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  #21  
Old 11-07-2011, 05:16 AM
UnwittinglyPoly UnwittinglyPoly is offline
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Well, there we go... I'm bored already. Have a fun discussion.
Dang, and just after you were starting to make it interesting.
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  #22  
Old 11-07-2011, 05:17 AM
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. . . I think the drivers generally behind mono are in many ways less healthy than the drivers generally behind poly.
A great many people get into polyamorous relationships because they think it would be cool to fuck a lot of people and not have to ask permission. Most people get into monogamous relationships because they want to commit long-term to a loving partnership and raise a family together and see no reason to have more than two people involved in order to do that. Which is "healthier?"
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  #23  
Old 11-07-2011, 05:29 AM
UnwittinglyPoly UnwittinglyPoly is offline
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Originally Posted by nycindie View Post
A great many people get into polyamorous relationships because they think it would be cool to fuck a lot of people and not have to ask permission. Most people get into monogamous relationships because they want to commit long-term to a loving partnership and raise a family together and see no reason to have more than two people involved in order to do that. Which is "healthier?"
A great many people get into monogamous relationships because they have an insecurity-based need to be someone's "one and only", and any other scenario sets them sideways. Most people get into poly relationships because they want to commit long-term to loving partnerships (and many times live their lives together and raise a family) and see no reason to arbitrarily limit it one person. Which is "healthier"?

Actually, if the truth be told, I think the majority of people who get into monogamous relationships do so because 1) That's the social expectation, and 2) They can't stand the thought of their significant other loving someone other than them. That's not why they get into a relationship with the person--they do so because of the reasons you mentioned. But the reason it's a *monogamous* relationship is largely because of my points above. In their minds, there is no other option because of those things.

Last edited by UnwittinglyPoly; 11-07-2011 at 05:34 AM.
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  #24  
Old 11-07-2011, 11:07 AM
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The problem is, you're trying to create a logical discussion based on your own EMOTIONAL response to something. Your assumption is that the large majority of people get into monogamous relationships because of your reasons 1 & 2 is simply baseless. If this is a truly logical argument, where are your facts and figures? Your opinions are meaningless in a logical argument if they're not backed up.

People aren't disagreeing with you based on your argument that jealousy is less healthy than non-jealousy, they're disagreeing with your assumption that MONOGAMY = JEALOUSY. You throw around words like "majority" "great many people" "most people" yet provide no statistical data to back that up.

You see, just because you've decided to call yourself polyamorous, it doesn't mean that jealousy just disappears. I still get jealous just as much in my poly arrangements as I ever did in my mono arrangements of the past. The problem is that we've been conditioned to believe that relationship = ownership. The thing is, there are people out there who have got over the relationship = ownership issue, and are STILL monogamous. Some people honestly PREFER being with just one person, and it's nothing to do with jealousy. Just like I prefer being with lots of different people - different strokes for different folks. The idea that anyone who's got over the feeling of jealousy would naturally be polyamorous is just faulty - jealousy is an emotion that affects both poly and mono people.

Also to nycindie, I don't see anything wrong with wanting to fuck a lot of people and not have to ask permission, I don't believe that either of the two options you present are unhealthy as long as you're honest about your desires.
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  #25  
Old 11-07-2011, 06:04 PM
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Originally Posted by zylya View Post
Also to nycindie, I don't see anything wrong with wanting to fuck a lot of people and not have to ask permission, I don't believe that either of the two options you present are unhealthy as long as you're honest about your desires.
That was my point and why I put quotes around the word healthy. I wasn't actually saying one was more healthy than the other but asking how we can judge the health of a relationship based on outside appearances. It's the people involved that make it healthy, not necessarily the parameters that do so.
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  #26  
Old 11-07-2011, 08:22 PM
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I don't know what has been written on this thread but I wanted to reply to your original thoughts before going back and reading. Excuse me if there are repeats.

I think that the idea of people avoiding crossing the bridge is valid, but it think its for different reasons than one might think. Having talked a lot about monogamy and polyamory with both types of people I have come to realize that mostly people who are monogamous think the idea of poly as a theory but in practice they just don't have the time, interest or inclination to pursue it. They prefer other "hobbies" over their relationship dynamics.

It seems for some self work is not that important and other things in life are. So why bother going down roads that have known bridges if you can take the over pass quite happily. I don't think its much to do with jealousy until one partner wants to try out a poly lifestyle for whatever reason.

By doing a tag search for "mono/poly" you will find additions to this discussion. It could shed more light on what mono people think.
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Last edited by redpepper; 11-07-2011 at 08:39 PM.
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  #27  
Old 11-07-2011, 08:35 PM
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It seems for some; self work is not that important and other things in life are. So why bother going down roads that have known bridges if you can take the over pass quite happily.
RP, I am about to scold you! I hope I'm misunderstanding you, but it sounds like you're saying mono people choose the easy way out because they're uninterested in doing "self work," which I'm assuming you mean to be looking inward, examining old beliefs, working on getting to know themselves better, improving communication, all that.

WELL!

I am really surprised you would say that. The self-help industry is huge and didn't get built upon poly peeps alone. I know I've said it before, but I've been doing self-work since the early 80s. I've tried a number of different therapies and self-awareness modalities, and attended numerous workshops and courses in all the above and then some. I've even given workshops myself. Only met two poly people in all those years. Of course, some may have been in the closet, but my point is that monogamous people are just as interested in challenging old beliefs and doing "self-work" as polys are. Just because someone chooses monogamy doesn't mean they are unenlightened or narrow-minded. Some of the most progressive and radical thinkers I've ever met were in monogamous relationships with equally progressive and radical partners.

So I hope I've misunderstood you.
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  #28  
Old 11-07-2011, 08:44 PM
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Originally Posted by nycindie View Post
RP, I am about to scold you! I hope I'm misunderstanding you, but it sounds like you're saying mono people choose the easy way out because they're uninterested in doing "self work," which I'm assuming you mean to be looking inward, examining old beliefs, working on getting to know themselves better, improving communication, all that.

WELL!

I am really surprised you would say that. The self-help industry is huge and didn't get built upon poly peeps alone. I know I've said it before, but I've been doing self-work since the early 80s. I've tried a number of different therapies and self-awareness modalities, and attended numerous workshops and courses in all the above and then some. I've even given workshops myself. Only met two poly people in all those years. Of course, some may have been in the closet, but my point is that monogamous people are just as interested in challenging old beliefs and doing "self-work" as polys are. Just because someone chooses monogamy doesn't mean they are unenlightened or narrow-minded. Some of the most progressive and radical thinkers I've ever met were in monogamous relationships with equally progressive and radical partners.

So I hope I've misunderstood you.
sorry. I wrote too fast and didn't edit. I meant to say the self work that is required when addressing a partner who wants to try out a poly relationship dynamic. Of course mono people do self work and care about that for themselves. A lot of it over laps even, just that some care more (not exclusive to monogamy either) about their careers, their hobbies or their kids etc. than dealing with the self crap that comes up around poly relationships. Does that make more sense?

The kind of self work mono people do as a result of a poly partner is often not chosen work either I might add. At least not initially.
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Last edited by redpepper; 11-07-2011 at 08:54 PM.
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  #29  
Old 11-07-2011, 08:49 PM
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Hey UP, I've done some thinking about this subject and I think I've got my ideas in order. I get the distinction you're making about individual relationships versus underlying emotional drivers. And I think I understand why people here don't seem inclined to engage in the logical way you want... it's just way too personal for us. Many of us have mono family, friends, or partners who've accused us, implicitly or explicitly, of looking down on them and considering them dysfunctional because we've chosen a different model of loving. We know from experience that they *don't* deserve to be looked down on and are in no way of necessity dysfunctional, so we've been hurt by those accusations and are offended on behalf of our mono allies when someone else presents with those beliefs.

On to the question at hand! I'm going to start at the most basic level -- is jealousy, in. and of itself, unhealthy? I think it's not. Rather, I think it can be a useful part of one's emotional ecosystem. The way I'm thinking about it is not unlike how a century ago we thought wolves were bad because they killed game animals and we liked game animals, but in time we came to understand and value the role of the wolf. Something that seems bad and scary can actually have its place.

To continue the analogy, obviously we don't want uncontrolled wolves roaming our streets and eating our babies, we want to keep them in their proper place, in the wild, and will trap and re-release them if they wander too far. Similarly, we don't want jealousy -- or any of our feelings, really, but especially not a dangerous one like jealousy -- to be uncontrolled.

We need to manage our feelings and work with them, but in and of themselves they are neither bad nor good, they are merely neutral -- it's how much prominence we give them, how much intensity, how we let them affect us and manifest in our actions that matters. Does that make sense?

So, what useful role could jealousy possibly play? I think it can actually play a very useful role in letting us know when we may be being mistreated, when our emotional needs are not being met, and when we may be losing a relationship, or an aspect thereof, that we would be better off keeping.

How does this model of jealousy translate to healthy or unhealthy relationships? Let's say you're monogamous (since that's the model most people start with). You may have uncontrolled jealousy. That's a problem. You could become poly without ever resolving that problem and, sadly, some people do just that, to disastrous results. Alternately, you could examine it, deconstruct it, and control and manage it. At that point your relationship will be healthier whether you stay mono or move on to become poly. If you do the latter you'll likely have *much* more success with your ventures into poly than a person who has uncontrolled jealousy, but nothing says you have to go poly.

You may have managed, healthy jealousy and yet still feel like monogamy is an emotional need for you. Why? Maybe it just hurts too much to think of your partner loving someone else romantically. But wait, wouldn't that mean you have uncontrolled jealousy? No, you may be analyzing your reactions, correctly assessing your limits and place of greatest fulfillment, and responding calmly and appropriately. But you may realize that this desire for a monogamous partner, and the pain when you don't have that, is *still* a fundamental, natural, even integral part of the way you love. That doesn't make you bad! That doesn't make you wrong! That doesn't make you unevolved or unhealthy or anything like that. Not everyone can do poly and stay true to themselves. What matters, and makes you healthy or unhealthy, is how you recognize, explore, accept, and live by who and what you are and the natural shapes and limits of your feelings.

To assume that anyone who feels jealousy strongly enough that they're not suited to poly is automatically unhealthy, or hasn't examined and worked on their darker issues, is a bias, pure and simple.

Does all of that make sense? Do people agree? Am I missing something?
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  #30  
Old 11-07-2011, 09:05 PM
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Originally Posted by redpepper View Post
sorry. I wrote too fast and didn't edit. I meant to say the self work that is required when addressing a partner who wants to try out a poly relationship dynamic. Of course mono people do self work and care about that for themselves. A lot of it over laps even, just that some care more (not exclusive to monogamy either) about their careers, their hobbies or their kids etc. than dealing with the self crap that comes up around poly relationships. Does that make more sense?

The kind of self work mono people do as a result of a poly partner is often not chosen work either I might add. At least not initially.
LOL self crap!

Okay, I gotcha. Because I know before last year when I chose to embrace poly, most of my "self crap" was centered on all the skills that polys need. Time management, intimacy, communication, sexuality, inhibitions, self-esteem, assertiveness, blablabla. There areas are crucial for a well-rounded human being, no matter what type of relationship they're in. But I was not an anomaly, everyone I knew (monos) struggled with most of the same issues that poly peeps struggle with and sought more self-awareness, in whatever form or path that took for their own way of living. Obviously, polys have unique situations that demand more juggling and ... diplomacy, in a way. But we're all the same bunch of fucked-up human beings trying to heal and find our way in the world.
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