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He knew that he was my first boyfriend (I was 18), and he didn't want me to feel like I was missing out on dating.We talked about nonmonogamy in theory for a long time (two years? In hindsight, I feel like this gave me time to get used to the idea and for us to build a solid foundation.This past year, we've been trying to tell new friends early on, because it is much less awkward. We tend to attract open-minded people into our lives, so no one has had a terrible response thus far.I tend to be attracted to older men, which is different from Ben (he is only a couple of months older than I am).My sister (who is also my best friend) and her husband know, which is extremely helpful. I felt like I was living a double life for a while there, which I hated.We've also told a few close friends, all of whom have been awesome and supportive.If he did fall in love, I don't think it would bother me.We both feel strongly that our relationships with other people don't take away from how we feel about each other.
Ben mentioned that he would be comfortable with me casually dating other people early on in our relationship, and it was then something we talked about every once in a while for a few years. When we graduated college (and moved in together), I met someone who I could see myself dating.Making the other person feel valued and primary is extremely important to Ben and me. We spend most of our free time together and try to be intentional about the quality of that time (e.g. We've both acknowledged that if our foundation wasn't strong, we would probably feel more jealousy. Everyone knows right off the bat that we are happily married, and thus not looking for a lifelong commitment.We also feel strongly about treating the people we date with respect and care (and expect to be treated the same).Ben was comfortable with me exploring it, and I casually went on a few dates.From there, we talked about opening the relationship on his end as well, and I was surprised by how nonjealous I felt.
The idea of telling our parents makes us both want to poop our pants, and thus will never happen (nor does it need to).