It is the biggest fear people have about serious, nonmonogamous relationships. It’s one of the biggest excuses people make. Even people who admit that monogamy doesn’t work experience a lot of fear and angst about this.
I mean hey, Suzi and Don had an open relationship, and Suzi eventually fell in love with one of her side-guys and left Don. It’s happened to celebrities too. And I read such-and-such book about open relationships and it said that it happens all the time. So, damn. Maybe I should just go monogamous. I don’t want the love of my life leaving me for someone else they have sex with!!! It’s just too risky. Yeah, monogamy sucks and doesn’t really work, but at least my odds are better in terms of hanging on to my sweetie… right?
I shall explain why.
This gets back to the specific definition of OLTR, and why there are specific rules and parameters around the OLTR. An OLTR is not just an open relationship – it’s an open relationship with safeguards in place to specifically prevent the problem everyone is worried about; that of your lover leaving you for one of his/her side-people.
As I’ve explained many times, both here and in my books, in an OLTR relationship, side-women are only allowed to be FB’s and nothing more. That means you can have sex with women on the side, but you can’t date or get emotionally intimate with these people.
This differs from a MLTR, where you are allowed to get as emotionally intimate with other people as you like, i.e. you can have multiple MLTR’s and get as romantic and loving with them as you want.
As most of you know, I’m currently in an OLTR with Pink Firefly. This means I can have sex with FB’s on the side, and do all the time. She is also allowed to have men on the side as FB’s if she wishes. However, there is a very strict set of limitations for how we behave with these people. These limitations are so important that it’s likely our entire relationship would end if any of them were violated. That’s how serious we are about these limitations… and that’s exactly how an OLTR should be. Otherwise, you should just have MLTR’s.
Since my side-women are all FB’s, I can have sex with them, and I can talk to them a little bit as friends, but that’s literally all I can do (unless Pink Firefly specifically asks me to do more with them, and that has happened, but that’s both an exception to the rule and beyond the scope of this article).
This means I do not:
- Spend the night with my FB’s.
- Spend any degree of nonsexual time with my FB’s.
- Have long, deep, intimate talks with my FB’s.
- Take my FB’s out on dates of any kind.
- Call my FB’s whenever I’ve had a bad day.
- Go on trips with my FB’s.
- Spend any time with my FB’s whatsoever unless we’re having sex or having a reasonably brief, friendly conversation right before or right after sex.
As you can see, if a man or a woman in an OLTR is operating under such a strict set of conditions with these people, it makes it very difficult, if not impossible, to create an environment where more romantic feelings will occur in the first place.
Let’s take the opposite scenario and examine how most people do open relationships. They basically sit down and declare that the relationship is emotionally exclusive, but sexually open. I’m only going to love you and you’re only going to love me, but we can both have sex with other people on the side if we want. So far, so good. That’s standard OLTR stuff.
However, unlike an OLTR, they don’t set a clear and rigid set of standards for how people behave with side-people. Oh sure, women in OLTR’s will usually throw out a few rules to the guy about how he’d better wear a condom with these girls, and how he’d better not buy them gifts, and some general statements how he’d better not fall in love with anyone else, but these rules aren’t good enough. They’re not clear or specific enough. They leave too much room for feelings to fester and grow with side-people.
In every open relationship I have ever seen or heard about where one person started getting feelings for a side-lover, they clearly and blatantly violated the rules of an OLTR. The person not only had sex with a side-lover, but he/she also spent time with that person. They went out on dates. And/or they went on trips together. And/or they had long, intimate phone calls. And/or would spend entire days together. And/or they spent the night with each other occasionally.
That is not an OLTR. That is a dysfunctional open relationship.
I’m serious, folks. Every time I have seen this happen in an open relationship, the person was treating a side-lover as more than just a FB. And so of course, feelings grew, and the open relationship either ended or was severely damaged.
All you have to do to protect yourself from this problem is establish the clear behavioral parameters regarding FB’s on the side, and make these clearly understood before the OLTR relationship ever begins (this is part of the OLTR Talk, something I will discuss later). This also means that you’ve been dating this person as a MLTR for at least six months (if not longer) so you know that A) she’s the kind of woman who understands these rules and B) she’s the kind of woman who will do what she promises, or at least has higher odds of doing so.
This usually brings up the excuse question of, “Well what if she/he promises to do those things, and then violates them behind your back anyway? You can’t trust someone to do what they promise!”
This goes back to excuse #3 right here. If you can’t trust someone, you would never put them in an OLTR relationship with you in the first place. You would only pursue an OLTR relationship with someone you’ve known and dated for a very long time, and who has a long track record of clearly demonstrating and earning your trust. If you get into a serious relationship (monogamous or not; doesn’t matter) with someone you don’t trust, then with all due respect, you’re a fucking idiot. Trust is earned first, serious relationshippy stuff comes second. I realize Societal Programming teaches the other way around, but as usual, Societal Programming is wrong.
There have been many women in my past who wanted to get into OLTR relationships with me, marry me, move in with me, etc, who I said no to. The main reason was because they hadn’t earned my trust, so I politely said no to the OLTR and kept seeing them as a MLTR. See how this works? It’s very simple.
I challenge you on this. Go back through and think of an example where you saw or heard of a couple in an open relationship or marriage, and one of them fell in love (or caught feelings) for one of their side-lovers, and they left their original partner for this new person (or they didn’t but it caused major strife in the relationship). If you think through the scenario, I promise you that person was violating the ruleset of an OLTR, and treating their side-FB as something more than a side-FB.
This problem occurs not because open relationships don’t work, but because most people in open relationships do it wrong. Since Societal Programming doesn’t teach or model open relationships for normal, everyday people, this is not surprising.
That’s why I am here; to help teach you the right way to do these things.