I decided to pursue open relationships when I became disillusioned with monogamous relationships.
I guess a bad breakup can leave you confused on what love and faithfulness in relationships really mean, and whether or not we are truly built to be with only one person.
After a 4-year relationship with someone that I believed I would spend the rest of my life with, the relationship ended and I was single for a while. After deciding that I was ready to get back into the dating field, I met a really cool guy. We dated exclusively for about 6 months until the guy who I really liked and sort-of-kind-of dated back in university moved back into town for work.
I first learned of his move on Facebook when he posted that he’s happy to be back in town, and I decided to get in touch with him so that we can hang out. I told my partner about him, and had an honest conversation with him about my ex sort-of-kind-of boyfriend being my “what if” guy. Since he came back, I wondered what it would be like to be with him because I never fully had to chance to experience a relationship with him.
My boyfriend told me that he would also like the opportunity to see other people, casually off-course. It didn’t mean that he didn’t care about me, but that he would a shot at a non-monogamous relationship to explore his sexuality.
So, we both agreed to an open relationship where I explored a love affair with my sort-of-kind-of ex and he saw other people. We agreed on basic rules, which included always using protection and complete honesty with regards to who we were seeing.
I pursued a relationship with my sort-of-kind-of guy and he was cool with my open relationship arrangement. Things were great for about 3 months because of the euphoria of this new situation, but the complexities of being with someone started to set in.
The more time I spent with my sort-of-kind-of guy, the more I fell in love with him even though he was emotionally haphazard, and I started seeing and feeling less for my actual boyfriend. Emotions got in the way of what was supposed to be a logical relational arrangement, and my boyfriend and I ended up breaking up when we realized that we had become buddies.
I didn’t end up with my sort-of-kind-of guy because he was happy to remain casual with our relationship and I ended up wanting more.
This open relationship situation made me realize that I’m not polyamorous. What I want is a lover, a best friend and a partner to live life with, not just someone to spend endless nights with. I want a family and stability in my love life, not because of social conditioning that ingrains in us that heterosexual, monogamous relationships are the right type of relationships, but because it’s what I want for my life.
Emotionally, I felt like an open relationship was a handful, and it was only two people. I felt drained, but I know that it’s because I was giving love and time to two people who weren’t necessarily reciprocating it to me.
I guess with matters of the heart, self-honesty is important. And honestly, an open relationship isn’t something that will work for me.
*image from Pexels.