"Polyamorous Australian parents juggle lovers with family life"
The tabloidy news treatment of polyfamilies that was the norm a decade ago — the happy, upbeat "look at the weirdos" approach — is still the norm in actual tabloids. This story appeared Saturday in Australian newspapers owned by the Murdochs' News Corp, and it was reprinted in the UK by News Corp's The Sun.
The video clip with it, from a nice Australian TV show last year, portrays different people.
Polyamorous Australian parents juggling lovers with family life
By Winnie Salamon
A TYPICAL morning in Scott and Amy’s house goes something like this: Cook breakfast, make school lunches, yell at the kids to brush their teeth before school. Amy reminds Scott that it’s his turn to watch the kids tonight while she goes on a date with one of her several lovers. Scott gives his wife a kiss before rushing out the door. He needs to get to his girlfriend Ruth’s house so they can ride the train into work together.
If you thought polyamory was for sex-crazed twenty somethings and creepy cult leaders, think again. ... The reality is that most polyamorous people have jobs and bills and chores and perhaps most controversially of all: children.
Meet Pete. A warm, intelligent 57-year-old who works in education IT. ... Pete’s ‘coming out’ to his children wasn’t planned. It just happened. ... “My daughter just shrugged and said, ‘That’s cool. Some of my friends do that.’ She would have been about 15 at the time.”
Pete’s son wasn’t so accepting. “My son joined a fundamentalist Christian church when he was 13. He worried that I was doing the wrong thing by my partners, that both women were getting the short end of the stick. He’s 29 now and 100 per cent supportive,” he said.
Models pose for a stock picture (Getty)
Scott and Amy, in contrast, are in the thick of parenting. Now in their mid-40s, the couple met when they were 16 and have two daughters, aged seven and 10. They also have at least 10 lovers between them, impressive considering they only discovered polyamory three years ago. As Scott wryly puts it, he and his childhood sweetheart are now polysaturated.
“Polyamory was something Amy and I talked about for a long time before we acted on it,” Scott says. “It was a conscious and thought-out decision. Looking back on my life I think I’ve always been poly, but I thought I was just being a stereotypical male. Always wanting more.”
Parenting in a poly family isn’t without its challenges, but Scott and Amy believe being open and honest with their children is crucial.
“Our oldest daughter understands we have sex with other people and she knows it’s not ‘normal’. But a good portion of her friends are from divorced families and their parents have other relationships. There are single parents, blended families. In that context it’s not so different.
“We only introduce the kids to our more serious partners,” Scott continues. “They definitely don’t meet every person we sleep with.” ...
Scott says that answering questions in an age-appropriate way has ensured that his kids are as happy and healthy as any other child with two loving parents.
If you think juggling work, kids and one partner is tough, Scott has some advice:
“You have to be organised. Amy and I make sure we get two date nights a week while the other watches the kids. We swap weekends but also make sure we have every third weekend together as a family,” he says.
“I think our girls are lucky to grow up with an array of amazing, strong adult role models who love them. Sometimes our partners even help with babysitting, and that’s always nice.”
The whole article (June 3, 2017). And as it appeared in The Sun (June 3).
Comments Australian polyactivist Anne Hunter,
"For a very conservative outlet it was surprisingly nuanced, particularly around families. However once again it was annoyingly couple-focused, and completely disregarded third-party voices (whom I know they interviewed.) As appears to be a growing trend in media, it contributes to the idea that polyamory is a mild extension of white middle-class monogamy. In part that's because many of us (me included) who do polyamory differently declined to be interviewed for this outlet, not trusting we'd be reported accurately."