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-   -   Should I be considering this? (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=16887)

Eruza 11-10-2011 10:14 AM

Should I be considering this?
 
I don't know much about the poly community. I'm not really sure whether you folks can tell me whether I should be thinking about getting into it, but at least I can explain my problem.

I don't need to be with more than one person, but rather, less than one person. The psychological terminology for people like me is "schizoid". In my case, it means I'm missing some of the emotions that other people have. The effect, in my history of monogamous relationships, is that I haven't had enough emotional rapport with anyone to be everything they need. I just don't understand some ranges of emotion that are common to normal people.

I'd be quite comfortable being alone for the rest of my life if I didn't also feel the need to be part of a family. I can't raise a child, for example, but I'd like to know I helped raise one. I've never wanted or needed to have the emotional health of another person as dependent on me as is typical in monogamous relationships, and in fact, I find that sort of emotional dependence too great a responsibility for comfort. My fear that I will hurt their feelings because I don't understand them is too much of a risk. At the same time, I want to know that I do have some emotional significance to others.

So handicapped, I've considered that maybe I can have a suitably small place in the hearts of others and a suitably small place in some sort of family if I'm part of a larger family than those of the nuclear sort. Does this make sense or am I looking in the wrong direction?

nycindie 11-10-2011 11:02 AM

Are you thinking that poly relationships are less invested, less committed, less demanding, and less emotional than monogamous ones? If so, I do think you are looking in the wrong direction.

Eruza 11-10-2011 11:37 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by nycindie (Post 110264)
Are you thinking that poly relationships are less invested, less committed, less demanding, and less emotional than monogamous ones? If so, I do think you are looking in the wrong direction.

Ah. This may be a good example of the sort of response that I am not able to predict because of emotional states I don't experience. I wouldn't come here and insult you by claiming that poly relationships are less anything. It seems to me that more than two people in a relationship would complicate matters exponentially.

My hope is that there is, however, a bit more room for specialization in such relationships. If there are others in the relationship who are able to empathize with each other in situations that concern my own blind spots, perhaps the relationship can continue to function when my own efforts would fail.

nycindie 11-10-2011 12:41 PM

I didn't say you were claiming that. I was wondering if that was your perception, just to find out a little more why you think poly might be for you. Some people think poly means casual. I think "specialization" is a good way to look at how some polyamorous situations could be.

If your desire is more geared toward being part of a family, you might want to look into "intentional communities." If you joined one, you could contribute to, derive satisfaction from, and feel a part of a group but perhaps not have the stress of emotional intimacy from one-on-one relationships (that is, if I am understanding correctly what schizoid is).

Eruza 11-10-2011 01:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by nycindie (Post 110269)
I didn't say you were claiming that. I was wondering if that was your perception, just to find out a little more why you think poly might be for you. Some people think poly means casual. I think "specialization" is a good way to look at how some polyamorous situations could be.

If your desire is more geared toward being part of a family, you might want to look into "intentional communities." If you joined one, you could contribute to, derive satisfaction from, and feel a part of a group but perhaps not have the stress of emotional intimacy from one-on-one relationships (that is, if I am understanding correctly what schizoid is).

My perception of poly relationships is the same as my view of monogamous relationships; I assume that no stereotypes can apply to them because there must be a vast variation between each relationship.

I'm off to go look into intentional communities. Thanks for the advice!


Edit: Getting a real Wicker Man vibe off of these intentional communities. I think I'll have trouble finding one in line with my interests.

Oh, I forgot to reply to your assessment of the schizoid thing. I do have some trouble with intimacy, but I'm not as far along that axis as many schizoids are. Mainly, I'm just exceptionally good at keeping myself company and a bit blank on some emotions. I guess you could say that one-on-one relationships feel stressful to me, but it's not an intrinsic sort of stress.

kirsten 11-10-2011 02:33 PM

I'm not the most experience person here, but I have a few thoughts. I think that you may find that you *yourself* aren't suited for poly, but that you would be a good partner for someone who is poly. Some poly people look for partners that aren't meant to be their "everything," which is rare in the monogamous world.

For example, if I am already married, but I want an additional partner, the emotional load on the second partner could be less than it is on my spouse. Poly people tend to adjust based on the situation, rather than try to fit a relationship into a pre-defined mold. The level of affection and connection that they feel to someone, and how much that person feels for them, will determine how involved they are with that person.

This doesn't mean that you aren't suited for poly, but I would consider just dating someone who is poly and seeing how that goes. If you don't have a need for "more" when you are in that situation then you don't need to go seeking more.

LittleSara 11-10-2011 11:41 PM

Try something new?
 
I'm not that experienced either but... I think as long as you are honest with your partners about who you are, it will help manage any unrealistic expectations of you. Prevent disappointment, fights, etc.

Eruza 11-11-2011 05:40 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by kirsten (Post 110276)
I'm not the most experience person here, but I have a few thoughts. I think that you may find that you *yourself* aren't suited for poly, but that you would be a good partner for someone who is poly.

Ah! That may be more my speed. I had a girlfriend for a year or two that had a girlfriend who had a husband, and they spent the weekends together.
Quote:

I'm not that experienced either but... I think as long as you are honest with your partners about who you are, it will help manage any unrealistic expectations of you. Prevent disappointment, fights, etc.
I think you're right about that.

So I suppose my next step is to step out of the introductions forum and try to get to know the community here?

LittleSara 11-11-2011 02:17 PM

Other helpful areas of the site
 
You can ask questions in New to Polyamory:
http://www.polyamory.com/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=4

Look for events in Meetings & Events:
http://www.polyamory.com/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=7

Or start your own blog in Lifestories & Blogs:
http://www.polyamory.com/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=5

Some members allow you to private message them if you want to ask a question directly.

Good luck! :)

Eruza 11-11-2011 02:25 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LittleSara (Post 110399)
You can ask questions in New to Polyamory:
http://www.polyamory.com/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=4

Look for events in Meetings & Events:
http://www.polyamory.com/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=7

Or start your own blog in Lifestories & Blogs:
http://www.polyamory.com/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=5

Some members allow you to private message them if you want to ask a question directly.

Good luck! :)

Grazi!

Your sig made me have a look at the glossary. Is "polywog" a pun on the naval line-crossing tradition? I didn't see an analogue for "shellback" in the glossary. I wonder what should be considered the "equator" in terms of experience in poly relationships.


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