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

March 19, 2013

TV Crazy Alert: Poly vs. Tea Party drama coming on ABC March 28

ABC-TV's reality show "Wife Swap" will mix and match a polyfamily and a Tea Party family on March 28. An ABC press release explains:

"Envy/Loudon" - Political pundit and Tea Party activist Gina Loudon trades lives with a mom in a polyamorous relationship, on "Wife Swap," THURSDAY, MARCH 28 (8:00-9:00 p.m., ET) on ABC. And in a first for the series, one of the families breaks the rules and refuses to reunite at the round table to discuss their experiences, leaving only one family to discuss things among themselves.

In "Wife Swap," two mothers of families, each with opposing values, trade households, lifestyles and children (but not bedrooms) in a two week-long challenge: In the first part of the exchange, each mom moves into the other's home and agrees to follow a manual of "household rules" written by the departing mother, including how to parent, manage their social life, do house work, unwind and more. Everything changes in the second week when "new mommy" takes charge, introduces her own set of rules and runs the "nest" her way. At the end of the second week, the two couples meet for the first time in a raw and highly-charged exchange of views, making frank assessments of one another and discussing the experience.

Gina Loudon is a staunch Tea Party activist and conservative political pundit who lives in San Diego, California with her husband, former Missouri State Senator John Loudon, and their five children -- Lyda (17), Lilly (13), Jack (10), Beau (6) and their adopted son Samuel (6), who has Down syndrome. Religion and politics are topics of constant discussion in the Loudon home, with John leading daily Bible study for his wife and children.

In Charleston, New York, Angela Envy lives with her husband of eight years, Chris, along with Angela's daughter Brooklyn (12) and their three children -- Maverick (7), Lyric (5) and Kingston (1-½ ). Angela and Chris also share a live-in girlfriend, Ashley, who has become part of the family. Chris is a semi-professional wrestler in his spare time and works at a local warehouse to support his family.

When Gina first arrives in Charleston, she meets Ashley and learns that she'll be living with a polyamorous couple. With her conservative views and strong religious convictions, Gina finds the relationship "wrong" and is very uncomfortable with the situation. Tensions rise between Gina and Chris after he and Ashley take Gina out one night for drinks at a local bar. With the alcohol flowing, Gina begins to let her guard down and starts sharing her true feelings about the relationship between Chris, Angela and Ashley, as well as her stance on myriad controversial topics. The evening peaks Chris' interest to look into Gina's background - and what he finds prompts Chris to confront her, sparking an even larger confrontation.

Meanwhile, Angela meets her new family, but immediately feels judged by John when she reveals her relationship with Ashley to the family. As someone who does not discuss politics or religion at all, Angela finds the family's strong conservative views upsetting. When it's time for the rules to change, Angela decides to turn the tables by creating a political and religious free zone, but John breaks Angela's rule and continues to share his disdain for her personal life, bringing Angela to tears.

Here's the original press release (March 19, 2013).

Six years ago, a producer from Wife Swap came asking around the poly community for participants. They were offering each family $20,000 at the time.

If anyone can pass this on to the poly family involved: Would you like to tell about the experience from your end, for possible posting here? You can write to me at alan7388 AT gmail.com.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

this might be the worst thing ever

it's so bad i don't even want to know how bad it is

March 19, 2013 6:02 PM  
Blogger Natja's Natterings said...

Yikes!!! Does anyone know these Poly people? I am just bewildered.

March 19, 2013 8:22 PM  
Blogger Joreth said...

This is what happens when people don't follow the advice of PMA. No matter how well the poly family actually behaves, this kind of media coverage will taint the community with its association.

There are some shows that we should just stay away from entirely. There are plenty of other good opportunities around if one wants publicity.

March 20, 2013 11:35 AM  
Blogger The One True Feral said...

Now, I've never actually watched a whole episode, but I have seen bits and pieces. And the impression I've gotten is that, while they do feed drama as much as any of the rest of their ilk, they do seem to more often portray more conservative families as close-minded, bigots, &/or hatemongers.

For example, I recall an episode where they swapped a Pagan and a very Christian. The Pagan family was shown to be inclusive and accepting. The Christians, not so much. The mother flipping was a highlight.

The press release's wording here seems like it'll be similar. They describe the poly family as open, honest, and welcoming. They describe the conservatives as harsh, judgemental, hiding things, and breaking the rules of the game.

I just don't see any cause, yet, for all the vitriol and outrage. Since I'm also a wrestler, and poly, I'll see if I know anyone who knows the guy.

March 20, 2013 12:17 PM  
Anonymous Lucius Scribbens said...

This ought to be good. DVR is set.

March 21, 2013 1:09 AM  
Blogger Anita Wagner Illig said...

I share Joreth's reservations, but we'll see how it goes. I'm concerned that no one will come out looking very good and be tainted merely by association. It smacks of Jerry Springer-ish absurdity. We'll see.

I have to wonder just how much more extreme the show's producers can go in terms of matching (or mismatching) families and values. Maybe cult fundamentalists and satan worshipers?

March 21, 2013 2:35 PM  
Blogger Lisa Malone said...

That Envy family and I use that word loosely is disgusting. Hopefully one day the women will wake up and see how that pig of a man uses them both..he should be strung up by his penis..gross

March 28, 2013 9:06 PM  
Anonymous Kerri said...

I saw this one just now. I think the two ladies should just give Chris the boot and live happily as lesbians. The only thing I agreed with the Tea Party lady was when she called Chris a misogynist. He comes off as the typical straight frat boy type who just gets his kicks off by having two women by his side. He won't allow other men into the relationship but a woman is totally cool. Calling women bitches and sitting on his ass while the two ladies do housework & cook. Blech.

March 28, 2013 9:12 PM  

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