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Ever had or seen a successful polyamorous relationship?


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#11
roo

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[quote] [quote name="naughtycowgirljo"]I am strongly opposed to folks whom have never been poly, whom do not fully wrap their beliefs around it, or whom are not otherwise inclined towards ships of this sort "trying" to force themselves to "be ok" with being in one for another. it is good to question, and to try for sure, everything once, but not to be something we inheirently are not, for anyone else's acceptance or approval; this, in my experience leads to unneccessary pain and tainted judgemental views of misunderstood experiences......[/quote]

I am a to-each-his-own kind of person. I have never been in a poly relationship, and don't think I need to in order to know it isn't for me. It's not being a kid again and mom is telling you to try the asparagus because you don't know if you really like it until you try it.

How many of us, after telling our parents about being gay, got asked: "How do you know if you are gay if you have never been with a guy?" or, for those of us who were virgins at the time: "How do you know you are gay if you haven't even been with anyone yet?" And how many of us found those questions to be totally stupid?

We all know that you don't have to be with a particular someon to know whether there is or is not an attraction. You know who you have the desire to be with.

What I am trying to say is that I think you just know some things without having to try them. That does not necessarily make one narrow-minded.

I don't have a problem with poly people or their lifestyle. I only ask that you be up front with it so monogamous people don't get hooked up with you. That's just asking for trouble. I realize many of you do keep it out in the open, but some don't.

Some anthropologists feel that humans are not monogamous, some feel we are supposed to be. Either way, we can clearly see that neither one fits 100% We are either an odd species that can encompass both, or we are in transition.

Whatever works for you is fine, as long as you are aware that others may not share your view.

Monogamy works for me, even though no one person can be another's everything. That is why I have friends. I think those of us who are monog. (successfully, anyway) find one person who fills enough of the proper needs we have, so as to make going outside the relationship unnecessary ( we do need friends and family, however). It's all a matter of who you are, recognizing that, being up front about it, and learning how to keep whatever relationship it is you decide to have, working.

Most any relationship needs communication, respect, trust, and an understanding of its boundaries. You know what you will and will not put up with, regardless of your relationship style.

To each, his own. And try the liver, you might like it this time around. Lol.
A good woman is like a good book: you'll want to get lost in both for hours and be much the wiser for it.

#12
robinbird

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i've definitely had successful polyamorous relationships. and i actually consider myself a stronger, wiser and, more open person due to the growth and love i've found in them. i would NEVER say that polyamory is for everyone; whatever truly works for you is what's truly best for you. i speak only from my own experience, and from the other positive experiences with polyamory that i've witnessed.

i had a five year open relationship with another women, from our teen years to early twenties. we both saw other people in varying levels of seriousness; we both dated other women, men, and trans people, so we both consider ourselves basically omnisexual. but she was my Number One; or what those of us actively involved in being poly would call "a primary partner." nothing ever came before her, and though i took the needs of others in my life very seriously, she was my love. she came first if necessary, and others respected this.

right now i'm in a serious, open relationship with a man -- and am also falling quickly in love with a woman i've known for awhile now. (no threesomes or anything like that; these are two two separate and beautiful relationships.) both of these people are very open to polyamory, and we all just want to see each other happy. to me, that's what being poly comes down to: trusting your partner's love. but also wanting them to experience other sensual or sexual experiences that make them happy. while my current two partners are what i'd consider primary, i also have some really lovely connections with other women. (and men and trans folks are a definite possibility; i just date women most frequently.) i'm not closed off to whatever beauty and connection the world may offer me, and i feel so lucky to have two partners who respect and understand that. (and who let themselves be open to the same possibilities.) as anyone who's struggled to be determinedly polyamorous knows, it's rare to find people who really respect & understand everything that goes into doing it successfully.

all relationships, if they're going to work, require a lot of real communication and honesty. i've found that being poly truly causes me to be even more honest with myself and my partners; it brings things to the surface more often, and communication becomes even more natural and easy for us. when i need reassurance, i ask for it. when i'm worried about my partner, i do everything possible to make sure that everything is okay, and that they are able to express any fears or insecurities. sexual health is also something you have to be even more aware and straightforward about, if you're poly.

being polyamorous doesn't mean that i love my primary partner (or in this case, the two of them) any less. it just means that i believe connection comes in numerous shades, and it would be a shame to miss out on any of them. if i kiss you, you mean something to me, and most likely it's something pretty serious. even if i only have the chance to be with someone a few times, due to circumstance; even if we just walk in the rain and kiss and drink tea together; i'm glad to have shared that particular connection.

what it comes down to is that i just don't believe the heart is a limited resourse. i really do understand that for some, monogamy is the way to go. but i also think that if we let ourselves be really honest and communicative with our partners, polyamory can be an option for many of us.

whew. :D
peace and pink lipsticked kisses,
bird
"I don't sleep, I dream."

#13
LisaSonata

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Polyamory is one of those things that makes sense in theory but (unfortunately!) doesn't always work out smoothly in reality.

A relationship that I had started out being open ended on my part. I was under the assumption that since I was being honest to everyone, it was all okay. Which in a way it was, but later I found out that there was a lot of resentment behind it all.

Polyamorous relationships could only exist peacefully if people didn't eventually develop attatchments towards others. Because America is such a mono-oriented culture, we have been (yes, even we free-thinking lesbians) socialized to believing commitment is good and polyamory and openess to be "bad." So we all hear this message and end up developing feelings (that are genuine), behind them.

And, if I am truly satisfied with myself, I only have enough energy to give my all to only one person. others may feel different, but I'm a little selfish with my energy :wink:

#14
robinbird

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Quote

Polyamorous relationships could only exist peacefully if people didn't eventually develop attatchments towards others.
i think much of what you're saying here holds a lot of truth. many of the reasons that people struggle with polyamory definitely have to do with cultural socialization, etcetera.

but i do think the statement i quoted above is a pretty negative generalization. polyamorous relationships can exist peacefully in many ways -- i know you meant no offense, but to say that for polyamory to work people must not develop attachments makes it sound as if you are invalidating all serious, loving polyamorous relationships.

i think human beings are capable of enormous change, growth & evolution. and some of that growth, some serious challenges, may come into play for a couple/group to be peacefully polyamorous. but i can tell you from personal experience that polyamory does NOT mean lack of attachment. in fact, for myself & many others i know, it means the exact opposite. it means allowing yourself to grow attached to more than one person; to explore a variety of connections, relationships & attachments. it can indeed take some serious rethinking to live this way, and it does challenge you to face lots of issues (jealousy, possesiveness, insecurity, etc.) very head-on.

but this does not mean that serious, meaningful attachments can't be present in polyamorous relationships. we all have our preferences, definitely. but for the people i know who take their poly lifestyles seriously, it means a great deal to them to have meaningful connections with (and thus, attachments to) each partner they have. again, i think much of what you said made sense. it was just that one sentence that simplified things far too much. it didn't take account of the many people who have made the choice to live beyond those societal structures, and who are doing so peacefully, lovingly & with deep emotion.
"I don't sleep, I dream."

#15
LisaSonata

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Well, I didn't want to appear to invalidate non-committal relationships in general. But I think there is a difference in "non-committment" and "juggling." As I've said, eventually, there may be a realization that while you thought it was fine, someone else may not have-- but didn't want to cause rifts. Of course this is impossible to find out, until it's rather late and I understand that it is not fair to oneself to play guessing games.

We are young and so I think the possibilites seem endless for us. However, as I've found myself doing as I've grown a little older (but I'm not old! :) ), the ideas of what I want from a relationship have changed. Before (as you say quite eloquently) we look for experiences to have, people to know and to love, and have many people love us back. There is nothing wrong with that, obviously. But when the experiences and love games all seem like a repetition, I think we usually turn to something else in a partner: stability and trust. We face our issues (hopefully) in our youth. The older we get, the more we want simplicity.

I don't think that attatchment equals possession in any way. Rather, we have limits of energy and for myself, energy is more precious if it is committed and peaceful.

Not Trying to Patronize,
Lisa. 8)

#16
robinbird

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Not at all, I don't think you seem patronizing. I just think that maybe you haven't been exposed to many polyamorous situations that involve long-term love. I do know some people who enjoy the fun in polyamory; the freedom to play and flirt as much as they like, etcetera. But those people are often considered swingers, rather than polyamorous. After all, the word amourous is rooted in amor: love. I know far more polyamorous people who, like me, seek both long-term love & the freedom to have other experiences.

I am chronically ill, so the need for stability rates high in my life. Reliability, dependability, all of these things -- they matter more than I expected at 24. But I've found that I can have those, and also live a polyamorous life. It takes effort and lots of loving, conscious communication... but it can be very happily done! I suppose I'll get a bit personal to explain: I'm living a life with a very primary partner. We spend 5-6 out of 7 nights together, and will shortly be getting a home together. I also have a sort of "secondary" partner, who is only secondary (and I hate that term, but I can't think of a better one right now) because she lives 3,000 miles away. If both partners lived here, in the same area code as me, we would figure things out. We are all "allowed" to see other people as we wish, and though we would definitely not be a threesome, both of these partners respect & care for each other. And both of them respect and honour the love I have for the "other" partner. We talk out our insecurities; I have plenty too; we make sure boundaries are clear and needs are always discussed. If I choose to, I can make a new friend who I kiss, or make love to a long-time friend who has been a lover for years. But at the same time, my primary partner is the one with whom I am building a life. And any partners outside of us must understand this -- while still trusting that I care deeply for them, within the bonds of our connection. There is a growing group of openly poly people who understand this attitude; who believe that the heart is not a limited resource, and that deep connections can be made on many levels. For me, all the connections I make are based in emotion, passion & caring. Not sex; though that is lovely too, of course!

Again, everything you're saying makes sense. I just think we're sort of missing each other, in the end. There truly are many people out there; I know quite a few besides myself and my partners; who are in long-term stable relationships, and are also polyamorous. By being polyamorous, like me, they don't seek to play and flirt and have one-night stands. (Though of course, that lifestyle is just fine & dandy for those who choose it.) They just don't want to limit themselves -- the most frequent sort of relationship I see such people having (outside of their primary partnerships) is a physical relationship with a close and dear friend. It's sort of a different way of looking at relationships entirely... The book "The Ethical Slut" deals with these issues quite well. It's an excellent book for *anyone* in a relationship to read, I think -- it speaks primarily of communication, respect, boundaries, devotion as opposed to commitment, etcetera. It shows the many ways in which one CAN be in a devoted primary partnership, and also explore other (short-term, long-term, or anything inbetween) connections.

I hope this makes my points more clear!

ps: In no way do I think that attachment always has to equal possession. Not at all. But I do think that mainstream culture sort of trains people to think this way; to think that commitment is the right choice, and that people 'belong' to their partners. Very often, perhaps in less intellectual company, people speak of their lovers as property. This thought underlies an absurd amount of people's relationship beliefs. But of course, that does not mean that ALL attachment is possesion! I am very, very attached to all of my partners, for example, but am still polyamorous. And I know, absolutely, that people can be monogamously attached, and not be possesive. I place no judgment on either choice. Nonetheless, possession/posessive behavior is present in many relationships across the board.
"I don't sleep, I dream."

#17
Faith

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All the things you said, Robin! Wow, what an incredible 24 year old you are. Intelligent, well spoken, respectful, loving....awesome. Oh, and a talented photographer! :lol: I too am polyamorous(as I mentioned in other posts and on my profile) and was never happy for long trying to be monogamous. And serial monogamy never made sense to me either. Why should I have to leave someone I love, to be with someone I love? I am very blessed that both the womyn and the man I am with not only love me, but each other! It is something I prayed a long time for. I am also happy to report that they are both secure enough in my love for them, that other folks are not out of the question. I am mostly attracted to wimmin, but don't ever want to live without this man, either. I adore wimmin-only space and events, I love the scent and feel of a womyn....I'm so happy being Poly! Except for the "You're a pervert" part that I get from some folks. Oh, well......definitely their problem, not mine :D So, yes, it can work, has worked, is working - for quite a lot of people. Faith
It's okay to hate two people, but if I love two people I'm a pervert.....go figure. Me!

#18
Ravenfox

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[b]Hi
I have been reading this posting as i have been registering.
I think what was just said about power is why most relationships fail.Someone always wants that power.
What ever happen to living in an under freedom...It is no wonder we are lossing freedoms in this country when the basic at it's core there is none...Our relationships.

I am Bi-sexual an I have been married for 30 years...before u start clapping or getting out of chairs...30 years of hell mostly... Very violent, Why? Because he would not share the power...It is coming to end now...

I have met a wonderful woman an we are both bi-sexuals ...She is fast becoming my new lifes partner...She is teaching me that power can be shared an should be shared...I find it odd that she is not from here yet shoing me about freedpm...I really did not know how to balance that.I do not think I am alone thinking that in this country.

This statement that power would be unbalanced is one made from a relationship where no power-share exist now and i am willing to bet never has...Only my opinion.

I also have made a new friend at another dating site online, where you share an write down fantasies etc...This lady is living proof that a marriage of three can work.....They all get along very well....Have been married for over ten years....I can upon request get that exact amount of time should it be required.The marriage consist of a lady bi-sexual , male, an one lesbain ...I do not know if the it works because of the sexual preferances involved but this one is working....They try at it, work hard at it, and noone feels left out...And that i think is key..Plus up front open honesty is rule the within my friends relationship....

Example everyones has a computer but no one has secrets. Eveeryone uses everyones computer, an see an reads everything that is there. Everyone benefits from this openness...

Well this was for me just what i have always wanted in my marriage, an in new relationship. My girl friend an myself are putting all this into place with our relationship...

Freedom my grandmother always said is never held to thightly. Anything thing you love if held thightly you will surely lose it...Allow it to grow to be free to come an go an like the bird fly free and it will return an grow with you. If held to thighly it will leave or die...I think this example i have found with my friend and her marriage an my grand mothers words show what all seem to fear ...Life can just flow and we can let go and allow things to flow...no controls no power needed over others...just freedom...I was not allowed that in my marriage and i can tell you it is so nice to be free to be me ...

I am presntly trying to be this way like my friend, i will tell her about this.And if willing she may write me something to post here or i will have her come here her self to post telling her own story in her own words...But she has made her relationship work...All are open to see an date others...all can ..but none do...Somehow the freedom to be able to wore off long ago an no-one does go out of the relationship...

What they have found I am desperately trying for myself.
Raven
Sometimes the feelings you are feeling can not always be put into words and expressed....

#19
PetticoatLace

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Hello all.
I don't consider myself a polyamorist as much as a "Bi-nogamous" person.
I have had a few successful live-in relationships where all three people (FFM) were in love. My goal is a three-way marriage built of soulmates. Currently I don't have a g/f though.

But I find that it works far easier when everyone is in love, everyone can talk, everyone is best friends/lovers/confidants. There isn't the same jealousy issues and the snuggle pile is wonderful. It's peaceful, and also amazing.

I admit though my non-live-in relationships haven't been as happy at times.. but I don't invite in someone that I don't think has the skills to make it work.

Just thought I might share my experiences.

#20
BauboBBW

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i just "broke up" with someone recently (not only was it "poly" it was also long-distance)

short story: she had a sub that lived with her, said it was only a D/s thing....then, over this summer the "relationship" between them changed and became more "intimate" (i.e. sexual) -- and there was a preg scare recently. (she id's as a lesbian/dyke)

there also has been kind of a back -n- forth "jealousy" and "one upman-ship" type of thing (not intentional on my part).

she's hurt because i decided to end this thing because it just ain't working...i feel like i get absolutely nothing from this relationship (xcept for sex every 3 months)...while he reaps the full benefit.

i told her that i needed more than just "scraps" for a relationship. she just can't understand why i'm hurt....i feel like she wasn't totally honest with me here.... :cry: dammit!
*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*
"Don't compromise yourself, you're all you've got..." - Janis Joplin





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