Polyamory.com Forum  

Go Back   Polyamory.com Forum > Polyamory > General Poly Discussions


Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 01-04-2012, 02:35 PM
Magdlyn's Avatar
Magdlyn Magdlyn is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Metro West Massachusetts
Posts: 5,810

Many of us make decisions on how to live our lives that our families don't approve of. Dealing with that in a considerate yet self confident way is an opportunity for growth.

I will draw a parallel with breastfeeding, since I am a lactation counselor. Many women I help get negative reactions from family members about their decision to breastfeed, or to continue breastfeeding for more than a few months.

There are several things you can say and do, to get nosy family members to butt out of your lifestyle, your way of loving.

1) Share information. Print off pages from poly websites or share a book about how polyamory works and how it is healthy for some people.

2) Use humor. (In breastfeeding, if someone asks, when seeing the mom and baby nursing, "How long are you going to do THAT?" say, "Oh, probably another 10 minutes or so.")

3) Express appreciation for their concern. This FM might love you and have a real fear you are being damaged by sharing love with more than one partner.

4) Be self confident. If you are happy and feel good about your life, show it! Don't allow them to rock you with their poison.

5) Do not allow them to castigate either of your partners. (Some people will mock a nursing toddler about how they are a big boy/girl and nursing is for babies.) This FM needs to back off your other partners.

6) Even though you say you are a private person, don't back down and hide your joy by not going out with your bfs. (Some women hide indoors to breastfeed, but the more women that hide it, the more of an oddity breastfeeding can seem when someone does nurse in public.) Go out, enjoy life, do it with pride!

7) Is what others have said. Draw clear boundaries. If you like this family member, tell them in no uncertain terms you will no longer discuss this topic with them, and continue your relationship with them. If they just won't back off, stop seeing them.

Remember, this FM might have cravings for other partners themself, and be projecting that longing onto you negatively.
Love withers under constraint; its very essence is liberty. It is compatible neither with envy, jealousy or fear. It is there most pure, perfect and unlimited when its votaries live in confidence, equality and unreserve. -- Shelley

Mags (poly, F, 61) loving miss pixi (poly, F, 39) since January 2009, living together since 2013
In a newish relationship with Steve, (34, poly, my Top)
"Master," (mono, 34), miss pixi's Dom for 3 years

Last edited by Magdlyn; 01-04-2012 at 02:41 PM.
Reply With Quote
Old 01-04-2012, 03:26 PM
AnnabelMore's Avatar
AnnabelMore AnnabelMore is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 2,285

Well done, Mags.
Me, 30ish bi female, been doing solo poly for roughly 5 years. Gia, Clay, and Pike, my partners. Davis, ex/friend/"it's complicated." Eric, Gia's husband. Bee, Gia and Eric's toddler.
Reply With Quote
Old 01-04-2012, 04:28 PM
dingedheart dingedheart is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 1,363

Mags I know what you mean ...I once saw a 6-7yr old boy walk up and help himself to an afternoon snack ...very shocking or stunning for me and one of my guys. And really hard to continue to have the conversation we were having with the mother ...but she and the kid couldn't have cared less.
Reply With Quote
Old 01-04-2012, 05:16 PM
jasminegld jasminegld is offline
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 81
Default Poly Pride

> 1) Share information. Print off pages from poly websites

In particular, print off the Poly Pride page, and muse to FM how much you and bf would like to attend a Poly Pride event.

> ...bizarre to ask for a meeting...

Not really. I know of at least two instances among my poly acquaintances where family members staged "interventions." In one case, they asked for a meeting. In another case, they sprang the intervention on someone unannounced.
Reply With Quote
Old 01-04-2012, 06:09 PM
ThatGirlInGray ThatGirlInGray is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Northern Cali
Posts: 552

I'm sorry you were caught by surprise and brought to tears. I'm with everyone else who says tell FM to mind their own business. And I doubt treading lightly will get the message across adequately.

Of course, out of respect for my mother I'm abiding by an agreement I made with her when I was 19 to not come out to my family as Bi until my grandparents were gone. There's a lot of family I will NOT mind cutting myself off from so I'll probably be grinning when I come out as Bi AND Poly. So I may not be the best person to listen to in this instance.
Pan Female, Hinge in a V between my mono (straight) husband, Monochrome and my poly (pan) partner, ThatGuyInBlack
Reply With Quote
Old 01-04-2012, 07:07 PM
bassman bassman is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Surrey UK
Posts: 474

I can think of 2 words to tell FM !
Male M, struggling noob.
Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-2012, 12:47 AM
jasminegld jasminegld is offline
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 81
Default Article about family

Just found an online article about this very topic, posted today:

"Opening to Family About Open Marriage

Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-2012, 09:05 AM
Somegeezer's Avatar
Somegeezer Somegeezer is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Leeds, UK
Posts: 806

I'm better off without people like that in my life. =] I'm sure my mother and sister already think of me as some jerk. Especially at times when I've seemingly brought many people home in short spaces of each other. But thankfully, they generally keep their noses out. Even my sister being bisexual doesn't really seem to open her mind up to other possibilities unfortunately.

Stick with people who embrace who you are, or at least couldn't care what you do with your own life.
[Insert witty comment here]
Feel free to add me up on facebook. - Just click here.
Do send a message in your request saying who you are and that you're from this forum. It will help me filter out any spam requests.
Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-2012, 06:19 PM
AutumnalTone AutumnalTone is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Kansas City Metro
Posts: 2,187

Originally Posted by CautiousLoops View Post
my FM would like to meet tonight because they said they would like to understand where my emotions are at with my partner.

I know it's past when this was supposed to happen. I'll offer this up for future reference.

I'd *never* meet with a FM in circumstances such as this. To do so is to enable further bad behavior.

How does that enable bad behavior? By agreeing to meet with a such an agenda, you're communicating to the FM that you agree he has every right to be able to expect to call you to task for anything he wants and to interfere in your life. If you agree to a meeting under that rubric, you're reinforcing his ideas that he has rights to impose his nonsense on you--and he will keep doing so forever after.

I'd simply tell him it's none of his business and he needs to keep that in mind. And that he owes me an apology for causing a scene in front of my date and hurting my feelings.
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.
Reply With Quote
Old 01-06-2012, 06:25 AM
Monochrome Monochrome is offline
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 13

I am very private, too, and haven't had anything like this with my family, but something much less drastic happened with Gray's family. Some years ago now, she left for a long weekend to visit a friend in another state. A male friend. Meanwhile, Gray's sibling was visiting my in-laws, who live a short drive away, so I drove over to see them (and get a free meal ).

We are all chatting pleasantly when the subject of Gray visiting her friend came up. There's this pause, then one one of them says seriously, "and you are all right with this?"

"Um, yeah. Surprise, surprise, I talk with my wife about our relationship."

Ok, that last part might not have been out loud, but I think it was evident in my tone of voice. There hasn't been another "concerned talk" since.
Reply With Quote

boundaries, coming out, family

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

All times are GMT. The time now is 11:05 AM.