The world has come to accept the idea that a committed relationship or marriage must involve sacrifice, that you can’t have it all, and that there is no such thing as the perfect relationship. They say that, for a relationship to work, both partners need to compromise.
So, we withhold some degree of openness and perfect honesty right from the start. Couples cut themselves off from the world and consciously design a life situation where personal freedom is sacrificed at the altar of a relationship that is supposed to save us. But how can salvation be found in any situation where we can’t be entirely open, honest or free?
We try to become close to one person so that we are no longer lonely, yet we end up suffocating because so much of who we are is no longer accepted and can no longer be expressed. Sex is a huge part of any romantic connection, yet we repress our sexual needs for the supposed purpose of having them met within the relationship. Is it not insane to sacrifice the very thing we are attempting to get and still expect to get it? Thus is the error of all sacrifice.
It is no wonder that relationships in this world are so broken. Marriages fail all the time and in so many ways. Parents and children then endure the nastiness of divorce, broken homes, financial ruin, and ongoing war between people who once promised their undying love and loyalty. Others stay together in a closed state of existence where there is no inspiration, no excitement, no joy—numbing their pain with alcohol, junk food, and junk entertainment which quickens the slide into old age.
The media makes countless jokes about this tragic situation. Everyone has learned to accept it, yet none of this is in any way acceptable or even necessary. If you want endless love, lasting joy, perfect freedom and closeness, then there is an entirely different and superior way to do relationships. I am going to be perfectly, unapologetically honest because this truth cannot be shared by holding anything back.
My partner, Zuzana, and I have been together for roughly 5 years. We never fight, disagree, or argue—not because of willpower, but because there is no need. We are completely open about everything. No topic, no thought, no need—nothing at all is off-limits. We are both entirely free, even as we choose to spend most of our time together. Because of the DNA of our relationship, that feeling of excitement, love, and bliss has continued to increase over the years.
You might think that this is impossible…that I am exaggerating. Friends think we are projecting a false image, or that we simply got lucky and met the right person. It is true that, yes, we are physically attracted to each other and we do share the same tastes. This is an essential starting point; but this alone would not be enough if we were not “doing the relationship” right.
When we first met, we agreed that we would be perfectly honest and open about everything. Furthermore, we agreed that we would not judge one another. Since we don't feel there is anything wrong with either of us, unconditional acceptance was to be the default. If there were any feelings of possessiveness or jealousy, then this would be dealt with directly and lovingly—but we would not sacrifice honesty at the altar of that jealousy. Furthermore, there were to be no promises about anything, no conditions, no expectations. We were, in a sense, simply best friends who were also very attracted to each other and wanted to hang out. The perfect relationship, the perfect love.
“But,” you may ask, “don’t you draw a line when it comes to sex with other people?” No. If there are limits to unconditional love, then it is not unconditional love. If there are limits to perfect honesty and openness, then it is not honesty and openness. If there are limits to freedom, then it is not freedom.
So began our little experiment. We had no goals, no agenda, and in the beginning we certainly did not intend to live together or to have children. We simply enjoyed our connection while it lasted, yet we both remained open to other people, maintained other relationships, and were perfectly honest about it all. When there was jealousy, we went through it together, reassured each other about our true feelings toward each other, and remained rooted in the truth about our relationship. In the beginning, this was not easy, particularly for her (because of my needs).
Many years before we met, I realized that I am polyamorous. I have always been happiest and feel most natural in a situation where I can be close to, and have sex with, more than one woman in my life. When I have attempted to deny this part of myself, I have suffocated in a relationship, I have lied, and eventually have done worse. By the time I met Zuzana, I knew that I would either need to be in an open relationship or be single. Despite my best intentions, monogamy did not make me a good person and; therefore, was not an option for me (no matter how wonderful or perfect any one woman may be).
If we are being honest with ourselves, most people feel this way deep down. You may not have a need to go out and meet somebody new all the time, but you surely would like the option if there ever is a need. The problem with this, of course, is that if you grant yourself this right, then any fair person must also offer the same to their partner. Thus, we must confront our own sexual jealousy.
Sexual jealousy seems like the scariest thing in the world to deal with. But far worse than any sexual act is deception. Most people equate non-monogamy with cheating, but it is not the same thing. Cheating breaks all trust in a relationship, making forbidden sex with another person seem more important than the relationship. In truth, sex is never is that important. People cheat either because it is so much fun or because they are lacking intimacy and closeness in the relationship. But, to the person being cheated on, confronted with so many lies and so much betrayal, everything breaks. To avoid this sure recipe for crisis, sex must be dealt with, from the very beginning of a relationship, in the light of day.
Early on, I told Zuzana about my lifelong fantasy to have a threesome with two women. At first, she was not sure she could deal with it. I let it be and said nothing more. Days later, she told me that she would try it. Instantly, I felt closer to her than to any woman before. In most cases, when a woman agrees to this, she may not actually need to go through with it. It is not easy to orchestrate such a thing (to find the other woman), and most couples never fulfill the fantasy. Yet, by even giving your partner this possibility, you give him or her such a wonderful gift.
In our case, I did have a friend who was open to exploring this (another wonderful story for another time). So, I introduced the women, they became friends, and we eventually met. What we discovered in this celebration of openness, honesty, and sexual freedom, is that jealousy is not that big of a deal in the act of sexual bliss between true friends. To be perfectly blunt: we found out that if nobody was left out—as long as she and I were able to both experience sexual enjoyment together—jealousy was drown out by the sexual bliss and friendship. It would have been far more difficult if I had gone off on my own with someone and she was left out.
So we found our way of doing non-monogamy, though of course this particular thing wouldn't work for everyone. You and your partner can find our own way of doing this, there's no formula other than unconditional love. The details can be worked out.
Unexpectedly, after this unbelievable dream come true, I found that my need to go off on my own with other women begin to fade. While I continue to stay in touch with others, and even meet new women, since then I've found that none of them were willing to accept me, to love me unconditionally, to be open to anything about me in the way Zuzana is…and so there has been a natural gravity that has always effortlessly pulled me back to her. By accepting me completely, by allowing me everything, by holding my hand through my wildest fantasies, eventually I had no needs that fell outside of our relationship and we naturally and effortlessly started a wonderful life together.
Of course I offer her the same freedom to be with other men. There is no allure of forbidden fruit for either of us because nothing is forbidden. By making nothing off-limits, we can look clearly upon the truth of other people, other relationships, and we both know that the grass cannot be greener than it is here. We are not more attracted to anyone else. There is nobody out there who can fulfil any of our unfulfilled needs (there are none), and so even though we have an open relationship, neither of us goes off on our own to be with anyone else. This is not a rule or expectation; rather, our own, individual choice. If there ever becomes a need, then this is alright too, and we will work through any difficult emotions.
Since that first polyamorous experience, we have enjoyed other relationships and threesomes with more women. But, for the most part, we live like any married couple (though we will never get married because marriage violates our values). We love our young son and my daughter unconditionally, we thrive in business together, we run an orderly and peaceful household, we pursue our hobbies and passions freely—but at the same time we remain best friends who talk about everything openly and, most importantly, treat each other with the kindest, purest love and respect.
Love and respect is not something that can be demanded from a partner. But if you offer it, along with unconditional love, along with the possibility of perfect honesty without punishment or shame, I assure you that you will receive what you give. Yours will be the sweetest, most loving relationship—a holy relationship—within which everything is natural and everything is sacred. You can have it all, but only by giving all and sacrificing nothing.
Happy birthday, Zuzana, my perfect and eternal love. Thank you for loving me as I am, and for never wanting to restrit my freedom to tell the world our perfect story. You made it possible for me to be me, for my life to be filled with joy, for me to truly love, and you know I am yours forever. I accept you unconditionally, I celebrate your happiness just as you do mine, and I would change absolutely nothing about you or us. Thank you for joining me in this unbelievable bliss that is our relationship.