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Old 11-21-2011, 07:42 PM
zylya zylya is offline
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Sussex, UK
Posts: 77

Originally Posted by AutumnalTone View Post
You'll find that a lot of such agreements, particularly among those new to practicing polyamory, are not so much mutually agreed upon as one party inflicting a rule upon the other, with the other acquiescing rather than walking away. So, in a great many OPP situations, it *is* one partner inflicting an unreasonable deman on the other.

The example you quote is quoted without context, which is necessary to tell if the question was reasonable. Based solely on the wording of the comment--"...limits he imposed..."--suggest that the discussion was about one partner imposing limits on the other, and those limits not being fully agreeable nor necessarily what the other truly wants.
If we take the context, it was rory, who's been active on this forum for a long time, and started opening up her relationship 4 years ago (all info from the topic). Hardly "new to polyamory" really. She also mentioned that she was more interested in girls than guys. Yet the implication was still that it was HIM forcing HER. I actually read the discussion and at no point in rory's post was it suggested that it was his decision that she accepted, and indeed in a later post in the same topic she confirmed as much directly. A link has been posted in this topic, but I probably should've posted the link myself. The topic was right below this one when I posted though so I didn't really think about it. In addition, a demand is only unreasonable, if the person being demanded feels it's unreasonable.

The negative connotation that attaches to the term is there rightly, I believe. If the one partner only desires the single P (whether penis or pussy), then no need for such a policy exists. My wife has no real interest in finding a male lover, for example, although she's free to do so--there's no need for a OPP for her to limit herself to only one male lover. A one-penis policy only crops up when one partner desires multiple penises, much to the chagrin of the other; the only reason we could have for a OPP is if I were insecure and didn't want her fucking other men.

An OPP speaks to one partner simply not trusting the other and the existing relationship. It speaks to a negative relationship dynamic. It speaks to *bad things* and I think it good that it has a negative connotation.
In the case of a monogamous relationship that's opening up, I completely disagree - if someone was married and monogamous, and their partner told them they were bisexual and wanted to explore a relationship with someone of the same sex, then I don't think it's entirely unreasonable for someone in that situation to want "OPP" because it's as close to the relationship that they originally signed up for. If someone was going through the effort to open up a monogamous relationship for me to explore my poly then I'd be a bit of a dick to insist that it was totally open when I've already turned their world upside down by dropping the polybomb on them. An OPP is almost a compromise between "true" polyamory and the monogamy they went in for.

Also if you're going to claim that OPP is negative because of lack of trust, then surely monogamy is also negative for the same reason - in that case there's an even BIGGER group of people that you don't want them to have sex/form relationships with. But we don't view monogamy as unhealthy in and of itself, it is the application of the monogamy, or the one penis/pussy policy that is either healthy or unhealthy.

Originally Posted by Mya View Post
This is precisely what's wrong with the term when used in all situations where there's only one penis involved. It gives the impression that the woman had little to do with that agreement and that's not the case every time. If someone says "You have OPP" about another persons situation it makes the assumption that the woman didn't have much say in that. It makes the woman a victim, not an active decision-maker.
This is what I was trying to say before - by talking about how a guy IMPOSES it on a woman, it suggests that women aren't able to make decisions in their relationships. Let's be clear here, if you are in a relationship and your partner suggests a OPP and you don't want to go along with it, but you do anyway, for the sake of the relationship, then you have noone to blame but yourself. If it is important to you that there is no OPP then DO NOT BE IN A RELATIONSHIP WITH SOMEONE WHO INSISTS UPON IT.

In my relationship with my primary, she doesn't want to get pregnant or catch STDs, yet we still have a "practise safe sex" rule. Surely this rule is unnecessary? Yet we still have it because it makes us feel more secure and that we're in agreement. Any rules that people make are to protect themselves - if someone is jealous, that is a very real emotion. If a OPP made ME feel better and it was something that she was happy with anyway, then why exactly is it a bad thing? Yes jealousy can be negative and unhealthy, but that doesn't mean we'll never experience it. Surely if both people are happy with the OPP and it is benefitting the relationship then it is a good thing?
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