5 Things Couples Should Know Before Considering An Open Relationship
Comedian and Academy-Award winning actress Mo’Nique and her husband, Sidney Hicks, have been happily married since 2006. Their not-so-secret secret to long-lasting love has had people talking for years, and the couple talked about their “open marriage” on a recent episode of ‘The Preachers,’ a new daytime talk show.
“It was my idea,” Mo’nique explained, “because I wanted to be open and honest with the person I was going to spend the rest of my life with.”
For the couple, who also hosts a popular podcast, ‘Mo’Nique & Sidney’s Open Relationship,’ the word “open” doesn’t just refer to sex. Open is how they describe their communication style. Sidney shared, “We are in an open relationship 24/8. And that means we are always open to a conversation. We’re open to the understanding that man and woman or as a couple we should have for one another.”
But, don’t get it twisted: sex with other men and women is a part of their open marriage. Mo’Nique, who initiated the idea (to many people’s shock), believes being honest about that is part of what makes their relationship so ‘beautiful.’ “There may be times I may want to be with other men. And my best friend said, ‘mama, I’ve loved you since the 10th grade, do you think you being with another man is going to have anything to do with me loving you?,’ she said in the segment.
Is how they work their union really so unconventional? With a decade under their belt, you may be curious to know if they’re the ones getting it right. But, don’t jump in so fast! When open relationships are discussed, many assumptions are quickly made.
I asked Sexpert Tyomi Morgan to chime in on the topic and share her advice for couples considering an open relationship.
If you are a couple considering this option, here are 5 things you should consider:
1. An open relationship is not partner swapping.
When people hear the term “open relationship,” it doesn’t always mean the couple is having sex with other people. This is one aspect of an open relationship, but it can also be about sharing intimacy and having a relationship with someone else exclusive of sex. Swingers are couples who actively seek out sex with other people or couples outside of their relationship, but open relationships can be progressive and polyamorous.
According to Sexpert Tyomi, “People who want to be in an open relationship want to practice open love. These individuals feel more and want to share this love with those in which their hearts gravitate towards.” Tyomi notes these couples have a home base of whom they go home to; someone they truly love and trust.
2. It’s not a quick fix for spicing up your love life.
Couples can fall into patterns where sex can become stale or routine. Some may think if they have an open relationship it will spice up their love life. This is a common misperception.
Spicing up your relationship doesn’t always have to mean sex outside of the relationship. Developing more intimacy as a couple is key, says Tyomi. Try playing games, sexting, or even sex coaching to spice things up at home.