No matter what name you give, an open or unconventional relationship is becoming common these days. Because of western cultural influence, people realize that monogamy is not for them and turn to polygamy. However, there is nothing wrong with this, but like it is said, everything has its pros and cons.
But when it comes to open relationships, our society still lacks that mindset where conversations on such relationships are acceptable. Thus, youngsters who are involved in such relationships or want to don’t know the right parameters, which often lands them in trouble.
So I have got you this comprehensive blog where I am going to tell you how you can set boundaries in such a relationship and save yourself from emotional breakouts.
But before that, let’s understand what open relationships are.
What is an open relationship?
The definition of an open relationship changes with people’s perspectives. Broadly it is the kind of relationship in which both partners have the freedom to explore a romantic or sexual relationship with other people.
The open relationship involves casual sexual encounters and long-term or short-term romantic relationships. It can also be in the form of polygamy, where one person can simultaneously be involved with many people. There are certain risks involved, and sometimes it becomes difficult to differentiate between the relations.
Before you get involved in an open relationship, set some ground rules to avoid further emotional and mental stress.
Set sex boundaries.
Setting sex boundaries is the first thumb rule you should ensure and discuss with your partner. What kind of sex is okay and what is not? Whether you want your partner to have a sexual encounter with other people or not. Don’t feel embarrassed about getting specific in this case. Have a conversation about how you will handle it if things come up in the heat of the moment. Discussing these things beforehand is always better than risking each other’s mental health. Also, make sure that you include safe sex practices in your rule.
Set emotional boundaries.
Another important aspect of open relationships is emotional boundaries. Define what emotional and social boundaries will work between both of you. For instance, would you be comfortable if your partner has random hookups, goes on a date, etc.? Determining emotional boundaries is more difficult than physical ones because no one knows what feelings you might develop with time.
Figure out how much time you’ll spend with other partners.
When you are in a relationship, it’s obvious that you will spend time with each other. But because you are in an open relationship, your partner might have some other commitments also. So, discuss how much time you will spend with each other and in open activities.
We have been wired in a way that there should be only one partner for life, but now the concepts are changing, and people want to explore different options before they settle for one. Besides, people also think staying with one might be boring, and thus they get involved in different open relationships where boundaries are well defined between both partners. Being in an open relationship is not easy but requires a lot of patience, trust and communication.