Personally I can’t say that I’ve ever been in the position of dating a couple, but I have been in the couple and noticed a few things that might be useful to anyone considering it in the future.
It is always good to know if any of the people involved are bisexual or pansexual.
You should always be very sceptical of couples who say things like…
“We are only looking for someone who will date both of us”
“We expect someone to have the same level and feelings for both of us.”
You should never assume that it’s necessary to develop a relationship with both people in a couple in exactly the same way; relationships will naturally grow on their own and develop with time. It’s good to remember that no two relationships can ever be the same.
When you start out on this potential magical journey, don’t take one half of the couple’s word that the other half “is fine with it” on anything, you will need to talk to both parties and confirm it for yourself.
This is a real problem with any “don’t ask, don’t tell” relationships, because it is pretty much impossible for you to verify if your prospective lover’s partner is even okay with the idea of non-monogamy at all! Beware of untrustworthy cheats and liars.
The ability to maintaining a successful relationship with one half of a couple often relies and depends on good communication with both members of that couple. There is no such thing as a silent or sleeping partner within poly.
It’s generally not a good idea to start a relationship with one member of a couple, unless you are prepared to be involved to some extent with both of them, poly is really about love, tea, chatting and sharing.
It’s always good to understand the shape of the prospective relationship, if you are dating both parts of the couple, or planning to forming a V. In either case you will have to take into account that there is likely to be a very strong existing bond that is extremely important to the couple concerned.
Never try to act or become the go-between in the couple’s relationship, this is just asking for trouble.
Don’t expect someone else to be a go-between for you either, that would be double standards. If you can’t talk to all parties involved there’s already an issue which is likely to get worse not better.
From the start always be crystal clear about what you need and expect from the relationship and make sure that your lover(s) are able and willing to meet your needs, wants, desires and expectations, or at the very least treat them with respect and as known aspirations.
Discuss, negotiate and agree the “Rules”, it’s really important
You will need to clearly define and layout your own rules for agreement with your partner(s). Also make sure that you understand and agree your partners rules and boundaries.
You need to accept that relationships change and the rules that govern them are based on feelings. Feelings can change and this means that the rules need to be renegotiated and adjusted with time. This will also include your own feelings and rules.
Within the relationship, you must always have the right to make yourself heard
Always remember that the couple’s relationship is not more important than you or your relationships with them. It has just been around longer and likely to operate on a different set of rules. But it is NOT more important, just different.
It may be true that you will sometimes miss out on time with your lover(s), often due to competing commitments and other limiting facts, but you are often likely to get better-“quality time and loving”. This is because you are not always available and therefore not taken for granted like the long-term partner – enjoy it.
I suspect that dating a couple can be tough at times, but can also lead to something truly amazing. Never give up searching for your happy place!
Any comments and input would be really welcome 🙂