The Quad Q&A: Date Aftercare for Primary

polyamoryI have a date tonight! I’m excited, lots of new relationship energy, and it’s with someone that seems compatible with my interests and way of life. I’ve been “out” as poly for about a year, and have a primary partner that identifies as mono/monogamish. We had a rocky start, as I tried to date and see others a little too quickly and without much communication. We took a step back, worked on our relationship, and my partner is supportive and even encouraging.

However, I haven’t dated much. While previous dates went fine, they were not with people I found very interesting or promising. This one I’m excited for, and seems promising. I can tell, though theoretically she’s fine with my dating, the prospect of this date is making my partner a bit nervous.

I was wondering if you guys have tips on someone approaching and talking to their primary partner after/before a date that makes them a bit nervous/jealous? What are good after-care practices? Any other advice or things I should be thinking about?

I really want to make sure my partner knows she’s loved and important!

Lexxi’s response:
It is important to make sure that your partner, especially your primary partner(s) are aware and understand how important they are to you.

I find that I am most at ease the moment the new potential partner has been made aware of my presence in my primary partners’ (and yes, I have used this in the plural sense as, to me, everyone in my quad is my primary) lives. Without that being put out to our dating worlds, I feel less than important to my partners and then my insecurities set in.

I feel even more at ease when that new potential partner reaches out to talk with me. This, to me, makes me feel acknowledged and puts me even more at ease. It means, to me, that this person is showing that they understand how important I am in their lives. They are showing me that they care enough about my loves to take the time to get to know me as well, which in turn reassures me that they will be careful with this treasure of a person.

I highly recommend that you both discuss what is needed before and after a date. You may not be able to think of all the potential things that will make things go smoother until the first, or even second, date has past, and that is OK. It is just important to note the things that would make things better the next time. The caveat here though, don’t take it personal. Take it as a learning experience. Think of it as, “next time, I would need this to make me feel more comfortable”. And just because you or your partner were not comfortable with something the first time, or that you need to tweek the before and aftercare, does not mean that the date and/or experience can’t repeat itself. It just means that there may need some changes in the before and aftercare.

I hope this helps, and enjoy your date…

Lexxi

Krys’s response:
There are various ways you can do to help my primary partner know they’re loved and appreciated.  It ranges from doing little things for them (get them a drink, help with something around the house), telling them they’re loved, and making sure that we get some quality reconnect time after a date.

One thing that’s always helped me when my partner starts to see someone new, is talking to or texting with that person.  I don’t expect to become close friends with them or anything, but it’s helped to ease my mind (and a lot of times, the other person’s mind as well) when I can let them know I’m real and in full knowledge and support of my partner spending time with them.  I’ve been lucky in becoming pretty good friends with a few of my metamours (the term for your partner’s partner).  At my birthday party last year people in attendance included the quad, my boyfriend and his wife, and a few of my husband’s FWB’s, along with some “vanilla” friends who know and accept us for who we are. It was amazing 🙂

A lot of what you and your partner might need will change and evolve over time, especially since this is a new situation for you both.  Make sure you keep the communication open.  Quality time is probably the most important thing, but there may also be little things that they’d appreciate.

Gunnar’s response:
I am not going to repeat what has already been stated above.  Krystalla and myself went through a lot of adjustments with this.  It was a learning curve and took a little bit of time to understand it for ourselves.  Aftercare is something that not every couple thinks about.  With the emotions and feelings running high sometimes it can be overwhelming.  It is important that you understand that this is normal.  Reconnecting is important, and as time goes on this too will evolve.  

For Krystalla and myself when we first opened up we fucked like rabbits after each date.  Actually we fucked like rabbits for some time after we opened up.  The thoughts, feelings, and wandering mind contributed with this.  It also is how we reconnected. We didn’t know it at the time and realized it after.

Cuddling, talking, sex or any other means of showing your partner that they are still important in your life is key.  The one thing that we noticed if we didn’t reconnect that we felt like we were left behind.  So after each date we found something that we did together.  The bond got stronger and as time went on we noticed the reconnect was a lot of smaller things as well.

Every relationship will evolve.  It is one thing that is never constant.  Much like exploring your poly side, your relationship will also expand and grow.  Never forget your partner and make sure that they know why they are so important to you.  The one constant you do have is your partner and they are the ones we lean on for support.  Talk through everything and you will find that your relationship will grow and with that you will become closer as well.

Bob’s response:
Aftercare and communication are the key…  I would start by finding out what your primary wants and needs to feel safe in your relationship…  to me this has two facets ..

The first is how much your primary wants to know.  This could be a tricky since as IMO this is where most of the communication misunderstanding can occur.  Too much or too little information can be as stressful, oh and this can change based on the relationship so renegotiation of this can vary based on the partner or the time..  To give and example,  I’m a voyeur and love to hear all the details when Lexxi and Krys go on dates (especially if there is kink involved ;))   but I grow quite bored when it comes to repetitive romance or activities that happen over multiple dates .. those I don’t care as much for, so a lot of time it gets glossed over. For others it may be different. Finding out what is the ideal amount of info, especially if the primary is mono is something that has to be scary… it can actually be a fun exercise and help understand each other better… but do know that you will probably screw up at least a few times… both partners need to understand that, and learn from it

The second is reconnection… what to do after a date especially if sex is involved ..  I’ll be a broken record and mention the same thing .. find out, and I mean talk about, what works for you. It could be a simple snuggle or a full on hot passionate fuck afterward (I’m a big fan of this one). Actually I would say establish 2 or 3 of these, so that you’re not stressing about not being able to perform what was agreed upon.

Have fun exploring and remember you are partners on this adventure. You may not always be traveling each road together, but it’s the journey that counts.

The Quad – My Poly Origins (Krys)

polyamorySince Venice and Ryan asked if The Quad could contribute to their blog, I’d been trying to think of something their readers might be interested in.  As a group, we answered a question, and if any of you have any other questions you’d like us to answer, please feel free to submit them.  We enjoyed answering that one.  In the meantime, I figured I’d let you all know how I came to realize I that I was polyamorous.

When I met my husband Gun, I was a rather innocent 20 year old.  He’d told me since we started dating that if I wanted to explore, we could talk about it and he’d be open to that.  He figured I’d bring it up back then.  Nope.  I brought it up on (Canadian) Thanksgiving weekend in 2011.  About a month before that, I’d started the journey to take control of my life and get healthy.  I’ve always been a bigger, curvy girl, who was shy and very unsure about herself.  Some health issues started popping up that summer, so I knew I had to do something about it.  In starting to shed some pounds, and feel good about myself, I decided I wanted to bite the bullet and see if someone else might be interest me.  On a whim, one evening just before Thanksgiving weekend I signed up to the website Plenty of Fish.  Within hours I had messages from a bunch of guys.  I chatted with a couple, but one in particular piqued my interest.  He was married, and looking for a friend with benefits (FWB).  His wife had had one for a few years, and he wanted one as well.  They were open and communicative with each other.  I couldn’t ever meet him without Gun being aware, so by the end of that weekend I knew I had to tell him.  We were home from dinner at his parents place, our kids were elsewhere in the house, Gun was playing Xbox, and I was sitting near him and getting more nervous by the second.  I was trying to wait for a slowdown in play, or a cut scene, but neither were happening in the game he was playing.  After he died one time, I just took a deep breath and kind of blurted out, “you know how you’d said when we started dating that I could explore elsewhere if I wanted to? Well, I think I found someone I’d like to do that with.”  He kind of sat there dumbfounded for a few moments, then said “okay.”  We talked a LOT those first few weeks.  I even told Gun if he wanted to find someone to have fun with, to go ahead.  We set out a few rules for ourselves and ventured forth.

For reasons outside of my control, I only saw this guy a handful of times, and only once intimately.  After that, I was chatting with a few guys, saw one or two others in various capacities.  Gun wasn’t having a much luck finding a sane female, who wasn’t cheating on her husband.  We’d been listening to the podcast Life on The Swingset, and decided to sign up to a swingers website and see if we could find a couple that we could both have fun with, along with making new friends.  We had various types of success and what I call “learning experiences” over the first few months of doing that.  I signed up for an anonymous Twitter account that summer as a way to vent frustrations, and express myself.  I obviously couldn’t do that on my vanilla accounts.  Gun started his own account a few days after I did.

Within a few months, we found a great community on Twitter.  We started meeting a few couples in person and were having an interesting time.  It was around then that I met a guy from one of the swinger sites we were on, and he became my FWB.  We chatted often and I saw him on my work lunch hour sometimes.   A few couples on Twitter who were swingers or were interested in swinging, started talking about a meet and greet in Niagara Falls that winter; we decided to go as well.  Because of our kids, we could only go for one night while most of the other couples were there for 2 nights.  We got there early Saturday afternoon and promptly got to meet the others in person.  We hit it off right off the bat with Bob and Lexxi, and with another couple Charlie and Angel.  At the end of the evening, Bob and Lexxi invited Gun and I up to their room.  Needless to say, we accepted, and had an enjoyable time 😉  We exchanged cell numbers the next day, and were texting the whole way home.

The four of us started to visit each other’s’ homes about once a month.  There was no denying that we all had a connection that was different than what any of us had experienced in the past.  Feelings started to deepen as time passed.  With communication being so open, we all discussed it with each other as it was progressing.  Around then, things with my FWB were getting awkward, something was missing for me. I wasn’t happy with what he could give me and Gun didn’t like the vibes he got off of this guy, so I broke it off with him.

The big turning point for myself in realizing I was poly was the long weekend we all spent on a houseboat for Lexxi’s 40th birthday.  That was the first time that we slept swapped (there were two double beds next to each other at one end of the boat, Gun and Lexxi had one while Bob and I had the other).  It was a fun, relaxed, amazing, weekend full of laughs, lots of hot sex, and tequila body shots.  A couple of weeks after that I ended up going to Bob and Lexxi’s on my own for a night.  When I left that weekend I had to hold back saying “I love you” to Bob.  I knew my feelings had deepened, but it surprised me that it felt natural to want to say that.  That summer, we all realized we’d been sliding down the same path.  We had visits that included our kids, some alone, had a wife swap weekend, and even an entire week where Bob and Lexxi stayed at our house (sans kids to boot!).

Gun and I had wished we had a couple that was closer we could hang out with, but after a while realized that we now had a bunch of great open-minded friends who lived at various distances, and we really weren’t focusing on finding couples anymore.  We deactivated our accounts on the various sites we had been on.

At some point later, Gun decided to sign back up to a few dating sites to try to find a female FWB in our area.  I had played alone with Chad, who is a good friend of ours, a couple of times that spring.  Other than that though, I had been feeling like something was missing for me and was wondering if a relationship of my own outside of what we now called The Quad, was it.  Lexxi had never really played separate from Bob (other than within The Quad, and with Chad) and was curious, so she and I each signed up on Tinder, and then OkCupid.  For myself, I chatted with a few people, met one guy for a coffee, but ultimately was discouraged and decided to deactivate the two accounts at the end of that summer.  A month and a half or so later, I reactivated my OkCupid account and soon after found Erik’s profile.  I found it smart and funny, plus the percentage match between us was 99% as we both had answered a lot of their questions similarly.  So, I messaged him.

We chatted easily over text, and then hit it off in person.  Over the next while, we went on various dates together, Gun and I had dinner with Erik and his wife Mia, plus they both came over when Bob and Lexxi were visiting.  As the months passed, I could see patterns in myself where I knew my feelings were starting to deepen for Erik.  Last spring, almost a year ago now, I really realized that I am truly polyamorous. I was in love with, or in the process of falling in love with, 3 guys and also had a deep relationship with a woman. Plus I had some good friends who I care for immensely.

To say the past four and a half years have been eye opening, is an understatement.  Between realizing that I am polyamorous, and now also discovering my kinky submissive side, I finally feel like I’ve found myself.  It feels natural, and I feel freer than I ever have.

The Quad Q&A: When Do I Tell A New Prospect I Am Poly?

first date poly rulesOkay so for reference, I’m a 22 year old female who has been dating one 25 year old man for four years now. We’re happy, he knows I’m poly, it’s been on the table for about 3 years now. Right now it’s a long distance relationship, although it hasn’t always been. I’m having no problems with him. The issue I’m having is that for the first time since then, someone is interested in me and I think I royally messed up the order of things.

Friday night I went by myself to a local dance hall/club to check it. I considered that maybe I might be able to hook up with someone but I wasn’t really looking for anyone to actually date. Long story short, I ended up bringing a guy back home with me. Since I was expecting a one night stand and was also kind of frazzled that anyone had found me attractive enough to go home with, I didn’t bring up that I was poly. I really wasn’t expecting to ever see him again after I drove him back to his car the next day, but I underestimated my charm apparently because he definitely wants to see me again. He asked ME for my number and said he wants to meet up with me next week at the club again.

I have seen advice from other Poly people that I should always be open with someone I meet about being poly before anything sexual happens between us.   While we didn’t have sex, we did have sexual contact. He never asked if I was seeing someone and trust me when I say that if he had, I would have been honest about it.  But I just never felt that there was an appropriate time to bring it up. It was also loud and it would have probably been a complicated conversation to have in a club. I feel like a jerk about it now, but I just really didn’t think I would have to deal with this! poly first date rules

This new guy is older than my boyfriend, and is also getting a doctorate in some field of psychology. He didn’t seem to have a problem with the other weird things I revealed about myself, so I think it’s safe to assume he won’t be too shocked when I tell him I am poly.  He may be upset I didn’t tell him the first night we had sexual contact though. poly first date rules

My personal friends don’t have any experience with this sort of stuff, so I’m coming to you guys for help with this. I want to tell him before we meet again. I know that keeping it from him any longer is a really bad idea, I think. I feel like I got thrown in the deep end with this and I’m really inexperienced. My initial idea was to text him and ask to meet for coffee because I had to talk to him about something.  However, I could also just text him so that if it ends up that he doesn’t want to hang out with me anymore, neither of us have to deal with being face to face with each other. Texting feels too impersonal. Do you guys have any ideas or suggestions for me? Did I mess up by having sexual contact with him without letting him know I was poly? Should I tell him before we meet again, and do I really have to tell him? poly first date rules poly first date rules

*As a group we decided to each take the question and answer it on our own, without seeing the others’ responses

Gunnar’s Response:
As a man who has multiple girlfriends my fear is always “will I be accepted”. This also seems to be in the back of your mind. Society today is more progressive but there are still some who are negative towards poly or multiple partners. I am glad that you want to air this out, although you didn’t mention what was discussed fully between each other outside of “weird things about yourself”. Was sexual history discussed? Besides what positions you like ;). What about his current status? My concerns always hinge on those two points since it establishes a baseline. It also leads to other conversations like that you are poly.

With that said, I am curious on what your other partner is aware of. Do you have any set rules or boundaries? Do you communicate everything that happens in your lives including lovers or potential dates? With having long distance relationships (I am in two right now) communication is so much more important than being local. Not having the physical contact and regular interaction makes it hard to ensure you are on the same page. Trust me, it is very easy to fall into this trap and end up having long conversations after the fact.

With the assumptions that I have, advising your new interest on your status is very important. Not all men like to share. However, not all men care either. It could end up being just another night that ends in sex and that is it. Either way it seems that you had fun and if it happens again, you wouldn’t argue. You also don’t seem to be looking for something more with this new guy. As to when to tell him, I’d suggest doing it with texts (if you are texting). I do most of my base questions through texting, so that is not as bad as you think. Either in person or over text works, more on what you are comfortable with. It’s not like you are dumping the guy. You are simply setting expectations and ensuring no assumptions are being made going forward.

Communication is key to any relationship. Friends, family and relationships. It is how all relationships work, and without it, they will ultimately fail. Myself having multiple girls I ensure that they are all aware of each other. Based on the relationship they are informed as needed. My wives (married and poly wife) are always informed about my dates along with expectations (sex is always on the table). Again, these are the rules I have set with everyone and there is no hard or fast rule in the lifestyle.  Just be honest to yourself and your partners and things will work out.

Now this is all from a man’s point of view, so I am curious on a woman’s point of view.

Krystalla’s Response:
Yes, you need to tell him, and if it were me, I would do it before you see him again. It’s easy to get caught up in hormones and everything while in the situation, then processing everything after can make you think “what did I do?” Don’t beat yourself up about that, take it as a learning experience. It happened and you didn’t go beyond your own boundaries (right? if you did, then that’s a whole other processing point), so before going further you need to tell this guy.

Personally I would text him the basics, that you’re non-monogamous, and then if he’s fine with it, go into more details about your poly long distance relationship and stance on things when you meet again. Also, you should probably clarify if he’s single or not. I am also assuming that you’ve discussed what had transpired with your current partner, and your thoughts going forward with this other guy…? Honesty and open communication are of utmost importance in a successful relationship, and are even more important when you’re dealing with dating more than one.

Lexxi’s Response:
I think that it is important to open up with him and discuss. Use your first partner as a sounding board also, let him in on your dilemma, that way you have someone by your side, so to speak.

Don’t wait too long. It only makes things harder, not to mention, it will hurt not just you, but both other men as well. No one likes to be kept a secret, and by not being upfront with the new potential person, you would be doing just that.

How to go about it? I am not sure how much you discussed after leaving the club the last time, but perhaps it wouldn’t be a bad thing to suggest to meet up for general conversation over coffee. I agree that the club setting is not the best place to have important conversations of any kind, and you may want to get to know him better if the conversation about poly works out for you. Coffee shop would be more conducive for those types of conversations. May I suggest you simply say, in your text, that you would like to have a chance to chat in a neutral setting that isn’t too loud before meeting again, that is, if he asks why.

Good luck 😉

Bob’s Response:
First off, I’m assuming your current boyfriend knows about your activities… and that you are looking for play partner and that you have some kind of protocol to communicate what the two of you need/want to discuss. To me that is the important part of this; communication (however you are comfortable with) between established poly partners is the key.  As for this new guy, to me I say don’t sweat it, poly is a controversial issue and not everyone understands it. At this point in the relationship, aka a booty call, it’s not the kind of information that needs to be shared. Now that is me, the emotionless swinger. Since you are asking this question I’m assuming that the fact that it’s bothering you, you need to add this in your conversation protocol to any potential play partner. So in the future, I say bring it into the conversation, if nothing else, just to make you feel like you are honoring your poly guidelines. Now for your current and situation, are you interested in this guy? That is the question. If you are, and considering the reaction you are having, I would say bring it up in conversation. As for how…well I can’t really tell you which one is better. It all depends on you and your communication style. If it was me I would do it during the next date (I’m assuming that there will be one). Be honest and matter of fact. This is who you are. If he has issue, that’s his problem…walk away. If not, well girl have some fun. poly first date rules

The Quad – An Introduction Into Their Polyamory Lifestyle

polyamoryIntroducing:  The Quad.

We have asked four friends (The Quad) who are in a polyamory relationship with each other to share some of their experiences with our readers. How exactly we will do this, we are not quite sure. The difficulty in organizing four separate people, who all have their own respective blogs (linked below in the descriptions of themselves), isn’t easy. Which is exactly why we have asked them to share their experiences. If maintaining a productive blog that makes sense to our readers is tough, imagine maintaining an actual relationship with 4 people, while also dating others outside of The Quad? I assume this is a huge challenge.

We will title any blogs from this series with the header, “The Quad – (Blog Title Here)”.

Meet The Quad.



Venice and Ryan have asked us to participate in their blog. Of, course, we are honoured by this invitation. The first thing we should do is introduce ourselves.

There are four of us in our relationship and we form what we call our quad. In fact, we just celebrated our third “quadversary” – this a word that Krys made up when we hit our first year anniversary. The guys, Gunnar and Bob, are straight, Lexxi is bisixeual with a preference to guys, and Krys is heteroflexible.

Gun and Krys are legally married as are Bob and Lexxi, but we have all iterated that if it were legal to marry more than one person, we would seriously consider it. We do consider ourselves intertwined as such often referring to our other partners as poly spouses.

We all have different likes and kinks when it comes to sex.

  • Bob (shutterbob.net) is a voyeur, photographer, sadist, sexual explorer, you name it he has thought of it and probably tried it. Out of the group he is the one that will push the borders and pull the group along (with full consent of course). He is also the one that probably seeks out group play the most. Bob is Dom to both Lexxi and Krys and takes great pleasure in pushing their limits and borders. As he likes to say; it’s not the destination that matters but the journey.
  • Krys (krystalla3.wordpress.com) is one of Bob’s subs. She is still discovering her submissive side and is finding that she is masochistic. She loves the pain and marks on her body. Krys also has a boyfriend outside of the quad.
  • Lexxi (lexxiblue.wordpress.com) is a sensualist sub who likes to be restrained. She doesn’t mind pain but doesn’t necessarily like marks left on her body. She does like having her limits pushed, gently. She hates to admit it, but she is realizing she’s a service sub, however doesn’t think she’s very good at it. She doesn’t enjoy cleaning house, but she does take pleasure in making sure everyone’s needs are met. Everyone meaning her Sir, her poly hubby, her sister sub, and any guests that come into her home.
  • Gun (opencoupling.com) is the most vanilla in our quad. He isn’t into kinky sex but has dabbled with the group to have an understanding. He can be a verbal Dom when situation presents itself. His other fetishes is new blood. To experience new women (well, new to him, that is). Currently has a few other relationships outside of the quad.

We have noticed over the last year or so, when we meet new people or go out in public, people often question who is with who within our quad and find that quite amusing.

We are all parents. Bob and Lexxi have a 23 yr old girl and a 24 year old boy. Both of them are fully aware of their lifestyle choices and have been very good about it, often helping out with Krys and Gun’s boys, who are 14 & 11, when they tag along to visit Bob and Lexxi. Krys and Gun’s kids don’t know the full extent of their relationships yet, but do understand that we’re important to each other.

There is 500km/300 miles between our respective homes, so we try very hard to make sure we get together on a monthly(ish) basis. This is challenging in the sense that everything has to be planned out. The distance doesn’t make it easy for spontaneous activities.

So after reading that last paragraph, I am sure you are now wondering how we met. Short answer… twitter. Bob and Krys started chatting on Twitter about common subjects along with another group of people. It was suggested to organize a meet and greet in Niagara Falls, Ontario. We all agreed to go and the rest is history.

We have also expressed ourselves in our own personal blogs. They range in topics from the lifestyle to personal feelings/experiences.