"Six Reasons to Try Polyamory"
Six Reasons to Try Polyamory
Polyamory, the practice of having a relationship with more than one person, is enjoying a bit of a coming-out party. Though there’s some debate about how polyamory should be practiced, it’s generally seen in multiple partnerships, group relationships, and occasionally even group marriage....
1. You could find an incredibly supportive community.
Many cities have poly meetup groups that meet on a regular basis for discussion and support. Newbies and people who are simply curious about how these relationships work (How does one decide how to split the groceries? Do poly people all shower together to save water?) are usually welcomed with open arms....
2. You want to push yourself to find new limits.
How far is too far for you in a relationship? What really bothers you? What do you really like? Where do you see your relationships going? Polyamory is a pressure cooker for relationship exploration.... While exploration can always happen in a monogamous relationship, it’s happens harder, faster, and stronger in a polyamorous one.
3. You want to learn how to communicate really really REALLY well.
...Being open and willing to be vulnerable is really scary, because the potential to get hurt or rejected is high. Those with backgrounds in nonviolent communication thrive in polyamorous relationships, and those without it improve their skills drastically.
4. You question the wisdom of “traditional” coupledom.
...You might find that monogamy is right for you, but wouldn’t you rather [also] know what else is possible?
5. You’re bisexual.
...Being able to have more than one partner opens the door to triads, quads, and groups that allow a bisexual person the opportunity to love all genders at the same time and live a life that fulfills all parts of them.
6. You’re into BDSM.
...A big part of BDSM comes from learning from those with more experience how to be safe, sane, and consensual (as all kink must be).... Polyamory or other kinds of non-monogamy can open up situations that are otherwise impossible.
Despite all these fantastic reasons to try polyamory, it may not be the right lifestyle choice for you. Don’t try polyamory (right now) if:
1. You think it will fix your infidelity problems.
Surprise! Cheating exists within polyamorous relationships too...
2. Your partner is pressuring you.
...It has to come from inside....
3. You just want to sleep around.
Sleeping around can destroy a poly relationship as fast as it would a monogamous one....
Remember that polyamory is just like any other form of relationship, but multiplied! You need to be aware of and respectful to partners’ feelings, and know that you will make mistakes. A big part of learning to love others is learning to love yourself, just as you are. So try it! Or don’t....
Read the whole article (Nov. 18, 2011). The author's blog: Reverse Retrograde.
Further recent advice-column roundup:
At "Ask a Dude" on The Hairpin, an online women's magazine, a reader writes:
There's a whole movement out there called "poly" in which people in loving, committed, intimate relationships have permissions from their spouses / partners to also have other loving, committed, intimate relationships at the same time. Like most things, it's a spectrum: some poly people I know are doing "don't ask don't tell" (although that's widely disparaged in the poly community as being borderline-cheating), whereas other poly people disclose everything to their partner including number and type of orgasm with the new partner(s). And there's everything in between. It's a whole movement, including workshops, seminars, estate planning advice, summer camps, and conferences. It's been around for a long time and (although I'm admittedly a bit biased), it is AWESOME.
My husband and I have been dating other people — doing poly, not swinging, they are very different — for years....
Read the whole item; it's the second entry. (Sept. 13, 2011).
Open Love NY, one of the biggest and most active local poly groups, has begun an advice section. Leon Feingold posts,
Hey - how many people here have questions about polyamory? They can be n00b questions or veteran questions or easy questions or challenging questions....
Ladies and gentlemen, we at Open Love NY are proud to give you: "Poly Wanna Answer?"
And while we're at it, here are other poly-specific advice columns that I know of:
● Annie Ory of Mapping Love ("become the person you want to be in love with") contributes Hey Annie! to ModernPoly.com. She's up to column #24.
● Noel Figart continues her Ask the Misanthrope advice column on her long-running site The Polyamorous Misanthrope.
● Betty Baker's Poly Advice Nurse podcast ran for 67 episodes.
● Joreth Innkeeper plays Miss Poly Manners, answering advice questions regularly on Cunning Minx's Polyamory Weekly podcast. As part of this persona, Joreth wears a full-up proper Victorian outfit (the infinity hearts are a subtle anachronism) when she performs as Miss Poly Manners in public. Schedule her at your next con.
Polyamory Weekly, by the way, is back to a weekly schedule and has built an audience of roughly 12,000 listeners per episode — a huge increase since last I knew. The current episode is #295. Minx deserves cheers, great respect, and tip-jar donations from all of us for running this poly-community mainstay nonstop for the last 6½ years.