Comments

102
@101: Had she written in, she'd probably get lambasted for standing on a technicality. With the pretty consistent advice that they needed to have a much clearer discussion of what the other person wanted and needed to know when ("I don't need or want to know unless this gets to a certain level" being an unexceptional variation on disclosure rules), without this 'I promise to consider your feelings first, then fuck' vagary. Turns out they aren't on the same page about what that looks like.

(Her technicality being "oral isn't sleeping with" and his technicality being "call before sleeping with anyone means call before you go out to a situation where fooling around might occur.")

He seems to have hoped no actual sex would occur, at least on her end. She may have presented the abstract idea of an open long weekend apart while in actuality having someone on deck and ready to roll, which would emotionally land differently even if being within the letter of their agreement. (Or maybe she sincerely understood this as a mutual fun idea, met a guy at a gathering with friends, and understood that anything short of PiV was okay on both sides, but they'd drawn The Magic Line at reaching for a condom. Agreements in relationships (not just about openness) often have Magic Lines because everyone can tell where they are, which is very helpful.)
103
I sympathize with the LW, because I feel like that's how I would respond if I were in his shoes. However, because I feel like that's how I would respond, I would never be in his shoes. Nonmonogamy, even in the abstract, is uncomfortable enough for me (as it pertains to my relationships, not the concept in general) that I'd never propose, or go along with a partner's proposal, to open our relationship. And for me, the betrayal of the spirit, if not the letter, of the rules agreed upon, which at their core were designed to make each other feel secure and in control, is a big red flag.

Maybe their rules are silly. Maybe they're unwieldy. Maybe they're useless. I don't know. Chances are, since they're new at the open thing, some or all of the above are true. But the point is that in a loving and trusting relationship, you should respect your partner's boundaries first, THEN discuss potential changes to the rules, not break them because you find them inconvenient and hope they forgive you. If you can't give your partner that courtesy and postpone your gratification while you find an agreement that works for you both, I think your partner is quite right to be questioning your relationship.
104
All I've learned from this thread thanks to ipj and bidanfan is: If it ain't PIV, it ain't sex ( sorry about that same sexers, I guess you go through life without sex. And as long as I keep my dick out of pussy, my wife can only be mad about flirting ). LW is a controlling asshole for thinking otherwise. It's also a bridge too far to send a text to an SO saying "hey, looks like things might get nekkid and horizontal, are you sure about this or should I dial it back and we can talk in the morning?" because....., I dunno, it delays instant gratification or something.
105
I do think the guy is over-reacting, but I dislike the wholesale dismissal of his feelings in the comments here. His feelings and emotions are as legit as anyone's. He needs to figure out why he is so upset by this minor infraction. Although it seems trite, I would recommend talking it through with a counselor to get clarity. It would seem a shame to destroy such a good thing impulsively.
106
It's interesting how often this site has letters from guys who thought they were gonna get all the goodies all the time by making deals with their women about "us" being sexually open/experimental--and then cry foul when it turns out the women are the ones who take advantage of the situation.
107
@104: Too young for the Clinton polls, when a solid majority of straight people admitted that they viewed oral as foreplay and not sex? Even if the standard doesn't work for the minority for whom piv sex isn't on the menu: those who include it often draw a line of some sort around piv vs other forms of sex play. (Look around a high school or college for tons of "only" exchanging oral and not really sleeping together.) Probably has a great deal to do with its connection to pregnancy. If it's truly short of PiV sex then the odds are basically nil. Cross that line and an unintended pregnancy becomes a possibility of this roll in the hay, even with birth control. That's an emotional line as much as a physical one.)

You can cheat on your spouse with actions that come drastically short of PiV sex. (e.g. A perennial debate here on which I disagree with Dan: if the sex worker or hot ex stays inside the computer and never technically touches you, is it cheating? How about if you meet in a hotel room but maintain a 1/2 inch distance at all times?)

If his objection was "obviously oral is sleeping with, come on!" I'd understand it. (Though still argue that obviously "think of me, then fuck" wasn't a very clear standard.) But the standards of when they would check in with what level of detail seem to have been more amorphous than that--perhaps willfully, more likely because "we'll think of each other" is more abstract and comfortable to envision.

A while back there was a letter from a happily open couple: He wanted an emotional connection and so slept with old lovers, after a pleasant dinner catching up on old times and mutual acquaintances. She wanted a bad girl one-off with some guy she found in the hotel bar. Had they gone into this with "Just think of me first" or "Don't do anything I wouldn't do and we'll be fine" it wouldn't have worked, because they found each other's preferred format initially squicky. But after instead doing describe/downplay/drop they worked out a mutually happy system.
108
A while back there was a letter from a happily open couple: He wanted an emotional connection and so slept with old lovers, after a pleasant dinner catching up on old times and mutual acquaintances. She wanted a bad girl one-off with some guy she found in the hotel bar. Had they gone into this with "Just think of me first" or "Don't do anything I wouldn't do and we'll be fine" it wouldn't have worked, because they found each other's preferred format initially squicky. But after instead doing describe/downplay/drop they worked out a mutually happy system.
109
Glad 'ol Bill and high school set the standard. Thanks for clearing that up. Unless its PIV, it just ain't sex. Gotcha.
110
My ex did the same shit. She could fuck whoever she wanted (some reasonable exceptions) but all she had to do was clear it with me. Simple call or text saying "Hey, babe. I found a playmate for tonight. Is that cool?" Never once did I say no. But she broke the rules by acting on her desires before checking in with me despite knowing there was a 99% chance I would say go for it. I let it go twice. Three Strikes and yer out biatch! Don't regret forgiving but ya gotta draw a line somewhere...
111
That's just dumb. I am sorry, but there is no such thing as "open relationship." Yeah, go ahead an crucify me. The so-called "open relationship" will only bring pain and mistrust. I have never (NEVER!) met anyone who has been happy in this "open relationship" and I met plenty of couples claiming it. There will always be one person who is butt-hurt about the experience. If it's truly an open relationship, one would not have to call in to get permission. The way I see it by watching several of my friends falling for this scam is that you like someone, that person is a gigolo (male or female-version, I suppose), and you want to stay with them so bad that you accept this ridiculous notion of an "open" relationship. Open relationship is nothing but an excuse to fuck someone else while reaping the benefits of someone's unconditional love.
112
@111 "[An] open relationship is nothing but an excuse to fuck someone else while reaping the benefits of someone's unconditional love."

Yep, that's the general idea.
113
@101: If you're male and you get cheated on, you're obligated to apologize to her, and pretend that it's your fault. Also, you're apparently obligated to keep paying her rent.

@111: I am sorry, but there is no such thing as "open relationship."
...
"Open relationship is nothing but an excuse to fuck someone else while reaping the benefits of someone's unconditional love".

This is hilarious. There's no such thing as addition! It's nothing but adding numbers together and getting a bigger number that's the sum of the previous ones!
113
Dude, this is totally not about the "rules of engagement" you agreed upon. What you are experiencing is plain old sexual jealousy. She was doing another guy and that set off the fireworks in your head. You made a deal it turns out you could not actually handle.

You're not alone. Nobody really knows if they can do polyamory until they try it, and for some people, it is just not a possibility. And there's nothing wrong with that. We are a pair-bonding species and we have the instincts that go with that.

So do not kick an otherwise fab girl to the curb for a slight error in execution of a plan it turns out you were not ready for. This is your problem, amigo, not hers. Don't make deals you can't live up to in the future, and apologize to her for making a big deal out of it.

113
@114 Exactly this isn't about the rules it's about his ego. I get the feeling he expected her to sit around rhapsodizing about his dick, not to get laid. If this part of a pattern of rule breaking sure dump her, but if this is just him realizing non-monogamy doesn't work for him he needs to own that and actually tell his girlfriend what he wants.

And E. So glad you took a break from your Men Rights forums to come here and tell us all how women aren't people, that it's wrong to treat them us like people, and how the male ego must be catered to at all costs.
113
LW. If you've been thru crazy shit with this girl, why the hell would you open the relationship?
I assume, an open relationship can only work for both parties is if " crazy shit" is not part of the equation. You haven't articulated the crazy stuff, so we can all only imagine what you mean..
Maybe this incident is the straw, and only you can decide that..
2
@115: "And E. So glad you took a break from your Men Rights forums to come here and tell us all how women aren't people, that it's wrong to treat them us like people, and how the male ego must be catered to at all costs."

So glad you couldn't find anything to say about me that was true. Are you one of those cretins who thinks only men or women can be people, or are you just doing an excellent impression of it?

In other words, yes, I noticed that I have never, in my life, said anything that could be plausibly interpreted by anything resembling a sensible human being as anything resembling what you said. And I noticed that you apparently can't disagree with me without lying. I mean, if you could say something to support your position without obviously lying, you'd have done that, wouldn't you? If there was anything true that made you seem right, you'd have said it. But you didn't.

Nocutename: Yes, I'm aware that you'll be upset with me for pointing out when someone is lying. Is there any lie so blatant that you won't leap to its defense, provided the lie comes from a woman?
118
Liar! LIAR! LIIAAAAARRRRRR.....
119
Go away E. Seriously. Get a hobby, get laid, get SOMETHING. Just stop coming here and spooging all over the comment threads.

And please learn the concepts of sarcasm and hyperbole.

    Please wait...

    and remember to be decent to everyone
    all of the time.

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