Monogamy is a myth. I know there’s the fairy-tale out there: my one prince/princess charming, the love of my life, will come, and we’ll live happily ever after. But how many of us have had that experience?
I do not know a single person who has never, ever been attracted to someone else while in a monogamous relationship, even if, like Jimmy Carter, they have only “committed adultery in [their] heart many times.”
What is “cheating”? It is the natural desire for sexual variety. It is the explorative, curious impulse. It is horniness when you are away from your partner, or when, for whatever reason, sex with your partner is not working out well. Among other things, that could be because a partner is sick, they’re busy with “the children,” tired from work, etc.
Of course you’ve read a million “solutions”: Spice up your sex life, make time for sex, etc. These are good suggestions, and certainly should be followed if they are needed, but they do not replace the natural urge to “fuck around” sometimes.
What happens when both partners are allowed to pursue sexual interests? The core issue is fear: “Will s/he be younger/more beautiful/better at sex than me, and thus my spouse will want them instead of me?”
Most of my life has been what could be called “serial monogamy,” although in my case it was rarely true monogamy. You see, to me, it is unreasonable to ask someone to pledge sexually fidelity to me for the REST OF THEIR NATURAL LIFE; just the same, I feel that it is unreasonable for ME to pledge lifelong sexual fidelity to anyone.
On the other hand, casual sex is also not really all that much fun FOR EVER. Partnership has its priveledges. Why should sexual fidelity determine one’s ability or desire to be committed and partnered, even possibly for life? If sexual fidelity was not a concern, many people would not have gotten divorced. What usually happens? It is the angry, accusatory and jealous dialogue that ends the relationship; the “cheating” is indicative to betrayal, a wound to the ego, and the secret of it is the worst blow, not the actual sex. People feel their spouse has betrayed them if they “cheat,” and that’s a deal breaker, but what if it wasn’t?
Some people have developed semi-open systems: many sports wives, musician’s wives, etc, know that their spouses will “cheat” on the road, and have rules about how much of that stuff is ok, and where spouses should draw the line. Many people also have double standards, such as when husbands have this unspoken rule: “I can cheat because there are groupies on the road, and they don’t mean anything to me, but you [wife] cannot cheat.” That arrangement is obviously unfair. I’ve been in that relationship, and it doesn’t work well enough for me.
Over the years I’ve combatted the constraints of traditional monogamy in various ways, mostly by having threesomes with my committed, “monogamous” partners. This has helped to release the pressure valve of desire for new pussy and or dick – whichever takes the fancy. For me, “being bisexual doubles your chances for a date on Saturday night,” as the saying goes. I’m lucky to be bisexual, and like it best when my partner (in my life they’ve mostly been male) has been bisexual. Oh, the fun threesomes we can have! But I don’t just want the occasional threesome. I want permission to be myself in my life. I want to be free to fuck someone if I feel like it.
After a life of sexual experimentation and much serial monogamy I finally found a person who isn’t threatened by this fact: a partner who “got it”: my husband Martyn.
In July of 2015, after 10 years of being together, my husband Martyn and I got married. “Why?” Some people ask. Because I cannot imagine ever wanting to be partnered with anyone else, while both of us are alive, because I love him, because we work together so well as a team, because we trust each other, and because we have fun together. We support and comfort each other. We make a home of each other. We cook together, cuddle together, sleep together, have separate interests and pursue them, have common interests and pursue them. Because this relationship “works.” We call our relationship “partnered non-monogamy.”
What is the result of granting sexual freedom to each other? For me, because I am free to do as I wish, and because I am openly doing this, any sexual adventure I embark upon is safe, sane, and carefully weighed. I think, “Do I really want to do this?” “Do I like the person enough to fuck them? How about we just fool around a little and then I go home and get to get fucked my fabulous husband?” I am more judicious and more selective.
Here’s what I think about myself: I am fuckin’ fantastic. I am a 56 year old lifelong New York City intellectual. I’m 5’6”. I have beautiful long brown hair. I am about 30 lbs overweight. I have a lovely pussy and beautiful tits. I am great in bed. I fuckin’ rock. My husband is the luckiest man on the planet.
It’s actually a lot about self-esteem. I truly know that I am not 20. I don’t have a “perfect” bod, whatever the fuck that is. So if some 23 year old wants to fuck my husband, that’s awesome. He’s awesome! This 23 year old does not threaten me. I think she’s a delightful piece of chocolate picked from a box of yumminess. What a tasty little snack! How could I deny my husband such a treat?
Does he really want a relationship with that 23 year old? Do you want a relationship with a 23 year old? Probably not. Just sexually speaking, often these youngin’s don’t have all that much practice. My sexual skills are rather impressive, if I do say so myself. That is a nice checkmark in my favor. But I am truly not worried. Even if she’s terrific in bed, and I would hope that she would be: it’d be nicer for him: when you get into a relationship with someone you take in all their baggage. Their life becomes a part of your life. That’s a choice we don’t make every day.
In actuality, mostly Martyn and I prefer to have sex with others, together. Why? I, for one, find I am often more comfortable having sex with others when he’s around. I just want to know he’s there. I don’t even have to get his dick inside me. Sometimes it’s about safety and comfort in the situation. Also, it’s fun to come up with creative sexual ideas together and execute them, whether it’s a seduction, a configuration of bodies, or an exploration of a particular kink, and sometimes it’s about compersion.
Compersion is the feeling of happiness or thrill in another person’s pleasure. There is nothing cooler than sitting on the bed, holding a woman’s hands while my husband makes her cum with his tongue. You know how I feel? I feel proud: proud at how good my husband is at giving head, happy that he is enjoying himself, happy that she is loving it, and, frankly, it turns me on. These sexual experiences do not lessen me. They make me happy; they keep me interested, and they make us better partners. We share these intimate moments. We rejoice in each other’s pleasure, and we don’t live in fear.
Partnered non-monogamy: love yourself and give it a try. For us, it has made our love continue to grow. “‘Til death do us part.” That doesn’t sound so bad to me these days. This, I can do.