my boyfriend is polyamorous, and I’m very open to the idea! In fact I’m glad that he was so open about it. I’ve been open to the idea for a long while, and while I’m ok with it, but there’s just one thing. I’m not sure how I feel about him having sex with others? I worry about STDs and I worry about what he’ll think of me. I feel like I’m in no place to talk about this, he’s very kind and loving, I’m just not sure what to do
I definitely don’t want to seem like I’m downplaying your concerns, but I do want to say that concern about STDs is one of the “best” things to have as your “one issue” - because it’s really solvable. This is a realistic, responsible, mature, and clear problem to have - it’s not a messy tangle of emotions. And it has specific solutions.
1.) Mandate condom use for all partners. This should be a non negotiable. Your boyfriend absolutely needs to use condoms with all of his partners, all of the time. If you don’t trust him to do this, you cannot be polyamorous with this man.
2.) Get tested for STDs every 3 months. Be open with your healthcare provider about your relationship practices, and find one who is safe and non judgmental. Look after yourself! Mandate that your boyfriend also get tested frequently.
3.) Accept some level of risk. Almost all fun things worth doing carry some kind of risk. Even with condoms and regular testing, you still may get an STD. Most are treatable. If this is something you absolutely cannot accept the risk of, you cannot be polyamorous.
As for worrying what he’ll think of you, that’s not clear enough for me to give specific advice. Are you worried he’ll compare your naked body/sexual prowess to other people? (He probably won’t. And if he does, he’s not worth dating.) Are you worried he’ll see you as somehow more ‘disposable’ or less worthy of respect if you’re OK with him having sex with other people? (He probably won’t. And if he does, he’s not worth dating.)
Good luck, have fun, stay safe, and consider supporting your local Planned Parenthood! <3