Poly vs. Amory
Here’s the thing.
I’ve learned so fucking much in the past two years, and I’m going to share it with you without holding back. Not even a little bit.
This is “my truth,” as the new-agey, responsibility-avoiding people like to say. This is my fucking truth. (And, fyi, I’m going to say fuck a lot. For a non-ranting, more elaborate, profanity-free version of this article, please click here.)
My husband and I have been polyamorous for about seven years. Although, I suppose the first few were much more about being a nondescript form of an open marriage since we weren’t seeking multiple, committed, loving relationships, the theory behind our lifestyle is what I’ve said again and again:
Love Breeds Love
Desire Breeds Desire.
Any encounter we had outside our marriage during those first few years were very open and the intentions on both sides were very, very clear.
When we moved into practicing polyamory, that is, seeking out another committed, loving relationship, I learned that not everyone has the same definition of polyamory as we do. Well, as those people who are actually and successfully practicing a polyamory lifestyle do.
Most people who love to call themselves (and hide behind) “poly” are really fucking focused on quantity rather than quality. Hmmm…I CAN have more than one girlfriend/lover/SO…so I’m going to have three! Because, let’s see, I’ve never been able to make a relationship with one woman work long term, so I’m going to try with three! That’s the ticket! That’s the answer! That’s where I’ve been going wrong for the past 15 years!
Most people I’ve met in the Austin poly community are not practicing polyamory. They’re dating. They go from several short-term relationships to several short-term relationships, none lasting more than 3-6 months.
HELLO! NOT POLYAMORY.
That’s dating! And not dating very successfully because they keep ENDING.
Or, the other kind I’ve found are people who are players, predators, sex addicts, or people who have such “taboo kinks,” they have slipped past “kinks” into sexual perversions, like incest and animals. Seriously. No judgment here folks! I mean, how horrifying to be judged for preferring to fuck (or be fucked by) another species over humans, right? Or wanting to fuck your 15-yr-old sister or your long lost birth mother. That’s all just in the realm of sex positivity, right? No judgment. No blame. There’s nothing wrong with your behavior or desires. Natural urges and all that… /sarcasm
I’ll get more into this on my Blinders of Sex Positivity post in a few weeks. Another post. Another time.
Mostly, though, I’ve met players and boys masquerading as men, and some monsters masquerading as humans. The polyamorous community certainly attracts the predators. And how.
But of course it does! A group of open, honest, trusting women who like sex (and are open about that). It’s a fucking feeding frenzy for parasites, narcissists, psychopaths, and other such predators. How very naive of me to think that someone calling themselves polyamorous was really interested in multiple, open and honest, loving, committed relationships. How very fucking naive of me.
Psychopathic predators and abusers aside, as I’m really tired of talking about them and, as I keep being told, they’ll get theirs one day.
‘Cause that happens.
The community is very self-cleansing, I’m told. I just wonder how many other women’s lives will be shattered and how many others will be assaulted before they catch on to his game. Not much of a community who doesn’t protect their own good people.
Again, I digress. Imagine that.
Also in the Austin Poly Community are several truly polyamorous families. They are what’s known as the “core group.” One of them even call themselves the polypod, and I think that’s rather adorable. The polypod, from what I’ve seen (and I’ve only seen them from a distance), as well as the few other multi-relationship groups who I know a little better and I’d consider friends, are doing it well. And by well, I mean successfully.
They are open. Honest. Respectful. Loving. Supportive.
They commit and invest in their relationships.
They might have casual sex on the side from time to time, but it’s after their current relationships are firmly established and secure. Because, after all, it’s about MORE LOVE…not more sex. And the few times you need to fulfill that biological need with someone different, then be honest about that. Never lie to get laid. How disgusting.
The most successful polyamorous relationships I’ve seen focus much more on the “amorous” part of the word, less on the “poly” part. It’s about LOVE! It’s all about LOVE!
Relationships take effort. Investment. Time and energy to solidify.
So, if you claim to be poly, think about this…
If you want to be poly, think about this…
Take. One. Relationship. At. A. Time.
When your first relationship has a solid foundation (and I mean SOLID foundation), the kind that takes at least a year, if not more, to establish, then look for a second one.
This is not a race to see who can have the biggest harem. And, btw, if you’re building a harem. YOU’RE NOT POLY! You’re a misogynist and a predator who sees women as life support systems for their pussies.
Romantic relationships contain drama (how I’ve come to loathe that word). It’s built in. Everyone has their insecurities and their baggage. Everyone has their idiosyncracies. It takes time to build a solid foundation and learn how to communicate with each other. Build trust. Establish and maintain intimacy. Minimize and handle inevitable conflicts (HELLO AGAIN! ROMANTIC RELATIONSHIP!). Ease through misunderstandings. Manage fears and insecurities on both side. Get to a level of comfort and security in yourselves and each other.
THEN — open up to dating others, and I’m not talking about casual sex unless that’s specifically what you’re looking for. If it is, be very fucking up front about that. Because polyamory means multiple, loving, committed relationships, or the pursuit thereof. Set clearly defined rules and don’t break them, or that will damage the trust you just spent a year building. Once you meet someone you think you can form a deeper relationship with, close off dating others. Focus on solidifying that second relationship while maintaining the first. FOR ANOTHER YEAR!
Insecurities will pop up. Jealousies (and yes, they don’t magically disappear when you label yourself polyamorous). Misunderstandings.
Give yourself time to learn about, develop, and nurture this other love. Commit yourself to making it work, for, again (and I repeat myself so much because so so so so many just don’t get it) HEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS REQUIRE EFFORT, INVESTMENT, and RESPONSIBILITY!
After the second is solidified and the first is stronger than before, and you still have extra time/needs that aren’t being met, then look for a third. But always remember, finding another significant other isn’t about finding someone BETTER, it’s about increasing the love and the desire among your own little polypod. It’s about ensuring that everyone you love FEELS loved, not ignored or pushed to the side or replaced.
It’s about MORE LOVE.
Always, more love.
If you don’t have time/energy/capacity to manage, maintain, nurture, and grow one or two relationships, plus your job, plus your kids, plus time for yourself and your friends – WHY DO YOU WANT ANOTHER? It’s a recipe for disaster and heartache on many levels.
You don’t date someone for three months and say, “Okay, ‘primary’ – check. We’re ‘solid,’ so who’s next?”
Fuck that. You’re not solid after three months. You’re barely starting. And if you run at the first sign of struggle, then, guess what, YOU’RE NOT POLY!
If you find yourself saying “I want to be able to do what I want when I want without responsibility or accountability,” then you’re not poly.
The last two years have been difficult, as you all have seen from reading this blog, especially the past few months. Do you really think my marriage could’ve survived (let alone thrived and gotten stronger) if it hadn’t been quite literally unshakable?
And for those of you looking for you 100%-genuinely-happy-all-the-time-easy-no-drama-or-responsibility-perfect love? Grow the fuck up. There is no such thing. When you are a perfect partner, you’ll find your fairy tale perfect love. And let me tell you, mister, you’ve got a long fucking way to go.
I guess the anger portion of the grieving has set in. It’s about fucking time.
~ by omgrey on July 11, 2012.
Posted in Romance & Relationships
Tags: assault, author, bdsm, broken heart, casual sex, commitment, commitmentphobe, commitmentphobia, date, dating, fear, grief, healing, heartbroken, honesty, incest, intimacy, kink, lie, lies, love, misogyny, narcissist, non-monogamy, o.m. grey, olivia grey, open, open marriage, passion, player, polyamory, psychopath, relationship advice, relationships, romance, sex, sexual assault, sexual predator, sociopath, swinger