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People can actually be perpetuating unhealthy, dysfunctional standards and practices while being completely unaware that they are part of the problem.
If anyone has ever described the idea of societal privilege to you, it’s kinda like that.
You posted that you and your partner are ready to open up your relationship and find a special person to add to it. One thing that many of them said was that you are a “Unicorn Hunter”.
But before they actually did anything precipitous, like posting in a Poly forum, they discussed these issues: Some have other specific issues that are important to them, but this list is what I’m going to focus on, and trust me, it is plenty.
They have been together for over a year and are open-minded, tolerant, ethical, progressive people.
Their relationship has some very good points, they genuinely care for each other, are committed, and tend to be open to new experiences.
The problem with this is even though there are consequences, and they are often big, this is not setting a boundary. Upon further reflection, you consider this option, “Hey, I’ll just make an excuse. Are you going to get U a hotel room for the duration of your family’s stay? Presumably U spends time in your home and will feel isolated for the duration of the visit. In all of these cases you are faced with the same situation, U is a “dirty secret”, and while NONE of you intended to set things up to make them feel that way, each of you WILL feel the pressure that is generated by that truth.
This is a request for another person to limit their own behavior (in sometimes unexpected and dramatic ways) that is a much bigger deal than most new-to-Poly people can even grasp. P hates these things anyway, I’ll bring U and we’ll make up a cover story that we can use if anyone asks.” This is not going to work well. Aside from the fact that you can’t make U leave (tenancy rights), you are basically kicking U out of her own home for a week. Put on some sort of Kabuki-style production as described above in the work-related holiday party. You need to either be completely out (challenging under the best of circumstances), willing to risk dramatic disclosures in meaningful situations, or U will be excluded. For starters, some people are actually okay with this.The core of it is, you can be a good person, doing things that seem reasonable from your perspective, and still be part of a problem.