Polyamory in the News
. . . by Alan M.

December 20, 2006

"All Mine"

Herald Sun (Australia)

Are polys becoming the go-to experts on managing jealousy? Australia's largest daily newspaper printed an article on the anatomy of jealousy (Dec. 10, 2006), adapted from London's Sunday Telegraph. The article describes, approvingly, insights and methods from the poly community, as relayed by Chris Ford, coordinator of the Sydney Polyamory Social Group. I was surprised to find such a good article in a Rupert Murdoch product.

Can jealousy be eliminated altogether? One section of society in which we might expect it to be an endangered species is the polyamorous community (which is based on the principle that, when it comes to long-lasting, loving relationships, monogamy doesn't necessarily have the monopoly).

However, as Chris Ford, coordinator of Sydney's Polyamory Social Group, explains: "It's not that polyamorous people are jealousy free. Rather, they don't relate to jealousy as something to be avoided. When it's experienced in a relationship, it needs to be dealt with, just like anger, fear or any other emotion.

"Many people abstain from close emotional ties with anyone except their lover, primarily to avoid jealousy.

"This deprives them of the rich tapestry of intimacy and social support that would otherwise be available, and leaves them with the pressure of trying to satisfy 100 per cent of their partner's emotional needs, a pressure that can itself destroy relationships.

"Dealing with jealousy requires the sort of communication which leads to deep, trusting relationships. Avoiding these emotional issues creates barriers and undermines intimacy."

...Dragging it into the sunlight and examining its underlying causes — the doubts to be allayed and the injuries to be healed — is the first step in overcoming it. The beastie's power is broken once our trust in our partner exceeds our mistrust of ourselves.

Read the whole article. It also quotes praises of Berkeley poly counselor Kathy Labriola's paper "Unmasking the Green-Eyed Monster: Managing Jealousy in Open Relationships" and provides a link.

By the way, another good, often-referenced paper is Franklin Veaux's "Practical Jealousy Management".

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