" ‘I’m happier when I’m with several people’: Polyamorists prepare for B.C. convention"
A nationwide newspaper in Canada, the conservative National Post, took note of the Canadian Polyamory Advocacy Association's first PolyCon happening in Vancouver next weekend (May 31 - June 2), and used it as the hook for a Sunday article.
‘I’m happier when I’m with several people’: Polyamorists prepare for B.C. convention
By Joseph Brean
CPAA director Zoe Duff is in a “triad,” as she put it, living with two men for the past five years. They all date other people, but the triad is the core.
When fears about Mormon Fundamentalists taking child brides sparked the British Columbia government to ask for judicial clarity on Canada’s criminal law against polygamy, a group of people in unusually populous romantic relationships intervened in court on behalf of Canada’s polyamorists.
The law was upheld in 2011, but interpreted such that informal adult sexual arrangements fell outside its bounds, and the new Canadian Polyamory Advocacy Association welcomed it as more or less a win.
This week in Vancouver, the CPAA hosts its first national conference, an effort to pivot from legal intervention to popular advocacy.
Sessions at Polycon, as it is billed, focus on legal issues, networking, managing jealousy, “poly-feminism,” and a report based on interviews with both new and more experienced attendees of a polyamorous “sauna night” at a Toronto home.
One session describes how to set up a “line family,” described by Richard Gilmore and Elon de Arcana as “a multi-generation poly family that adds new, generally younger, members as the older members pass on or members depart. In this way the family never ends and family investments, businesses and property holdings continue to increase in value. This provides a stable environment and good economic start for children and a secure retirement for older members of the family. While this concept was envisioned by the science fiction writer Robert Heinlein, many of the techniques we discuss are used by the wealthy to grow and maintain dynastic family wealth.”
...But real-life advocacy on a topic so wrapped up in sexual identity politics, to say nothing of the domestic life of children, can be awkward to the point of toxic.
Like other niche communities, judgmentalism and moral superiority abounds among polyamorists, and minor differences are elevated to wedge issues.
That is the subject of one talk, by life coach Samantha Fraser, is how not to be a “Poly Elite Douchenozzle.”
...For example, the term “primary,” for your main relationship(s), is particularly divisive, for the stigma it places on the secondary partner(s).
...Polyamorous relationships are not caught by the law because they are not recognized as legal marriages or conjugal unions. The issue is divisive among polyamorists, however, and as Ms. Duff described it, some could not care less about official sanction, while others would like recognition for practical reasons like health insurance, and some have even held pagan ceremonies of their own.
...“We’ve got a long way to go before people are going to say, ‘Let them get married,’” Ms. Duff said. “I haven’t personally even thought about it, because it’s not an option… As a long term thing, I can see a desire to have the right to marry.”
Read the whole article (May 26, 2013).
Zoe says tickets are almost sold out for PolyCon.