How To Ask Your Husband For An Open Marriage (7 Tips You Have to Follow!)

by April Maccario

If thoughts have been floating around in your head about having an open relationship with your partner or you’re 100% certain that’s what would make you happy, you need to talk to your husband about it. 

Obviously, opening a relationship up is a really daunting step to take, especially when you’re in a monogamous marriage, so you might not be sure how to do it. In addition, the concept of an open relationship is something that most people have strong feelings about and the topic also has a lot of judgment surrounding it, so you might not feel comfortable turning to even your best friend for advice.

However, there’s absolutely no need to panic, this article is here to help you figure out how to ask your partner for an open marriage, and how to make a success of it once you’re in one! 

We’re going to share seven of the best tips when it comes to asking your partner to think about changing the status of your relationship, and four tips on how to have a successful open relationship once you’re in one. Let’s jump straight in and take a look!

How To Ask Your Husband For An Open Marriage

1. Make a list of reasons why you want an open relationship

make a list of reasons why you want an open relationship

This is the most important thing you need to do. Before you even think about talking to your partner about the fact you would like to open things up, it’s time for you to do some soul searching to figure out if this is something that you really want.  Although honest communication in a relationship is essential, it’s also never a good idea to talk about really important matters if you’re not 100% sure what you want.

So, you should think about why you want to be in an open relationship, and of course, make a long list of all the reasons. Although it might seem a bit like making lists is something that should only be done at work, writing down your feelings can really help to get them out into the open and help you to process them.

Once you have made your list of reasons as to why you want to be in an open relationship, you will be able to see whether this is actually something you want, or if you are clutching at straws to save your relationship and you think that by opening it up, it’ll fix it (a lot of people do this, and we’ll touch on it later). The list you’ve created will also be really useful for when you actually speak to your partner.

2. Casually ask your partner how they feel about open relationships

Rather than jumping straight in and asking your partner if they’re happy for you to start sleeping with others out of the blue, it’s a good idea to get an idea of how your partner feels about open relationships. 

A good way to figure out their stance on the whole matter is by casually bringing the topic up in conversation. For example, maybe find a celebrity couple in an open relationship to discuss or talk about a news article you were reading on them and see what they say and what their opinions are.

3. Make a list of concerns your husband might have

When preparing to ask your significant other to open up the marriage that the two of you share, it’s important to understand that they might have their concerns and you need to be prepared to answer them. You might want to think about concerns your spouse might have, make a list of them and try and answer them. 

If you’ve already prepared your answers to your partner’s possible concerns, the conversation should flow easier when you go to speak with them. It also shows that you are fully considering how they feel, as well as wanting to do this just for your selfish gain.

4. Don’t do this to try and save your relationship

As mentioned above, a lot of people seem to think that turning their relationship into an open one will save their relationship. You shouldn’t ask your partner for an open relationship in a bid to save your relationship, as you most likely have deep-rooted issues that are not going to be solved by incorporating others into your sex life.

Although to outsiders it might look like it’s unconventional, in fact, for open marriages to work well, the foundation of the marriage needs to be strong and the couple needs to be able to solve relationship problems together. So, if you’re having problems in your marriage, try to work on these first and then enter into an open relationship once everything is all figured out.

5. Be prepared for your husband to say no

You do need to be prepared for your partner to say no to opening up your relationship. Although you might see having an open relationship as something that would fulfill you and make you happier, your partner might see it as you just wanting to have sex with others and they might value monogamy too much to be open to the idea. 

Moving from a monogamous relationship into an open relationship is a big step, so you do need to be prepared for your partner to say no to the idea. Your partner may also be upset by the suggestion of it, so be prepared to emotionally support your partner through this.

6. Practice clear communication in a safe space

practice clear communication in a safe space

After you’ve fully prepared yourself, it’s time to actually speak to your partner. One of the most important things you need to do is ensure you have the conversation in a place where both you and your partner feel safe to express any emotions that come up and feel vulnerable. You will also need to make sure you use clear, honest communication in the conversation, to make sure things aren’t misinterpreted and things don’t get heated.

Remember, this will most likely be quite a big deal for your partner and you need to make the conversation about how an open relationship can benefit both of you and the relationship. 

Try to use “we” instead of “I” or “you”, and avoid sounding selfish or putting blame on your partner. However, it’s important that you also express exactly how you feel because you deserve to have honest communication within your relationship.

7. See a professional to help you with the conversation

A lot of the time, it’s useful to sit down with your partner in front of a professional, whether that be a therapist, a marriage counselor, or a sex therapist. If you feel like it would be useful to have someone guide the conversation for both of you or just be there to mediate the talk, get in touch with a professional. 

4 Tips On How To Have A Successful Open Marriage

If you have successfully spoken with your partner and the two of you have decided to enter into an open marriage, that’s great! 

However, you need to keep working on the relationship and make sure it stays such a success. Open relationships can seem difficult to navigate, and there are a few things that you need to do in particular, to make sure both of you stay fulfilled.

1. Establish boundaries

One of the most important things you and your partner need to do is establish a clear set of boundaries or ground rules. All open relationships are different, so you can’t take specific ideas about boundaries from someone else, but it’s important that the two of you answer the question, “what is an open marriage?” in your own words. 

You need to think about how you want to manage sleeping with other people, if there are some people you don’t want your spouse to sleep with, deciding how much time you’ll spend together and with other partners, figuring out whether you want to meet your spouse’s other partners, etc etc. 

There are a lot of things you need to think about so that no one feels unhappy with the arrangement. As things progress, these boundaries and rules may also change over time and may need to be adapted.

2. Constantly practice clear and honest communication

Clear, honest communication in open relationships is absolutely vital.  This doesn’t mean that you have to tell your spouse who you’re sleeping with and how everything’s going for you in the bedroom (in fact some couples prefer to keep this secret) but it does mean making sure the two of you can communicate clearly if one of you is having issues dealing with it all.

Quite obviously, jealousy may come into play in this kind of relationship, especially if your spouse thinks you’re sleeping with someone else in particular or they think you have an actual love interest, so make sure there’s an open line of non-judgemental communication with each other so you can figure things out in a calm, adult manner.

3. Decide whether you’ll tell other people

decide whether you'll tell other people

Obviously, the people that you and your partner are both sleeping with will know that you’re in an open marriage, but it’s up to the two of you to decide whether you want to tell your friends and family or not. Whatever you decide, both of you have to stick to this decision.

4. Schedule dedicated time regularly to check in with each other

Even if the communication between the two of you is clear and you both feel happy with everything that’s going on, it’s a good idea to schedule in dedicated time regularly, possibly once every week in the beginning and once every month or two after that, to sit down with each other and voice any concerns you have. 

FAQs

Can an open marriage save a marriage?

You should never look at the idea of open marriage as a way to save a marriage, and if you are, there are probably a lot of issues that you need to work through with your partner. In fact, open relationships need to have a really secure and stable grounding, with clear communication between both partners and commitment. 

Is an open marriage healthy?

Open marriages can be really healthy if they’re done correctly. If a couple is happy with having an open relationship, they have a strong foundation and they practice honest communication with each other, it can be healthy. However, marriages like this do require a lot of work and commitment.

What are the rules of an open marriage?

If you want to enter into an open marriage with your partner, it’s up to the two of you to figure out what the rules are going to be. Each relationship is different and you need to set boundaries that both you and your partner are comfortable and happy with. 

Is an open marriage a happier marriage?

Each relationship is different and therefore there will be some open marriages that are happier than monogamous marriages, and there will be monogamous marriages that are happier than open ones. Open relationships do typically require more work and better communication than a traditional marriage though.

Is once a month a sexless marriage?

A sexless marriage is typically defined as a relationship that includes either no sexual contact or very little sexual contact. If you’re normally having sex more regularly than once a month but all of a sudden you’re only having sex once a month, you might just be stuck in a rut. If you have sex once a month or less for a prolonged period, you could be in a sexless marriage. Sexless marriages are typically when a couple has sex less than 10 times in one year.

In Conclusion

If you’re thinking of asking your husband for an open relationship, hopefully, this article has given you some useful tips on how to navigate around this subject and how to clearly and honestly communicate with your partner. 

Did you like this article and find it useful? Let us know in the comments and feel free to share!

April Maccario
I'm a huge nerd when it comes to understanding how relationships between men and women work, and what drives a certain behavior. I spend much of my time getting into the nitty-gritty and try to share my findings on this site with the hope of making life a little easier for women that are struggling in their relationships or love life.

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