couple communicating on the couch supporting open relationship section

Maintaining Relationship Happiness in an Open Relationship

When it comes to swinger dating, it takes all types. We mean that many people are looking for a wide variety of relationship types. For those looking for longer term open relationships, the maintenance of that structure can prove important. Just like any long term relationship, a couple needs to establish trust, structure, and open communications.

Today we’ll examine ways to maintain an open relationship with your partner.

Before reading, understand the various open relationship types, such as polyamory, throuples, and swingers. Any relationship structure can be long-term and in those cases, maintaining happiness throughout the experience is critical. If one or some of you aren’t happy, the open relationship is failing. And that’s the exact opposite result you sought when you ventured into the open relationship landscape. Your objection to traditional dating and marriage was most likely built on an idea that those relationship structure don’t yield bliss.

Communication in an Open Relationship

couple communicating on the bed

At the epicenter of an open relationship’s happiness, long or short-term, is undoubtedly communication. For any relationship to prosper, even beyond romantically driven ones, there must be communication. Open relationship interest has increased over the years due to their emphasis on communication. You can’t have an open relationship without proper, heartfelt communication. Its the most critical prerequisite.

But communication in an open relationship isn’t a one time deal. In other words, you and yours must consistently communicate needs, desires, and confirmations of boundaries and consent. People and relationships change over time, that’s normal, but if you fail to keep communications up, you end up misunderstanding the others and/or growing apart.

Here’s some vital tips in approaching communication in an open relationship:

1. Regular Check-Ins:

  • Schedule regular check-in times to discuss how the relationship is going, voice any concerns, and reaffirm consent and understanding of the relationship structure.

2. Active Listening:

  • Practice active listening, making sure to fully engage, understand, and empathize with your partner’s thoughts and feelings.

3. Use “I” Statements:

  • Communicate feelings and concerns using “I” statements to avoid sounding accusatory or defensive (for example, “I feel anxious when you don’t tell me about your dates beforehand”).

4. Be Transparent:

  • Maintain transparency about your intentions, feelings, and actions. Share details about your other relationships to the extent agreed upon in your relationship boundaries.

5. Encourage Open Dialogue:

  • Make your relationship a safe space for open dialogue. Encourage your partner to express their feelings, concerns, and desires.

6. Clear and Concise Communication:

  • Avoid beating around the bush. Be clear and concise in your communication to avoid any misunderstanding.

7. Discuss Sexual Health:

  • Have ongoing conversations about sexual health and safe practices. Be open about your sexual activities with other partners to ensure safety and trust.

8. Use Nonviolent Communication:

  • Use Nonviolent Communication (NVC) techniques to express needs and feelings without blame or criticism.

9. Be Patient and Considerate:

  • Recognize that some conversations may be challenging. Be patient and considerate of each other’s feelings.

10. Seek Professional Help When Needed:

  • Don’t hesitate to seek help from a relationship counselor or therapist, especially one experienced with non-monogamous relationships, if you’re facing communication challenges.

Navigating Jealousy and Insecurity

No matter the type of relationship, even business, we often find jealousy at the root of disruptions and calamity.

Jealousy isn’t always an unwarranted emotion. Sometimes, it’s our internal red flag warning us to move away. Sometimes, it’s irrational and serves only to create conflict even if indirectly. Jealousy can influence us to root against our partners.

If you’re looking for swinging to save your marriage, for example, you’ll need to approach your relationship with jealousy.

We detailed the importance of communication in the prior section. Communication also has a huge impact on relationship jealousy statuses. The less communication, the more of a breeding ground for paranoia the relationship becomes. Feelings of jealousy often arise from paranoia and lack of communication. That said, jealousy is a normal feeling we all experience. But its the degree to which we experience it that makes or breaks our ability to maintain a healthy, happy open relationship.

Here’s some tips to help you and your partner(s) turn down the volume on jealousy:

1. Self-Reflection:

  • Spend time reflecting on your feelings. Try to understand the root causes of your jealousy or insecurity.

2. Express Your Feelings:

  • Openly communicate your feelings to your partner(s). Bottling up emotions can lead to resentment and misunderstandings.

3. Set Clear Boundaries:

  • Define clear boundaries in your relationship. Knowing what is and isn’t acceptable can help manage feelings of insecurity and maintain satisfaction.

4. Practice Mindfulness:

  • Engage in mindfulness practices like meditation or deep breathing. These can help manage immediate feelings of jealousy or insecurity.

5. Use Reassurances:

  • Seek reassurances from your partner(s). Regular expressions of love and commitment can help alleviate insecurity.

6. Foster Trust:

  • Work on building trust with your partner(s). Trust is the bedrock of any relationship and can help mitigate feelings of jealousy.

7. Seek Outside Perspectives:

  • Speak to friends, join support groups, or seek professional help for fresh perspectives and advice on managing your feelings.

8. Practice Self-Care:

  • Engage in self-care activities. Ensuring your personal well-being can bolster emotional resilience and improve overall satisfaction in relationships.

9. Develop Coping Strategies:

  • Work on developing personal coping strategies, such as cognitive restructuring, journaling, or engaging in hobbies, to help manage feelings when they arise.

10. Encourage Open Dialogue:

  • Foster a safe space for ongoing dialogue. Regularly check-in with your partner(s) to assess relationship satisfaction and address any issues or feelings.

The role of self-care and personal growth

Relationships can feel draining. That usually happens when one person (the drained) gives so much to the relationship they forgo their own needs.

Self-care is an important, critical aspect to maintaining happiness in an open relationship.

As individuals navigate the complexities of multiple partnerships, it’s vital to ensure personal well-being. Self-care practices – be it physical, emotional, or mental – promote resilience, reduce stress, and increase overall happiness.

In other words, you’re important – treat yourself as such. When you do, you’ll promote health and happiness in your open relationship ecosystem.