More articles on what poly culture offers everyone
A couple months ago I posted about a slew of articles that portray poly as leading the way to a better future for relationships generally. More keep showing up.
● MeetMindfulness claims to be "the first online dating site to serve the mindful lifestyle." In its articles section, a poly love coach writes:
Navigating Open Relationships, Polyamory & Non-Monogamy
By Laurie Ellington
Have you ever considered what would it be like to live in a world where everyone could be in love with everyone else (including yourself) without jealousy, fear and insecurity?
Imagine a world where every relationship you have, whether it be sexual, non-sexual, short/long term, whatever…. where every relationship you have feels just right, at home, full-on in alignment with your deepest desires and your longing for intimacy, connection, playfulness and love.
What would it take to cultivate relationships such as these?
...I believe whether you practice monogamy or polyamory (or anything else), the practice is more about... how we stay true and honoring of ourselves while staying in connection with those around us. The following is brief summary of some of the key things I have found to be essential in sustaining healthy, poly/open/non-traditional relationships.
1) Those involved with poly/open/non-traditional relationships have a genuine sense of love, care and support for one another.... without necessarily attaching sex to the outcome.
2) Agreements/boundaries are clear, respected, and honored.
...Communication is incredibly important here in order for everyone to know where they stand, what the agreements are, what they are saying “yes” to and what are their bottom lines....
3) It is imperative that everyone supports each other in being the best at who they are... and strives to create positive and healthy experiences for everyone involved.
This is where connection and responsibility come into play. I’m finding that the more present I am with my experiences and the more I share with others, the more awake and alive I feel in my connection to what is really true for me.
...As I see it, open relationships allow for all participants to make choices in open and transparent ways — with consent of all involved, which for me seems like a pretty sweet guarantee for personal empowerment; we can experience expression, self-care and connection with others.
...I have a friend who said he wanted the kind of communication and relating that comes with polyamory without having to be poly/open. The bottom line? Anything is possible.
The whole article (Dec. 1, 2014).
● More enthusiasm at BlogHer:
6 Reasons Why Sharing Your Boyfriend Will Boost Your Self-Esteem
By Te-Erika Patterson
...This level of honesty definitely strengthens the bond between you both and allows you to look yourself in the mirror with love, knowing all of the cards on the table and you are making a decision to be with him with your blinders off.
You are with someone who knows how to treat women well....
You are part of an unconventional team.
...Being a part of an unconventional relationship will cause you to have to stand together against personal attacks from those who lash out in fear of the unknown. Being in a team like this one will bring you closer, knowing that you all are brave enough to create the type of relationship that sincerely satisfies you....
You know you are loved by choice....
You can focus on your goals without having to meet every need expressed by your partner.
Growth happens as a result of loss, desire and exposure to new ideas. When you share your boyfriend you allow him to be exposed to someone who could inspire him to grow in ways that you cannot. You also have the relief of letting go of the responsibility of being his ‘everything’. This frees you to focus on your own growth and you will love yourself more when you do.
You learn what true love is.
True love isn’t about sacrifice, really. True love is being genuinely happy that the person you love is happy, even if you aren’t the source. This type of love is the opposite of jealousy and it is called compersion....
If only it were all like that more often. Read the whole article (Dec. 23, 2014).
● At Mic.com:
This Is the Explanation for Polyamory That Everyone Needs to Hear
By Amanda Chatel
Polyamory has existed for centuries, but it's only recently — as society warms to formerly unconventional romantic setups — that polyamory has landed on the mainstream radar.
That doesn't mean the majority of Americans understand it. Even as more polyamorous partners come to the fore (one study found 4% to 5% of the U.S. population identifies as poly), most people still have one big question about polyamory:
"How do you not get jealous?"
...The answer, it turns out, is the key to having a healthy polyamory relationship — and it's something people in monogamous relationships could probably learn to do better.
It's all about being happy for each other. "It's called 'compersion,'" Becky Koski told Mic. The 30-year-old from Anchorage, Alaska, has been in polyamorous relationships for over a decade. "It's kind of the opposite of schadenfreude, meaning you derive happiness from your partner's happiness. Instead of getting upset or jealous, when you see your partner getting involved with someone new, you are excited for them and excited vicariously through them."
Steve Dean, founder of online dating consultancy Dateworking, has been in non-monogamous relationships for three years. "Compersion is basically happiness at someone else's happiness," he told Mic, comparing it to a parent's genuine happiness at seeing his or her child happy. It's an unselfish attitude that comes from viewing an experience through another person's eyes.
Koski admits this doesn't mean poly relationships are all jealousy-free; after all, envy and grudges are components of even healthy monogamous partnerships. But for many poly partners, said Koski, jealousy is "just another emotion or issue to work through, as opposed to this end-all, be-all problem that can't be surmounted."...
Converting jealousy into happiness comes from talking. Lots of talking. "Instead of just caving to [jealousy] when it appears," Koski said, "you talk to your partner or partners about ways to deal with it."
...Poly partners provide a model for anyone dealing with jealousy....
"I think the No. 1 biggest misconception is that polyamorous people just have sex all the time," Dean said. "But I'd say the best way to describe polyamorous people is that they communicate all the time....
It's exactly the way any healthy relationship should operate.
Read the whole article (Jan. 6, 2015).
● From The Unlaced Librarian/ Leandra Vane:
Ten Ways an Open Relationship Improves My Marriage
...A lot of people have asked me how being sexual with people besides my husband could possibly help my marriage. I attest that having an open relationship has done nothing but improve our marriage.
1. I know we want to be together because we love, like, and respect each other, not because we swore an oath of “no matter what”....
2. He respects all women.... I like that I know he will be respectful to those he dates and those he doesn’t.
3. I don’t feel ashamed about aspects of my sexuality that include having crushes on others, writing erotica, or fantasizing because I now know they are normal and unlike the societal stereotype, they do not crumble a relationship from the inside.
4. I deal with jealousy in all aspects of my life. After you’ve dealt with jealously in such an intense form as with your lifemate, the other situations don’t seem as urgent....
5. ...We have respect for each other’s desires instead of being offended, hurt, or irritated by them.
6. We are constantly growing and being challenged. Sometimes those changes and growth spurts are painful, but the strength we gain is worth it and combats the dangers of becoming bored or complacent with each other.
7. I won’t find a woman’s phone number hidden in his pocket because we put the numbers we get on the refrigerator.
8. I now first see another woman as being a potential friend rather than a potential enemy....
9. Each time we engage in a new experience, the trust in our relationship builds. That valuable investment makes it even more important that we stay together.
10. When we first started discussing an open relationship I was terrified: of what people would think, of infidelity, of insecurity, and a million other things. But I filled that fear with knowledge and have learned more than I could have ever imagined....
The whole article (July 14, 2014).
● A TEDx talk at the University of Texas at Arlington: "Polyamory and emotional literacy," by student Kel Walters (5:36)
Polyamory, emotional literacy and the benefits they can bring to society. Having multiple romantic and sexual relationships at the same time with all partners' full knowledge and consent. Build your emotional literacy and your ability to deal with it.
Kel Walters is a junior at UT Arlington studying political science and psychology with a minor in Arabic.... She also writes the column Real Talk for a student-run webzine called BackRow Mag. She has been involved in the polyamorous community for several years, helping others build and maintain their relationships. (Oct. 21, 2014)
This talk was given at a local TEDx event, produced independently of the TED Conferences.
P. S.: Poly movie campaign seeks backers: "as the Freak takes you". Pepper Mint, San Francisco community organizer and a longtime member of the Polyamory Leadership Network, knows folks in this ambitious independent film project and urges you to chip in to their IndieGoGo campaign.