How do you picture your primary relationship and your other relationships to evolve over time as you get older? What when you’re say 40, or 50? We have few role models for open relationships at 50, maybe because it’s a relatively recent concept in the mainstream.
The concept of role models is a very interesting one and I think it’s incredibly important. If you don’t see others that are like you, doing what you want to do, there’s no one to look up to. There’s no “well this is how they did it, so I can get pointers from them” model. The more people you know the more of a community you can form and the more support you can get from those who make the same lifestyle choices you do. Without those people, I think, it’s a lot more difficult to push forward.
I think that like any other relationship, open relationships are ever-evolving and must be able to flex with whatever demands and struggles there are. Certainly what I face now is different than what I will face in my 30s, and my 40s, each new year bringing about new challenges and new rewards. I would suspect that my relationship will evolve based on my and my partners needs, and that other relationships will do the same.
As we figure out how to include others in our relationship and how to form other relationships we become more knowledgable about the balance between self and relationships. I’m certain that many relationships I have now, I won’t have when I am 40 or 50. I will have new relationships that I am sure will be satisfying in the same, or greater ways.
I think it’s important to help build that community and to help seek out mentors and role models by being open and honest about who you are and what you’re interested in doing. When you do that, you allow others to be open and honest with you as well. You never know what the people around you are thinking until you start to have that dialogue. And if you can’t find any particular role model that is doing what you’re doing, strive to become that person yourself, for someone else.