Originally Posted by BlkDaddy4White
I personally dont think its something the kids should know...especially if they are YOUNG...teenagers you cant hide that sort of thing from...but i think all you do with yuonger kids is confuse them and open them up to the type of problems that we ALL dont think they should be open too.
I have to disagree. My parents were in relationships outside their marriage when myself and my siblings were young (though those relationships were complicated and I wouldn't consider them the true meaning of poly). They thought they did well to hide it. We all knew. Even my brother by the age of three sensed something different about that friendship. We caught them out on it all the time and it wasn't as if they weren't being careful. Kids are smarter than most adults give them credit for. Being lied to hurt and confused us more than anything they did with the lights out. We also had to deal with the whispers of other adult family members over it and the confusion of why our parents would do something they must know was wrong since they wouldn't tell us the truth. We all came to hate and resent the other couple our parents were involved with and it led to some pretty nasty family fights.
They are still deeply involved with the other couple, though I don't know entirely the nature of that relationship anymore. As an adult I can mentally and emotionally handle it (most of the time) and it helped that my mother FINALLY (only a year ago) admitted some of what had happened more than 20 years ago. But the lies and secrecy and resent have pretty much destroyed the respect and trust within the entire family, including between my parents who are still unhappily married. The damage done and the feeling that their outside relationships must be "wrong" and "abnormal" (based on what others said and the refusal of my parents to discuss it with me) is in part what caused me to repress my bisexuality, cheat on my former partners rather than even entertain the idea I might be poly, and stay in abusive relationships with men because "at least a male/female relationship was normal". I thank the gods I have the husband I do who saw and accepted me for what I was even before I could look in the proverbial mirror.
The bottom line is that the kids don't have to know the dynamics of the sexual relationship but NEVER lie to them or try to hide from them the nature of the relationship. It's about balancing the details with their level of understanding and maturity, not hiding it until they're old enough to figure it out on their own and be confused and resentful for feeling deceived.