That 'initial' poly discussion
I'd like to start a thread that maybe will draw out some experiences and wisdom from others that may help many people get over that initial step easier.
This happened to be prompted by an intro post I just read and got me thinking. It's such a common struggle and is an area that is so critical to navigate as best possible if the prospects going forward can evoke as little pain and hardship as possible.
How do you open the discussion of what polyamory really is and how to live it with your SO who is either 'wired mono' (if this is real) or has just never had the slightest exposure to the whole thought train and philosophy.
I can only offer up my (my mate & I) experience as a starter.
Although I was 'always' poly minded - or a least since I took the time as a teenager to put some serious thought and study into what the word (and actions) 'Love' really meant. The monogamous model - to my naturally analytical mind - just was full of cracks and what appeared unrealistic expectations. Seemed doomed to struggle and failure in a majority of cases.
The fact that the girl that eventually became my mate was married to my best friend for a time before eventually being forced to deal with the connection we had, seemed to subject me to a 'test' of my theory. Test passed with flying colors. Never any real jealousy - just acceptance.
Now.............many years later, her first test.
Via a what most would call a 'swinging' connection (we dabbled in that a bit when the mood struck both being highly sexual people), a woman appeared who I discovered a strong connection with. Accompanied with the typical NRE etc. It became obvious that there was more there between us than sex.
At the point this was becoming obvious - my mate approaced me with the killer question.
"Do you love her?"
After a moment's consideration on what the correct answer to that question was, I decided that this was the time to cross this bridge once & for all. The answer was "yes". And this of course led to months of exploration of what that word REALLY meant. And a lot of painful struggle. Because of complication on my mates end, as well as new girl's husbands, we eventually had to have a painful break for the good of the masses (families, mates etc). Painful as it was, we both agreed it was the "right" choice for the greatest good.
You see, my mate, despite the open, free environment (sexually) we were raised in, was still very programmed about what the concept of 'love' meant between two people. The programming specified pairing as the only 'real' definition of what most refer to as 'romantic' love. In that model there simply was no space for more than two ! The concept that if there was anything less than lifelong infatuation (NRE) between two people, it meant the 'love' wasn't real. This was/is the foundation of that belief system.
Crash, smash ! Belief system is pieces. Crisis. Chaos. Pain.
It took time. And lots of learning & analyzing. Identifying the source of the belief system (programming).
But yes - we got there. So much stronger and so much more loved. Our relationship moved to a whole different level. Much clearer understanding of what our 'connection' REALLY is - and what it would - and should-mean to us in the future.
But that's our story..............
How have any/all of you shined the light into that dark tunnel with your otherwise unsuspecting partner ?
What words and resources have you used to explain what was a complex revelation to them that was so simple to you ?
Maybe this can help others yet to cross that bridge ?
Last edited by GroundedSpirit; 11-05-2010 at 01:54 PM.