Long-Term Developing feelings in an open relationship

johndoe

Space Monkey
space monkey
Joined
Dec 18, 2013
Messages
26
Hi folks,

I've been lingering around and reading GirlsChase for almost a decade now. Don't read it as much as I used to (which is a testament to how well it has taught me) as my life has gotten more busy and packed with relationship and work.

To cut a long story short, I've had a very fulfilling relationship with a wonderful girl for almost 4 years now, and recently we've decided to open the Pandora's box of an open relationship. Our sex live has always been good -- passionate intercourse, great orgasms, and we do it very frequently. But after years of staying together and exclusive, we'd started to miss the thrill of meeting and having sex with new people. So one fine day, she suggested we try this.

Truthfully, I was reluctant, as I always felt that getting laid was a lot of work. I wasn't looking forward to hitting bars and getting on Tinder again, because I was very into my work at the time, and going open meant that if I was going to keep up, I was going to have to commit to hours a week just putting myself out there and "hunting". I couldn't say I didn't miss the thrill of the chase, however, and thought that it was a thing that would strengthen our trust and rapport.

Obviously, she got it going much faster than I did. All it took was a few swipes on Tinder, and, in a couple of weeks, she was inundated with hot guys from all nationalities and ethnicities, asking her out on dates. This was when I started feeling insecure -- I was a little rusty, for one, and she was reluctant to even talk about rules. Obviously, she wanted to have a good time, and this caused a good bit of drama between us, which got her feeling frustrated with me.

I caught up a short while later, having a few good dates that led to sex, but she was always fairly nonchalant about it (perhaps because she knew the sex wasn't as good as ours). When I had this one date with a girl I felt a bit too much for, and whom the sex was a little too good with, she started changing her tune, wanting to end the open relationship and start rebuilding us.

With me going through the drama I did with her, I obviously wasn't too pleased. I have to admit though, the implicit point of an open relationship was not to develop feelings for these other partners, and in this way I felt like I cheated. Didn't give in to her request to stop, and things boiled over to a point where I asked for a break up (which later turned into just a "break").

This other girl though, wonderful as she was, asked if it was better if we cut contact so that I could work on my relationship. As much as she wanted to "see me every day", she thought that I should do things right. So I accepted.

So here I am, 2 months into an open relationship, confused as a spinning top. On one hand, it's ridiculous that I'm considering letting go of a 4-year thing to start a thing with someone I barely know; but emotionally, that's all I'm thinking about.

What the hell is going on in my head? Thoughts?

P.S. I know the boards here usually discuss technique, but I'm feeling both heartbroken and like a giant dickhead at once, so I thought writing here will help clear things up for me. You folks here are all pretty methodical after all.
 

J Wick

Tool-Bearing Hominid
Tool-Bearing Hominid
Joined
Dec 25, 2012
Messages
628
I find that when I'm not sure what to do, it's because I'm lacking clarity about what I want to do.

It seems to me that you have unanswered questions that you have to ask yourself. What do you want in general? What do you want out of a relationship? What do you want out of the 4 year one? What do you want out of the new one? What are you willing to tolerate and what is a deal breaker and so on.

When you get really clear about things, and this can be applied to everything in life, you have a much easier time deciding what to do.

For instance, I can tell you what I would do. I'd probably move on from the old relationship or try to make things more casual with her, because I don't want a serious relationship right now (I'm actually in a similar situation haha). And then I would keep seeing the new girl because she seems interesting, and I would keep meeting new women.

But that's what I would do, based off of what I know I want out of life and dating. Figure out that yourself and it'll be your guide.

When I had this one date with a girl I felt a bit too much for, and whom the sex was a little too good with, she started changing her tune, wanting to end the open relationship and start rebuilding us.

Here's a tip, in open relationships it tends to be a good idea to avoid sharing too much info. I believe in good communication, but there are times when less is more.

My gf would always say how she can handle the details (and she would share her details and I was totally ok with it.) But I noticed that she cannot handle the details. She will get upset or jealous or try to influence who I see, etc.
 

Fluxcapacitor

Modern Human
Modern Human
Joined
Dec 17, 2018
Messages
684
@johndoe dude! This is the open relationship paradox and it's been discussed on the forum, most recently because of the Will Smith interview. There's a few issues highlighted in your post.

There's an expression "new love is true love" which is what you're experiencing. The feeling of love is being out of control which is why new relationships are exciting, this is also why the girl should be chasing, she has less control of the relationship and values you more. You've developed feelings for this new girl because it's new love and exciting, your girlfriend is now jealous and chasing you because she's now uncertain. You've gained power back.

Let's back up a little.

The on again of again relationship happens because one of you thinks you can do better, the reality hits and then you go crawling back. This is the case with breakups usually the one dumping thinks they can do better. (This is over simplified, there's more at play)

When your girlfriend suggested an open relationship she's implying she's bored of you. Half of her thinks she can do better, but she's happy that you're stable with her. This will give her the best of both worlds and a bit of lost respect for you while she's submitting her body to another dude... welcome to the paradox.

Your roles have actually reversed. She was happy with the open relationship while she was having fun. Now you've met someone and she's lost control she now wants monogamy. Usually the only open relationships that work are when you enjoy your partner getting fucked by someone else.

You were reluctant to accept and then felt insecure, she now feels insecure and doesn't like the competition. You feel like you've cheated because you've "hurt her feelings" where you've actually beat her at her own game.

You shouldn't have discussed this with the new girl. This should be fun.
 

Skills

Tribal Elder
Tribal Elder
Joined
Nov 11, 2019
Messages
1,342
Location
South Florida
Problem has nothing to do with open relationships but with leadership, you are letting women run the show instead of you running the show. Also you are not ready to have open relationships at this point you are to green... this isn't how open relationships are run
 

johndoe

Space Monkey
space monkey
Joined
Dec 18, 2013
Messages
26
@johndoe dude! This is the open relationship paradox and it's been discussed on the forum, most recently because of the Will Smith interview. There's a few issues highlighted in your post.

There's an expression "new love is true love" which is what you're experiencing. The feeling of love is being out of control which is why new relationships are exciting, this is also why the girl should be chasing, she has less control of the relationship and values you more. You've developed feelings for this new girl because it's new love and exciting, your girlfriend is now jealous and chasing you because she's now uncertain. You've gained power back.

Let's back up a little.

The on again of again relationship happens because one of you thinks you can do better, the reality hits and then you go crawling back. This is the case with breakups usually the one dumping thinks they can do better. (This is over simplified, there's more at play)

When your girlfriend suggested an open relationship she's implying she's bored of you. Half of her thinks she can do better, but she's happy that you're stable with her. This will give her the best of both worlds and a bit of lost respect for you while she's submitting her body to another dude... welcome to the paradox.

Your roles have actually reversed. She was happy with the open relationship while she was having fun. Now you've met someone and she's lost control she now wants monogamy. Usually the only open relationships that work are when you enjoy your partner getting fucked by someone else.

You were reluctant to accept and then felt insecure, she now feels insecure and doesn't like the competition. You feel like you've cheated because you've "hurt her feelings" where you've actually beat her at her own game.

You shouldn't have discussed this with the new girl. This should be fun.
Thanks for the thoughtful reply Flux. Now that you've mentioned it, you're right, I've had an intuition that my girlfriend's been having "what if I was single" thoughts for awhile now. I just never really concerned myself with it, because I felt we were friends beyond all else, owned a couple of things together, and had a pretty good sex life (i.e. frequent, taking her to orgasm during intercourse every week or 2). I thought that if she had a crush on someone outside, it'd be pretty inevitable, and I knew she wouldn't renege on our relationship just because of that.

We did have a talk a couple of months ago about her losing interest. That resulted in her putting in more effort for about a month or 2, and slipping back to her old habits.

I guess I really wanted to make us work, so I was making the effort to keep us together (turning down advances, making time for her), which might've appeared to her as me being more needy or invested. As much as it's not a difficult thing to get laid, I feel like being in this "swinging dick" mindset changes the quality of my life a lot. All the excitement and anticipation of the chase affects my focus at work, and shows in my daily meditation (my heart rate used to be as low as 58 in the morning, now it's much higher and I can't sit as long).

I don't think it'll be hard to get things going with this new girl again (unless I wait for a ridiculous amount of time), should I decide to break up. Maybe I'm reading things wrong, but we went off like a bomb, and not all of my trysts were like that.

I'd love to have a look at the Will Smith interview. Gonna search the forums.
 

johndoe

Space Monkey
space monkey
Joined
Dec 18, 2013
Messages
26
I find that when I'm not sure what to do, it's because I'm lacking clarity about what I want to do.

It seems to me that you have unanswered questions that you have to ask yourself. What do you want in general? What do you want out of a relationship? What do you want out of the 4 year one? What do you want out of the new one? What are you willing to tolerate and what is a deal breaker and so on.

When you get really clear about things, and this can be applied to everything in life, you have a much easier time deciding what to do.

For instance, I can tell you what I would do. I'd probably move on from the old relationship or try to make things more casual with her, because I don't want a serious relationship right now (I'm actually in a similar situation haha). And then I would keep seeing the new girl because she seems interesting, and I would keep meeting new women.

But that's what I would do, based off of what I know I want out of life and dating. Figure out that yourself and it'll be your guide.

Here's a tip, in open relationships it tends to be a good idea to avoid sharing too much info. I believe in good communication, but there are times when less is more.

My gf would always say how she can handle the details (and she would share her details and I was totally ok with it.) But I noticed that she cannot handle the details. She will get upset or jealous or try to influence who I see, etc.
I was pretty clear I wanted a stable relationship with someone I was both friends with, and had sexual chemistry with. That was what I was working towards for the past year or so. Now, with all of this, it's eroded a lot of the trust and emotional closeness I had towards her, so I'm not so sure about us anymore. We got a lot of things together over the years though, which would be difficult to work through if we really decide to split. That motivates me to fix things, but emotionally, I'm not really there.

As for the oversharing part, I never had a chance to do the less is more thing. All I said was "it was good" and she was on to me. Maybe it's the way I said it or something. I swear, girls have the most killer intuitions sometimes.
 

Fluxcapacitor

Modern Human
Modern Human
Joined
Dec 17, 2018
Messages
684
Thanks for the thoughtful reply Flux. Now that you've mentioned it, you're right, I've had an intuition that my girlfriend's been having "what if I was single" thoughts for awhile now. I just never really concerned myself with it, because I felt we were friends beyond all else, owned a couple of things together, and had a pretty good sex life (i.e. frequent, taking her to orgasm during intercourse every week or 2). I thought that if she had a crush on someone outside, it'd be pretty inevitable, and I knew she wouldn't renege on our relationship just because of that.

We did have a talk a couple of months ago about her losing interest. That resulted in her putting in more effort for about a month or 2, and slipping back to her old habits.

I guess I really wanted to make us work, so I was making the effort to keep us together (turning down advances, making time for her), which might've appeared to her as me being more needy or invested. As much as it's not a difficult thing to get laid, I feel like being in this "swinging dick" mindset changes the quality of my life a lot. All the excitement and anticipation of the chase affects my focus at work, and shows in my daily meditation (my heart rate used to be as low as 58 in the morning, now it's much higher and I can't sit as long).

I don't think it'll be hard to get things going with this new girl again (unless I wait for a ridiculous amount of time), should I decide to break up. Maybe I'm reading things wrong, but we went off like a bomb, and not all of my trysts were like that.

I'd love to have a look at the Will Smith interview. Gonna search the forums.
@johndoe dude! She's definitely had some thoughts about being single but valued the security she had with you and was looking for excitement from a lover. The fact you had a talk about her not putting in enough effort/losing says it all, you were more invested in the relationship than she was. She changed her attitude temporarily out of respect but she'd have inadvertently lost attraction because of this conversation, it doesn't sound like it was executed from the right frame.

She put you in a bad position even bringing this up, as @Skills has mentioned this isn't how you run an open relationship and you are failing to lead. She won the frame and got what she wanted while you had accepted it because you knew she would stray anyway. Making the effort to keep things together (more than she is/was) is needy and over invested which gives her security because of your investment.

Again your inability to lead (mostly due to commitment) has lead to her calling the shots and wanting to call the open relationship of too become exclusive. Another concession, she should be chasing and qualifying why you should become exclusive again not expecting it. She needs to win you over, and this shouldn't be easy because you have more options.

Your desire to commit comes from efficiency it's easy and ready to be stable. Dudes crave stability where girls crave chaos, the drama and chaos is her normal and stability irritates her until she's out of control, then she expects stability from you. It comes down to getting your needs met.

Read the forum about Will Smith, read the forum on open relationships (I can't recall the title of the thread but there was something posted about open relationships shortly after the Will Smith discussion). There's a lot of great content here.

@J Wick is right that you have unanswered questions you need to ask yourself, and skills hit the nail on the head about leadership or lack thereof. I highly recommend reading GC about relationship management.

You'll find relationships have a shelf life of 2 - 5 years with the ultimate goal of having kids. If you can't provide that or keep the relationship progressing in some way the relationship will stall and break. At the 4 year mark you're nearing the end and if she can't get what she wants from you she'll look elsewhere. The breakdown has came from lack of progress and lack of excitement.
 

johndoe

Space Monkey
space monkey
Joined
Dec 18, 2013
Messages
26
Since it's been a month, I thought I'd provide a bit of an update, along with a couple more questions.

Alright, update first:
  • I hooked up with the new girl again, once, then after that 10,000 more times. We also managed to sneak off for a vacation over a weekend, which she paid for. Really #$%^ing amazing, considering it's COVID season and what not.
  • Ex wants to get back together. The part of me that invested 4 years wants to do it, but a larger part of me just wants to move on. I feel like if I do go back, it will probably be wonderful for a few months, then the same thing will happen.
  • Soon after the vacation, new girl asks me if she should stop seeing other guys. Thought it was a roundabout way of getting me to commit. I said no, because I wasn't ready to commit. She gets upset, but warms up again after I elaborate on the situation. Essentially, I told her it wasn't fair to her when I was still not all there emotionally. Really like this new girl though.
So, two questions:
  1. What do you think will happen if I get back with the ex? Will the same thing happen?
  2. Was there a better way I could've handled the commitment situation with the new girl?
 

DoWhatWorks

Tool-Bearing Hominid
Tool-Bearing Hominid
Joined
Nov 7, 2019
Messages
168
@johndoe

Only you can make this decision but I will give you some considerations:

Option 1) All in on Ex Girl

  • She feels like she's losing you which is a powerful emotion and makes her want to tie you down. What you need to work out is - do you think the relationship could go for another 4 years or has it realistically reached its expiry date?
>> if you see potential you come back with a strong frame of I dictate the relationship rules otherwise I'm replacing you. Then if she tests the boundaries again you have to be willing to walk away.

>> if you think it has realistically ended just end it on good terms (being honest this is what I would do). As there's no point going back for 1 happy month to simply end up back where you started especially if stability is your end goal.

Option 2) All in on New Girl
  • She's obviously very invested in you if she's paying for holidays lol. I would say don't get carried away if you want this new thing to stand the test of time. Read this asap - you've already broken key rules of a holiday this early on & I suspect seeing her more than 2x a week because you're in the excited honeymoon phase
>> Reading between the lines you seem to be a monogamous guy (nothing wrong with that) so if that's what you potentially see with this new girl you still want her to work for it. You want the frame of "I think you're great, just getting my head around everything and scared of moving too fast so let's slow it down, enjoy the moment and really get to know each other"

Then you see her 1-2x a week max on a low maintenance basis I.E she comes over, no restaurant dates and enjoy her being on her best behaviour before she ultimately gives you an ultimatum in 3-6 months' time and you wifey it if that's what you want.

Option 3) Wild card - Date both

  • You tell your Ex this whole situation has opened your eyes to how you'd love to keep seeing her but can't promise sexual exclusivity anymore
  • Tell the new girl she's great but you don't want to dive into a new relationship (essentially carry on what you're doing)

Either way you're in a good position and this should be a textbook course of action for anyone in an unideal relationship situation.

99% of the time the answer = Get a new girl! Then decide what you want to do.
 

PalmaSailor

Space Monkey
space monkey
Joined
Nov 24, 2019
Messages
58
Location
London
It’s monkey branching, she thinks she can do better but doesn’t want to lose the security of having you.

it’s a mistake to go along with it.
 

johndoe

Space Monkey
space monkey
Joined
Dec 18, 2013
Messages
26
@johndoe

Only you can make this decision but I will give you some considerations:

Option 1) All in on Ex Girl

  • She feels like she's losing you which is a powerful emotion and makes her want to tie you down. What you need to work out is - do you think the relationship could go for another 4 years or has it realistically reached its expiry date?
>> if you see potential you come back with a strong frame of I dictate the relationship rules otherwise I'm replacing you. Then if she tests the boundaries again you have to be willing to walk away.

>> if you think it has realistically ended just end it on good terms (being honest this is what I would do). As there's no point going back for 1 happy month to simply end up back where you started especially if stability is your end goal.

Option 2) All in on New Girl
  • She's obviously very invested in you if she's paying for holidays lol. I would say don't get carried away if you want this new thing to stand the test of time. Read this asap - you've already broken key rules of a holiday this early on & I suspect seeing her more than 2x a week because you're in the excited honeymoon phase
>> Reading between the lines you seem to be a monogamous guy (nothing wrong with that) so if that's what you potentially see with this new girl you still want her to work for it. You want the frame of "I think you're great, just getting my head around everything and scared of moving too fast so let's slow it down, enjoy the moment and really get to know each other"

Then you see her 1-2x a week max on a low maintenance basis I.E she comes over, no restaurant dates and enjoy her being on her best behaviour before she ultimately gives you an ultimatum in 3-6 months' time and you wifey it if that's what you want.

Option 3) Wild card - Date both

  • You tell your Ex this whole situation has opened your eyes to how you'd love to keep seeing her but can't promise sexual exclusivity anymore
  • Tell the new girl she's great but you don't want to dive into a new relationship (essentially carry on what you're doing)

Either way you're in a good position and this should be a textbook course of action for anyone in an unideal relationship situation.

99% of the time the answer = Get a new girl! Then decide what you want to do.
Thanks for the thoughtful answer. I think the conundrum is that there is really not one clear better option. That's the other reason I'm spending time writing here -- to give myself a way to sort my thoughts out.

The last 4 years with Ex Girl were great, because we hardly fought and really made a life together. Sure, she seemed to be window shopping towards the end, but I thought this whole thing happened because of my weaker frame control in the relationship (I guess that's the problem with reading too much GC! You see all the mechanics behind a relationship and your role in it). I wish I could be more of a pleb and just pin the blame solely on her, but even if she stayed faithful, the skewed frame control dynamic (of her having more frame control) would make this a pretty awful relationship for us.

Although this episode led to a few nasty fights between us, it has returned the frame control firmly back to me. 4 years of monogamy had eroded my confidence in being able to find someone new, and that I could meet someone else this fast (and build something this strong) is a real confidence booster. I haven't been exactly nice, in the sense that I have prioritised my wants over ours, and it makes me a little sad that this is what gives me frame control; but hey, if might is right, then you've got to do it the way it works.

As much as things are hot with New Girl, I've actually been wary of setting the wrong expectations (thanks to GC again!). I don't have hard rules, but we're not seeing each other incessantly. And I've been aware to not make big promises and grand romantic gestures -- things which I don't see myself doing 3 or 6 months in. So many guys punch a hole in their sails doing these things, and its hard to make them see the folly of their actions, which is really sad. It also brings your integrity into question if you're willing to make big, empty promises, and the more experienced girls pick up on that, but that's a whole another topic.

As much as I disprefer being in a situation like that, I don't think mine's a bad one at all. The shitty thing is that, in 3 to 6 months, I'll likely have to disappoint one or lose both... unless I figure out polygyny. I don't think that's an option where I live though.
 

DoWhatWorks

Tool-Bearing Hominid
Tool-Bearing Hominid
Joined
Nov 7, 2019
Messages
168
I haven't been exactly nice, in the sense that I have prioritised my wants over ours

Bro don’t feel guilty. Your Ex wasn’t being “nice” when she made you open up the relationship in the 1st place.

The game is the game.

Problems don’t go away, they only go up in quality.

You went from shaky with 1 girl to having to choose between 2 girls.

Also to respectfully call you out - you said you don’t make grand romantic gestures but have already been on a holiday with new girl??

Girls looks at your actions not just words.

Rest is up to you - good luck & keep us posted.
 

Chase

Chieftan
Staff member
tribal-elder
Joined
Oct 9, 2012
Messages
3,890
@johndoe,

New article from me here on the overall "what leads up to this type of situation" gist of things:


It sounds like you've handled things well since agreeing to open things up. You went and picked up some new girls, and even found one you really like.

The 4-year-girlfriend trying to call shots the whole way through ("Hey, let's open things up!" --> fine so long as she's having fun, then --> "All right, experiment's over!" just as soon as the balance tips in your favor) was not a good situation. But you handled it fine once you had your bearings.

I'm not in favor of continuing things with a woman once things have broken down enough that she's sampled other men. I know guys who've circled back to ex-girlfriends or shifted to monogamy from girls they'd been open with and it always seems like the relationships have tons of problems after that. Seems to put a stain on most relationships you can't much scrub out.

New Girl sounds like she's definitely into you. Sounds like you are handling things well with her too.

All in all, you're not doing too shabby with what started out as a pretty sticky situation.

I'd be wary of going back to monogamy with the 4-year-girlfriend though and giving her what she wants.

Maybe an option if you really think you can buck trends there. But sometimes a relationship has simply run its course.

Chase
 

johndoe

Space Monkey
space monkey
Joined
Dec 18, 2013
Messages
26
@Chase

The fanboy in me is a little starstruck that you're replying to my post. Thanks for all the articles over the years! Your ability to dissect and provide clean analysis (without resorting to fluff and figurative language) is amazing, and it makes your material stand head and shoulders above others in the same domain.

I've been doing a fair bit of reflection on my previous relationship (will probably write a longer post when my schedule allows), because I feel a large part of how it turned out is actually my fault (the result of a failure to lead) instead of Ex Girl's. Sure, she followed her whims on the whole open relationship issue, but I definitely could've steered her in the correct direction; and this would've been very winning towards her and our relationship.

Re-reading David Deida's The Way of the Superior Man has been a big part of this reflective journey. It's a book which tackles man-woman relationships from the perspective of the divine masculine and feminine in Eastern esoterism. I've read it during my teens, but I find myself understanding it much more now, and not just because I have more relationship experience too -- I've been maintaining a daily routine of yoga and meditation for over half a decade now, and it's helped me have a much higher quality of life and an appreciation towards the wisdom found in Eastern mysticism.

In fact, my seduction efforts have never worked particularly well until I tempered it with a yoga and meditation routine. It's added a warmth to the otherwise cold hard methodology of the seductive arts.

Anyway, I digress. Thanks again for undertaking this huge endeavour that is GirlsChase!
 
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