Originally Posted by Hades36
Just thought of a really critical question: what's happened in your life to make this such a hot button for you? Your gripes about semantics are great for debate but is that really what you're asking, is that really what's eating at you? Just seems you're really frustrated over...um...words? I'm always open to having a discussion about what's really prompting your question. I mean, if its really just about semantics, then my feeling is that we all have a right to call it whatever we want, so that seems like a dead end.
Why say anyone is "really frustrated" or "griping" just for challenging a term and how it is used? Asking a question about why a term is used is not proclaiming it a "hot button" topic. It is asking a question. The thread serves to shed light on an inaccurate use of language. Such inaccuracies can lead to misunderstandings and misconceptions.
People who assume that there is a defined polyamorous lifestyle when there is not, could perhaps make choices in their lives based on that assumption which then could be detrimental to them, such as going along with a practice that they believe is part of "the lifestyle" they have chosen rather than determining for themselves how to work out the details of polyamory and make it fit into the lifestyle they already lead or wish to lead. Questioning the language is important -- is the same as when people who identify as "childfree" point out the distinction between using that word and using "childless." There are valid reasons for such clarification.
A lifestyle is not a culture is not a scene.
There is no one polyamorous lifestyle. Though there are many traits or practices shared among polyamorists in how they conduct their lives, there is nothing that can be said to be shared by every polyamorist other than the acceptance of the belief that a person can love more than one. People in a wide range of lifestyles practice polyamory.