Polyamory in the News!
. . . by Alan M.

July 23, 2009

"Local family's lifestyle gets national attention"

KOMO-TV 4 News (Seattle)

Terisa Greenan and her webcast sitcom "Family" — the fictional adventures of Gemma, Ben and Ernie living in a vee triad — have drawn the attention of the ABC-TV affiliate in her hometown. And, says the station's report, an Oprah Winfrey producer has expressed interest in taking Greenan and her own two partners national.

Watch the broadcast (about 4 minutes). Here are excerpts from the accompanying article on the station's website, basically a transcript of the broadcast:

By Michelle Esteban

SEATTLE -- A controversial local family's story is a huge hit on YouTube and has everyone, from Oprah to the Kinsey Institute, asking just how they do what they do.

The childless family of three is polyamorous, meaning its members can have more than one romantic relationship at once.

Terisa Greenan is in love with two men, Scott and Larry, and they're both crazy about her.

..."We're all heterosexuals. I have a romantic relationship with both of them separately," said Terisa.

Terisa recently started dating a third man, and her two current partners are OK with that.

"I don't feel sexual jealousy in that way," said Scott.

And why should he? Larry and Scott date and sleep with other women, too. And of course, Terisa has no complaints.

"When I see Larry and his new girlfriend kissing or hugging and lying in bed together, and he has a smile on his face and he beams with joy, I think, 'I love him. I want him to experience that joy,'" she said.

Expert: "Most people want monogamy"

"It is not in most people's capacity to love multiple people at the same time, much less all live together as a happy family," said Dr. Pepper Schwartz, relationship specialist and sociology professor at the University of Washington.

Schwartz thinks the trio loves the security of their relationship, but aren't madly in love. She says most polyamorous relationships don't last because too many emotions get in the way.

"Most people want monogamy," she said.

Not Scott.

"We like the charge of a new relationship," he said.

To each his own, says Larry....

Web series catches attention of Oprah, Kinsey Institute

...The Web series started as a lark while Terisa was between jobs. There's no budget, and the actors and crew work solely for experience and exposure. Terisa says "Family" is about the art of filmmaking; the insight into an alternative lifestyle is just the bonus.

The seven-minute sitcoms get thousands of hits on YouTube. And it may soon be the topic of discussion on America's most popular talk show.

"Oprah Winfrey called. It was amazing, I was like, 'How on Earth did you find me?'" Terisa said.

National exposure would complicate an already-complicated lifestyle. With three people, everything, from decision making to scheduling and arguing, takes longer.

What do their parents think? Terisa and Scott's parents have accepted their lifestyle, but Larry has kept his father in the dark.

"At some point really soon, we're going have that conversation. It won't be fun," said Larry.

But Larry can tell his father that he's making history. The Web series recently grabbed the attention of the Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex at Indiana University.

...The institute says Terisa's work is one of a kind. The school intends to add a DVD collection of the Web series to its library as a resource.

The curator says the soap-opera format of "Family" is the first of its kind in the history of polyamorous relationships. He believes the DVD will serve as a valuable form of reference for future social historians.

As for the future of the trio, Terisa, Scott and Larry intend to grow old together.

Here's the whole article (July 22, 2009).

The KOMO-TV broadcast is also getting promoted nationally on ABC News.com (in the Health section), as the lead paragraphs of this article; the rest of the article is mostly a reprint of ABC News.com's story last month about calls for legalized polyamorous marriage.

Only a few years ago, some people were saying never, ever talk to the media because they will just trash you and trash poly. What a change.

Of course, you still have to know how to present yourself well (which does not mean "just being yourself"!), and you have to figure out the agenda of the outfit you're dealing with — and if it's a bad agenda, say no. Especially when it comes to TV, which has an eye that never blinks. Robyn Trask of Loving More has had good success coaching people to deal with TV producers on a level footing. Call her if you're ever in this position.

And also study the wise tips on appearing in the media posted by Susan Wright of the National Coalition for Sexual Freedom (NCSF). She has also posted some suggested sound bites to memorize.


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Blogger Unknown said...

For me, poly is in large part about "being myself." I love having a set of people who relate to me as me, not as one-half of a couple.

July 23, 2009 8:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I always love the folks who say poly relationships don't last. Don't last in comparison to what? Mono relationships? How many mono relationships last a lifetime?

I have mono friends who think 6 months is a long relationship.

I know poly groups that have been together 30 years. I've been with my wife for more then 12 years, and in that time we have both had relationships with others that lasted multiple years.

How about a real survey. Find 100 poly relationships and 100 mono couples, and see how long they stay together, and what happens when they break up. Follow all the people involved for the next 10 years. Report should include how many of the people are no longer talking to each other by the end of the survey.

July 24, 2009 1:17 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

Awesome! I'm glad Terisa and crew are getting more notoriety.

I just wrote Terisa some 'love mail' to counter the hate. ;)

July 24, 2009 1:22 AM  

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