Wishing you all love on your journey of exploration. I am married and have been for over 25 years. About 5 years ago we opened up our relationship. We both really wanted it, but it’s much harder to change relationship horses mid-stream than it is to navigate differences from the beginning. The good thing about poly though is that you make up all of the rules — the two of you and whatever other people you involve.

James and I decided to only see other people together, which isn’t typical in poly, but it helped us manage some of the initial transition, particularly since we embarked on it to enhance our already good relationship, and not because it was some kind of escape. He’s straight, but still really enjoyed threesomes with another straight guy and watching me enjoy that. I discovered that I was bi and now we most often spend time with a woman. I do have an emotional partner who is male, but we now live on the other side of the country from him, so don’t see him any longer.

I don’t tell you this as any kind of blue-print, but just as an example of how you and your guy can configure this in any way that works for you. James and I have the comfort and stability of being pair-bonded but also the personal expansion and variety of spending time with and caring deeply about other people. It’s brought us both a lot of enjoyment but also a lot of growth as individuals and as a couple. It takes work to get there, but it’s totally worth it!

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Dispelling cultural myths with research-driven stories. My favorite word is “specious.” Not fragile like a flower; fragile like a bomb! Twitter @ElleBeau

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