I’ve said it before, that the poly lifestyle is best suited to those who know how to entertain themselves and can happily spend time alone. When I wrote about it previously, I was referring to the odd night or weekend alone, not a months-long stretch.
Being isolated from one’s partners is very different from waiting for next week’s date night. It’s a psychological trial that requires some patience and strategizing. Here are some tips for how to cope when you’re all alone and hating it.
How to Cope when You’re Isolated
Make (and Keep) Virtual Dates
Even though your poly routines have changed, keep that shared Google calendar alive with prescheduled plans to connect over Zoom or Skype. Make these dates a priority. At first, they might seem strangely two-dimensional, and could even make you feel lonelier than before, but keep at it. In time they will become more natural.
Focus on fun as well as communication. Try some of the ideas I put forth last week for stay-at-home dates. Or plan something completely original to your polycule.
Get Sexy Solo
Treat yourself to some new sex toys, or dive deep into your favorite porn. Do whatever you need to do to stay relaxed and satisfied during your time alone. Masturbation need not be regarded as a last resort or something that pales in comparison to partnered sex. It can be super hot and at times even more enjoyable than hooking up.
Make the most of isolation by getting to know your body. Experiment with different sensations and turn ons. Get a little freaky, and don’t be afraid to make some noise! Fully surrender to the sexy advantages of having some space all to yourself.
Take on a Project
Find something big to focus on besides work, loneliness, or the usual stresses of life. When your thoughts start drifting towards how much you miss your partners, or how much it sucks that some of your polycule are shacked up together while you’re at home all alone, turn to your project for some sweet distraction. Online classes, home organizing and decorating, and writing are all good options if you want to feel productive and keep your mind busy.
Choose something that you can get completely lost in. I find that tedious or repetitive tasks work for me, as they also offer something of a meditative benefit.
Make plans and let yourself get excited about them! Think ahead to all the amazing things you and your partners will do when you finally get to see each other again. Those of us who have been in long-distance relationships know this strategy well—it’s what keeps the sex flame burning and the emotional connection strong.
Don’t just casually mention your plans when you connect over Zoom, really flesh them out. Even if you don’t know when you’ll be able to actually do the thing you’re discussing, the anticipation can carry you through some dark, lonely times.
Have you been separated from your partners for an extended period of time? How did you cope? Tell us your story in a comment.