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How to have an open marriage that works

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For some people, monogamy is not an honest choice for their relationship. But navigating the waters of an open marriage doesn't come with as many handbooks, advice, and helpful tips as navigating through a monogamous marriage does. Luckily, an open marriage and a monogamous marriage require some of the same core principles (with a little bit of a twist) in order to work.

You Must Have A Strong Ability To Communicate

In an open marriage, lying is disastrous. The point of an open marriage is to have an environment where you can be totally honest with your partner about your feelings and concerns, at any point in the marriage, and allow them to be totally honest as well. This means you must be able to express yourself well and have very good listening skills.

Having strong communication skills is not a natural thing. We all have a tendency to keep things to ourselves out of fear that we will hurt our spouse's feelings. Moreover, listening effectively in this world can be a hard thing to do with constant distractions from the outside world and even our own minds. Practice and dedication to developing strong communication skills is necessary in any marriage, but it will pay off big-time in an open marriage.

You Have To Want The Best For Your Partner

You should have a strong desire to let your partner experience pleasures that they crave, sexually and non-sexually. This is all about mind-set and attitude towards the situation. Instead of viewing it as a disservice to your relationship, view it is a huge service to your relationship and your spouse.

When you allow your spouse to experience true pleasure, they are happy and satisfied with life, and you are a big part of the reason why they feel so good about their life. You are a loving partner who encourages them to experience all the pleasure they want with experiences that they desire, and you also offer them a loving, exciting, and constant partner to come home to.

Remember The Difference Between Love And Having Fun

An open marriage is, in part, about having sexual experiences with other people. But it is not about falling in love with other people, and some spouses do not even want the possibility of feelings involved. In either case, your spouse should be the main focus of your heart and vice-versa. When feelings for other people start to get involved, the marriage can become rocky.

It is important to make an agreement that falling in love with someone else has nothing to do with the open marriage (if that is not what you want to happen). It may be wise to agree that if feelings do arise for someone else, the open relationship may need to be ended completely. We are all emotional beings, and the possibility of feelings arising for someone else is there; however, with the right outlook on the situation and commitment to the marriage, issues like that can be solved quickly.

Create An Agreement And Stick With It

Having an agreement that states the ground rules for the open marriage, and sticking with that agreement, can help you avoid hurt feelings. Many people try to have an open marriage without ground rules, but it usually ends up not being as carefree as they picture it being and trouble can quickly arise.

The agreement will not only ensure that you both know what your spouse is comfortable with, it will also bring you closer as a couple and enhance your own marriage. The honesty and love that goes into the agreement can really deepen your intimate bond together.

Sit down and assess your individual needs and wants for this type of marriage. Be brutally honest! If you leave something out, you may be inclined to be dishonest about it later on, which will cause huge problems in the marriage.

Then, hash out your true feelings about how comfortable you are about each other's desires and ambitions, and create an agreeable contract around those findings. Don't leave anything out, no matter how uncomfortable you feel talking about it. It may be uncomfortable at first, but with complete honest you will find that soon there will be no topic off limits in your marriage.

Take the ground rules you develop very seriously. They help guide your activities inside and outside of the relationship and make it very easy to determine where the line is and where tension and conflict could arise. Although there are great sites for swingers dating, like Swinglifestyle, several couples in an open marriage also utilize Swinglifestyle as well. If you and your partner want to take the leap into this lifestyle, make sure to establish rules between the two of you and place your feelings first, like this article: Swinging: There are some rules you should follow

Related Articles:

Open relationship rules: 10 tips for success

Open relationships and how more couples are embracing the trend

Open relationships: Why people engage in them and why they are healthy

Open marriage vs. swinging

Be honest
Be honest Photo by Christof Koepsel/Bongarts/Getty Images

Be honest

For some people, monogamy is not an honest choice for their relationship. But navigating the waters of an open marriage doesn't come with as many handbooks, advice, and helpful tips as navigating through a monogamous marriage does. Luckily, an open marriage and a monogamous marriage require some of the same core principles (with a little bit of a twist) in order to work and the first is honesty!

Related Article: Open relationship rules: 10 tips for success

You Must Have A Strong Ability To Communicate
You Must Have A Strong Ability To Communicate shutterstock

You Must Have A Strong Ability To Communicate

In an open marriage, lying is disastrous. The point of an open marriage is to have an environment where you can be totally honest with your partner about your feelings and concerns, at any point in the marriage, and allow them to be totally honest as well. This means you must be able to express yourself well and have very good listening skills.

Having strong communication skills is not a natural thing. We all have a tendency to keep things to ourselves out of fear that we will hurt our spouse's feelings. Moreover, listening effectively in this world can be a hard thing to do with constant distractions from the outside world and even our own minds. Practice and dedication to developing strong communication skills is necessary in any marriage, but it will pay off big-time in an open marriage.

Related Article: Open relationships and how more couples are embracing the trend

 

You Have To Want The Best For Your Partner
You Have To Want The Best For Your Partner shutterstock

You Have To Want The Best For Your Partner

You should have a strong desire to let your partner experience pleasures that they crave, sexually and non-sexually. This is all about mind-set and attitude towards the situation. Instead of viewing it as a disservice to your relationship, view it is a huge service to your relationship and your spouse.

When you allow your spouse to experience true pleasure, they are happy and satisfied with life, and you are a big part of the reason why they feel so good about their life. You are a loving partner who encourages them to experience all the pleasure they want with experiences that they desire, and you also offer them a loving, exciting, and constant partner to come home to.

Related Article: Open relationships: Why people engage in them and why they are healthy

Remember The Difference Between Love And Having Fun
Remember The Difference Between Love And Having Fun shutterstock

Remember The Difference Between Love And Having Fun

An open marriage is, in part, about having sexual experiences with other people. But it is not about falling in love with other people, and some spouses do not even want the possibility of feelings involved. In either case, your spouse should be the main focus of your heart and vice-versa. When feelings for other people start to get involved, the marriage can become rocky.

It is important to make an agreement that falling in love with someone else has nothing to do with the open marriage (if that is not what you want to happen). It may be wise to agree that if feelings do arise for someone else, the relationship may need to be ended completely. We are all emotional beings, and the possibility of feelings arising for someone else is there; however, with the right outlook on the situation and commitment to the marriage, issues like that can be solved quickly.

Related Article: Open relationships: Why people engage in them and why they are healthy

Create An Agreement And Stick With It
Create An Agreement And Stick With It shutterstock

Create An Agreement And Stick With It

Having an agreement that states the ground rules for the open marriage, and sticking with that agreement, can help you avoid hurt feelings. Many people try to have an open marriage without ground rules, but it usually ends up not being as carefree as they picture it being and trouble can quickly arise.

The agreement will not only ensure that you both know what your spouse is comfortable with, it will also bring you closer as a couple and enhance your own marriage. The honesty and love that goes into the agreement can really deepen your intimate bond together.

Sit down and assess your individual needs and wants for this type of marriage. Be brutally honest! If you leave something out, you may be inclined to be dishonest about it later on, which will cause huge problems in the marriage.

Then, hash out your true feelings about how comfortable you are about each other's desires and ambitions, and create an agreeable contract around those findings. Don't leave anything out, no matter how uncomfortable you feel talking about it. It may be uncomfortable at first, but with complete honest you will find that soon there will be no topic off limits in your marriage.

Take the ground rules you develop very seriously. They help guide your activities inside and outside of the relationship and make it very easy to determine where the line is and where tension and conflict could arise.

Related Article: Open relationships: Why people engage in them and why they are healthy

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