Monogamy is linear, I find. There isn’t much space for creative interpretation of “We will break up if you fuck anyone else!” as much as men try to find every loophole possible—no pun intended!
There’s not much possibility for alternate adventures in the traditional relationship structure of the world we live in. There will be many generations before polyamory is a size of the gay or lesbian population. And there is a long way to go before people en masse start letting go of the Cinderella-Prince Charming fairy tale that is still promoted to young people.
Beyoncé can talk all the “independent women” stuff she wants to all the single ladies—Rihanna, and even Taylor Swift—but it didn’t take long for her to abandon all that autonomy to become a domestic goddess with Jay-Z, even though she certainly displays more control and dominance in that relationship than he does, it looks like… not that I know anything for certain.
Another reason why methinks the power dynamic is so unique, it would kinda sully the fantasy that the masses have with Queen Bey, but that’s just speculation, of course! And as usual, I digress…
The point is: polyamory is wide open to possibility. It’s as unique and expanding and ever-evolving as human relationships in the post-millennial paradigm shift in sex and life. But there’s a few things that kind of overlap and conflict on the surface, and I thought I’d reflect on these things for shits and giggles. It’s just fun to explore the ideas we exist in!
You can have sex with someone else, and I’m happy to hear about it, happy to watch it, happy that it happened for you two or three or four or more… and it doesn’t stop with that one!
An obvious possible source of internal conflict, this paradox is the first crossroads of poly people. If you can’t do this one, you might as well go get yourself The Ethical Slut and start over.
What is allowed in this relationship is not allowed in that relationship… but for the next one, we might be able to negotiate something. If you communicate properly…
There is no carte blanche approach to healthy polyamory from the get-go, unless you’re a group of very advanced humans and even then, communication is always encouraged more than assumption.
If you have one lover who will allow you to peg him anally, it’s not just to be expected that the next one should offer the same fun. That’s not fair. It can be asked for, and their honest feelings are what should be respected. The fluctuating scale of interaction between partners is a blessing and a source of delight. Allow it to be.
Old flames sometimes get jealous and insecure about new people and NRE, but new people sometimes get envious and hesitant because of old flames burning slowly.
This is something that is difficult to articulate to people who can’t open their heart’s eye to see the relationship enough from another perspective that they get surefooted and safe with anything else happening.
The grass is not always greener on the other side of the fence, but it always looks more appealing because it’s farther away… plus, it’s not yours. As long as you’re in a good place with your partner, the long-term, short-term presence of another lover need not be a problem… unless you like making problems.
Relationships can end, begin, end, begin, and do all kinds of unpredictable things… while other relationships are doing the exact same or opposite, simultaneously.
This one is the closest to monogamy. But at the same time it’s often practiced with a level of freedom, space and openness that doesn’t really translate as much in monogamy, as well as not in the sense of inviting options being exploited, instead of them being excursions into escape for when shit hits the air conditioner.
If you’re healthy about a breakup and everyone involved was being mature, there’s a good chance of reuniting in the future. I know it’s happened to me more than once. I’ve had some five-year breaks between poly lovers. More often it’s around two or three.
The ONLY ex-lover who I’ve NOT been intimate again with in the last DECADE was a beautiful Muslim Pakistani goddess, but she doesn’t want to be friends anymore. And I swear it’s not fair because I would prefer to be friends… such is the shitty part of paradox.