Nature abhors a vacuum, they say. There’s a good blowjob joke in that statement, but I’m not a comedian philosopher witty enough to find the punchline.
The one thing I do know is that it sucks ass when shit in other relationships wipes its influence all over your personal space.
Damned if we do screw, damned if we don’t screw. Ironically we are fucked if we don’t screw, as a species, but that’s besides the point. Actually, no, it’s not this time! I normally digress like a feline princess (I’ll be here all week, folks) but this time, my excursion was actually towards the point I’m trying to make! Land, ho!
Ahem, yes: relationships affect each other. We hopefully do our very best to make sure the petty squabbles from one situationship don’t bleed and barf all over the boundaries of another undercover something. Besides the almost instinctual cathartic gossip session, it’s actually good advice to follow mom’s words that suggested: “If you can’t say something nice about someone, don’t say nothing at all!”
But if that means we couldn’t talk to anyone but our lovers about them… it might destroy the relationship as much as it strengthens it! I’m not one of those dudes who needs a gang of drinking buddies to complain about his “ball and chain of a wife” at home, or frigid girlfriend, or roommate-like lover. But, shit happens, and the mind needs to flush itself somewhere, somehow, sometime.
So, if it’s not to complete strangers, the internet, and or some more healthy and creative outlet, we are going to be affected by our connections, and we are going to express them!
This is a semi-serious exploration of the ways relationships can impact each other in polyamory. The more serious examples are for you to work out yourself. And you can laugh about it when you’re done dealing with it! But not a moment sooner. So in the meantime, let’s explore a bit, shall we?
This is most common form of relationship impact. People express unhappiness or frustration with other lovers to other lovers. Sometimes people even exaggerate the problem, for the sake of conversation! It’s weird, but it’s almost normal. I don’t do it too much, because I really try to not have any of my sexual partners affect each other, but… sometimes they ask. And I suppose that’s not really influencing the relationship, but it does make awareness deeper.
When one woman asks “what’s she like?” then, things might happen subconsciously. Or they might not. But the words being said cause at least as much of a difference as the difference between silence and sound. Are there emotions to the sounds being said? That’s for you to decide.
This one is less easy to ascertain, but it’s a thing. One of my lovers expressed jealousy and insecurity about knowing about my depth of connection with one of my former lovers. This mental stress caused a few days of anguish to her, and I had to assure her that our relationship had elements of love and passion that were not present in the other relationship (which is the case with all of them, to various degrees, so I wasn’t lying to comfort her).
Her mental state had gone through a change from her knowledge of my poly reality. That was a challenge to solve, but it was solved with love and truth: antidotes to fear.
This one is parallel to the mental impact, but it has more identity energy being impacted than just intellectual. This is when tears fall, this is when words get sad and when dreams get crushed. They can get rebuilt, but it takes effort and intention.
Poly relationships can have serious impact on each other, and people can spend a lot of time and attention trying to avoid this truth, and only rarely does it fade away in the future. “Feelings buried alive never die” is some wise advice. The same person I know who had mental anguish over jealousy also had emotional struggles, but they were mended with affection and connection.
This is where it’s easiest to see the impact of other relationships, and this is where it’s very important to be generous and open minded about what we are all doing in polyamory. There have been times where I have had such passionate sex with a woman, that she is unable to be sexual for a few days, and she says so in a text message a few days later, while on a date.
Another situation that I recently experienced, was with a wonderful angel who had just been to a sex club the night before. She had a very hardcore session with a dom, so when she came to see me her body was covered in bruises and gashes from her previous session. I had to be very careful with her when we were conducting our usual passionate intimacy. I learned that the body sharing boundaries and limits that people build for themselves are vastly different from person to person.
Oy vay! The markings were unbelievable!
It didn’t do a thing to the fun I had with her though…