This is going to sound weird because it is weird. My boyfriend recently came to me and told me he had a confession. I thought he was going to tell me he cheated, but instead, he said he hadn’t cheated but felt like he wanted to cheat. He apparently said he sometimes feels like hooking up with other men, but won’t because he doesn’t want to hurt me. He said he did the right thing by telling me. I’m not sure how he’d think I respond, but I was pissed. He promised he didn’t do anything with anyone and didn’t hit anyone up. Even said I should be thankful he was honest with his feelings. He went onto say, he just wants us to do more to spice things and suggested some kind of open relationship where we get a pass to mess with a stranger every now and then. I just don’t know what to do with this info because I think an open relationship is the first step to us breaking up. Suggestions?
Dear Uncharted Territory,
Thanks for writing to me. You presented one of those questions where I had to ask myself where to begin. But then I thought, let’s just start from the beginning. Your boyfriend’s confession about wanting to cheat, but not actually cheating.
Your boyfriend probably thought he was doing the noble and honest thing by telling you he thought about cheating rather than doing it. In his mind, he didn’t betray your relationship because he didn’t sneak into anyone’s DM, he wasn’t flirting with every cute face he saw, and his private parts didn’t accidentally fall in or on something. While I understand his intentions, I also understand you being taken off guard by his comments. It’s kind of like having someone come in your face and tell you I didn’t slap you, but I’ve thought about slapping you. In both situations, you feel disrespected by the thought. Although in your case, I don’t think your boyfriend was trying to offend you.
And you didn’t share how long you and your man have been in a relationship, but for any couple that’s sexually active, keeping things fresh is important. Most people don’t want to feel like sex is a routine or chore they have to do. So as time goes by in a relationship, it’s up for a couple to keep things spicy. And this may mean some role-playing, or a change in environment, or a change in position, or in some cases, a change in the arrangement.
Which brings me to the concept of an open relationship. Open relationships are not something every couple can manage. It requires two people who aren’t prone to jealously, who are sure in their commitment to one another, and who agree to follow certain rules for their new engagement. Because it takes a certain type of person to be in an open relationship, if you know that’s not you, don’t fake the funk. Don’t agree to do something you know you can’t handle.
Suggestions going forward.
- While his delivery may not have been the best, forgive your boyfriend for saying he “thought about cheating.” My gut tells me he loves you and wants you two to make it.
- Again, don’t agree to an open relationship if that’s not something you want. Instead, have a conversation with your boyfriend about ways to spice things up that doesn’t include other people.
As always nothing but love,
P.S. Make sure you check out my new scripted show, Majoring in Me the Podcast.