Last week Mary Crumpton, her triad partners Tim and John, and their extended romantic network in northern England received amazingly positive worldwide publicity
in tabloid media, after Mary gave an interview to her local newspaper to "help people understand polyamory better."
She spoke to the Manchester Evening News
two months ago. The paper didn't use the interview at the time, but then they finally printed it on April 10th after she announced that she's standing for Manchester city council as the Green Party candidate for her ward. And then, the story grew wings.
|The Sun's version. Posted Crumpton, "Relieved they did a reasonably good piece even if there are some misquotes and inaccuracies. Could have been much worse."|
"Mrs Crumpet," the tabloid Sun
called her. To me that invokes cozy, homey English traditionalness, playing off how ordinary she makes their poly life sound.
Now, a week later, the UK's Daily Mail
returns to this proven well of clicks with a long followup to its first article. However, much of the followup is a word-for-word reissue of the story the Mail
published last week.
Woman with a husband, live-in fiancee and two boyfriends has been inundated with rude offers from men wanting to become number five after she revealed her polyamorous lifestyle
By Mark Duell for MailOnline
...The therapist, who is standing in her local elections as a Green Party councillor, has spoken publicly to allow others to learn more about those in multiple relationships.
...Since speaking out Mrs Crumpton has been left in tears by hundreds of supportive messages from people praising her for talking openly about her unusual lifestyle.
But she added that she has also faced a plethora of abusive messages, with some people sending her private messages saying: 'You should kill yourself'.
Mrs Crumpton admitted there have also been 'a few guys sending me pictures of their penis, saying 'Do you want me to be number five?'
But she said the abuse 'doesn't matter', and had been outweighed by the positive comments - with some people approaching her in the street to give her a high five.
Mrs Crumpton is standing as a Green Party councillor in the local elections next month, and admitted the exposure from the interview could help her attract votes.
But she told how the interview actually was carried out two months ago, before she had decided to stand for the council which is 'almost 100 per cent Labour'.
She has sided with the Green Party, which passed a motion at its autumn 2017 conference, officially recognising the validity of polyamorous relationships.
...She pointed out her concerns over being in a polyamorous relationship when she has to write a will or be asked for a single next of kin in hospital.
Mrs Crumpton added: 'It's not yet a protected characteristic, but somebody, your employer, could sack you if they found you were in multiple relationships.'
She said she used to be a teacher in a Catholic school, and could have been sacked if she was in a polyamorous relationship while there.
And she now wants a change in the law 'so that nobody will fear being discriminated against for their polyamorous lifestyle'.
She is also pushing for improvements in social housing and an increase in policing levels on the street, as she stands for the elections on May 3.
Asked how many people practice polyamory in Britain, she said: 'It's a lot more than you would think. There are polyamorous social groups all across the country.'
Mrs Crumpton said there are 'hundreds of people at conventions', and 'a lot of people go to a Facebook group but only if it's really locked down'.
'I don't have children, and have no desire to have children. I see no problem with bringing children into a polyamorous set-up though, because I have seen co-parenting work really well for other polyamorous groups. It is not something we plan though.
'Mostly people have been great. They had lots of questions about it, and some family members needed reassurance that we were all happy and no-one was getting hurt. I find that I have a huge capacity for romantic love.
'I just naturally fall in love with more than one person at a time. So to settle down with just one person for the rest of my life just doesn't feel natural to me.
'People sometimes ask me if it means that I love my husband, or any of my partners less. And I say no. Perhaps it is a bit like how we love our children - when a parent has a second or third child, it doesn't mean that they love their first child any the less.
'I think that romantic love is unlimited too. Time is limited of course. But I do not believe that love is. It certainly isn't for me.
'We all go out together. For example all going out for drinks for my birthday or to social gatherings and events organised by friends or trips to the cinema or whatever. Tim, John and I go down to London to see my family the three of us. And my sister's children refer to us as 'Auntie Mary, Uncle Tim and Uncle John'.
'People have the idea that polyamory is all about sex which isn't the case. I don't do one night-stands. I generally wait a month or so at least before becoming sexual with anyone I start dating. I suppose in that sense I am old-fashioned.
'My relationships themselves vary in how sexual they are - one of them being more platonic with not much more than cuddling and kissing.
'I suppose that, for me, is another good thing about polyamory - each relationship can find its own level in terms of sex and with other things too. And there is no pressure on one relationship to tick all the boxes, so to speak.'
...A Manchester Green Party spokesman said: 'We are humbled and proud of our council candidate for Chorlton, Mary Crumpton, for openly discussing a topic that many people would fear due to potential controversy. ...
Read the whole article
(April 13, 2018).
|Embracing the name. (Facebook)|
Mary posts on Facebook, "It amuses me that the Mail
headline focussed on my throw away comments about getting rude offers. Rather than focussing on all the messages I have had from people thanking me for speaking out about polyamorous relationships."
As for commenters' accusations that she's just seeking publicity for her city council candidacy, she posted: "[I] did the interview in February long before I agreed to stand for the Greens. The M.E.N. [Manchester Evening News
] just took a while to publish. Did it to help increase the visibility of polyamory. In the hopes that others in similar situations will feel less like they have to hide it. And also in the hopes that people in polyamorous relationships might one day get the same rights as people in monogamous relationships."
● She just did a BBC TV interview
(viewable only in the UK) "in which I explain, amongst other things, why I spoke to the media about our private life". (Her part starts at 51:18. Victoria Derbyshire show, BBC2, April 16, 2018.)
● Update May 9:
A video bit from her appearance on ITV's "This Morning" (1:42)
. Also, in UK Metro
today following the show, Polyamorous woman wants husband, fiance and two boyfriends to have equal rights if she dies
● Update May 14:
Accompanied by her husband and two boyfriends, Mary Crumpton and her fiance John Mulls exchanged vows in a full-up commitment ceremony in their local Unitarian Church, as planned. The event was written up
in the Daily Mail,
their hometown Manchester Evening News,
and probably elsewhere.
...She wore a white dress and celebrated after with 100 guests at a reception.
Mary, 43, said: ‘It was a lovely day. Tim said a few words to bless mine and John’s commitment to one another.
‘Then John said a few words of respect for mine and Tim’s marriage. Then John and I made vows of lifelong commitment to one another.
‘We couldn’t sign legal documents as polygamy is illegal in this country, but in all other respects the ceremony was conducted like a normal wedding,’ she told the Sun.
Labels: politics, tabloids, UK