The truth is, that an open relationship is not about following your heart, it’s about following your hormones.
Dear Open Minds,
Coming from a small town and having been brought up in an old-school yet a well-to-do business family setup, I would call myself fairly open-minded. Likewise, I am mostly drawn to the similar breed of people: open-minded. Lately, I have been hearing a lot about the fad called ‘Open Relationship’. Be it my friend talking about another friend being in one, callers complaining about the unexpected attachment to Karan Johar on Mirchi love, or people writing blogs and a thousand rules of ‘how to be in an open relationship’, it has been following me everywhere like a ghost. However, what drove me to write this letter was a nerdy Saturday night when I was browsing through the romantic genre of Netflix and stumbled upon a film ‘Newness’. I was instantly reminded of my friend who had mentioned this film while we were talking about using the hook-up apps and the repercussions they come with. The film narrated the storyline of a couple who meets on an online dating app and ends up dating and living together. Boredom creeps in and they change the rules of the relationship. The same concept found a fleeting mention in the Zoom web series ‘Ready to Mingle’ in the recent episode aired on YouTube.
Now, coming to the foundation of this discussion, what is an open relationship? By dictionary meaning, an open relationship is the one where both the partners agree to be free to maintain sexual or romantic relationships with other people. Sex is allowed, romance isn’t. Spending time is normal, emotions ain’t. Fucking a stranger repetitively is the part of the game, but if your partner talks and opens up to your friend in an innocent conversation? Well, that’s definitely a no. Because that kind of ‘openness’, is prohibited.
What kind of rules are these? What if one partner falls too deep with someone while another feels like Adam on an island? Does the theory of one-in-the-hand, one-in-the-bush apply to all the areas in life, even love? Why even take the chance of falling in love in the first place then. It’s perhaps more sensible to begin following the rulebook from the very beginning and spend an entire life following it while still living an illusion that you are ‘following your heart’.
The truth is, that an open relationship is not about following your heart, it’s about following your hormones. And that’s okay. As long as it isn’t meddling with something that you still have a chance at – a real relationship.