The pandemic flies further out of control. Millions face eviction. US deaths to
pass 400,000 around MLK Day. Administration flings chaos and sabotage. Pentagon brass meet
to discuss how to deal with an autogolpe attempt, a possibility brand new
in all of American history.
So there's a bit less news-media attention these days to light topics
like new relationship models and stuff.
Here are just two items plucked from the stream this week, from outside the news
parts of the media. Both are fine Polyamory 101s, especially the first.
They're reminders of how media of all kinds are now churning out, on their
own, abundant basic intros and profiles of the kind that just a decade ago poly education and awareness activists struggled mightily to drag into existence, one
by obscure one.
I'm talking about some of you, dear readers. You've done such tireless work
— dealing with journalists, submitting to interviews, helping them get it right, correcting their
misconceptions — that now the media can just
copy each other and usually get it right. Your early efforts
built this positive-feedback cycle that's running fast today, faster than anything we could do.
Which is not to say we shouldn't get on their cases when they bumble it.
Everything You Need to Know About Polyamorous Relationships
is from InStyle,
a leading international fashion magazine,
circulation 1.7 million, where a one-page ad in the print edition costs
$234,000. So if this piece appears in 1 or 2 pages of print as well as online, the market says that's worth about a quarter million to a half
million dollars in publicity value.
As far as I know, that alone would be more than the actual money that polyamory
education and awareness efforts have raised and spent in the movement's entire 30-plus year
And it's darn good, even with over-claiming headline.
Everything You Need to Know About Polyamorous Relationships
Including the most common myths about polyamory and best practices for
entering into a polyamorous agreement
By Maressa Brown | Dec 25, 2020
If you’ve spent even a few minutes on a dating app these days, chances are
you’ve encountered profiles that disclose some form of consensual
“Polyamory is a form of consensual non-monogamy that emphasizes emotional
intimacy and sexual intimacy to whatever desired degree in an ongoing way
among multiple partners,” explains Elisabeth A. Sheff Ph.D., CSE, author of
The Polyamorists Next Door
, who explains that often the goal for polyamorous people is to have
long-term, emotionally intimate relationships with multiple people.
People in polyamorous relationships are open to bonding intimately — be that
sexually and/or romantically — with multiple people.... [Says] Casey Tanner,
certified sex therapist and expert for LELO who works with many polyamorous
couples, “Successful polyamory is guided by explicit consent to what kind of
romantic and/or sexual relationships are explored outside of the
relationship at hand. These agreements exist to keep each member of the
relationship physically, emotionally, and sexually safe such that partners
can truly lean into experiences within those boundaries.”
Unlike an open relationship — in which committed partners might agree to
green light dating, sex, or other types of bonding outside of their
relationship — a polyamorous relationship is marked by more relational
commitment, says Shannon Chavez, Psy.D., a psychologist and sex therapist in
Los Angeles. “There can be different levels of commitments and different
levels of intimacy,” she notes. For instance, some relationships might be
based strictly on sex while others are based on an emotional connection or
both physical and emotional intimacy.
It also bears noting that many polyamorous people find support from building
a sense of community with other polyam people, either online or locally. “It
is much more than who you are having sex with or having another
relationship,” says Chavez. “The lifestyle is an important part of
Next follow descriptions of common polyam relationship structures,
from open couples to network polycules to unofficial group marriages to solo
Although awareness about polyamorous relationships is growing, plenty of
misconceptions abound. A few of the most common myths, busted:
...There’s always one primary couple. ...
Polyamorous people have wild sex lives. ...
Practicing polyamory will save a monogamous relationship. ...
Polyamorous people are “greedy” and “boundaryless.” ...
There is only one way to be polyamorous. ..
Just like other marginalized groups, people misunderstand the polyamorous
community to be homogenous, or one-size-fits-all, says Tanner. “When people
picture a polyam person, they might think of a youthful, queer artist type
with no kids and no mortgage,” she says. “In reality, polyamory occurs
throughout the lifespan and includes people of all professions, family
constellations, sexual orientations, and socioeconomic statuses.”
...Some people come to polyamory after having been in monogamous
relationships in the past and finding that they were not getting their needs
met, says Chavez.
But that’s far from the only path to practicing what Chavez calls a
relationship orientation. People are realizing that they knew from the
beginning of their relationships that they could — and would prefer to — be
in love with more than one partner at a time....
Either way, polyamorous people realize that they are someone who could love
multiple people and enjoy multiple relationships...
If you’re just beginning to practice polyamory, Tanner recommends making the
Address transparency. Answer questions like what do you want to know
about the other’s outside relationships, and how much detail do you want to
provide/be provided with?
Discuss frequency. Talk about the frequency with which you’d like to engage
in other relationships and the ways in which you’ll continue to be
intentional with bringing energy to the relationship at hand.
Talk about “coming out.” Decide which people in your life you feel
comfortable “coming out” to about polyamory, and make sure you’re on the
same page. ...
1) Practice total honesty. ...
2) Conduct regular relationship evaluations. ...
3) Set clear rules and boundaries. ...
4) Talk through jealousy. ...
5) Don't rely on one another for everything. ...
6) Be vigilant about safe sex. ...
● In a less heavyweight corner of the media, The Benefits Of Polyamory
appeared a couple days ago on Vocal,
a large and successful platisher site.1
Despite the optimistic headline, this one takes a dimmer view of what
fraction of people are right for the poly life.
Dainis Graveris / Unsplash
By Ossiana M. Tepfenhart
...Things started to change around the time I was in high school.
I, along with many others, started to hear about relationships with more
than one person. ... I quickly learned about polyamory and realized that I'm
not entirely monogamous by nature.
|Dainis Graveris / Unsplash|
Poly relationships can take a wide range of different appearances...
When Does Polyamory Work?
From what I've seen, poly relationships only work for a very select few
people. They work for people who are not monogamous by nature, have the
ability to be radically honest with their partners, and have a high level of
Most people cannot be good poly partners, simply because the tendency
towards being jealous or envious can make insecurity too much of an issue.
With that said, if you're confident and open, it's possible to make things
work out well.
Why Do People Choose To Be In Poly Relationships?
...The Extra Love ...
The Variety-Filled Sex ...
More Resources ...
Why Polyamory Is Not For Everyone, But Should Still Be Accepted....
● ANNOUNCEMENT: Love Is Polytical
, a two-day online conference January 2-3
, is planned by Karada House, "a queer collaborative art space that
explores the boundaries of art, the body and creativity" in Berlin, Germany. The working language is English. Workshops include Relationship Tools:
Needs, Wants and the Relationship Anarchist; Kinky, Poly and Asexual; Psyche
of Polyamory, Intersectional Non-Monogamy, Queering Polyamorous Parenthood,
We Do Not Live Single-Issue Lives, and more. (I don't know anything about
this group; just posting their announcement.)
Have an announcement that belongs here? Write me at alan7388 (at) gmail.com.
1. A platisher (publishing platform) is a for-profit, magazine-like
site where writers send in content about anything, staff screen for quality,
their pick of the best gets publicly featured by category, and the creator
gets some pay based on reads. Much of the rest also goes online but, without
being featured, stays mostly unseen as if on private blogs.