This post partly grew out of a conversation with my friend Wesley Fenza, who writes at Living Within Reason. Wesley has a companion blog post with his more measured take on this issue.
Through the lens of mainstream media depictions of polyamory, I am the poster child for Bad Poly (and Bad Non-Monogamy, generally). Posturing for respectability is not for me and never will be, and I am not the least bit sorry.
Continue reading “Bad Poly’s Poster Child: A Navel-Gaze”
Among more progressive types, much is made of the smug polyamorists who declare themselves to be more skilled at communicating, better at relationships, and overall more evolved than their monogamous counterparts. As I’ve said before, I’m not on board with that. Poly is my relationship style, not an indicator that I am somehow better at anything than a monogamous person, let alone everything. Being poly is no guarantee against any kind of hurt or pain and can even introduce novel forms of pain into one’s emotional life. Poly is not a shield against any and all harms; given my journey to my current relationship style, I have never have believed it to be so.
Reading through the comments on others’ Facebook walls in response to my last piece on polyamory has reminded me of all this. Many of the comments invoked poly smugness, claiming that (1) responding with “it’s not for me” is a preemptive strike against poly evangelizing, (2) defensiveness is only natural when someone makes an unnecessary mention that they are poly, or (3) both.
I honestly feel a bit at a loss. Continue reading “When the Monogamous Bait Poly Smugness”
For most people and most relationships, the mainstream monogamous relationship model fits and there is no need for them to question it overmuch. The mistake is not doing what works for you if monogamy is what that is, it’s assuming that mono-to-poly relationships are the only ones where the terms of the relationship change.
I’m not just saying this because I’m poly and tired of my relationship style being treated as the only one where painfully-common problems arise (though yes, I rather am, thank you). I’m also saying this because a lot of wholly-avoidable issues come up in relationships of all kinds when people don’t acknowledge those changes for what they are. Continue reading “Everything I Know About Monogamy, I Learned From Polyamory”