5 Qualities Necessary to Practice Poly

There’s has to be kind of logical system, philosophy or just pattern of behavior that a person must choose for their relationship system to bring forth and multiply the love, peace, and happiness one seeks in their life.

When someone is monogamous, the system can be simple. The ways for monogamous situations to unfold are vast, but still narrow in possibility. Polyamory on the other hand, can be anything we imagine being with more than one person. But I don’t practice “polyamory anarchy,” as it is called by some, where anything goes for anyone. I have a code like Omar Little, and I have some prime directives like Robocop!

5 Qualities Necessary to Practice Polyamory

1. Trust

First and foremost, you need to take a leap of faith like Miles Morales for polyamory to become the super-spectacular dream that you hope and wish it can be in your life. It’s also like the Matrix: nobody can tell you what polyamory feels like, you have to see it for yourself. Now take the leap that Morpheus did in the first movie, and try not to fall like Neo. But you’ll fall. Ha ha, everyone falls their first time. There’s no such thing as poly without falling.

Something is going to fuck up. But you do NOT have to automatically reset and reboot the system and resort back to monogamy all over again, just because something failed. Nope! Adjust the sails a bit, remind yourself what your boundaries are, and who you are best suited to share them with, and then change course—slightly—while still going in the same direction of your beautiful poly dreams! Trust in yourself, and trust in your partner(s).

Read: 7 Ways to Build Trust in a Relationship

2. Patience

The greedy child sees their birthday cake and rushes in to gobble it up in a hurricane of gluttony and impatience, bringing five minutes of joy, a week’s worth of stomach pain, and perhaps punishment and guilt. The smart kid will see the cake, know that they have access to as much as they want because it’s their birthday, and then share it with their friends, but also make sure to eat five pieces of cake if they damn well feel like it!

Polyamory is just like birthday cake. You can have as much as you want, but you need to have patience to make the cake last, and not ruin it for everyone else at the party. It takes time to learn how much or little cake others want, if they even want the same cake, or if they are on a diet and are abstaining from sugar. Some people only came to bring a gift and leave. Others want to feed you cake at two in the morning with another friend while lying in your bed after everyone else has gone home.

I love cake and polyamory, and hope to eat cake with two lovers in my bed someday, ha ha. But, I digress, kinda sorta. Having patience is so meaningful, because polyamory, much like a cake, takes time to measure and assemble the right ingredients, mix in the bowl, bake in the oven, and then frost and ice it properly, before you can share it with others. Patience is the path to all the good things that come in polyamory.

Read: Tips for Embarking on New Poly Relationships

3. Communication

If you can’t express the specific type of polyamory you want, then you can’t have your cake and eat it too. Are your partners allowed to kiss other people? Are you allowed to have sex on Sundays when they are at church? Are you allowed to pick up people from your job and fuck them on your lunch break? Can she get with her ex-boyfriend on his birthday, just once a year? There can be a million things to ask, wonder, explore and work through in polyamory, and if you can’t communicate well… well, then say goodbye to having a good time in polyamory!

Seriously, you need to learn how to grab your guts and throw them out your mouth! Be courageous, speak with intent and clarity, don’t beat around the bush… all that good shit. You’ll need to learn how to ask for what you want in polyamory, or else you’ll need to learn how to ask to STOP being polyamorous because it won’t be working for everyone if no one’s talking!

Read: Tips for Maintaining Communication in Poly Relationships

4. Maturity

Being mature is a vital component of polyamory, and it is not something that everyone has possession of, no matter their age. Sixty-five years doesn’t always signify that someone is mature, mentally or sexually. Their body has matured and they will have gone through puberty and probably had a bit of sex in their time (hopefully, but if not, we don’t judge), but they may not act maturely. Maturity is the ability to calmly and rationally process situations and scenarios of an adult nature, providing a modicum of responsibility and balance to various adverse life situations.

Not everyone is mature or reacts with maturity, not even in the most normal of life situations. Now take things to the bedroom. Truth be told, some people revert right back to their high school teenage self, and don’t even know it! Which is why so few people in high school are actually poly, when they are more likely to be non-monogamous, or just sexually wild and out of control (which can be done in relatively safe confines!) Maturity is a vital fundamental component of polyamory, trust me.

5. Compersion

Getting into polyamory and not practicing happiness for the happiness of your other partners is similar to getting into a monogamous marriage and not practicing communication with your mother and-father-in-law or any of your partner’s extended family! It’s something that should be considered basic, but people need reminding: do the opposite of being jealous! Have faith in the process, trust the system, take the car out for a test drive!

One of the very best ways to keep a relationship strong is to do the exact inverse of what makes it weak: cheating and lying. So if you tell the truth and you share sexuality together, then you are doing the very antithesis of cheating and lying, and if you can share in each other’s joys even when it comes from other people, you can probably and almost literally do anything else in the world together. Compersion is a beautiful thing, and it builds up ALL the others.

Read: 4 Ways to Practice Compersion

If you got those five things going on for you in your relationship already… I do believe you are on your way to Polyamoryville!

Addi “Malcolm Lovejoy” Stewart

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