I have, in pretty much every relationship I’ve had, been either living with the other person, or (at university) been sleeping with them pretty much every night. I think that has caused me some problems in the few relationships I’ve had that didn’t fit this model.
I was a late starter, relationship wise. But when I did finally get a steady girlfriend (call her E), the relationship lasted over a year. Not bad for someone I met in the queue to open a bank account in my first day of university. With E, we had a pretty intense relationship in which we spent almost every night together during the term, and had a few empty weeks missing each other over the holidays.
This was a pattern I was to repeat though my years at university.
When Caitlin and I got together, due to circumstances, she moved straight in with me, and we can’t have spent more than a handful of nights apart since. This has left me, I feel with a slightly different view of relationships to lots of people. As we were thrust together so suddenly, and while very much desired, also quite unexpectedly, we had to cope with all the stresses of living together, with none of the being able to retreat to our own houses for some space.
We really wanted it to work, and so we talked through all the problems and arguments; something that aides us today as we embark on our open relationship.
So, back to the subject. Amy, our girlfriend, does not live that close, and can’t visit nearly as often as we’d all like. So for the first time in my life, I’m having to have a relationship at a distance. Its been very enlightening, and has made me think lots about how I view trust and jealousy.
I, of course, trust Caitlin. We’ve shared so much that it really couldn’t be otherwise. With Amy, though, I’ve had to accept that I’m not there all the time, and have to trust her.
I do, by the way!
Its something that probably comes naturally to most people, but is not something I’ve had to deal with up to now. Amy also has her own life to lead, distinct from Caitlin and mine.
This physical distance also means that contact is quite different to the time I spend with Caitlin. When Amy is with us, the time is finite, and feelings and touches something to savour, as there will be a gap before they can be repeated. It makes for very interesting times.
I’m very happy.