“Her husband is sleeping with my girlfriend” … said the voice on the phone. And now? Instead of separating, BRIGITTE author Katja Lewina, 34, and her husband scratched their hearts out to each other – and found a way
The baby finally fell asleep, I had just put on a coffee – when the phone rang. “Are you the wife of …?” Asked a male voice unknown to me. Immediately I have to pick up my half-dead man in the hospital, I thought. “Her husband is sleeping with my girlfriend, for months.” Silence. “I think you should know that.” He’s crazy, I thought. Three cute kids, big flat, almost never quarrel and still having fun in bed after all these years. That would never put my husband on the line! Well, we’d rather watch Netflix than fiddle around at parties, and our conversations were all too often about nightly pimping and defiance, but who did it please? Then the voice started to cry and dictate the name and phone number of the other woman. The truth stared at me now from a scribbled sheet of paper. And I had absolutely nothing of it.
What should I still believe in him?
On this day could have come to an end, with our falling back to back, the swing afternoon to five, the planned family vacation. He had committed not only a capital crime. Much worse: I did not even know what I should believe him anymore. First he had an incredible number of orders, then he needed time and time again for himself. Such a lying shit!
The following months we spent talking to each other and scratched our hearts in abundant tears. Because if we had learned one thing, then that in our feel-good bubble we knew a lot about each other: Would one of us have ever dared to say “I miss something in my life”? Or “Our perfect everyday life crushes me”? But now that the unimaginable had become real, we could only be radically honest with each other – what we wanted, how we wanted it and with whom. It was like cutting off our old coexistence like a crust and seeing us the way we really were for the first time. At some point, something like gratitude spread in me. Disturbing, sure. And yet, if my husband had not gone astray, we would not have had that experience.
The fact that we both wanted to have other people was at that time at most theoretically an issue. The wound was still fresh after all, and we both were afraid of what would make intimacy with others with us both. But a few months later, I fell passionately into a mutual acquaintance. And because we were now used to our honesty, my husband knew about every little emotion inside me. But did I want that? Could I do that? I did it, so I will not stop you, “he said in all seriousness.
Everyone has to make their own rules
For five years now we are living in an open relationship. Of course, at first we were almost crippling jealous, of course, we had to explore boundaries to protect ourselves, to protect our family. Initially, it was important to us that none of us stayed elsewhere or that no dates come to our apartment. We did not want to run parallel relationships, so for a while we tried not to meet anyone too regularly. But an open relationship without feelings for a second person is impossible. The safer we felt in our new construct, the fewer pads we needed.
Today it only means: No one else comes to our bed. Otherwise everything is really allowed. Holidays, One-Night Stands, Weekend Trips. And yes, for a year I even have a boyfriend. And yes, that our common children know and like as my second partner. Of course, we first had to explain that you can love several people at the same time. The fact that we talk about our love life honestly and openly, is now completely normal for our children. And no, I do not have to and always do not want to justify myself for it, even if that is hard to understand for many outsiders – in the end this is simply not our problem any more.
We are honestly happier today than we ever imagined. Not only because we enjoy the freedom to do whatever we want with other people. But also because we know that our relationship is not even broken by feelings for others.
Would you like to read more about the topic and talk about it with other women? Then check out the BRIGITTE community’s “Daily Relationship Forum”!