The Polyamory Thread


#1

It turns out that being a married woman with a boyfriend who’s on the dating scene is unusual to some people. Who knew. So, due to popular demand I’m starting up a thread about polyamory.

A short definition: Dating (and/or having a more serious relationship with) more than one person without lying to any of them about the others, possibly while involving your other partners with each other.

I’m currently married, and coming up on my seventh wedding anniversary. When we first met and were dating, I told him that I wasn’t well-suited for monogamy, but would always be honest with him. He agreed to that, under certain conditions. While originally it was somewhat one-sided, he has since found a few lady friends and some of my girlfriends have coaxed him out of his shell.

My current boyfriend is getting serious (he’s the one I went to Hawaii with in honor of our almost-year anniversary lately) and gets along with my husband. When the house was hot and both of us were suffering from it, he stopped by with a gift-wrapped AC unit.

Other than that… I’ve seen a lot of poly families, triads, and groups. What do you want to know?


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#2

Was it sometimes difficult for your husband to accept it before coming to term with it?


#3

I think it helped that I was always willing to do whatever he needed to be comfortable, and trust it would work out in the end. For example - he had always been okay with me having other boyfriends (I had another boyfriend for the first three years while we were dating) but after we were married, he suddenly felt insecure and asked me to date anyone but men. I did that for about a year before he worked out whatever issue it was.

Some of the basic conditions were that we would always be safe, in terms of things like pregnancies and STIs, with new people I was seeing - and that involves a level of established trust - and that if I ever introduced someone casual to him and he hated them, they would never come around again. (And never possibly become anything more, both from convenience and because I trust his judgment.)

p.s.:
There is a whole community of happy monogamists who are shacked up with polyamorists. They tend to be interesting geniuses; their name for themselves is MonoPolists or MonoPoly players.


#4

Did your boyfriend or husband every get jealous of one another in the past or present?


#5

I’d say that they have never become directly jealous of each other, but it’s been a sort of “several chess moves in the future” kind of thing. I do recognize that yes, I am involved with two men, and testosterone is a factor. I do everything I can to help them get along without being personally offended, like introducing a couple of tomcats. Just from personal experience I’d say that having two men you’re seeing in the same room is a bit tense, but it’s something you can practice handling.

On a more personal level for those two: my boyfriend sometimes spends more money on me. My husband sometimes spends more time with me. I get about equally irritated with both. In my experience, it’s as frustrating juggling one relationship as two, but if you have three serious ones at once, you’d better really want to flex your Machiavellianism.


#6

Were the previous persons you dated always understanding, or agreeing with the fact that you are polyamorous?


#7

No. :grinning: It’s an extreme example, but it did happen: at one point I had an online dating profile that referenced me being married, and I clarified in the text I was polyamorous. I showed up to a starbucks, and the first time I mentioned my husband, he jaw-dropped, literally dropped his coffee, and loudly proclaimed, “I knew you poly people were whores!!”

…But for the most part I told them up front, so they either didn’t date me in the first place, or didn’t blame me because they knew going in that it was an experiment. I can give someone time, attention, adventure, and affection, but a lot of people that leave me seem to end up wanting more. Which I don’t really mind.

Unrelated to this particular thread, I’m an aromantic person. This is far from typical in the polyamorous community.


#8

(Off-topic, then?) Did the fact that you are aromantic not sat well with some persons, that you were dating?

Did most people that asked you to go on a date, and whom you told you are polyamorous, knew what it implied? (Meaning, not lying to any of the persons you are also dating/in a relationship with)


#9

Speaking for myself HIV and my need for privacy would be the main deterrents to it, I hate those tests and I swear some doctors, unfortunately seem to do everything in their power to make them as humiliating as possible. Assuming HIV is ever cured and any hypothetical significant other of mine keeps those other lovers from barging into my/our residence unnanounced at all hours, I don’t see why not.
I don’t know if I could ever successfully juggle two (or more) romantic/sexual relationships simultaneously myself tho.


#10

It is really unfortunate that a ton of married people looking to cheat on their spouses take it as a personal affront. They just refuse to understand the difference, and maybe if they argue at you enough… I have a whole jaded catalogue of mating behaviors I’m thoroughly sick of.


#11

I see, unfortunate indeed. Allow me to change the focus of my questions?

Is it difficult to divide your time/attention “equally” between each person you are in a relationship/dating with, or is that not really a matter of “time”?


#12

Okay, I must admit absolute ignorance on this one. What does being an aromantic polyamorous person feel like? What is your motivation to be polyamorous if you are aromantic? My closest friend is a (mostly)hetero-romantic asexual who would be poly if her husband were okay with it, so, I understand her desire to kiss and cuddle and love people other than her husband, but I’m a tad stumped here on the aromantic/poly combo. The best I can figure is that it’s a “friends with benefits” sort of set up?


#13

I think Sashira answered some of the aromanticism questions on the other thread.


#14

I know you’ve stated that you’re aromantic, which I can completely get in a triad+ relationship; you find multiple people sexually attractive. It really happens to all of us, poly or not. I have a girlfriend, and she has me, but we both are like “oh wow that girls pretty nice looking”. And I know you’ve expressed your hatred for people catcalling, so rest assured, neither of us are jerks that go like “HEY GIRLLL”. We just let them go on with their lives. That being aside, would you happen to know how a ROMANTIC poly relationship would work out? I just can’t imagine a person romantically loving two people equally or close to equally like that; it’s always been unconditionally, exclusively me and one other person. For a bit of time, it’s been the same person, too.


#15

Hm… Let me try to address this without getting too deeply into my friend’s business. So, she’s asexual, but not aromantic. She falls in love as most people do, she just doesn’t desire sex with people she falls in love with. She desires close emotional bonds with people that go beyond friendship, and she yearns for that closeness with more than one person. Aromantic people may really enjoy things like hugging, kissing, and holding hands with people. Aromantic people may even have sex, but not so much because they desire it in the typical sense. Admittedly, that’s getting into graysexual stuff, which I’m not really as educated on. I do know that the A’s in LGBTQIA tend to distinguish between the sexual, the romantic, and the libido (non specfic sex drive).

I mean… Okay. Maybe a bit TMI here, but I’m celibate. I definitely have a sexuality, and I also definitely have a libido, but I don’t satisfy my libido with other people. So, I understand the distinction, but at the same time it’s hard for me to understand an asexual person who satisfies their libido with another person. Which isn’t to say that I don’t accept it, it’s just seems simpler to me that they would go the “solo” route.


#16

@Sashira Not exactly intending to turn you into a ‘Dear Abby’ segment, but I guess that could happen.

As someone who wants to date aromantically (at this point in my life), I have a lot of trouble going about it- I consider myself solo poly- I want to date, but maintain my own individual social life. Problem is- I also find many people don’t seem to want this. Any good advice on how to go about it, or find (in my case women) who are similarly inclined? I think that I live in a place particularly ill-suited to my personal outlook, in about a fifty mile radius from where I live- and although I can’t help that, I would like to figure out how to be more or less clear about what I’d like to find without coming across as insensitive/rude.


#17

Is there an app for that, or a website that could help?

We could start our own advice column thread, Dear Sashira…:stuck_out_tongue:


#18

Right? The dating sites I’ve found always seem to have greener grass elsewhere. Alas. Can’t quite tell if I stay single because I’m me, or because other people around aren’t drawn to/right for me.


#19

Sashira, I’m glad you started this thread. I am in a polyamorous relationship as well, for nearly three years now. My husband and I have been married for 15 years and decided about four years ago to discuss allowing a third. That evolved, as things do, and we connected with another couple. I am bi, so I gained a girlfriend and a boyfriend. There have been bumps in the road, but we’ve worked through them.


#20

If everyone understands the relationship and accepts that, I see no harm.