The UnMarriage (Relationship Series: Part 3)

Series intro: Relationships – An Intro
Part 1: Open Yourself to the Possibilities
Part 2: What a Woman REALLY Wants


As I said in Part 1, Mr. O’s ‘open marriage’ (and no, I have no idea why I put that in quotes.  It seems stupid but I can’t make myself delete them) revelation prompted several deep conversations between Bil and I.

I’m not going to lie.  Those two words probably opened up a wider channel of communication than has been there in a long time between us.

300px Anillos The UnMarriage   (Relationship Series: Part 3)

Image via Wikipedia

For whatever reason it really made us stop and examine our own relationship.

What makes us remain committed to each other?  What would make that change?

We already know that cheating would be grounds for kicking the other persons ass.  But how does that compare to an open relationship?

Are there any reasons in our relationship we would ever consider starting down that road and what would be the ramifications of a decision like that.

Bil and I don’t exactly have the normal relationship either.  Yes, we are committed to each other.  I call him my husband.  He refers to me as his wife.  We wear wedding bands.  And yet… we are not legally married.  And probably never will be.  Because I don’t think a piece of paper from the government is going to make us any more committed.

That is our reality.  That is our norm.  But that doesn’t mean that norm isn’t evolving as our relationship does and changing as we do.

So, in the the spirit of having a wife who blogs, Bil good naturedly agreed to sit down with me and discuss our relationship and relationships in general for your voyeuristic pleasure.

Why do you think our relationship works without us being married?

Because marriage isn’t important to us.  The relationship is.

I know at one point in time you were leaning slightly more towards the ‘lets just make it official’ side of things.  Has that changed?

I don’t know if I was leaning towards it, but it’s not really that important.  If it was something that we had to do because of V or there was some strange law that we had to do it, sure.  But I don’t need to go through the legal process to validate my love for you.

Do you think if we didn’t have Vista we would still be together?

Oh yeah.  We’re not together because of her.  We’re together because no one else will put up with our shit.  And you know we have feelings and all that nice stuff…  You know… I love you, you love me, happy family…

I think you’ve been watching entirely too much Barney.

I know you have no issues with me going out for lunch /dinner /drinks / coffee with other guys, and even ex-boyfriends. You had no issue with me even going for coffee with Mr. O, knowing our history and the fact he’s now in an open marriage.  Do you think that’s more from trust or lack of caring?

Who the fuck made up this questionnaire??  Of course it’s because of trust.  I trust you implicitly and I’m not a jealous sort of person who wonders if you’re out cheating on me.  That’s just how I roll.

Why?  How do you know I’m not going to cheat on you?

Nothing is absolute.  But I trust you and take you at your word.  A lot of it comes down to knowing you’re coming home at night to your family.

If you could change one thing about the way I approach our relationship, what would it be?

Well I wouldn’t change anything because then you wouldn’t be who you are.

That’s a pansy-ass answer.  Try again.

No.  I’m serious.  Same reason I won’t change for you.  That’s the way I do things.  I might compromise more on certain things, but I think a person’s essence shouldn’t change in a relationship.

Why do you think marriages and relationships fail?

In general, it’s usually selfishness on one persons part.  The inability to negotiate or compromise on things.

If you met someone who could offer you something I couldn’t in the relationship, would you cheat, ask for an open marriage, or ignore the urge?

I would never cheat.  I don’t know if I have the balls to ask for an open marriage arrangement.  It’s not part of my makeup.  I also don’t find that I’m missing something in my life that you don’t provide me.  And I think that’s one of the reasons why our relationship works.  To be cliche, you do complete me, you fill in the gaps.

Sweet answer.  But a cop out.  Pick one of the three.

If I had to pick, I’d ignore the urge.

Don’t you think that would make you unhappy?

Lots of things make lots of people unhappy.  The challenge is to redirect that into something that does make you happy.

What would you do to spice up our sex life?

I’m not putting that on your blog!  That’s not something I’m going to share with people.

Why not?

Because there are certain line I won’t cross and that’s one of them.

So you don’t want want to talk about vanilla vs kink?

Sure we can talk about that but I’m not going to go into specifics.

Why do you think, as far as bedroom preferences, you’re vanilla and I’m kink?

Why don’t you like horror movies and I do?  Same thing.  If I sat you in front of a horror movie, you wouldn’t enjoy it.

Maybe it’s because part of me views it as abuse and I just don’t like that.

If you could change one things about our relationship what would it be?

*silence*

More sex, morning blow job….

I guess any answer I give would be something we’d want to work on.  But as long as you’re happy with things then I’m happy with our current arrangement.  It all goes back to communication and negotiation.  If there was some stumbling block in our relationship then I’d want to try and deal with it ourselves, and if we couldn’t then look to outside help.

But right now I don’t want to change anything in relationship.    I have a partner who I can come home to, vent to…

….who glazes over when you start talking SharePoint….

*laugh*  Yeah, well that’s what makes us unique.  Makes us work.

Don’t you just want to beat the crap out of me sometimes when I start being a royal bitch or make you answer questionnaires like this?

Ha! The thought crosses my mind.  But then I realize I’d have to wake up the next morning and deal with the body.

My challenge to all of those who are still reading is to create a questionnaire for your spouse and sit down and talk about relationships.  Your relationship and relationships in general. Have fun with it.  But don’t hand them the questionnaire like a piece of homework and walk away.  Sit together, after the kids are in bed, and actually talk.  Some of their answers might surprise you.  I know Bil’s did for me.

And if you don’t agree on everything, that’s OK!  That’s part of being individuals.  But understanding where those differences are can be key to open communication in a marriage.

*note – I’m not a relationship therapist.  I just play one on my blog*

For those people who want to be really brave, (and if your spouses / partners / lovers / significant others / etc agree to it), post your answers on your own blog and link to the specific page in the Mr.Linky below (I will delete any links that don’t meet this criteria).  Then  grab the badge to put on your blog proudly proclaiming that you have talked with your partner at least once this year.  Think of it as a New Year’s resolution you might actually keep.

talkaboutit The UnMarriage   (Relationship Series: Part 3)

Next up?  My own personal opinion and views on monogamy, open marriages, BDSM, the whole lot.

It’ll be open, honest, and a peek into my life.  (So, if you’re family, close friends, or anyone who ever wants to look me in the eye, you may not want to read it)

Have a question you want me to answer for you in the next post in my Relationship Series?  Leave it for me in the comments and I’ll do my best to give you answers.

 The UnMarriage   (Relationship Series: Part 3)
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12 Responses to The UnMarriage (Relationship Series: Part 3)

  • Michelle P. says:

    Sorry Jenn, we’re chatting a lot about relationships in our house right now, but not a lot about sex. May have something to do with the 9 year old sleeping on our bedroom floor.

    Jenn Reply:

    @Michelle P.,

    I would count the fact that you’re even talking about relationships a win. Many couples never even get that far, never mind talking about sex.

    Hopefully in time he’ll feel safe enough to sleep in his room. But I think you’re doing an awesome thing setting up the trust and security with him.

    Michelle P. Reply:

    @Jenn,

    Nothing like adoption to make you talk about relationships of all kinds. And learning what makes a relationship work. I am absolutely certain that we have the right boy and it’s wonderful building a real bond with him. Someday I’ll get my room and my husband back, but I can wait.

  • Amanda says:

    Jenn – what an awesome idea. I have a feeling that many of us don’t have was is considered a ‘normal’ relationship and frankly, I’m not even sure what would be anymore.

    I do know this, talking with your spouse is essential for a good relationship – I’ve never heard of someone getting divorced or breaking up because they talked *too* much. (Alright, go ahead and tell me I’m wrong though)

    I’m going to get to this with the pornhub as soon as he returns from work but before he goes to sleep – yep, you know that 1 hr window… LOL

    Hope you are going to have a great new years eve tonight
    .-= Amanda´s last blog ..Sunday – Blow By Blow =-.

    Jenn Reply:

    @Amanda,

    Still waiting to see your post. I’m really curious on what your interview would be…

    (hugs)

  • Kellee says:

    This has all been truly fascinating, Jenn. Good for you!!
    .-= Kellee´s last blog ..All the beauty of the world, ’tis but skin deep. =-.

  • Pingback: Trust and the Monogamy Myth (Relationship Series: Part 4)

  • Chibi Jeebs says:

    LOVED this part of the series! So much here touches on stuff in my relationship (right down to the marriage issue and Bil’s answers regarding trust/cheating – Chebbar could have written the same thing).

    Our relationship is… a little different, I guess? We talk about anything and everything, and I know a lot of people can have difficulties in asking for what they want or stating their true feelings. Hell, I used to be a closed book behind a brick wall and would “Fine” everything to death: Chebbar created a safe enough feeling environment that I don’t hesitate (much, heh) to speak up.

    I’ll ask him if he’d be willing to be interviewed, and if he says yes, I’ll add my name to Mr. Linky. :)

    Jenn Reply:

    @Chibi Jeebs,

    Oh, me too! I’m Fine. Everything is Fine. Mean while you’re trying not to choke the ever living shit out of them. lol

    It really does take a special person to bring us out of that.

  • Dude…no one has the balls to man up and post their questionnaire?!?! My man isn’t with me because he has his boys but this is a topic of conversation at night when the kids are asleep and we’re chatty so I’ll have to post our thoughts!

    This is a great series. I like the open honesty.

    Oh and Bil….he’s a keeper. Short, sweet, and straight-forward answers. Nice catch, girl!

    Jenn Reply:

    @Katie (aka Kekibird),

    No one. I’m sad no one wants to interview their partner. lol
    Perhaps not all men have the patience for their wife’s antics like Bil does.

    Bil really is a keep. I’m super lucky to have him.

  • Al_Pal says:

    I’d imagine plenty of people want to interview, but the hubs don’t want them posted! :P

    My man & I have been together over eight years. We finally decided to ‘get engaged’ last year, but we haven’t planned pretty much anything. *shrug* In one way, not a problem, we’re totally chill…but if we’re going to do it, I do kind of want to start at least thinking about it this year. heh.
    .-= Al_Pal´s last blog ..My new creative outlet: Bread Puddings! =-.

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