We should see other people


I think we should see other people... No, I’m not breaking up with you, quite the opposite.

Seeing other people might be beneficial for a relationship. How? Well, let me introduce you to the concepts of “NRE” and “compersion”.

Imagine there’s a situation that makes your partner objectively happy. How do you feel? Happy as well, right? Duh, obviously, you love them, of course you’re happy for them!

But what if this “situation” is the fact that they started being romantically involved with someone else? They still love you, they don’t intend to end things with you, it doesn’t negatively impact your relationship – they have simply found someone else who also makes them happy, that’s all.

How does it make you feel? If you’re unhappy about it – that’s jealousy. If you’re happy for them – that’s compersion.

If it weren’t for this strange idea, which society feeds us almost every day, that romantic and sexual exclusivity are absolutely necessary for a happy relationship, we would simply treat romance as yet another source of happiness. My partner picked up a new hobby? Great! Found new friends? Awesome! Got a raise? Wonderful! Found a lover? Marvelous!

According to a definition from PolyMatchMaker.com:

Compersion – The opposite of jealousy; the feelings of happiness that your lover(s) are also loving and being loved by other lovers. Coined by the Kerista Commune of San Francisco, which practiced polyfidelity and was disbanded in the early 1990s.

Now, for the other thing...

I’ve been in a wonderful relationship for over six years now. It’s plenty of time to build something incredible. For years we’ve been living together, spending most of our time together, we got married, we are each other’s best friends and we can’t imagine our lives without the other.

But six years is also plenty of time to forget what we felt back when we had just started dating. Our love is now stronger and more mature than ever, but that initial euphoric joy of falling in love has obviously faded away by now.

But I’ve met another great guy recently, and he reminded me how it is to feel that. And I know how crazy it might sound to someone who’s monogamous, but dating him actually might have made me a better husband to my husband. He made me remember how I felt when our relationship started. He constantly reminds me to always put my husband first and to always be honest to him. Knowing him makes me discover new things about my primary relationship. He makes me a better person.

And that’s the New Relationship Energy. Or as PolyMatchMaker.com’s defines it:

NRE – New Relationship Energy – That lovely euphoria you experience when you become involved with a new love.

So in short: that’s why I think that we, the people, should see other people.

A photo of me

About the author

Hi! I'm Andrea (they/them). I tell computers what to do, both for a living and for fun, I'm also into blogging, writing and photography. I'm trying to make the world just a little bit better: more inclusive, more rational and more just.

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