"Open Relationships: What the World Already Has"
Jenny Block, whose book Open: Love, Sex & Life in an Open Marriage will be published on June 1st, got a column into the influential news-blog site The Huffington Post (March 27, 2008). She talks about one of the commonest reactions people have to polyamory, one that drives polys up the wall.
Sex and love make people crazy. Not by experiencing them. By talking about them. And right now, a lot of people are talking about open marriage and polyamory....
...It seems to me that having the illusion of monogamy is what people are truly interested in. Otherwise, they wouldn't stray while giving lip service to the party line.... So as far as open relationships or polyamory being in any way deviant or even unusual for that matter, I don't see how that's possible. Unless you consider honesty deviant and unusual.
I'm polyamorous. I'm in an open marriage. And I'm honest about it. The stronger people's reactions to that honesty are, the clearer it becomes that their reactions have little to nothing to do with me and everything to do with them. If one is cheating, the thought of being honest is a scary proposition.... My question is this Why is it that deceitful, don't-ask-don't-tell non-monogamy is socially acceptable (don't kid yourself, it is), and honest non-monogamy is not?
....The reason is simple. If I can be polyamorous, tell the truth about it, and be successful in my relationship, then the implication is that it could work for others too. And there is nothing more terrifying than feeling like you're not strong enough to go out on a limb and attempt something that might actually improve your life. Better to yell, "Freak!" at those who are trying. And then everyone doing the yelling unhappy, cheating, or just plain judgmental feel themselves in the "right" and thus in the clear.
As for those people with no reaction to my choice, or those who simply say "It's not my thing. But good for you," it seems readily apparent that they are the ones for whom the choice to be monogamous really does work....
Read the whole article (March 27, 2008), and leave a comment. You can also leave a rating at the Yahoo News reprint of the article.
Block says there will be more of these columns. She has posted to public sites,
I'll be writing regularly for Huffington Post on the subject of polyamory, and I would love to hear any thoughts or suggestions the group might have about what I should write about there.
Labels: open marriage