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

March 31, 2017

"Millennials and polyamory: Will dating ever be the same?"

Avvo, "changing how people get legal help," is a massive legal-services marketplace, founded by Mark Britton of Expedia fame, that provides "detailed information on lawyers and legal issues." Its free portion offers 10 million searchable legal questions and answers, and ratings of essentially every lawyer in the United States.

It's big enough that it also runs a general-interest online magazine. This just appeared on AvvoStories:

Millennials and polyamory: Will dating ever be the same?

By Elizabeth Weiss

A recent edition of The Washington Post Magazine’s Date Lab — pairing two Washingtonians on a blind date — featured two millennials: a polyamorous woman and a woman open to trying something new.

The outing failed to produce fireworks between the women, but the Date Lab write-up did prompt scathing online comments. Total strangers berated the poly dater for broadcasting her lifestyle. Both women were labeled caricatures, members of a confused, experimental generation that needs to mature so they embrace the one true relationship approach — monogamy.

...The truth is that many millennials, whether a factor of generational change or youthful exploration, are open to the unexpected. Polyamory is increasingly considered an opportunity by millennials and, amid the hookup-heavy Tinder scene, some of them embrace the option wholeheartedly.

The new generation of polyamory

“After my divorce, I wanted to start from scratch and relearn how to be in a relationship. The last thing I wanted was to date and start the whole dysfunctional cycle again,” says Lucy Gillespie, creator, writer, and producer of Unicornland, a fictional web series about a woman who unconsciously practices “unicorning” by dating polyamorous couples to explore her own sexuality.

...Heather Claus — aka NookieNotes, owner of online dating site DatingKinky.com — [says] “In non-monogamy, I am exactly me. Every relationship becomes what it can be, without the hindrance of traditional social customs.”

      ● Read more about modern relationship trends in the full Avvo Relationship Study

...Page Turner, who maintains the website Poly.Land, was prompted to explore polyamory when she discovered that the affair she thought her friend’s husband was having was a wife-approved relationship. “They were stable, responsible people. It rocked my world,” says Turner. ... She hasn’t turned back since.

A non-monogamous millennial family

...Gillespie floats another idea: “They say millennials are very tribal. The New York polyamorous/ open relationship/ sex-positive communities are small, tight-knit worlds. I think that appeals to millennials — especially urban ones who moved from somewhere far away — because it becomes like family.”

Hacienda Villa, a sex-positive intentional community in Bushwick, Brooklyn, is one example of a place that promotes that familial feeling. Fourteen full-time members reside together in one space, some monogamous, some “monogamish,” some ethically non-monogamous, and some polyamorous. The Villa was co-founded by Andrew Sparksfire, a real-estate entrepreneur who is building community living environments nationwide that practice responsible hedonism to raise the visibility of the sex-positive movement in mainstream society, and Kenneth Play, a sex-hacking expert and educator and collaborator on The Casual Sex Project.

As Villa’s mission states, and most non-monogamists would agree, the lifestyle is about respecting everyone’s needs and boundaries while still indulging your desires. “Polyamory, open relationships, and sex positivity are ways that true love and emotions can enter the conversation. You can be friends with your lovers. That evolved, chill mentality appeals to millennials. It’s a genuine relationship hack,” says Gillespie.

...The legal ramifications can be daunting. But there are clear feminist implications that, at least for women, might make polyamory a more appealing option. Gillespie, for example, says her personal goal with Unicornland is “to see how a woman handled sexual situations; how she went from being passive, to being more active, in control, and powerful. I’m less interested in making polyamory mainstream, and far more interested in women being more in control of their sex lives.”...

...Are millennials testing out non-monogamy in search of something purer than the relationships they’ve been experiencing? A YouGov study found that only 51 percent of people under age 30 believe their ideal relationship is a completely monogamous one. And a recent Avvo study on relationships found that modern marriages are more romantic than practical.

...These millennials aren’t too concerned about being judged for a polyamorous lifestyle either. “I’m out as polyamorous although, in my day-to-day life, I tend to take an approach of being honest when asked directly about it but not advertising or disclosing electively,” says Turner.

If you’re worried about how a non-monogamous lifestyle could impact your job (and it might) be aware that in most states employees are at-will, meaning an employee may be fired for any reason or no reason. “Being polyamorous is not a protected class, so an employer could fire someone for being polyamorous,” says Robert S. Herbst, an attorney in Larchmont, New York....

Read the whole article (March 30, 2017).

● The same author wrote a brief piece on the same topic for AvvoStories last February 16: Millennials may just have a thing for polyamory.

● And almost a year ago, The legal ramifications of polyamory (May 16, 2016).

● The previous year, Avvo published an interview with a leading sexologist: Q&A with Dr. Pepper Schwartz: The rise of non-monogamy


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