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Old 12-07-2012, 08:35 PM
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PolyLinguist PolyLinguist is offline
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada
Posts: 49

Originally Posted by WhatHappened View Post
I have to agree that I find some of the assumptions in this thread very...unrealistic?

Women like shiny baubles? I'm sorry if those weren't the exact words, but I believe baubles was in there. It leaves me feeling like a spoiled Victorian child...or perhaps a cat...whose mind is completely occupied with a shiny toy. It feels superficial, shallow, almost as if I, as a woman, just need a pretty toy to distract me and keep me out of trouble and uncomplaining until the great Man is ready to have sex with me again.
Well, thank you at least for taking me seriously, and not calling me names.

On "baubles", I get the impression that it's the word you object to. I am sorry, let me call it "jewelry". Is that better? Is it against PC thought to point out that, by and large, women like and wear jewelry more than men do? Come on, I live in Vancouver, I see a lot of men wearing jewelry - but they are not the majority. If married, they (mostly) wear a wedding ring, I do too, but that's all. With women, yes they mostly wear jewelry.

OK, if you want to discredit me, go out, take an unbiased survey of the human world out there, going past trendy metropolitan centres like downtown San Francisco or Manhattan, and prove it to me that, at least among younger people, jewelry is as common (or who knows, more common) among men as women. Within the right probability margins, of course.

Originally Posted by WhatHappened View Post
It just might be that I, despite being a mere woman, would like heavy tomes full of great knowledge just as you would; that I might pass up a bunch of sparkly diamonds for the chance to study multiple languages and philosophy; perhaps I'd be more thrilled to receive a harpsichord and a pile of Bach manuscripts and develop a real talent with my hands, rather than use them to clap at a pretty Swarovski shooting rainbows in the sunlight.
Come on, don't give me that. One of my best friends is a woman whom I have known for longer than I've known my wife. In my humble opinion she is smarter than I am. She is knowledgeable, competent and successful at anything she puts her mind to. I can discuss virtually anything with her, and I do. As an aside, she is as dismissive of what both of us call "psychobabble" as I am. As of the unfortunate tendency to ask "how you feel about something", rather than "what you think".

Nevertheless, once, when on a business trip, I bought a nice little pendant for her. Not flashy, not very expensive, but not a $10 piece of junk either. She accepted it, she smiled, she thanked me, and she made a point of wearing it whenever I saw her next.

Now, this is an intelligent woman who knows me well. She knew that I would never, in a million years, buy a gift like that for a man. (In fact, I don't normally buy gifts for men, except my sons and my (now dead) father.) She knew that there is only one conceivable cultural context for what I did: a gift by a man to a woman whose company he appreciates and whose friendship he values. I also find her attractive, although not so much that I would forsake other attractions for her.

So, if she understands all that, and does not consider me a MCP (or worse), how come it's so difficult to explain this to others? Is it really because I called it a "bauble"?

Originally Posted by WhatHappened View Post
Any time is quality time? No, not at all. That point has been well-illustrated by others, though. I'll leave my own examples aside except to say there is a huge difference to my kids between me taking the time to watch a movie with them, read a book with them, say family prayers with them, play a game of chess with them, go on a walk or bike ride with them...and me buried in my computer...wanting them to leave me alone. I think I repeated with them a lot.
Ok, I won't get into a deep argument here. For all I know, our basic approach to child raising may be quite similar.

But if people object to some of the words I use (and then misrepresent what I mean), I too react badly to some words. I don't like to be preached at, a trait I share with my wife. We used to get communications from the school my kids went to preaching "quality time". Who were these people preaching, what special knowledge do they have? Half the kids in school come from broken homes - hey, half the teachers (maybe the ones composing the well-meaning message) had left their spouses or been left by them. Who are they to tell me how to spend my time with my kids?

Your example I don't think has ever happened in my family. It doesn't matter what I am engrossed in, and I can be pretty engrossed with things, my children always knew that they could come to me if they needed help or company. The problem was more the case of tearing them away from the Nintendo. Which we did, but not overmuch. I too was a child once, and would have spent a lot of time on computer games, had they existed.

Originally Posted by WhatHappened View Post
Feelings being involved in you sampling different restaurants--being somehow akin to a person...hm. True that no analogy is perfect, but I think that is still far off base. Even to do so, you had to bring in a person. And a chef will never have a relationship with the diners at the restaurant where he cooks anything like as personal and intimate, anything like as important to his life, as the relationship between two people.
Fair enough, but I can't think of a better analogy.

I don't really have to, because my wife understands me, and that is what matters. This is how she puts it: "I married an interesting, intelligent and adventurous man. It is perfectly natural that he would like to explore the joys of sexual relationships with more than one person."

That the feelings of any person I get involved with should be taken into consideration should go without saying. But I always try to respect other peoples' feelings, probably too much in fact.

I am not sure what more I can do than what I do now in order to protect this (so far imaginary) person's feelings. I don't hide the fact that I am married, and not unhappily either. I don't hide the fact that I am very attached to my children. I don't hide the fact that spending birthdays, Christmas and New Year with my nuclear family are absolutes. I can be affectionate, tender and understanding, but it's not in my nature to spend hours cuddling up with someone, doing nothing. I am utterly without religious or spiritual feelings. I am resentful of anyone trying to change me - I am what I am. I am extremely open about all this - so, if someone still likes my company and wants to enter a relationship, what more would they expect that I can reasonably give?

If it's love (i.e. something significantly more than friendship and affection), this is not something I can give just like that. It develops, and is outside conscious control. It might happen, but it might not happen. In any case, I am extremely careful about using words of such emotional impact. I would never tell someone "I love you" unless I meant it. And to say "I may love you one day" sounds to me like leading the other person on.

And if I don't find a suitable poly companion, and it's because of the various factors making up my personality, so be it.

Last edited by PolyLinguist; 12-07-2012 at 08:54 PM.
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