Oh, Polyamory, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways…
1. You always surprise me. Always!
2. You never leave me feeling totally alone.
3. You don’t stop me from dreaming more and more.
4. You like my friends to become friends, and maybe even lovers!
5. You don’t know what boundaries are unless I say you do.
6. You show how endless Love can be!
Which is how I start this part of polyamory’s peculiar process: the trust switch a.k.a. the end of the intimate road as we know it… and the beginning of the friendship in the sky. Or… something interesting and undescribable and nebulous, in a place where nobody advances anything, but it’s not like there hasn’t been something previously occurring… you know those ones! I hope you do, and if not, then beware!
One day, you might be in exactly that position, and you didn’t even see it coming. You just kinda drifted from someone that you were cool with, and warming up with, but then, before you even were consciously aware of it… it’s been a few weeks since you talked, and your focus is on others, as you can assume theirs is too. And it’s okay, it happens to the best of us! That doesn’t quite mean it’s over, does it? Not unless you want it to be over. Maybe relationships can take a breather for a minute… and then start up again when people feel the desire to do exactly just that! In monogamy, they call it “taking a break,” I think, but in polyamory, it can or can not be so pronounced. I know I’ve taken breaks from lovers without specifically saying so, and then just calling them up again and seeing how they feel. From there, I’d like to talk a bit about the pseudo-separation process!
Hard Goodbye – where someone says “Thanks for the memories, but I feel differently now.” Either in person, in a phone call, an email… or text. Yeah, I know it’s like the most popular form of communication in the world, but… tradition and courtesy remain evolved beyond technology to my nostalgic little heart. Unless, of course, it’s a very well-written letter with genuine emotion providing proper closure. Then sure, whatevs. I don’t judge people’s method of disengagement, but I will acknowledge the compassion inherent in the last hug shared, which an email or text separation can never provide. Regardless, the point is: a hard goodbye is a mark in the sands of love, a sharp left turn, a final scene and last memory made together in this incarnation… and it’s GOOD to give the respect of a respectful ending, if someone really no longer desires to continue exploring poly joy with you. In any relationship in life, it’s a million times better to be given an honorable discharge, than to be abandoned and forgotten, or cut off with a three word text. I can’t endorse that type of behaviour (only unless it was an EXTREME emergency and you have to keep distance and time is not on your side. Even then, I still think everyone deserves some sort of explanation of pleasure’s exodus, to the logical degree the relationship requires… but that’s just me. Because other things can happen, such as the…)
Soft Goodbye – where someone doesn’t say “Thanks for the memories, but I feel differently now.” They just ACT like they said it, and… continue doing their thing, as everyone should always do, of course. But without the kindness of communication and disclosure, a soft goodbye isn’t exactly healthy for certain remarkable depths of relationship, but for others where the connection is less energetic and more ephemeral, a soft goodbye may be the perfect kiss goodnight, and articulating a whole monologue would be making too big a deal out of a sweet little moment, and that’s not exactly the wisest response to that situation either. Sometimes, the best thing to do is to not talk about how it’s the last moment you shall share, because it’s already known. The redundancy reduces the abundant dream. Mystery does often provide the imaginary wealth of anticipation and appreciation of a person’s presence, and then their absence… so when it’s actually time to not say much, except kiss them with a care-filled connection intention, or hug them with your heart, or just shake their hand firmly (maybe after an intense one-time orgy!) then let the soft goodbye happen, and gracefully bow out.
I never really think any of my relationships are absolutely done, except for the ones that are unhealthy for me/us/her/them, and only if they become monogamous! Otherwise, there’s ALWAYS a part of me that kinda dreams about possibly sharing another intimate moment with pretty much all of my polyamorous partners in my life! Even if it’s only 0.0001% of my heart dreaming: there is usually a reason why I don’t put a lot of intention and prison-like limits on any of my goodbyes, whether hard or soft… unless someone needs some serious time and space apart from me! And I like to think that it’s their behavior that needs to say goodbye more than they do… but that’s just my personal perspective.
I’d like to conjure up a little Lionel Richie for you, dear reader, as you mosey on out of here until next time. Now sing along:
“Hello! Is it me you’re looking for?”
If you are looking, check out PolyDating.com!
Greetings to Love,