment to raise that child or release custody. If the person who partnered in the conception is available, then the first priority is that the child/ren have safety, security and stability in their lives.

I have worked with too many confused and frightened kids and underdeveloped adults who grew up in conflicted homes and I in no way require mother and father stay together in the "interest of the children" even as they continue to have unresolved problems and conflicts. Children are very plastic and able to settle in when they have their basic physical, mental, emotional needs met. 

Excellent point about children, Joan.




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