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-   -   Multiple-member relationships? (More than 3 or 4) (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=8329)

MrFarFromRight 03-30-2011 07:50 PM

Multiple-member relationships? (More than 3 or 4)
Hi! I've been contributing to this web-site for about 7 weeks now, reading with interest other people’s life- and poly-stories, sharing some of my own. But much of what I've read concerns Vs, triads, and (less often) 4-people relationships. Also polys who have various relationships with several people who don’t know each other.

I'd be very interested in reading about larger groups. Not necessarily groups where everybody is sexually active with everybody else (or most of them). But where at least MOST of the people in the whole tangle know and like each other... and especially instances where the whole tangle considers itself “family” – whether you all live together or not. I guess that this would be my ideal, but I can imagine lots of difficulties that would have to be overcome. So I'd appreciate it if those of you with experience could share insights, joys, pains, advice, whatever...

I've written on other threads that “Love is infinite”, but is this just a nice cliché? I hope not.

p.s. Can anybody suggest other tags for this thread? I'm willing to remove one or more of those I've used if you can come up with better ones.

Hannahfluke 03-30-2011 08:03 PM

I don't know if this counts as what you're looking for, but our little network of people definitely consists of more than 3 or 4 people. We aren't all involved sexually, but for the most part have at least met each other and get along. Some of us are good friends, some not so much, but we're all friendly with each other.

Our configuration is:

Me and my husband (C), who have been married almost 20 years, with two teenagers.

My husband's girlfriend (T) and her husband (G), who have been married about 19 years, with 3 kids.

G's girlfriend (J) and her husband (Z). only married a short time, no kids yet

My partner (CC), who is single and has few other partners, whom I haven't met, or have only briefly met.

I also have a partner who is deployed with the Army right now, but when we were dating, I got along well with his wife (they've been married about 12 years I think and have 2 little kids)

I've also went on a few dates with another guy (still seeing if that one works out) and I met and liked his wife (they have two little kids too).

So even if you only count the one partner that I'm actively seeing right now, that's at least 7 people in the group, most of who have met and get along well.

LovingRadiance 03-30-2011 08:09 PM

Mono, Redpepper & Derby are involved in a group like that. :) You might PM one or the other and ask if they'll contribute to your thread. :)

Mono is ... mono, RP has him, her husband Polynerdist, girlfriend Derby, a non-sexual boyfriend... her husband has a boyfriend I believe, Derby has a husband who also has a girlfriend...
After that-they'd have to say cause damn if I can keep it all straight!

NeonKaos 03-30-2011 08:20 PM

...derby's husband's girlfriend has a boyfriend who has other girlfriends... does he have a boyfriend too?

MonoVCPHG 03-30-2011 10:20 PM


Originally Posted by LovingRadiance (Post 73766)
Mono is ... mono,

Hey..I 've got a motorbike that I'm practically fluid bonded with and a borrowed cat who I'm sure has unnatural feelings for me :eek:

Being mono is sooo lonely:p

MrFarFromRight 03-30-2011 10:23 PM

I suppose that some of my interest in this multi-poly idea is wondering if there’s a limit to an individual’s capacity to love. I could pinpoint a time in my life (years before the word “polyamory” got coined) when I had a primary (open) and long-term relationship with A, a longer-lasting but more sporadic relationship (as far as depth of feeling goes, also primary) with B, a NRE-infatuation-obsession relationship with C, a past relationship with D which got restarted at some point after the one with C had ended, a summer romance with E that I would have liked to continue beyond the summer (but it didn’t work out that way, though we continued to write to each other)... and was open to other relationships if they should happen (including several past relationships that I would have been open to restarting if the situation had arisen). As I was – at this point in my life – somewhat of a nomad, these relationships (the active ones) were spread over 4 countries. Everybody knew of my primary relationship with A and A knew of all the others. She had met B and C and I think that she later met D. I think that I can honestly say that I loved all 5 of them at the same time – as well as loving just as strongly other people where there was no sexual element.

But would I – and/or they - have been able to handle a situation where we were all living in close proximity, they all knew each other... and the timetable was a bit more complicated? (For example: D was never in the same country as either C or E (B and D had been in the same country, but at a time before I met A) so there was never any problem – between them – of “with whom does J sleep tonight?”) Would I have been able to “juggle” the time I spent with each? Would any triads or other configurations have developed?

And is there an upper limit to the number of people that you can love?

nycindie 03-30-2011 11:12 PM

Circle House
For a while when I first started coming here, there was participation on the boards from Selene, who was married to Andulvar and dating Marius, Company, and Thunder, as well as Vegeta and Ariel. I think they all lived in two houses, but then I believe Vegeta and Ariel broke it off (somewhat dramatically, if I recall) and left the tribe.

I have wondered how they're all doing since then. Anyone know them well enough to contact them for an update? They wouldn't know me from Eve.

Ariakas 03-30-2011 11:24 PM

We used to have a group on here that was 3 couples and a dude. So it does happen.

We also used to have a woman on here that lived in a poly house with the number ranging from 5 to 10 people at anytime. Fairly transient.

I wonder how many larger groups have people loving every division. Most seem to be more connected V's or w's than actual stars for example.


And is there an upper limit to the number of people that you can love?
Depends on how you believe in love. I believe there are limitations. Others don't. I romantically love two women very deeply. I would have a hard time finding space, time, energy or even love to include another. But my viewpoint on love is fairly "limited" compared other polys.

Ariakas 03-30-2011 11:35 PM

Here is my take on it. I think you are looking for a hard limit that is person to person. Where you ACTUALLY run into problems with large constellations is the people factor. Your have exponentially more socializing requred with larger groups. Unless someone is dating and keeping it private (which does happen)

As a triad you have 4 relationships
Quad has 7 relationships (maybe more my math is off today)

Thats a lot of freaking relationships and time.. and ALL of it completely within this circle of people. Trying to manage all of those relationships not only become tedious, but almost impossible. Not everyone is going to get along with me... add a 5th person, you end up more complex. Then of course you have friends and family. The time invested becomes... ridiculous. I am a private person, when the hell do I get time for me?... for example ;)

So even if I can, in theory, love endlessly, I sure as hell am not going to love everyone enough to put up with all the metamours involved.

I think thats why and when you run into sizing problems in regards to poly.

MrFarFromRight 03-30-2011 11:37 PM


Originally Posted by Ariakas (Post 73794)
“The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.” - george Bernard shaw

I love that quote in your signature, but I haven't noticed it before. Have you added it recently?

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