A Curious Nephew
Kids are way more perceptive than we give them credit for.
Just today, we three were at my sister's house for our Christmas get-together. I was off playing with my 7 year old nephew and we were chatting about this and that that popped into his head. At one point in the conversation we we talking about how each of the people are related to each other - how I am his "aunt" and MrS's "wife" and his mom's "sister", so he comes out with "What about Dude?"
Hmmm...how to handle this. I say he is MrS's "friend" and our "roommate" and he comes out with: "I heard mom and dad talking and I thought, like maybe, you have two husbands. DO you have two husbands?" Yikes!
Now, we are not officially "out" as poly to our families. "Officially" they know that Dude has been living with us for 2 years, that we vacation together, they invite him to "family" functions (they know he is estranged from his own family), etc. These are not stupid people - I'm sure they "know", to some degree, what is going on. But we have not discussed it openly...and probably won't for some time, if ever ("not prying" is valued in my family, and we don't talk about "private/intimate" topics like sex). A note here, my sister and her husband are VERY religious, and their church is very small BUT gossip is very frowned upon.
So now I am faced with a dilemma. How do I answer this question in a way that a.) is honest (NOT lying to children is very important in my family) and b.) won't contradict any explanation for Dude's presence that my sister may provide to my nephew? What is a seven year old's concept of "husband" anyway?
My answer, to the question "DO you have two husbands?": "Hmmmm...not quite, but almost." (This seemed to satisfy him, and he moved on to other topics - namely Star Wars and Legos.) I feel like I should call my sister and let her know a.) his question and b.) my answer - so that she can take that into account if he brings up the subject with them. (I just have this mental picture of him announcing to his Sunday School class - when there is some story about a biblical character with multiple wives - that Aunt Jane has two husbands.)
BUT I don't actually want to have a conversation with my sister about our situation - I'm perfectly happy with the state of vague acceptance (a familial DADT if you will) that we have now. MrS says that I am over-thinking things and that it is perfectly ok to just let it slide and that my answer was vague enough that they can still re-frame my nephew's interpretation if needed.
Me: poly bi female, in an "open-but-not-looking" Vee-plus with -
MrS: hetero polyflexible male, live-in husband (23+ yrs)
Dude: hetero poly male, live-in boyfriend (4+ yrs) and MrS's best friend
Lotus: poly bi married female, "it's complicated" relationships with Dude/JaneQ/MrS (1+ years)
+ "others" = FBs, FWBs, lover-friends, platonic G/BFs, boytoys, etc.
My poly blogs here:
The Journey of JaneQSmythe
The Notebook of JaneQSmythe