Originally Posted by Tonberry
For people who are curious about how poly works or want to try poly, I find it useful to give just a few general advices to avoid overwhelming them (then later you can direct them to more detailed articles if needed). So I was thinking, if I had to sum everything up in three points, how would I do it?
Here is what I came up with:
1) The basic rules of monogamous relationships apply (communication, respect, no going being each other's back, etc)
2) Treat each partner as their own person, each relationship as its own relationship. Be wary of treating them "the same" out of fairness, they are different people and most likely want and need to be treated in a unique way.
3) Communicate even more than for a monogamous relationship, sometimes one on one, sometimes with everyone involved depending on the situation. Make sure you have the same goals and know everyone's boundaries. In monogamous relationships many things are just assumed, which is bad for monogamous relationships too but has the potential to really backfire in poly ones. So make sure to know where everyone stands.
If YOU had to sum up everything in three bullet points, what would they be?
I think these are important!
For my own list, I would not refer to mono "rules" for poly, as poly seems to me to cover a strictly larger field. I also don't think having the same goals is mandatory, in my experience it is more about making the goals compatible.
My personal variety could then be
1. Treat the relationships, including that to myself, like children, in care and love growing up to be free.
2. Focus on the unique qualities and potentials in each relationship - again including that to myself.
3. "Real poly" above parallel monogamy. Take responsibility, as far as necessary and possible, for the whole situation, including the different goals of the participants, not ignoring the development of my own, always trying to be as inclusive as possible.