Author: Neamhspleachas

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Neamhspleachas is a thirty-something American, currently living in the Netherlands. She works as a journalist and writer. If she’s not working, you can probably find her drinking a craft beer somewhere. Possibly somewhere far away from home. You can find her putting her multiple degrees to good use by blogging about relationships, economics, politics, and boobs that are and are not hers at neamhspleachas.com.

I’ve written before about being in an open relationship when you’re accidentally monogamous. That was a few months ago. Now my dance card is so full I’ve deleted my dating profiles. It’s a luxury problem, I know. The reintroduction to the dating world has reminded me of a number of things. First dates are always awkward, connecting with someone online doesn’t always translate into a connection in real life, people are generally really weird and consent is sexy. One of these things is not like the other. As #MeToo has spread, as Yes Means Yes has taken hold, there’s been…

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A few week’s ago, I was catching up with an old friend, who had recently met a new partner. I was listening to my friend talk about his new lady and he ended with “And the best part about it is that I’m happy with just her. I don’t feel the need to be with anyone else.” I was taken aback. He’d long been a supporter of non-monogamy. But it wasn’t merely his switch to monogamy that was surprising. It was his attitude that somehow this relationship, this monogamous relationship, was better or more whole than a non-monogamous one that…

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Are you in an open relationship if no one is actually seeing any other people? The boyfriend and I started seeing each other less than a year ago. It was a bit of a whirlwind romance. He came home with me after a second date and never left. Three months later, we moved into a place of our own. We met online and we were both clear in our profiles that we were both kinky and non-monogamous. We discussed it on our first date. He was even seeing someone else for the first few weeks of this whirlwind. And then…

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A colleague mentioned that she was watching a movie that included a scene with couples tossing their keys into a bowl, and at that moment her teenage daughter walked into the room. Confused by the scene, the daughter asked why the couples were tossing keys in a bowl, and my colleague explained the concept of a key party. The daughter responded that that behavior was “reckless” and my colleague wholeheartedly agreed.

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It seems as though there are so many things to “come out” about these days. Being gay. Being bi. Being an atheist. Being a Wiccan. Being non-monogamous. It’s an unsurprising by-product of a progressing society. Rather than shamefully hiding your atypical lifestyle, you embrace it. You meet others who are like you and develop a circle of gay, atheist, non-monogamous friends. Unfortunately, your parents/family/coworkers/local grocer may not be as embracing of your “atypicality.”

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There are plenty of reasons why people who are in open relationships are also in marriages (their own marriages, not someone else’s). People may choose to explore open relationships after they have already gotten married. I know plenty of people who were married long before they got into the life style. Couples who were already open may choose to get married for health insurance, immigration, tax or a whole host of other, pragmatic reasons. While they may have been together and loved each other for a long time, what ultimately sends them down the aisle is the desire for one of them to finally have dental coverage.

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