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is it contradictory to say " yes, i want to explore a potential LTR with you " AND " i intend to date, possibly have sex with, others ". ???

By Soarfeet7
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That's like fuck buddies or friends with benefits. LTR with no strings attached. Usually never works for long. One person always gets too serious.

Tecolote Level 7 Dec 6, 2018

I don't agree.. most people I know interpret FWB as someone you have sex with but it's not a "relationship " ie: you don't usually go on romantic dates with a FWB situation.

It’s polyamory. And it can last a lifetime. IF both partners want that.

Even if you agree up front in a rational way, feelings have a way of doing what feelings want. you can't promise you won't fall in love with someone, even if there are no romantic dates. Love happens.

@mollygirl yep, spending time with someone who does not reciprocate your feelings is a disaster waiting to happen.

@mollygirl I just do not get it how people can treat their internal organs like replaceable plumbing. ...talking kissing massage and cooking together can be a great path of courtship and marriage. ...HELL the MORMONS "FLOAT".....really they do. ...women try out their vaginae on engaged men for size BUT NO THRUSTING allowed. ...teaches boys not to prematurely ejaculate on their honeymoons wearing their temple garments with strategic buttons holding closed certain flaps


It depends on their idea of a relationship. If they don't practice monogamy it makes perfect sense.

Paracosm Level 8 Dec 6, 2018

Not necessarily contradictory, but certainly non- committal.

Amzungu2 Level 7 Dec 6, 2018

I second this ??

If i knew what an LTR is I may agree with you.

@FrayedBear long term relationship

@Amzungu2 Gotcha. Yes much ado about flaps of skin - just don't bring the nasties and babies home with you.

I disagree. You can totally commit to an open relationship.

@brainyactress I assumed since she was questioning the contradictory nature of the two statements, she wasn't considering an open relationship as an option, so I don't disagree there are surely committed couples in open relationships. But your statement does beg the question(s) and this isn't meant to be snarky. I admit total ignorance on how an open relationship actually functions, but I'm interested in learning the perspective of those who do...so 1. What are you committing to in an open relationship? Is there generally a committed core couple that just eliminates the threat of someone cheating destroying the relationship by opening the door? And 2. Is it difficult to develop a committed relationship within that structure of it's open from the start? I think those are the biggest stumbling blocks in the way of my understanding.

@Amzungu2 The thing that’s inherent in your questions is the conflation of sexual fidelity with commitment. Each couple has to negotiate their own boundaries but commitment is not necessarily based only on sexual fidelity. Being committed means giving that person precedence and working on the relationship and sharing intimacies that are unique to the two of you. And building life stuff (money, kids, etc.) Being open is recognizing that while I’m “your person” there will be others who come along who light us up in various ways. And recognizing that that energy is useful, good and necessary. That energy can also spill into the primary relationship. (Hubba hubba!) Takes a ton of talking and lot of personal work. I’m building a relationship now that started open and is increasing in both love and commitment. There’s no doubt that we’re each other’s persons, but his links to other people enrich him and help him become more of himself. I’d never deny someone I love the opportunity to become his best self.

@brainyactress Thank you. That was an excellent explanation, and definitely provides a much greater understanding. I think you're spot on with highlighting the general assumption that commitment is based soley on sexual fidelity, and that's likely the one big stumbling block that prohibits people from understanding how an open relationship can also be a very loving, committed one. Thank you for the greater understanding. I'd even go so far as to now say that a healthy open relationship quite possibly displays a greater level of commitment than those that fall under the umbrella of general assumption. Your explanation brings to mind an India Arie lyric I'm fond of "...the highest expression of love is to give without expecting...to accept without exception." You guys may just be onto something. ?

@Amzungu2 I should also clarify that the openness for me, at least, isn’t just about sex. It can be emotional, intellectual, sexual, even an intense friendship. The main thing is there is freedom to explore while a boundary is maintained around the primary relationship because of your commitment to it.

@brainyactress Not everyone wants that or could handle it. I have a theory about human nature/instinct. Men and women evolved different biological imperatives. A caveman would have been motivated spread his seed far and wide Perpetuate the species. A cavewoman on the other hand would be motivated somehow endear herself and make herself valuable the caveman so that he would stick around and protect and provide for her and her children. A lot of things have changed all these centuries later. Women have established their independence, though it has been a hell of a fight every step of the way. The balance of power has shifted a lot... but there is still a strong pull in many women's ancestral memory that makes them yearn for exclusivity. For men, not so much. No slander of men intended. I love men, but I think it is delusional not recognize the fundamental differences between the sexes. Viva la difference. And if you can make an open relationship or polyamory work for you, bravo.

@mollygirl I’m aware and I can, but I disagree with this evolutionary biology perspective. Marriage is an advanced form of mate guarding the developed because of hidden estrus andcwomen’s (Not men’s) inclination toward promiscuity. She had to officially mate with the best provider who may or may not be old, ill, etc. but if she wanted the best genes for her offspring, she was doin’ it behind the shed with the young, virile soldier. Of course, she’d tell her “husband” it was his and would maintain the look of being a good mate so he’d provide. But in practice, in secret, she sought out the best genes.

@mollygirl In regards to my answer to the question, I was asked how I make it work. I don’t prescribe any lifestyle to anyone. We should all do what gives us the best life we can have.

@mollygirl I always trust a woman to disclose her attitude towards promiscuity. ...I have never wanted to impregnate more than one bride. ...open relationship on her part could include bisexuality with a lesbian and me....but I I don't feel that is fair unless another bisexual woman would love us both. ...that was the real lifestyle of Professors Marston and their bi-mistress who loved them both. ..the professors had one son and she had 2 sons....they are all dead now but the Marston son wrote the book and screenplay: THE PROFESSOR and his WONDERWOMEN a great true docudrama about the lie detector inventors. ...all 3 perfected it and the Comic book author who were not the Marvel Comics illustrators


If a woman told me that l would have to say adios.

Sticks48 Level 9 Dec 6, 2018

I will had add " and f u , u f ng f .


No.. the key is consent and communication.. the partner has at least the right to say yes or no or negotiate something different..
Personally, as long as I was allowed the same freedom I would be ok with it. (Within limits)

hippydog Level 7 Dec 6, 2018

I think most people have jealousy issues so likely they would not be ok with it.. but I honestly don't think its contradictory, just not normal in our Christian dominated society..


Interesting use of "relationship." One of the greatest all time movies....SAME TIME, NEXT YEAR, Ellen Byrsten, Alan Alda....one week a year, what was a "conference out of town,' turned into an LTR, and even at that one week love ebbed and flowed, the amazing part of the story line, were the changes which occurred in each other lives, and how it effected their own side relationship. I would highly recommend it for a great evening.

JimPlatt2 Level 5 Dec 11, 2018

It was a great show. I concur.


Sure. I call that social dating. It's socializing with no commitments to each other.

But when one of the individuals is ready to take the "relationship" to the next step and other is not ready, they are no longer on the same page. Then expect a split.

dare2dream Level 7 Dec 7, 2018

Well said.


Ethical non-monogamy. Just keep in mind that you expose others to the risks you expose yourself to.

RileyStevens Level 7 Dec 7, 2018

Mature partners can negotiate anything. The key to making it work is having everyone comfortable with whatever outcome is negotiated. Tristan Taormino’s book “Opening Up” is a great guide to open relationships

UUNJ Level 8 Dec 6, 2018

To me it is contradictory and I would not be in an arrangement like that. YMMV

HippieChick58 Level 9 Dec 6, 2018

As long as it's what both people are agreeable to, it's not contradictory. For me, I'm not agreeable to it at all, so for me it would be (contradictory).

bleurowz Level 8 Dec 6, 2018

It’s all about agreement, we all have a position we come from and it’s no more relevant/ irrelevant than any one else’s. As long as everyone involved can handle it , do your thing. We spend to much of our lives trying to live for the expectations of others whether real or perceived.

Outsideit67 Level 6 Dec 6, 2018

Ther are not rules for relationships, if you two or three agree to the relationship it should work.

RaulPerez Level 7 Dec 6, 2018

It is not contradictory if that is what and how the couple agree their long term relationship will proceed. I would want to talk about it from time to time, so both know how the full relationship is going.
I think each relationship should make up their own rules together. It's complicated, and requires some maturity and deep intelligence.


Not contradictory. You are being open and honest with your desires and where your heart is. O commend your attitude and in the past I've been in a similar situation. Most aren't cut out to operate that way. Some are and when you find those that are willing to be there for you, they might just turn out to be a keeper and become your primary relationship.

Nukdookum Level 8 Dec 6, 2018

I think it's contradictory...

SukiSue Level 8 Dec 6, 2018

I think it is too but trying not to judge too quickly.

@Soarfeet yes.. it could be something said because of anxiety. Maybe he'll rethink it as well.

@Soarfeet If it’s not what you want then don’t agree to that. You’re not being judgmental. You’re creating boundaries. If he won’t or can’t honor your boundaries, he’s not for you. I am poly, btw, and it’s never a free-for-all. There are agreements in every relationship that must be honored.

@brainyactress this is a great place for exploring perspective. Thank you for your input.

@brainyactress well put!


I wouldn't be interested beyond a casual fling with a woman who said that to me. I reckon a man who said that to a woman wouldn't even get a casual fling unless the woman was drunk or something.

Nardi Level 7 Dec 6, 2018

I've seen many use blokes just waiting for something better to come along.

@FrayedBear and vice versa

@Soarfeet very true. Not being one I had a one sided view when I wrote my comment. Thank you for the correction.

I have noticed that over time the idea of open relationships is getting more accepted but I missed the boat on that. I guess i'm just old fashioned and too jealous to share a woman i had feelings for so this question hit a nerve sorry.

@Nardi i think it is better to say it out loud, up front rather than it be stumbled upon. Deception sucks.

@Soarfeet You're right of course but if I was interested in a LTR it would have to be monogamous. If it were a casual fling I couldn't care less.

@Soarfeet after checking out your profile i have to ask. Did someone you are interested in suggest this to you?

@Nardi some one I met in the summer. We’ve spent minimal time together d/t his work travel, my family & travel... I wish to spend more time with him. He is telling me in a most indirect way that he does not want to settle in... leaving the door open for him self.

@Soarfeet that is a deflating feeling and it sucks. You probably feel like it can become something very fulfilling but his apprehension confuses you. At this point in my life I am ready for a full on relationship with that special someone. Complications are annoying.


Which teaches us to never assume an LTR is monogamous. Ask.

josephr Level 7 Jan 5, 2019

thx for the chuckle @josephr ... that pic reminds me of my grandpuppy <3

@Soarfeet, this photo reminded me of a puppy i had who wouldn't let another dog near me. She was obviously the leader of my pack. hahaha Many years ago, i also had a girl friend who demonstrated similar behaviours, but not for long.


Not at all. It's all about consent and honesty.

RileyStevens Level 7 Jan 4, 2019

It would be contradictory for me.

MojoDave Level 8 Dec 11, 2018

One example I will share...while I was married before my wife passed, I was having a LTR with the wife of the man I worked for, and she was having an affair with me, her boss, and her hubby, and we snuck in a third person now and then, and everyone was finally getting enough.

JimPlatt2 Level 5 Dec 10, 2018

Not to me, but then again, I am unique in sexual matters.

JimPlatt2 Level 5 Dec 10, 2018

i think you might be a polyamorist.

@Soarfeet You are absolutely correct....and it is tremendously fulfilling and satisfying....


Depends on the agreement you have. Sounds like polyamory. Is it? Are you?

brainyactress Level 7 Dec 6, 2018

.... a serial monogamist to date. Historically, I’ve been indifferent about casual sex. Somethings have changed in the last five years or so. My current intention is to settle into an LTR with a compatible partner.

Yes, been there, done that, and found out that I don't mind it at all. However, complications arise with others sometimes, and their third party members can put a monkey wrench in the works with their hang-ups. Life can be difficult trying to make things work out smoothly.

We were most definitely polyamorous....and living life every moment, of every day....when we woke in the morning, every morning, we knew happiness was coming, or at least great kisses and hugs.


both have to understand whether LTR includes monogamy

TheDoubter Level 8 Dec 6, 2018

I agree. Each couple gets to decide what suits them.


To me, it is, but there's a lot of people who want that freedom pursue multiple relationships. I guess you have to decide if that is your thing.

Rusticchef Level 6 Dec 6, 2018

Yep, I am trying to decide.

In theory, there shouldn't be anything wrong with that type of relationship, but I'm pretty sure it wouldn't work for me.

@Rusticchef definitely would not work for me in the long term.

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