The type of relationship that can sustain an open relationship

Tammy Nelson, PhD explains the do's and don'ts of an open marriage, especially when there are children involved
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The type of relationship that can sustain an open relationship

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Does an open marriage work when you have kids? Gay, straight, living together, an open marriage is a challenge, but more and more a common way for people to try to negotiate the really stressful strain of monogamy. Now an open marriage is not a way to justify having an affair. So if you're already cheating, and you go to your partner, and you say, I think we should have an open marriage, that's not the way to keep your affair partner in your relationship. For some people an open marriage can work, where you have open sexual behaviors that are negotiated and transparent. And that your monogamy agreement can include anything that you want it to include, as long as you agree on it. For people that make it work, they have a really strong foundation that keeps them connected and keeps their fidelity solid. But they define what that fidelity means. And they're the ones that are able to really manage other people's expectations outside of the home, particularly if there are kids involved. So how do you explain when mom or dad or dad and dad have their lovers or their friends or other people over to the house or spend time away from the family? Those are the things that have to be negotiated really openly and honestly. The one thing that people with really successful open relationships do have is the capacity to talk about everything. And to talk about it openly before it happens, while it's happening, and after it happens. How does this work, how is it going to work, and how did this work, and how did it affect everyone in the family? So if you think that you could have that kind of relationship, talk about it before you have it, talk about as you're trying to do it, and definitely talk about it as you're doing it to see how it's affecting everyone in the family.

Tammy Nelson, PhD explains the do's and don'ts of an open marriage, especially when there are children involved

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Tammy Nelson, PhD

Psychotherapist & Relationship Expert

Tammy Nelson PhD is the author of several books including, “Getting the Sex You Want; Shed Your Inhibitions and Reach New Heights of Passion Together”  (2008) and  “What’s Eating You? A Workbook for Anorexia and Bulimia (2004)” and her latest  book “The New Monogamy; Redefining Your Relationship After Infidelity” (January 2013) is receiving critical acclaim.  She has been a featured expert in New York Times, Washington Post, Self,  Glamour Magazine, Cosmopolitan, Redbook, MSNBC,  Shape, Men’s Health, Women’s Health Woman’s Day, Women’s Health, and a source in Time Magazine. She writes for the Huffington Post, YourTango and can be followed on her blog www.drtammynelson.com/blog/.

Tammy Nelson is a Board Certified Sexologist, a Certified Sex Therapist and an Imago Relationship Therapist.  She is an international speaker and a licensed psychotherapist in private practice with over 25 years of experience working with individuals and couples.  She travels and lectures internationally on her quest for global relational change.

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