Poly Relationships

Setting Boundaries after a Breakup

Couple Walking and Talking

After The Love Is Gone: Post-Poly Boundaries

Nothing lasts forever. It’s a bittersweet reality that any intelligent lover will take into consideration at all times. And then try to appreciate all the times they have with someone, before that inevitable CHANGE of things happens. At some point, the sex will stop happening.

You will not have the same physical access you once had. Whether you are having a one night stand or are together for 100 years… there comes a moment when you will not be able to be together with someone. And unless you are together until death swoops in and ends the love story, then you have to deal with the repercussions of the other option: sexual separation.

Oh, that dreaded realization: that you are no longer invited to your lover’s genital garden of delights and dreams! Sigh, LOL.

So, what level of connection is comfortable to your heart and soul when you have reached the end of an intimate relationship?

  • Do you kill and run?
  • Do you erase their phone number and forget they ever existed?
  • Do you try to put on a brave face, and bury all your jealousy, envy, rage, and bitterness?
  • Do you forget them by hooking up with your last crush or your last ex-boyfriend/ex-girlfriend?
  • Do you try to be friends with your ex, after a period of healing and disengagement?
  • Or, do you try to have sex with them still after you said you wouldn’t? (It happens. Often! Force of habit with familiar faces and all that…)

That being said: SOMETHING changes in the relationship when it is decided that sex is not happening anymore.

So, what do you feel like sharing with that person? It probably isn’t going to be the same with each person, but it might be.

Maybe you’re the type to know you need at least a month of not seeing that person’s face when you break up.

Maybe you need to just hear their voice once a week, or maybe email or text them occasionally but not see or touch each other at all.

But, one thing that is worth understanding about yourself: are you the type to NOT take the other person’s desires into consideration when determining how you will interact with them in the future of your non-sexual relationship? Are you going to just do what you want, and not ask or care or compromise or negotiate with your former flame about what kind of connection you will try to create from this new day forward?

It’s worth knowing. And it’s worth clarifying as soon as the moment manifests where it is pertinent to share that information.

Some people choose to crush, kill, destroy all old emotion, and keep the connection alive… but on a STRICTLY platonic friendship basis.

To the point where no words of emotion, passion, sexuality or intimacy may transpire between ex-lovers. And this is a fair choice.

But it is not my choice.

I personally enjoy being friends-with-SPECIAL-benefits:

  • The benefit of being able to talk to me about your NEW lovers.
  • The benefit of not losing the total value of the trust we have created.
  • The benefit of being able to do anything-but-actual-intercourse with me, if you choose.
  • The benefit of not completely losing a potential emotional oasis in your time of need.
  • The benefit of being able to help out in other ways, as a babysitter/pet sitter/favor-doer, just because.
  • And others…

But it takes a SERIOUS commitment to honor and self-control and integrity to RESPECT the new boundaries you have chosen together.

NO MORE SEX means just that: NO. MORE. SEX.

But it’s nice to hug them, and be there for them in future times of crisis, if they ever need a good friend…

And being friends with an ex is SO much harder in monogamy, I do believe.

Ah, polyamory. A bittersweet vicious dream.

In Love,
Addi Stewart

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