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-   -   Mono's Block in Understanding Poly (Whale vs Scissors) (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=27813)

PolyPhonic 09-01-2012 05:15 PM

Mono's Block in Understanding Poly (Whale vs Scissors)
 
I think the biggest fear/hurdle/rub in getting a Mono to understand Poly is to stop comparing the two.

Poly works, and creates happiness, intrinsic to it's "poly ways", not in any way intrinsic to "mono ways". And so Mono's have the mental block/hurdle of understanding how "poly ways" create happiness for polys in ways they don't consider happiness to mono's. And they seem to try and understand it as how it differs from their mono lifestyle. But that's like trying to see the difference between Scissors and a Whale. They each serve such a different purpose and really have their own entire way of life and purpose. Mono's seem to project the question: "How would that make me feel?" in trying to understand it. But that is the block right there. You can't use your own mono experiences to understand poly. A Whale doesn't care how being Scissors would make him feel. He doesn't have a need to cut paper.

CielDuMatin 09-01-2012 07:00 PM

Well, I tend to agree that the mindsets are very very different, but it's human nature of compare new experiences with our existing paradigms. Folks need to have information and try to fit it into their "world picture".

A lot of poly folks struggle to understand mono folks - so often they will post "why don't they get it? This is just so much commonsense!" The thing is, this mirrors exactly what the monogamous person is thinking.

Based on what I have seen and experienced, it's worth exploring a little what common ground there can be - it might be that the mono person is more poly than they think, due to conditioning, but there comes a point where you have to stop beating the issue to death and start to take a few things on faith about how the other person thinks. If you wish to stay with that mono person, then there may need to be some extra concessions put in place in order to keep things from going totally off the rails. It's going to differ, based on the individuals involved, of course.

dingedheart 09-01-2012 07:55 PM

Are you talking about mono's outside of a relationship ...parents , friends. Or are you talking about a mono partners in a relationship with poly partners.?


Isn't the basis for the interaction "the relationship(s) " feelings.

Whats your motivation in having multiple partners or relationships. ..., excape from boredom , free stuff, etc

redpepper 09-01-2012 11:25 PM

I don't think there is that much difference actually. I use the analogy of religions. Religions are different. All claim to be a spiritual practice. All come at spirituality from a different angle. The result being the same, spiritual satisfaction for the individual involved.

Really, the only difference is desire between poly and mono I think. Poly people desire a specific love style that fulfills a need for more expansive love with many. Monos desire love just the same but their need for expansion with many doesn't include calling them partners or lovers and having sex and close intimate time with them. They are happy to expand into the amount of love they want and need in a smaller container and a different level of intimacy as far as I can see. Its all love, all valid, all changable and all workable.

Having studied mono/poly relationships for many years here on the forum, in my personal relationship with MonoVCPG, conducting workshops and just living in the dynamic I have, I really think it comes down to personality types and how love is played out within them. That and an interest in relationship dynamics and communication or not. Some people like to fix up old cars, some like to have many boyfriends... At the end of the day there really isn't that much difference as fas as I have noticed.

nycindie 09-02-2012 01:57 AM

I think monogamous relationships and polyamorous relationships are pretty much the same, people just have more of them in poly. All the things necessary for a good mono relationship are also what make a poly relationship work: things like mutual respect, caring, compassion, intimacy, honesty, effective communication, affection, consideration, a willingness to take responsibility, love or a loving quality to interactions, allowing space for the person to be themselves (autonomy), and some kind of commitment. And people must love themselves in order to love others, whether they are in poly or mono situations.

The only thing that many monogamous people can't quite understand is how one can maintain all these things with more than one person simultaneously, but the basics of what makes any relationship satisfactory and successful are all the same things, IMHO. "Poly ways?" I don't know what the hell that even means.

PolyPhonic 09-02-2012 02:26 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by dingedheart (Post 152145)
Are you talking about mono's outside of a relationship ...parents , friends. Or are you talking about a mono partners in a relationship with poly partners?

Outside for sure. But of course I'm sure even Mono's inside still struggle with grasping Poly. I think they see it as a different belief set, but really it's much stronger than that IMpvO (In my poly virgin opinion). It's easy to accept or tolerate another belief set, like for instance Jews don't believe Jesus is the son of God, but Christians do. Pretty simple. They can get that. A Christian can understand that, and a Jew can understand the contrary. But it's deeper than a different belief. It's a totally different understanding.

Derbylicious 09-02-2012 03:05 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by evanevans (Post 152179)
Outside for sure. But of course I'm sure even Mono's inside still struggle with grasping Poly. I think they see it as a different belief set, but really it's much stronger than that IMpvO (In my poly virgin opinion). It's easy to accept or tolerate another belief set, like for instance Jews don't believe Jesus is the son of God, but Christians do. Pretty simple. They can get that. A Christian can understand that, and a Jew can understand the contrary. But it's deeper than a different belief. It's a totally different understanding.

But it really isn't. It's a different way of relating to other humans. We all relate to each other and the fact that some of us want to relate to more than one person sexually or romantically really isn't all that different from mono people wanting to have friends at varying depths for different types of friendships. We all crave human contact and interaction and really we are much more the same than different. (But then again I tend to believe that like sexuality monogamy and non-monogamy exist on a spectrum with very few people being at either extreme and most of us falling somewhere in the middle. The challenge is to find that middle ground where you understand each other and move from there).

PolyPhonic 09-02-2012 03:42 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Derbylicious (Post 152184)
But it really isn't. It's a different way of relating to other humans. We all relate to each other and the fact that some of us want to relate to more than one person sexually or romantically really isn't all that different from mono people wanting to have friends at varying depths for different types of friendships. We all crave human contact and interaction and really we are much more the same than different. (But then again I tend to believe that like sexuality monogamy and non-monogamy exist on a spectrum with very few people being at either extreme and most of us falling somewhere in the middle. The challenge is to find that middle ground where you understand each other and move from there).

Well that definitely goes towards what I'm saying. It's a different understanding of how to relate to other humans. A way which mono's have a hard time understanding using their own understanding. I think you are definitely explaining a different understanding: telling a mono that it's the same as friends in a mono world with added love and intimacy (to paraphrase). They can't understand that natively. They understand that kind of love and intimacy to be a direct connection one-on-one with only one special person who is more than a friend could be.

PolyPhonic 09-02-2012 03:43 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Derbylicious (Post 152184)
But it really isn't. It's a different way of relating to other humans. We all relate to each other and the fact that some of us want to relate to more than one person sexually or romantically really isn't all that different from mono people wanting to have friends at varying depths for different types of friendships. We all crave human contact and interaction and really we are much more the same than different. (But then again I tend to believe that like sexuality monogamy and non-monogamy exist on a spectrum with very few people being at either extreme and most of us falling somewhere in the middle. The challenge is to find that middle ground where you understand each other and move from there).

I think you are projecting the fact that you understand poly, into your viewpoint, of, what a mono can understand.

nycindie 09-02-2012 04:42 PM

Okay, so you feel that "poly ways" are vastly different from "mono ways" and monos have incredible difficulty understanding polyfolk. Several of us are saying poly relationships aren't all that different from mono ones and that there are challenges in helping a mono understand, but it can be done. Remember, that many of us who practice poly in our lives were staunchly mono prior to doing so. But you disagree and want to argue your view. Alright, so monogamous peeps have a hard time "getting" what poly is -- so what? Did you actually want a discussion or just the opportunity to defend your stance? What's the big deal? What's your point?


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