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-   -   Greetings, mythical beasts. We each have a question. (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=5908)

sohuman 01-25-2011 05:09 AM

Greetings, mythical beasts. We each have a question.
 
Hey - my husband of 10 years and I are new. I actually hate the internet for anything personal but have never laid eyes or ears, let alone any other body part, on an actual poly person. If you are a real actual poly person reading this, hi.

So we each have a question (and our questions may tell you more about us than any longwinded explanation of how we got here).

My question: how do "we" identify each other in the wild? Do we even try? Given how pervasive mono is, isn't it more efficient to attempt to convert prospective lovers, than to try to identify and choose from among the perhaps five other poly people in one's tri-state area?

His question: he has never met a single poly person in all his life either (sidenote, we are both well-educated and well-traveled, and have more than average numbers of friends in creative lines of work). He wants to know: how do poly people become poly in the first place? Did most of you start out mono and have that not work, did you know it from the start of your sexual life (like one would know one was gay), or did more of you just fall in with a poly crowd? (and, I cannot resist chiming in with a snort: POLY CROWD, are you for real, we've never even met one and you think there are just crowds of them out there running around? ...or is the very reason we've never met any poly people because they're all huddled together in a crowd somewhere? is it like that Ellen Degeneres joke where she answers people who ask her if she has any loose change by saying "no, sorry, it's all in rolls")

I just asserted and he agreed that anyone who comes to consensual conscious monogamy or consensual conscious polyamory through serious and humanistic contemplation of the dynamics of love, harm, interpersonal ethics, and commitment is more emotionally mature than someone who just fell into anything for any reason other than thinking it through for him or herself. We do also agree that the relative scarcity of people who even try to think big issues through - rather than spouting something they heard somewhere that sounded good to them - is just depressing. He is worried that there are just as many poly a-holes as there are regular a-holes out there. I think/hope the ratio might be a bit different.

So, in sum: if you do actually exist, do you also think as well? Cause that would be really something. Especially on the internet.

ImaginaryIllusion 01-25-2011 06:17 AM

Real? Yep.
Do we come out of the computer? Sometimes...
Recognition in the Wild? We all have secret decoder rings.
Answers above that should be taken seriously? Few if any. ;)

Welcome to the Forum

FlameKat 01-25-2011 11:11 AM

Your question: No idea :D

His question: Read through the forum, most people have added their stories to the information on here...

Welcome :D

Catfish 01-25-2011 01:07 PM

Welcome. I enjoyed your introduction immensely.

It's all relative. I imagine the question of conversion or "seeking to find a wild one" is akin to dating in the pervasive mono world. Simply approach the creature you desire and be yourself. You will be surprised, I promise.

Best of luck to you both.

GroundedSpirit 01-25-2011 03:16 PM

Hi Human and welcome !

And what a great post for a first entry ! Some great provocative thoughts and questions in there. Enough for an interesting thread outside the boundaries of "Intros". We'll see what our great mods choose to do with this. Hopefully move it ? (hint hint)


Quote:

Originally Posted by sohuman (Post 63118)
Hey - my husband of 10 years and I are new. I actually hate the internet for anything personal but have never laid eyes or ears, let alone any other body part, on an actual poly person. If you are a real actual poly person reading this, hi.

Actually, I suspect you have :) But because it's been kind of outside your sights you didn't notice it. Now, having discovered the possibilities, things may well change.

So we each have a question (and our questions may tell you more about us than any longwinded explanation of how we got here).

Quote:

Originally Posted by sohuman (Post 63118)
My question: how do "we" identify each other in the wild? Do we even try? Given how pervasive mono is, isn't it more efficient to attempt to convert prospective lovers, than to try to identify and choose from among the perhaps five other poly people in one's tri-state area?

Granted, there are not a large number of polys in practice yet (proportionally) so it may be that you pick up a sense of 'potential' more from people's more open attitude. Especially watching interactions between couples or more-ples (my own word). A certain air of freedom, confidence, etc in how they interact with each other and others in the picture.
Conversion I personally wouldn't recommend. Not only is it usually futile, it's also not something I believe to be 'right'. Education ? Yes. Open dialog ? Yes. Trying to cram my ideas down someone else's throat. Not happening.

Quote:

Originally Posted by sohuman (Post 63118)
He wants to know: how do poly people become poly in the first place? Did most of you start out mono and have that not work, did you know it from the start of your sexual life (like one would know one was gay), or did more of you just fall in with a poly crowd?

If I had to guess (it that's all it would be), I'd say that 10% came to poly via intellectual pursuit, observing & analyzing human nature, studying it, asking the hard questions about why there are so many problems and what might be a better way.
The other 90% probably 'fell' into it almost by accident. And in that 90% I think there are a large percentage that feel inside like they have 'come home'. Had they maybe had the time to study & philosophize about it they would have come there anyway.

As for BEING (starting out) mono and having it 'not work', I think it's more likely that most everyone can SEE from evidence around them even without experience that mono doesn't work (percentage-wise). Somebody will bash me for that one :) For those, I'd suggest maybe having a read of "Sex at Dawn" which I think is a good primer for understanding the biological history of human sexuality and sexual sociology of our species. The stats are in. Polyamourous cultures have generally been happier societies, more productive etc. Monogamy is truly not natural, a patriarchal invention primarily created by power hungry individuals (read religion) with a need for control.

There IS a better way. And it's NOT new !



Quote:

Originally Posted by sohuman (Post 63118)
I just asserted and he agreed that anyone who comes to consensual conscious monogamy or consensual conscious polyamory through serious and humanistic contemplation of the dynamics of love, harm, interpersonal ethics, and commitment is more emotionally mature than someone who just fell into anything for any reason other than thinking it through for him or herself.

Well, it might be that your choice of wording here might prove a bit provocative (emotionally mature), but I do agree you are kind of heading in the right direction. I might choose something along the line of 'more contemplative'. There are people who's natures (and socio background) lean them more towards thinking and studying the human condition. For those I think polyamory is an inevitable discovery. Emotional maturity will get put to the test from that point forward. :)




Quote:

Originally Posted by sohuman (Post 63118)
We do also agree that the relative scarcity of people who even try to think big issues through - rather than spouting something they heard somewhere that sounded good to them - is just depressing.

Ummmmmm - seems that way eh ?

Quote:

Originally Posted by sohuman (Post 63118)
He is worried that there are just as many poly a-holes as there are regular a-holes out there. I think/hope the ratio might be a bit different.

I think, for NOW, I lean towards your view. Ratio overall is likely somewhat better. Unfortunately, I'm afraid that will change over time. So history has spoken. Get in while the getting's good but be prepared for what may follow. :)

Again, welcome. Look forward to hearing your thoughts and questions.
It's a very nice place here with some great people. But like you, we're all still learning and feeling our way. Thousands of years of programming aren't overcome in a week - or a generation.

GS

Charlie 01-25-2011 04:37 PM

Oh GOODY! more funny smart people!
 
Welcome. Already, I think you're really great. I too enjoyed your post immensely and will take the time to develop an appropriately intelligent, lengthy reply.

For now, the geometry is all around you, I promise.

Senga 01-25-2011 07:07 PM

Oh yeah, there's this poly crowd for cool people, you know, only some people qualify.... Haha just kidding!!

There are many poly "signs" (wikipedia has a list of them I'm sure there is a list of them on the forum also). There are also conferences & workshops.
I think that trying to "convert" people would not accomplish what you desire. You can certainly introduce them to the idea. People have to evolve on their own you cant make them. If they are open minded, that is a great start.

Honestly I think the easiest way to start a relationship is with someone who is at or close to the same stage (emotionally, physically, spiritually, mentally) as you. Naturally polyamory creates an environment where people are constantly challenged/nurtured, so there is constant self growth. So I can see how poly people that have already experienced the lovestyle would want to join with others that have some experience, or are at least already open to the mindset.

bella123456 01-25-2011 10:18 PM

It is interesting to look at the path people took to end up here...many different paths to versions of the same location I would think.

For me, I am an open minded person. In my twenties I was comfortable dating several people openly at the same time. I didn't really think much about it back then, and I guess it was assumed that one would become serious and the others would fizzle out. Which is what happened - I would think the assumption of one or more fizzling out was pretty much due to there being only one expectation to how a relationship develops.

10 year marriage ended, and I suddenly became acutely aware it was just me in the drivers seat now. And I started to ask the question "what do you want?"

Oh, there's only one income in this house now. I want to earn more money.
Oh, my child stays with his father 6 nights out of 14. I have 6 nights away free. I want to go out and see more music.

I want to learn to play music.
I want to see more theatre.
I want lovely people in my life.

During this time, I had many strong love relationships with several people. None of them were sexual, for a variety of reasons (mine and theirs)...I'd never felt more loved and supported. And really, for the first time in my life I became very, very good at asking myself what I want. I listened a lot to myself, and worked out what I felt ok with. I decided I didn't need ONE life partner, as I was healthy, loved and enjoying a very full life.

I looked at the relationships with the people around me and started to believe that fulfilling relationships could look very different from the one model. This was a big step for me, just believing that value can be placed on relationships of all different types...that there isn't a need (for me)...to cram a relationship into a particular box

My friends kept saying - you're going to meet someONE at some point. And I kept feeling I didn't have an urge to meet someONE.
But I did meet someone, a poly guy - And I suddenly realised there was a framework I could put around the ideas in my head that were in infancy.

With him, it started with me realising I felt completely ok that he had a girlfriend....I was, in part so shocked that I felt ok, that I suspected I was in denial - lol ! I didn't feel ok immediately, it took some thought
I looked pretty hard for evidence I was struggling and I just didn't find it :)

So, by this point it was a only a small step...as all the "what do I want?" stuff had given me the training to take it from there..

I'm only little though, it's all very new and the philosophy is like shifting sand under my feet. I tend to have good balance :)

So, I'm only answering his question. I don't really know about yours..

sohuman 01-26-2011 02:29 AM

Wow! I look forward to digging into all these fantastic replies after our baby is sound asleep.

Feelin the amory.

AutumnalTone 01-26-2011 02:41 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sohuman (Post 63118)
Hey - my husband of 10 years and I are new. I actually hate the internet for anything personal but have never laid eyes or ears, let alone any other body part, on an actual poly person. If you are a real actual poly person reading this, hi.

You probably have met poly people. There are no scarlet letters nor ID tattoos to set them apart from the crowd, though, so they appear much the same as anybody else you'd run into.

Quote:

My question: how do "we" identify each other in the wild? Do we even try?
Some folks only look in places where other poly folk are likely to be found. OKCupid.com, for example, is a dating site on which poly folk can be found in abundance. There are local poly groups to be found in many places, and some folks only look to those groups to meet new partners. Some look to discussion sites such as this one.

Others simply meet interesting people and then sound them out as to whether or not those people are open to the idea of dating a poly person. If there's sparks, there just might be the possibility of a fire.

Quote:

Given how pervasive mono is, isn't it more efficient to attempt to convert prospective lovers, than to try to identify and choose from among the perhaps five other poly people in one's tri-state area?
I'm not certain that conversion is possible. Introduction to the concept may only make sense to those folks with some predisposition to multiple relationships. Thus, it's not a conversion as much as it's an awakening.

Quote:

He wants to know: how do poly people become poly in the first place? Did most of you start out mono and have that not work, did you know it from the start of your sexual life (like one would know one was gay), or did more of you just fall in with a poly crowd?
The whole idea of only being able to love one person at a time just never made sense to me. I found myself as a teenager quite smitten with multiple girls at the same time; that was a pretty constant state.

Quote:

He is worried that there are just as many poly a-holes as there are regular a-holes out there. I think/hope the ratio might be a bit different.
Are there people involved? Then there are assholes.

(Note: it is perfectable acceptable to curse on these boards.)

Quote:

So, in sum: if you do actually exist, do you also think as well? Cause that would be really something. Especially on the internet.
Nope. No thinking allowed.


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