Ceoli, I thank you for posting this so clearly. For some reason, I've had a hard time wrapping my head around a lot of these concepts. Now that I'm starting to "get it," this is really helpful in understanding the underlying problem that so many people are having on this forum, with "my triad just isn't working the way I wanted it to!"
While you're not talking about the primary/secondary thing here, I think the same notions apply. All these things, primary/secondary/triad "roles", hinge on having a pre-conceived notion of what a relationship should be. Ironically enough, while I always rejected that notion in the context of dating in general, I for some reason grasped onto it for the purpose of polyamory. I think I falsely believed that explicit guidelines on behaviour could somehow mitigate potential damage and heartache within existing relationships, not realizing that these prescriptions were more likely to cause it than prevent it.
In my own past, I've always had the best relationships when I wasn't looking for them, because then they were free to develop on their own. And a lot of them just plain didn't develop. Looking back, I'm grateful that I wasn't trying to force them to because I would have spent a lot of time in dead-end unhappy relationships.
We've all known people, poly or mono, who were in love with "the idea" of a significant other, and were willing to slot anyone remotely appropriate into that role. The same way that some people just need to be single to learn how to be themselves, it seems that some couples just need to be couples to learn how they relate to one another, before they'll be capable of having healthy relationships outside that pairing...
Originally Posted by redpepper
I hear of so many people looking for a "triad" with a unicorn because they think their love is so special it should be shared, that it quite frankly makes me want to wretch. Like the third is a puppy or something....
My knee-jerk reaction would be "if you have so much love to share with a third, then have a baby!" Then you have every right to slot that third into the "role" of child, without having to treat them like an "equal." (obviously kids need to be treated with love, dignity and respect, but to me that's different from equality)