Polyamory.com Forum

Polyamory.com Forum (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/index.php)
-   General Poly Discussions (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=2)
-   -   Division in the poly community (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=13758)

redpepper 08-20-2011 06:37 PM

Division in the poly community
 
When I first came to this forum I thought that the only poly was my own. I remember being floored that some of the activities I had participated in ie. swinging, dating, open relationship, etc. were also called poly by some. In my confusion and frustration I felt "lumped in" to a community that I didn't want to be part of as I was then on the path to achieving my own personal goal of creating poly family.

I was made to realize that others do not wish to be "lumped in" to a community that is more poly fi, poly family orientated. They were, in fact, on the other end of the spectrum to me.... I thought that everyone was striving to be in a poly family and that swinging, open, etc. was the way to get there for most. Naive, I know.... but then we all start in ignorance right?

Someone during that time and in my numerous discussions here and in my own community, told me that there is a divide in the community. One that is sometimes divided by age and stage, but not necessarily. One that is divided between "child free" and those with children. I was told at the time by someone in the then small community here, that the only reason that they hung out with me was because there is no one else to hang out with... that small communities have to manage on their own and those that are in them just kinda have to put up with each other.

What are your thoughts on that? How can we come together? Is it necessary to come together? What kind of negotiations can we start with in order to have a relationship with each other? What do we need to understand about each other in order to be accepting of each others path?

NeonKaos 08-20-2011 08:30 PM

Quote:

What are your thoughts on that? How can we come together? Is it necessary to come together? What kind of negotiations can we start with in order to have a relationship with each other? What do we need to understand about each other in order to be accepting of each others path?


Hm, well I don't identify "as" poly and I have never been one to seek out company based on a commonality such as sexual, gender, or relationship orientation. Even when I go to nudist resorts, I go there because *I* want to be naked, not because I want to be around other people who like to be naked!

I'm not sure if I'm qualified to answer your question(s), but it helps to keep in mind that not everyone wants to "come together" or "have a relationship with each other". I'm fine with people going off and doing their own thing(s) and including or being included by as many or as few people as they choose. I don't think the world has to be one huge love fest. I think there needs to be less coming together and more minding our own business. That's been working for me so far and whether anyone wants to believe it or not, I am quite fulfilled in my personal relationships. But that's just me and I wouldn't dream of forcing my ways upon any happy, positive-thinking people who are reading this.

nycindie 08-20-2011 09:16 PM

Funny, I was thinking about something similar last night. I had come across the transcript of Tristan Taormino's 2008 keynote address for a poly pride event in NYC. And it had me thinking that I would probably hate going to one of those things. Maybe I would if I had a lot of friends there, but it's not likely even if that were the case. Something like that is just too "manufactured" and conspicuous for me. I was recalling the few poly events I went to and how they didn't thrill me much at all. I remember one guy who started chatting with me by asking how I would feel about being a secondary. Sheesh. What a way to start a conversation and get to know someone.

Like NK, I don't identify as poly; I simply see myself as a human being who just wants to live my life as I see fit, and I truly dislike being seen as representative of any kind of "movement" or category. Certainly, I appreciate the existence of communities in which participants have multi-partner relationships because they will know what the heck I'm talking about if I need to vent, and I'm sure I can be helpful to others just because of my plain ol' relationship/life experience, rather than anything poly. I want to live in the moment and respond to what life brings me, and because of that I don't see the necessity of focusing my socializing or seeking potential lovers to the poly community. I still haven't yet reached the point where I'm juggling several ongoing and committed love relationships in my life, but labeling myself or being part of something more organized doesn't really seem very useful to me.

Seasnail 08-21-2011 02:32 PM

Redpepper, I've noticed a similar divide. Not necessarily in the poly community, but in the world at large, over the family-friendly and the child-free. I know you have lots of questions about how to pull together, and I don't have any answers. Just the observation that in our society, one option is to remain child-free not only as a non-parent but also by avoiding the company of children in all of your activities. Very individualistic, and odd to those of us who live more colletivistic/interdependent lives.

NeonKaos 08-21-2011 02:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Seasnail (Post 98430)
Redpepper, I've noticed a similar divide. Not necessarily in the poly community, but in the world at large, over the family-friendly and the child-free. I know you have lots of questions about how to pull together, and I don't have any answers. Just the observation that in our society, one option is to remain child-free not only as a non-parent but also by avoiding the company of children in all of your activities. Very individualistic, and odd to those of us who live more colletivistic/interdependent lives.

Yes, I have noticed the same thing. People who have children usually cannot wrap their minds around those who don't want any. On the other hand, I never met a single child-free person who thought it was odd that others have decided to go ahead and reproduce.

Funny isn't it how sometimes people who seem so "accepting" in one area of "alternative lifestyle choices" just can't figure out how to apply it to other areas of the same.

BrigidsDaughter 08-21-2011 03:24 PM

I recently was informed by two separate couple friends of ours that their weddings would be child free. They didn't want me (or our son, who they adore) to feel bad. My response was, "okay, we weren't planning on bringing him anyway".

I can completely understand our friends who do not want to have children; some of them honestly shouldn't. I do not understand the people who treat those who have children (and those children) as if they have caught some sort of infectious disease.

NeonKaos 08-21-2011 03:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BrigidsDaughter (Post 98434)
I recently was informed by two separate couple friends of ours that their weddings would be child free. They didn't want me (or our son, who they adore) to feel bad. My response was, "okay, we weren't planning on bringing him anyway".

I can completely understand our friends who do not want to have children; some of them honestly shouldn't. I do not understand the people who treat those who have children (and those children) as if they have caught some sort of infectious disease.


The thing is, there ARE people who ignore those instructions on invites because they think that they are the special exception.

The reason some people act like their friends with children have an "infectious disease" is because it is quite common for people who would seem to make "cool parents" turn into self-centered self-righteous fucking assholes (for lack of a more concise term at my fingertips - although some of the more choice ones would certainly peg me as one of "those" child-free people) once they have spawned.

I hope this post is taken in the spirit of trying to help you understand something you said you do not understand, not as an "attack". I will be the first to admit that I do feel somewhat "attacked" by this sudden left-turn from discussing poly to discussing child-free, however i take complete responsibility for those feelings and do not expect people to walk on eggshells around me. Just be ready to hear some pretty "harsh" sounding things from my end if the discussion continues along these lines.

Amen.

Awomen.

Etc...

BrigidsDaughter 08-21-2011 04:04 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by NeonKaos (Post 98447)
I will be the first to admit that I do feel somewhat "attacked" by this sudden left-turn from discussing poly to discussing child-free, however i take complete responsibility for those feelings and do not expect people to walk on eggshells around me.
Etc...

I am sorry you feel that way. I don't believe that the topic has take a left turn, so much as people were easily able to identify with one of the divides that RP mentioned
Quote:

Originally Posted by redpepper (Post 98325)
One that is divided between "child free" and those with children.

. Perhaps that is because this particular divide is pervasive in our society and not just in the poly community?

My own experience with our local poly community has been limited, but I did not feel that I was lumped into a particular category. At our last meet up, there was a wide age range, varied life experience, those with children and without, educated and not, etc. Personally, I belong to a number of different circles and have always easily found commonality between them. When meeting someone new, I always try to find one thread of common interest and go from there. I have friends that I do not talk politics with, but have great conversations on religion. Those friends that share I share parenting experience with do not necessarily understand *my* parenting, nor should they. Their child is not my child. The same goes for many other areas of divide. We are all individuals, it is important to respect both our differences and our commonalities. After all, if the world was all the same, it would be a very boring place.

ImaginaryIllusion 08-21-2011 04:44 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BrigidsDaughter (Post 98434)
I do not understand the people who treat those who have children (and those children) as if they have caught some sort of infectious disease.

My son does. Barely out of first grade, he's put together a couple things he's been told over the year:
He was told that Babies are similar to parasites in the womb.
He was told that tapeworms are parasites.

He has concluded therefore, and it came up quite independantly during conversation a couple weeks ago, that "Babies are just like tapeworms"

So, maybe they're not far off the mark. ;)




LUBE!

BrigidsDaughter 08-21-2011 05:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ImaginaryIllusion (Post 98464)
My son does. Barely out of first grade, he's put together a couple things he's been told over the year:
He was told that Babies are similar to parasites in the womb.
He was told that tapeworms are parasites.

He has concluded therefore, and it came up quite independantly during conversation a couple weeks ago, that "Babies are just like tapeworms"

So, maybe they're not far off the mark. ;)




LUBE!

We joking call our own child a crotch goblin, so I can't say I disagree with his perspective. Its more the "ew, you have children" reaction we sometimes get from complete strangers or in the case of a place we once lived, "I didn't know they allowed children here." The neighbors there were completely horrid to my, then 2 year old, son just for his very presence in our the building. Other people's choices are none of my business and I expect the same respect. It wasn't like he was ever loud or running wildly in the halls. He was always just standing shyly at my side while I got the mail or did laundry. *shrugs*

Why do some people have to be rude about their opinions anyway?


All times are GMT. The time now is 08:05 PM.