Conducting a successful open relationship can be a challenge, especially for people experimenting with this kind of relationship for the first time. So what does it take to make a success of your open relationship? For a start, it makes sense to know what you’re getting into and be aware of the rules you’re both playing by. We’re going to talk today about some of the things you’ll want to do if you’re going to make your open relationship real success, as tough and challenging it might sometimes be.
There’s Not One Single Way to Have an Open Relationship
The first thing to highlight is that there’s no single way to maintain an open relationship. Every relationship is unique, and it’s something that you and your partner will have to navigate together in ways that work for both of you. You shouldn’t feel as if you need to follow someone else’s rules or do things a certain way just because that’s how other people tend to manage their relationships. Some people make the mistake of thinking that they have to do it the way other people do, but that’s not the case.
Stick to What You’re Comfortable With
Rather than worrying about anyone else, it would help if you tried to stick with what you’re comfortable with. Different people have different worries, anxieties, and levels of comfort. If you’re satisfied with something and your partner is, it’s all good. But if you feel as if you’re not comfortable with some aspect of the relationship, you should speak up and make that clear. If you both stick to what you’re comfortable with, it’ll be better for you both and better for the relationship in the long run.
Do it For the Right Reasons
It’s undoubtedly vital that you enter into this kind of relationship for the right reasons. It’s something that you need to want and that both people in the relationship need to want. If one person wants it and the other doesn’t, it’s probably not going to end well. It’s to be done for the right reasons and not as a way to save a dying relationship or as a roll of the dice that not everyone is comfortable with. That’s something to keep in mind when deciding whether this is for you.
Have Rules Both Individuals Agree On
There should always be rules that both people stick to as part of the relationship. If there aren’t ground rules in place, you won’t know where each other’s boundaries are. Any confusion or misunderstanding between you regarding the mechanics of the relationship will only lead to hurt feelings and problems later, and that’s not what you want. When the rules are clear for both parties, you’ll hopefully both be on the same page, which is vital for the relationship’s lasting success.
Make Your Own Decisions
It’s vital that you decide your actions in the relationship and not what your partner wants or doesn’t want. It needs to be a level playing field in the relationship if this will work. That means that the rules you’ve agreed upon the need to apply to both people equally. So when you want to see someone else outside of the relationship, you should be free to do that if it’s within the rules that you’ve both agreed on. Equally, you don’t have to see other people all the time if you don’t want to; there should be no pressure in either direction.
Be Open to Change
Open relationships don’t have to be set in stone. Just because they function one way at one point in time doesn’t necessarily mean that they should stay that way forever. It would be best if you were open to change and willing for things to shift over time. As things change in your relationship, you might want to end the open aspect of that relationship. That’s okay as well. It’s essential to remain open to things changing as and when you want or need them to.
Communicate Openly with One Another
Communication is one of the most important things to work on when you’re looking to succeed in your open relationship. If you’re not talking to each other and making sure that any problems are being brought up and discussed, things might just become more complicated between you over time. Try to be as open as you can be about how you feel and the relationship in general. You don’t want to start hiding feelings or drifting apart, as that could spell disaster for the connection.
Learn to Manage Disagreements
It’s crucial that when you disagree with each other about an aspect of the relationship or how one of you has behaved that you’re willing to learn from the situation and discuss things until a resolution has been found. If you allow arguments to get out of control and for problems to erupt, the relationship will become fractured, and you won’t be able to make the whole arrangement last. So it’s essential to manage and navigate those disagreements as a team, even when it’s challenging to do so.
Get Help if It’s Needed
There are relationship counseling options out there that will be specifically tailored to your situation and relevant to open relationships. So if you think that that kind of external support might help you deal with any problems you might be experiencing or trying to deal with inside the relationship, don’t hesitate to reach out and get that help. You don’t have to go it alone or work things out by yourself all the time.
If you make the most of the rules above, you should make sure that your open relationship is a success. It’ll be challenging, and you might face challenges along the way, but with good communication and an approach based on the ideas discussed above, you’ll eventually get it right.