Note: I’ve been letting my partners choose their own pseudonyms. Names have been changed and specific locations obscured to protect the very, very guilty.
James is who introduced me to the idea of open relationships. We met online, in an MMO, and hung out a lot in game. As I got to know him he mentioned that he and his wife were in an open marriage. Screeching brakes. Wait what? I wasn’t completely unfamiliar with the concept, but had never met anyone who was or admitted to being in one. I don’t remember if my first thought was that he was lying or not, but I know I spoke to his wife in game at some point and she corroborated his story.
At the time I was dating “The Ex”. It was an on-again, off-again seven year long relationship. High school “sweethearts” turned unhealthy adult relationship. I wouldn’t even call it adult, as it was very immature. Anyway, when The Ex broke up with me for the last time, James was the one I called and bawled my eyes out to. He was the one I visited that New Years and started dating shortly after. In what will be a theme of my relationships, James lives a significant distance away. About 800 miles or a 15 hour drive. We saw each other several times that first year and have settled into a habit of daily phone calls, including some very explicit ones, and yearly visits.
We’ve been together for more than 3 years now. He’s geeky, and loving and all sorts of wonderful, and our relationship has continued to grow and change throughout these past years. (Oh no, I’m getting sappy. Run while you can!!) For a long time I saw myself as the monogamous person in a polyamorous relationship. James always encouraged me to find a more local partner, something I’m typically kind of terrible at. But his philosophy was always, “As long as I can still be your friend and talk to you, I want you to find someone else and be happy.” Despite some of my depressive moods, James has made me very, very happy for these past years.
Outside of the sappiness, he also introduced me to D&D and I first dipped my toes into the world of tabletop gaming with my pixie ranger: Chase Shimmernyx and her Quantum Badger. Often shoved in mugs of alcohol by annoyed party members, but occasionally saves the day. And she totally pressed the big red button. Multiple times. More on her later, I’m sure.