And it's long: 4,000 words, spanning six pages.
It starts by following a once-lively couple into their midlife dullness.
Megan and Marty reminisce about the people they used to be and feel that there's nothing ahead now but years of more years. They put a toe into swinging
but find it's not what they want. Then Megan develops a crush on a guy of a new
and different kind, named Kyle. The three become friends, and during a
dinner visit Marty encourages the two to go ahead and kiss. And then
before they quite grasp what's happening to them, they emerge blinking from a threesome.
The experience felt transformative: “It was like reigniting the curiosity
of a teenager,” Megan remembers. Questioning the confines of her marriage
“was like coming into Technicolor,” she marvels, referencing the movie
Pleasantville, in which rainbow hues begin to populate a
puritanical, black-and-white town. Megan was alive with excitement and
energy; she describes the feeling of returning to her body, as if she’d
been previously numb. “I remember looking back at them at one point, and
both of them looking at me,” she says of that first encounter. “It was
like, Oh my God, this whole other world is out here.”
Opening their relationship sparked a stream of existential questions for
them, according to Megan: “Whose life are we living? What do we
want?” Entrenched systems were equally open to debate. “We are in a time
of questioning institutional structures like health care, education, and,
yes, monogamy,” she says....“I think people are disillusioned with life
right now and really starting to write their own rules.”
...In contrast to the free love of the ’60s or suburban key-party ethos of
the ’70s, consensual non-monogamy in 2022 is a thoughtfully considered,
typically therapized practice, complete with a tidy acronym. CNM is rooted
in open relationships that aspire to be “honest, moral, and trustworthy,”
says Jessica Wood, Ph.D., a sexuality and relationships researcher....
The article follows the growth of the movement in recent years, quoting
such figures as CNM researchers Amy Moors and Zhana Vrangalova, legal
activist Kimberly Embers, and Feeld CEO Ana Kirova. The writer tells about
some of her own Connecticut friends and neighbors newly gossiping, during
"the ennui of Covid," about the cultures of swinging other consensual
Sex scholars studying CNM are beginning to explore the possibility that
the desire to be non-monogamous is a “relationship orientation” unto
itself, or may be part of sexual orientation. Creating a more nuanced
definition of sexual orientation could mean asking: “Do you want no
partners, or do you want to be exclusive in sexual and/or emotional ways
to one partner, or open with multiple?” Moors says. As with gender and
sexuality, relationships can exist on a spectrum, Vrangalova argues.
“We’re not dealing with a binary world of ‘Oh, you’re monogamous,’ or
‘You’re totally open.’ There’s lots of different things in between.”
...Megan considers herself a better parent now that she’s polyamorous,
saying she’s a more loving person in general. She and Marty give their son
and daughter an age-appropriate explanation of their unconventional
relationship structure or “polycule” (CNM is only the beginning of a
seemingly endless glossary of terms). “At one point, when we lived in New
Zealand and Kyle lived with us for about six months, they knew I might be
in Kyle’s bedroom or I might be in Daddy’s bedroom,” Megan said. “We talk
about ‘Mommy loves Kyle and Daddy,’ and ‘Daddy loves Mommy and Daddy loves
his partner’…and they don’t know it’s not normal yet.”
...“This is the next wave of inquiry,” Moors agrees. “This is going to be
up for national discussion in the coming decade, if not sooner.” It all
amounts to a migration to the mainstream: At [Janet] Hardy and coauthor
Dossie Easton’s earliest book events for The Ethical Slut, in the
late ’90s, “audiences were mostly geek culture—Renaissance Fair,
science-fiction conference attendees, old hippies like us,” Hardy said.
Now, the crowds are much more diverse. ...
...Joli Hamilton, Ph.D., a research psychologist, told me CNM is about
“returning agency” to your partner. She and her second husband, Ken, who
have seven children between them, live in small-town Massachusetts. They
“look like soccer parents,” she says....
1. No, monogamy is not "over" despite the online title and the printed cover line. Monogamy will always be the right choice for many people, perhaps most, and they need to find each other. But this is a fashion magazine, and the fashion industry is all about shaming endless container-shiploads of new clothes into landfills as fast as possible, because capitalism. So the title came naturally. </rant>
● In other big media: the World Service of BBC News broadcast a 23-minute radio program last Sunday titled
, part of its "Deeply Human" series (April 3). It's worth a listen in
your drive time. Webpage description:
Why do you love the way you do?
We're expected to love only one romantic partner at a time. But we can
love more than one parent, sibling, and friend - so why do so many
cultures demand monogamy in romance? Is it time to reconsider the old
Dessa speaks with a philosopher, an economist, and sexpert Dan Savage to
talk about love, sex, and commitment.
● Google Alerts doesn't serve up as many small-town newspaper
profiles of local out-and-proud polyfamilies as it did a decade ago,
perhaps because there are ever fewer small-town newspapers. But the genre
continues. This appeared in The Gabber
of Gulfport, Florida: Meet Gulfport’s Polyamorous Throuple
Rachael Meir, Aaron Meir, and Kasey Kershne (Ran & Rami
By Abby Baker
When Rachael and Aaron Meir met in college in Colorado 20 years ago, their
future seemed on track for children, the white picket fence, and
everything that comes with it.
Until they took the time to talk about what they wanted.
...Today, the Meir’s are in a polyamorous triad relationship with Kasey
Kershne. The group moved from Colorado to Gulfport three months
Despite the Meir’s being together for nearly two decades, their
relationship with Kershne is an equal one. That’s the entire idea behind
ethical polyamory, says Rachael, a licensed psychologist.
The three have separate dynamics with one another, each with their own
relationship within the triad, as well as a dynamic as a group. They go on
dates, scooter around town, have disagreements, triple spoon, and live a
normal life like traditional couples.
The triad cites warm weather and lower cost of living in their decision to
move from Colorado to Florida, despite Colorado having a sizable
Florida, not so much.
“A lot of Florida isn’t friendly for our situation,” Aaron said.
Despite this, they traveled the state searching for a potential home, and
settled on Gulfport.... The three of them have posted their polyamorous
status on various Gulfport Facebook groups and received overwhelmingly
Well, not all positive, Aaron says. But for the most part, people have
been understanding and [shown] willingness to learn.
“The idea of being able to walk down the street and all be holding hands …
we didn’t want to hide ourselves for any reason,” Kershne said.
...“We did a lot of research on triads and ethical polyamory and how to do
it in a way that didn’t make someone feel like they are a third, or
disposable,” Rachael said.
...“In a lot of cases, people are still living in the shadows,” Kershne
said. ... But with the changing nature of societal norms, perhaps it’s not
off the table.
Find out more about the throuple on their TikTok and Instagram
That's how you can represent if you're securely out. Create a social media
presence, show it to the folks at your local paper and ask if they'd like
to do a writeup, and off you go.
Unexpected relationship insights from the world of
By Sian Bennett
Until a couple of years ago, I didn’t think much about ethical
non-monogamy (ENM). ... But after spending time with friends from
diverse cultural backgrounds who are exploring non-traditional
relationships, I’ve gained a deeper understanding of why ethical
non-monogamy is an attractive option for them.
...During one of our get-togethers, it transpired that she was exploring
I was fascinated. But I also had so many questions about its practical
application. Like, how does it work? Don’t you get jealous? How many
people can you date at the same time? What do you tell family or
Through my new friend, I met more people exploring this lifestyle
choice. Then I started noticing it almost everywhere. ...
I clicked with people in this community because they were open-minded,
non-judgmental, intelligent, respectful, interesting and inclusive. ...
I became a poly-ally.
One of my first observations was that to navigate this lifestyle
successfully, you must be prepared to work — on yourself, your
communication, your emotional regulation and on owning your s**t. What a
One of the things that attracted me to go deeper was the awareness and
discussion around consent — in all its forms.
At its essence, consent is about boundaries. It’s about checking in with
what feels OK for you and knowing how to communicate that.
...The people I’ve met are less caught up in the script of what life
“should” look like. I celebrate that. ... Breaking down programming as
to why things need to be a certain way can be a challenge.
...A community often becomes like a family, or tribe, due to the shared
...One of the biggest takeaways from my time in Polyland is the amount
of clear, honest communication that’s required to manage multiple
Heck, having one successful relationship is something to celebrate. So
then double that, add a few dates, plus a job, friends and other
commitments… I feel tired just writing this.
...One approach that many people swear by is Nonviolent Communication.
It’s a great resource for anyone that wants to communicate with their
partner in a healthier way.
...Another key takeaway from the polyamorous lifestyle is that each
relationship provides something different. And that’s one of the main
reasons people choose it.
...For the monogamous among us, I hope this has given you something to
ponder, whether you choose to explore a different way of relating or
And on the grim new world-era we may be entering... some perspective.
We polyamorous people are a small, weird minority of social-rule breakers. Some people call us a threat to society, because we live outside their small worldview and we expose its incompletenesses. Our freedom to build non-traditional relationships, and
to speak up for ourselves about the truth of ourselves, is just one small way
we depend on a free and pluralistic society that respects people's dignity to create their own lives, to access facts, and to speak of what they know.
Such a society is only possible where people have the power to govern themselves, combined with legal structures that are at least
supposed to protect the rights of all.
People who create their own lives, and who insist on the democratic
structures and legal protections that enable them to do
so safely, infuriate and terrify the authoritarians who are growing in
power around the world and in our own United States.
Such rulers and
would-be rulers seek to stamp out other people's freedom to go their own
way — whether by intimidation, laws, propaganda and public
incitement, or, eventually, artillery.
For what it's worth, this site has received more pagereads from Ukraine
over the years (56,400) than from any other country in Eastern Europe.
The coming era may require tough things of us. We don't get to choose the time and place in history we find ourselves born into. But we do get to choose how we respond to it. Buck up and be
PS: Need a little help bucking up? Play this
new release from Pink Floyd. Loud.