David Smiedt weighs in on why open relationships aren’t the best idea.
Why threesomes just don’t work.
We think we’re so modern and enlightened and sexually savvy – at least compared with the previous generations. We drop phrases like “money shot” with no more of a raised eyebrow in response than “noodles” or “laces”. Porn – for better or worse (usually) – is a daily fact of life that we’d be naïve to deny.
In this supposedly “been-there-donethat-ho-hum” society, another topic which was once considered a taboo is being revived: Open relationships. For those who don’t know what they are, you may want to take a seat. Open relationships happen when two people in an exclusive relationship agree that they can sleep with others while remaining in said relationship. At the risk of coming across like some stuck-inthe-mud, neo-conservative, yes-please-but-only-in-missionary-position sexual conservative, let me tell you why I think open relationships an awful idea.
Firstly, the desire to ‘branch out’ usually stems from sexual dissatisfaction in either party. In other words, they want more sex and often, with other people. This is a common relationship hurdle but most folks usually find some kind of compromise – by which, I mean masturbation – because the multi-faceted nature of a committed relationship outweighs the onedimensional pleasure of an orgasm. I’ve had plenty of the latter but they’ve never scaled the benefits of being with someone in more than one sense. You see, no matter how much we try to justify with the “it’s just sex” excuse, the indisputable and intimate fact is that it’s way, way more than that. Sexual interaction is a negation of the concept of exclusivity, unless there is a financial arrangement involved (but that’s a different article for another day). Ostensibly loving one person but acting on your lust for another, cheapens the first while servicing the second – especially since two people rarely ‘brainstorm’ the idea of an open relationship together. It’s usually at the behest of one person and delivered in the form of an ultimatum: “My sex drive is very high. If you don’t take the requisite action, I’ll have no choice but to look elsewhere for release.”
This is where the seditious parasite takes hold. They’ll say it’s not their fault (their sex drive is responsible) and it’s your problem to fix. But, they have a choice – they can keep their goodies in their trousers, and just make regular withdrawals from the spank bank.
At its core, an open relationship is not a democracy, but a dictatorship. Both people have theoretical “freedom” but it’s usually only one party that’s exercising it. Don’t get me wrong: I’m not dissing sex for sex’s sake – if both parties feels the same way, then I’ll gladly light some candles, uncork a bottle of wine, and wish you all the best. However, all the other stuff that comes with a relationship and grows over time – the trust, the physical connection, the abiding intimacy – is under threat.
There’s a reason you’ve never meet a couple who say, “Why, yes! We’re in an open relationship, and it’s working out brilliantly.” It’s not that they’re embarrassed or afraid that people might judge them – it’s because they don’t bloody work.
It’s a matter of either or.
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