A few weeks back, popular Twitter storyteller, Ife (Diary of Naija Girl), shared a story on her timeline about a girl whose parents were into an open relationship. According to the girl, she came back home due to the COVID19 pandemic and subsequent lockdown.
Few days after her arrival, a woman visited her father but instead of staying in the sitting room, she found her way to the bedroom. The girl’s mother had to leave the room and joined the daughter in her room. It was weird but the girl looked past it until it happened the second time. The same woman came around and her mother left the bedroom as usual. Curious, the girl went to her parent’s bedroom and found out that her father was sleeping with the woman.
Well, it broke her but after having a heart to heart conversation with her parents; the girl found out that her parents in an open relationship. If I was in the girl’s shoes, I don’t know how I would have taken such information. But that’s not why I am writing this post. How do people deal with this thing called, “Open relationship”?
It is easy to raise your eyebrows and put on your judgmental coat the moment you hear that lovers are having an open relationship. Well, truth is, it does work for some people. My boyfriend and I tried to adopt this “open relationship thing” but for some reason, it didn’t work. The idea sounded cool to us but was immediately trashed. There was a possibility that any of us could fall out of love – we couldn’t deal with that.
Maybe you and your partner are considering having an open relationship – my advice is, “Don’t jump into this until both of you have understood what it entails”. Below are ways you can deal with an open relationship.
Love yourself to STUPOR!
You cannot go into an open relationship when you have zero self-esteem. If you are the kind of person that needs constant validation from your partner, it might be very difficult to navigate this style of relationship.
So, I would advise that you love yourself a lot before starting an open relationship. You have to understand that you may not be the sexiest person your partner may be having sex with but that won’t matter because you know you are a “catch”.
Tell your partner everything
For an open relationship to thrive, you have to learn to be honest and open to your partner. Part of the reasons why an open relationship didn’t work between my boyfriend and I was partly because I knew it will be difficult for me to tell him everything. Like, how can I sleep with a guy and tell him about it? It felt weird but just because it’s weird for me doesn’t mean that people don’t do it.
So, yeah, for an open relationship to work between you and your partner, you guys need to be completely open with each other. No secrets! Can you deal with that?
Have a game plan
Open relationships don’t work well when there are no rules. Both of you need to sit down and come up with a game plan and find answers to questions like, “How many partners are you okay with each other having?” “How many times are you allowed to have sex with someone?” “How much information are you allowed to share?” “Are there boundaries?”
The day my boyfriend and I agreed to go into an open relationship, I asked him for the rules and his reply was, “There are no rules. Just do whatever you like”. Lol, I already knew there was no way the open relationship was going to work.
Remember your main partner is your priority
While you are out there loving up and getting under the sheets with someone else, remember that your main partner is still your priority. Let your new lovers know this before you get down with them, to avoid stories that touch.
Get ready to be judged
Like I said at the beginning of this article, people always raise their eyebrows and put on their judgmental coats once lovers mention that they are in an open relationship. Are you ready for that judgmental look?
Not everyone will get it; they wouldn’t understand why you would want to share your partner with someone else. They will think you have no self-respect. You will continuously try to find the right words to make people understand that you and your partner are doing okay.
But hey, it’s not something to worry about. It’s your life. Though you can’t control the way people will react, you should have complete control over your reaction.
I am going to end this article with just one sentence – “Open Relationship is not for everyone”. It either makes or mars a relationship. Be careful while jumping into it.