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Old 08-22-2011, 06:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nycindie View Post
Funny how people are really responding to the kids or no kids issue, though I didn't think that was RP's focus in her original post. Must be a sensitive issue for many. Now in re-reading it, maybe that is a big part of the question, but it seems that the divide between "poly family" (however one defines family) and a much looser practice of poly, was her main concern or at least what prompted the question.

As a kid, I used to fantasize about being part of a big family. But as I got older, I have come to enjoy my solitude and independence, although there are times I am quite lonesome. A poly tribe, or big poly family, is nothing I would ever want, whether there were kids in the equation or not. Maybe if I were still in my 20s or 30s, I'd be into it - but now in my 50s? Nuh-uh. It probably does have largely to do with my lifelong choice to be childfree, but not the only reason. I relish my privacy, and have had enough roommates from hell to find communal living rather off-putting. In embracing poly, I reignited an old dream of mine to be a truly independent woman openly living on her own with a number of lovers.

Now, getting to the question of divisions in the poly community...

I believe any divisions we do see will mostly be predicated upon our own experiences and viewpoints. I guess the "poly family" question is a non-issue for me, since I am satisfied with my choice and don't find myself in situations where it is challenged. And in NYC I don't seem to meet many people trying to build a poly tribe (real estate being a huge factor, probably!). So, I don't notice a divide so much from that perspective, but more so from the view of solo vs. married. For example, I frequently reach a saturation point at which I cannot hear one more story about opening up a marriage, or the struggles of a couple dealing with their "thirds" or in-laws or whatever. I want to hear more from solo poly people who choose not to have any primaries. For me, it's a divide I feel a lot, because I am alone and set apart from most of the people I've met at the few poly gatherings I've attended, and here, and other poly forums I have visited. I find it exasperating when someone says to me, "But you're not poly, you're just dating." It has happened.

That's one divide I see, but if I look at how I feel when I'm in a poly group, I see more -- these are all based on my choices that seem different from the majority of those who go to hang out at poly gatherings (being solo, a straight woman, not into kink, etc.). For me, I have never felt like I fit in anywhere in my entire life, so I think I'm used to it, sad though that may seem. Now, I have not experienced any outright rejection from the poly community, so I think the divisions I see are totally subjective. As I stated earlier, I don't see the need to label myself or be part of some organized poly machine, so it doesn't affect me much, other than bring up some occasional feelings of frustration.

Geez, I fucking hope that made some sense, I got distracted halfway through writing it.
Well, I'm a solo poly at the moment and loving it. Not really sure if I will be forever, but I enjoy it now and remain open to what might come up. I wouldn't move in with my lover, though I think he and his GF would be up for it. I need my space too. Lots of it. In fact, I try not to visit more than one sleep-over per week, because it gets too much for me.

On the other hand, I consider myself part of a poly family. My lover and his GF, her lover, her daugter, one of my lover's ex girlfriends, my best friend and her BF, and his two teenage sons. We dont' live together: we don't even live all in the same town. But we function the way my extended family did when I was small, getting together regularly for social functions and taking care of one another. It's important to me to have that, but I don't really see it as a commune or anything fluffy like that. It just happens that we're all a bit non-traditional in our attutudes & behaviours around romantic relationships. I'm still independant in my decisionmaking, finance, and whatnot.
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