I can only speak from my experience.
Is poly something that is SO innate, like homosexuality or breathing, something you HAVE to do, not something you can choose to do, like quit smoking or eat less, exercise more?
I am polywired.
- Whether I am single and in the polyship of 1 -- just me!
- Or like now -- the married closed polyship of 2.
- Or like yesteryear -- the dating polyship of 3.
Still poly all those times.
I also question the concept of choice for polyship when I hear 2 different viewpoints:
1. I met another person at work/the gym/church/etc and we have a connection that I'd love to explore.
2. I am poly and need to love more than one person, so I'm off to find another person to love. Is that really a need or a want?
Does not apply to me? (puzzled)
1) That is a want. I would percieve this as someone asking their spouse to discuss if being allowed to explore is a possibility.
2) That is a need. Coupled with a break up -- because this person is not even asking the spouse for their input or comfort level. They are just gonna GO. Kinda mean too and not kind with their feelings.
My current agreement with DH is marriage -- in a closed polyship of 2 while we're in active parenting mode. That was the agreement and we will stick to it. We have an annual "state of the union" near our anniversary to review what is working, what is not, etc. We're both content. I think if you have made an agreement, you FINISH the agreement before starting off on a new path. For some it may mean writing a new agreement for how to best be together. For others it might be breaking up.
I'm very fortunate in my DH. He is not Closed to parts of me. He is Open to all of me. And for this I love him so.
My mono-BF1 (now my DH) and mono-BF2 knew before dating me I was poly. So there was no struggle of not having known. And it suddenly changing on 'em later. When we got married, DH and I had no struggles with a "mono spouse vs poly spouse" dynamic. Because he knew all this well before hand. It was "mono spouse AND poly spouse" from the get go.
I think it is harder for people who marry and then come to terms with their poly side after
the marriage has already begun. Maybe they don't realize polyamory has a name until much later or something. Or maybe it is the marriage that makes them finally realize -- "wait.... this isn't it!"
Then the struggle to cope.
It's entirely possible for poly me to be happy in a closed married polyship of 2. I've been here for more than a 15 yrs since BF2 and I parted ways amicably. And I am happy, loved, and content.
Why? Because I can be the authentic me and nothing is hidden.
Periodically I'll pop up with some poly wonderings, readings, or musings and mono DH shares the thoughts with me and that satisfies me. The exchange of ideas in calm fashion. That I am loved as I am
, authentically. There's no panic or freak out on his end. He knew it going in and he's lived with me this long and he KNOWS I'm not going anywhere so he's secure with me.
He likes to yank my chain when I announce I have a new crush (I never tell the crush person though-- we are closed) and I like being teased and I like crushing from a distance. It's flirty and fun for DH and I and our bond is tight so we can enjoy that sort of titillating banter.
Maybe that's the partial crux in other marriages? The poly person is not free
to be their authentic selves with the mono spouse? I'm not talking about free to date. I mean free to express
their poly thoughts? And not have the spouse wig out and rage at them?
Because it's like... if my mono DH says he loves me, all of me, just as I am? How much all of me
is he really
loving if I cannot even express my polyside thoughts to him -- my life partner? Without him having a conniption? I don't want to leave him. I don't want to betray our agreements. But I do want to be able to talk to him about my inner self, my ideas, my crushes, my STUFF. Doesn't he want to know me? All of me?
Or does he just want to love a sanitized version of me that meets his approval or is easier to digest? Who does that leave me to talk to then to create emotional intimacy and bond and all that other good married stuff? Cuz he's
the one I'm married to?
For us in marriage, the mono DH OPENS up to share poly thoughts, ideas, books, etc. The poly wife CLOSES to a polyship of 2. That's been our happy medium place and it satisfies. If we choose to Re-Open later, it's coming from an informed, "been here before" type place and years of talk. We've agreed that if both are not on board, it's fine to carry on as just as we are. I'm not lacking anything. Because I can be authentic in my relationship with him and he doesn't bat an eye. Just staying Open to each other even if not ever opening up to Another again. And it so satisfies me. I love him how he is loving me how I am.