Originally Posted by Flear
i don't get it that people try to say "i love you, so i have to limit you and your happiness, and you better like it, or else i'll stop wanting to be with you"
monogamy for some, sure, but when you are expecting the other person to be monogamous to you, ... i can't separate that from "i'm going to control and restrict and limit your freedom and choices"
Thanks for posting this.
I've been going over some of this stuff in my mind recently.
I suppose there are a couple of things. All relationships come with limits and I imagine that each of us have things that if our partner needed for their happiness, it would significantly change the relationship. For me, having a partner who needed a child to be happy - I wouldn't stop them having a child but I don't want to be closely involved in child rearing and so for them to have that, it would mean I would no longer want to be with them romantically. I would still be friends but not likely to spend much time with them because of the child/children.
There are other things that would utterly end things. If a partner of mine was to come to me, say they'd seen the light and were going to be training with Cesar Milan and then go on to set up a dog training business locally using those methods. I'd have to have a serious think about my ability to choose partners but it would be the end of the relationship. I would struggle to even be friends with somebody committing themselves to a path of causing suffering to the neighbourhood dogs.
For the moment, I want myself and my partner to be monogamous. Of course, my partner does not have to choose to be with me. I have spoken to him at length about this, told him that if he wishes poly relationships, I will absolutely support him and work with him so that we can shift our relationship back to friendship and he can find the romantic relationships he wishes. If that is what he wishes, we can be friends and he can find other partners. I have no wish to limit his freedom but I also have no wish to limit my own and so this is where we are.
I think that mostly my desire for monogamy just now comes down to empathy for others. When I read these boards and talk to friends about poly and think about my own experiences, what I think very often happens is that people enter into new sexual relationships without really considering the possible impact on the new people or on the loved ones of the new person. Very often, it seems to me, not everybody is on board in the rush to find new love. And of course, then people are hurt. I have no wish to be part of causing hurt to complete strangers and it seems to me like it's easiest to not do that that by being monogamous. That's also why I don't have affairs with married men - I don't want to cause that level of hurt to a complete stranger just so I can have more love in my life.
I don't want to 'work through' my empathy for others and get rid of it. I did do that at one time for a while and it made it hard for me to connect to people and I wasn't there for my friends and loved ones in the way I should have been.
So if this means that for the time being, I'm only up for monogamous relationships, so be it. For me, it isn't really about limiting my partners but about being as kind as possible (while under the obvious tension of living in a country that kills millions in illegal wars). Any partner I have must make their own choices about relationship styles and must change things between us as they need in order to be happy.