Originally Posted by Purpurea
I think what characterizes the need for a mono relationship is the need to feel to come first to your partner. The exclusive rights a mono relationship offers, the label, exclusive sex, marriage, are not the point, but the message this behavior sends out: "I love you more than anyone else." I think someone who needs a mono relationship, needs to be honestly loved more than other people by their partner.
What if your partner said: "There is someone else I feel emotionally equally close to, but although I wanted to if you didn't mind, because you do I will not have sex with this person, nor call them my girlfriend/boyfriend/life partner." - and you're ok with that, would you REALLY feel that this person is equally close to your partner, or would you, because of the fact you still get some exclusive rights, still feel you're number one to your partner, although the rational part of your brain might understand you're not?
Again to the monos: Would it be enough for you to know your partner COULD let other people emotionally equally close, but refuses to do so because of you?
It would depend entirely on how much this other person intruded into my life. What would be unacceptable to me if I was expecting a monogamous relationship would be if this other person took vacations with my partner, if the two of them went out to dinner or other events without me if I was available, accompanied my partner to small family gatherings or attended social functions as my partner's "date". The part of poly I just couldn't get past was the hurt I experience when my partner wants to build intimacy through shared memories and experiences with someone else when they're really the only person with whom I want the same. If there's something big and exciting going on, or something important or small and intimate, I want to be there for it as much as possible. I suppose being loved the most is a factor in there but for me it's also very much about being included and creating a history together. The fact that this other person didn't have the same benefits and privileges of automatic inclusiveness would make them feel not equal in my mind regardless of how much emotional closeness my partner felt for them.
If my partner could let someone else be emotionally close but chose not to because of my feelings I would probably have some anxiety about how long they could hold out. I'd likely always have some apprehension that at some point it wouldn't be enough for them.