Caroline Cranshaw: What to do when the person you've fallen for wants an 'open relationship'

A woman had fallen for the man of her dreams, only to find out he still wants to sleep with other women and have an "open relationship". Completely torn on what to do, she reached out to Sarah, Sam and Toni’s resident relationship expert Caroline Cranshaw for help.

In her letter she wrote:

­Dear Caroline,

My question is about monogamy and open relationships. I know that life is long and sexual chemistry eventually fizzles out - so is it realistic to expect that one person can be enough to satisfy all of your needs? A few months ago, after five guys in a row dumped me after our third date, I met someone I truly thought was the one, and who I thought felt the same way about me, too.

He’s good-looking, a great listener, generous and kind, had a great career, a good sense of humour and seems to adore me as well. But now, after dating for a few months, he told me that we are not exclusive and he is seeing other people. He wants to see me, too, but he says even when he’s in a relationship he wants to sleep with other people, and now he wants to honest about it, and am I okay with having an open relationship? That he would like to have a serious relationship with me but be able to sleep with whoever he wants, and that I could do the same.

I have fallen in love with this guy and the thought of going back to dating again makes my skin crawl but so does the thought of him sleeping with other women. Every guy who I’ve had a long term relationship has cheated on me so maybe I should just accept it. All I can think is the fact that I’m not enough for every man I fall for and there must be something wrong with me. But at the same time, I don’t want to lose him. Do you think open relationships can work?

Yours truly,

Feeling not good enough and let down once again …

Watch above to hear Caroline’s honest advice for this woman, and anyone one else who may be in the same place.

Caroline Cranshaw is a hypnotherapist, founder and trainer at the New Zealand Integrative Hypnotherapy Training Institute and the author of The Smoking Cure. Find out more about her at nzhypnotherapy.co.nz. Listen to Caroline's new podcast WTF Stories & Advice.