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  #1  
Old 05-24-2010, 02:58 PM
DharmaBum23 DharmaBum23 is offline
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Talking If you are already whole..why date at all?

The below quote is from the "Learning Compersion" thread. I apologize if singling this quote out brings any discomfort on your part, SC. This is just the best expression of an idea that I have seen in pretty much 99.9% of poly exchanges and I have a question about. I have started a separate thread to keep from highjacking the original.


Quote:
Originally Posted by SchrodingersCat View Post
You'll be much better off if you look to yourself and only yourself to provide your happiness. If this relationship prevents you from making yourself happy, then you can decide to make yourself happy by leaving it. And if you find yourself a nice mono man, bonus!

Now, the title of the post pretty much sums up my question.

If you are already making yourself happy, why would you want to date someone else(in a poly or monogamous context)?

As can be seen over and over again(either reading this form or talking with friends that are monogamous) dating can very easily torpedo one's happiness if one is already happy.

It seems to me that there is a name for people who do not require(in any way, shape, form or fashion) another person in a romantic or sexual context for them to be happy. They are called monastics.

As a matter of fact, one of the few things that texts written by Buddhist and Christian monastics have in common is how they state that they are quite happy without romance or sex and how engaging with either would be like a bull running through the china shop that is their happiness.

I would propose that, unless one hopes to eventually get to the point where they no longer engage in relationships at all, it would be a much more reasonable goal to try to be content when not with another person with the idea that the reward for the insane risks that come with dating is a form of happiness that you cannot achieve while single.

So, what do you guys think?
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  #2  
Old 05-24-2010, 03:21 PM
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Breathesgirl Breathesgirl is offline
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In my experience happiness begets happiness.

I'm quite happy being by myself on a regular basis. Sometimes I need human contact. I love my boyfriend and am quite happy with him. I'm even happier now that I have Possibility and his family in my life.

Quote:
“Laugh and the world laughs with you; Weep, and you weep alone; For the sad old earth must borrow its mirth, But has trouble enough of its own”

Ella Wheeler Wilcox
For me poly is about having needs met by one partner that can't be met by another. If I want a quiet movie night it's Possibility all the way. If I want conversation it's Breathes. There's more to it than this paragrapgh suggests but I can't quite put my finger on what, exactly, yet.

It also has something to do with compersion. When Breathes or Possibility are happy then I'm happy. When I'm happy they're happy.

Poly just makes the wholeness MORE whole, if that makes any sense, lol.
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Old 05-24-2010, 03:31 PM
AutumnalTone AutumnalTone is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Breathesgirl View Post
Poly just makes the wholeness MORE whole, if that makes any sense, lol.
It makes perfect sense to me.

When one has all of the components necessary for a fulfilling life, being engaged in the activities that one holds most dear and expressing one's self freely, then one has a whole life. Adding more to that simply expands one's life.

My life is whole in that I know and like myself, in that I am involved in doing many activities that I love, in that I've dear friends to offer me company, and so forth. My life expanded when I got involved with my wife. It has expanded further when I've been involved with somebody else.

To use a food analogy--it's a whole pizza whether it's a small, medium, or large.
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When speaking of various forms of non-monogamy...it ain't poly if you're just fucking around.

While polyamory, open relationships, and swinging are all distinctly different approaches to non-monogamy, they are not mutually exlusive. Folks can, and some do, engage in more than one of them at a time--and it's all good.
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Old 05-24-2010, 03:24 PM
AutumnalTone AutumnalTone is offline
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I think that for a person to engage in any healthy, close relationship, there's a need for them to be whole and happy by themselves. That condition, in no fashion, precludes any romantic ties, as having a relationship only adds to an enjoyable life.

The converse, that of a situation where a person isn't whole and happy, simply means that getting involved with somebody else means dragging issues along that will work against the relationship.

Citing the experience of monastics isn't going to provide much of an insight on human behavior. Such folks are such a small percentage of the population that they really do stand as outliers in the data. THe human experience encompasses not only those with little affinity for close, intimate relationships (and the monastics may simply substitute religious experience for such), but the rest of the sweep of humanity and the variety of attachment needs. In the same fashion, one can't assume that all humans should be comfortable with upwards of two dozen strong romantic relationships simply because some people are.

As for dating torpedoing happiness? I don't think so. Dating can, perhaps, torpedo self-confidence. Happiness is a more fundamental state, in my experience, and I've been happy (!) to be able to tap into my pool of happiness even when most stressed by events not fully under my control.
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When speaking of various forms of non-monogamy...it ain't poly if you're just fucking around.

While polyamory, open relationships, and swinging are all distinctly different approaches to non-monogamy, they are not mutually exlusive. Folks can, and some do, engage in more than one of them at a time--and it's all good.
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Old 05-24-2010, 03:35 PM
DharmaBum23 DharmaBum23 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AutumnalTone View Post


As for dating torpedoing happiness? I don't think so. Dating can, perhaps, torpedo self-confidence. Happiness is a more fundamental state, in my experience, and I've been happy (!) to be able to tap into my pool of happiness even when most stressed by events not fully under my control.
Question in regards to fundamental state? Does that mean that it is unchanging? If so, how does one obtain it if one doesn't already have it?

If it isn't unchanging, how can dating not threaten to diminish if not destroy it? A considerable amount of our music and literature in western civilization is devoted to how painful love and dating can be. If happiness as a state can be gained or lost, if anything would do it, I would put dating in the top 10.

I have to admit my bias here. I don't think that any state(happiness, sadness, whatever) is at all unchanging from moment to moment. From my experience, happiness can stay around for awhile, but eventually it will fade. Just like sadness.
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Old 05-24-2010, 03:44 PM
NeonKaos NeonKaos is offline
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"Fundamental" generally means "underlying" or "basic" and "unchanging" means "unchanging".

I suppose they could be used interchangeably depending on the context.
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Old 05-24-2010, 05:09 PM
DharmaBum23 DharmaBum23 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YGirl View Post
"Fundamental" generally means "underlying" or "basic" and "unchanging" means "unchanging".

I suppose they could be used interchangeably depending on the context.
Well, the way I interpreted the response(which may not be the way it was meant) was that whatever happens to someone in dating that it can't really affect one's happiness because happiness is a fundamental state.

And if one sticks to that idea(which may be me misunderstanding) then we get into some very sticky questions about happiness overall.

If happiness is that hard to affect in the negative sense(meaning once had it would be difficult to loose), it would be a little odd to say that it is somehow easier to be affected in the positive sense(meaning if it were lost or obscured it would be easy to get back).

This I don't think reflects the world in which we live where we have NRE(a temporary extreme rise in happiness), the mellow contentment of established relationships(a more sustainable increase in happiness), enough happy poly moments that they get a section on a podcast, etc. Of course, we also have the jealousy, anger, heartbreak, loss, etc.

What I'm saying is that if someone didn't need the NRE, contentment, happy moments(poly or otherwise), and so forth that one can gain from dating, it seems kindof odd that they would risk the extreme pain and heartache that can come with dating. Like crossing a gunfight to get your second cup of coffee.
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Old 05-24-2010, 05:12 PM
Ariakas Ariakas is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DharmaBum23 View Post
What I'm saying is that if someone didn't need the NRE, contentment, happy moments(poly or otherwise), and so forth that one can gain from dating, it seems kindof odd that they would risk the extreme pain and heartache that can come with dating. Like crossing a gunfight to get your second cup of coffee.
Love is worth all the pain
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Old 05-24-2010, 08:33 PM
GroundedSpirit GroundedSpirit is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DharmaBum23 View Post
....................

What I'm saying is that if someone didn't need the NRE, contentment, happy moments(poly or otherwise), and so forth that one can gain from dating, it seems kindof odd that they would risk the extreme pain and heartache that can come with dating. Like crossing a gunfight to get your second cup of coffee.
Dharma,

I more or less tend to agree with your philosophical stance & approach. And it is VERY philosophical and therefore not one that many large numbers of people will care to even process.

For a lot of people I think "happiness' is defined by a certain adrenalin rush. I often try to compare terms such as "happiness" and "contentment" because if they were not different it seems we wouldn't have come up with two terms.

You often see tossed around a statement (and philosophy) that "happiness is a choice" - and there does seem to be a lot of wisdom in that.
And I often wonder where greed plays into this the same as it plays into so many other things about modern culture. Something is 'good' - so MORE must be better ?

But per your original post & question the monastic traditions had identified at a very early stage that too much desire leads to unhappiness and struck out on a quest to eliminate all desires (needs).

But that is not going to be the "way" for the majority of people - and as your quoted post implies, we'll continue to risk the gunfire for the prospect of that second coffee. We want for that adrenaline (and caffeine) rush ! And sometimes we even get it !

GS
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Old 05-24-2010, 10:49 PM
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Honestheart Honestheart is offline
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a question in SchrodingersCat 's first post to this thread "If you are already making yourself happy, why would you want to date someone else(in a poly or monogamous context)? "
quite simply put...
i can be happy single, but i find that i am happier.... with somebody.
whether that somebody is with somebody else or not, doesnt matter...

just what i've found about me tho...
although to be honest, right now after the last relationship i just had i totally feel like a bull ran thru my china shop
and btw, monasticism is in the spell check???? hey, no fair! that was in my spell check and not polyamory!? ok ppl we so totally need to like do something about that! LOL ...
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Last edited by NeonKaos; 05-24-2010 at 10:58 PM. Reason: spelling
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