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  #81  
Old 01-05-2010, 04:56 AM
Ceoli Ceoli is offline
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[B]A prejudicial view of polyamory which houses a prejudiced view of sex. Sex = negative unless it be purified by the cleansing waters of love. Because love (what is love again? Someone bring me a definition ) is the reason having sex would not be some dirty rank thing. Sex-negative.
A very good point and thank you for catching that. I suppose I was layering my battles there and am now examining how to address the intersection of prejudice and sex negativity.
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  #82  
Old 01-05-2010, 06:03 AM
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Very true. I know way more than I ever wanted to know about how broken our child protection/foster care system is in this country, and I feel like parents basically surrender all right to privacy from the day their first child is conceived until the last child turns 18.

Mandatory reporters have to report anything that they suspect might be child abuse or neglect, and CPS is required to investigate all of those reports, as well as any from anonymous tip lines, which could be well-meaning but misinformed, or could be someone with a vendetta lying to use CPS as a weapon in a personal conflict (seriously- my ex reported all my local friends to CPS in the months after I filed for divorce, and CPS had to take his claims of people having orgies in front of foster children seriously and do a thorough investigation.)

Combine this with the fact that we're in a recession, and actual child abuse goes up when parents are stressed out by money problems, and actual child neglect goes up when families can't afford to provide for their children's basic needs, and you have social workers who are overworked and have to make snap decisions based on too little information, frequently more their impression of people than any real facts. So, there's been cases where they decided that the child was safe in the home because the house was really clean, and didn't notice that the child was malnourished until it came up on the autopsy after the child was murdered, and there's been other times where families were torn apart because they were some combination of poor, non-white, and didn't keep their house clean enough to pass inspection 24/7.

But the people who know how CPS works enough to have a problem with it have too much to risk to make much of a stink about it, so most Americans still believe that as long as you aren't doing anything wrong, there's nothing to fear from CPS.

Oh, looking around I found a link to an agency that fights to defend sexual privacy rights.
You hit that nail on the head several times over! I'd be interested in any concrete ideas for what we can (as people) start doing to make changes in this. Unfortunately it won't be a quick fix-but the more information we can share the sooner we can make changes become realities instead of dreams!

I'm going to check out that link!
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  #83  
Old 01-05-2010, 06:10 AM
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In the grown up world this "sneaking" type of learned behavior has become very helpful. Believe me I learned it well from my parents... that is what obedient child rearing does to a child. This is why I believe we are a culture of sneaking around (cheating, steeling, not being honest and open) because we continue to raise children to obey rather than decide for themselves and become self sufficient and independent. I have managed to hide from my parents and others quite successfully in order to pursue what I value in my life, which is my freedom of choice. This whole thing for me is no different.

Because my mother accused Mono of molesting my child we had to come out and tell her what he was doing in our lives, thinking this was going to help. It turned out that it made things worse and she made it so we had to go to a professional to have him checked out. I can tell you I was devastated by this on many levels; my pride at raising an amazing son who is safe and cared for and loved more than many other kids I know, the fact that my mum could distort our reality so badly that she could cause Mono to lose his job (they both work in the same "company"), the fact that she could be so blinded by her version of what is "right" so as to not see properly what was going on is shocking to me still.....(I have felt her wrath before but this was the worst yet) am I going to sit there and give her a blast of poly 101 and all its ins and outs around sex, no! I'm going to shrink away and protect myself and my family, gain strength and do the things I need to do to separate myself from her. Figure out strategies, figure out her game, lick my wounds.... to me it's like a war.

I am also going to be that kid at high school who sneaks out for a smoke too. All the while fighting for what I value and what I believe to be true, that we are entitled to fuck who we want in any way we want and to develop meaningful and deep relationships with whomever we chose. There is nothing sex-negative about that or anti poly word...that has everything to do with staying afloat and keeping from triggering others.... do you really believe that I have had time to sit around and debate within myself the ins and outs of not identifying with poly so as to not offend others in the community? No I haven't had time.... again, I am sorry for this, I realize at some point that will change and I will have time, but for now I am a work in progress as we all are and I will get to it.
Great parents like you and I are teaching our children to be independent thinkers-in time it will "take over" and the world will be amazed that we were "ahead of the game" so to speak in this. Don't get discouraged-we'll create an amazing generation!

It's not "like war" honey-it IS war. It's war for the safety of a child first. THEN the safety and security of a man (mono in your case). THEN the rights of the minority. Trying to do it in any other order-well it's not parenting.

It's ok, and I think even good for people who ARE NOT in the position of having to protect a child to "carry the battle" so to speak while those who must protect the children. Children are children for a finite amount of time, however the need to eradicte prejudice will be around for an infinite amount of time.

It's enough that parents put their all into raising right minded, independent, intelligent, thoughtful and unprejudiced children. Because those children will be carrying quite the load towards eradication of these prejudices and judgments and f'd up laws as they mature.
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  #84  
Old 01-05-2010, 07:01 AM
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It's ok, and I think even good for people who ARE NOT in the position of having to protect a child to "carry the battle" so to speak while those who must protect the children. Children are children for a finite amount of time, however the need to eradicate prejudice will be around for an infinite amount of time.

It's enough that parents put their all into raising right minded, independent, intelligent, thoughtful and unprejudiced children. Because those children will be carrying quite the load towards eradication of these prejudices and judgments and f'd up laws as they mature.
So I went on a run, I kicked some things, yelled at the ocean and had a deep hard cry and came back realizing just this LR... thank you.

I will do my best to intervene with other poly folk around here in the hopes of making the law better for my boy and other kids/families. Being identified as a polygamous religious follower is making it illegal to ever live with Mono or have any ceremony to make our bond sacred to us. My boy can be taken away for that reason and my mother will be on the front line when they come to get him, wheeling that law above her head... that is worth fighting against in my humble opinion. I can't see any other choice I have.

I'm sorry that it may mean that the meaning of polyamory is skewed for others, but hopefully it will mean that those that chose to identify with it can also identify with swinging, open relationships... whatever, as well. I don't think it means that will be taken away. I once identified as a polyamorist in an open relationship looking for a poly relationship and doing some swinging on the side. Maybe this is just where it will end up, I don't know.
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  #85  
Old 01-05-2010, 07:01 AM
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A very good point and thank you for catching that. I suppose I was layering my battles there and am now examining how to address the intersection of prejudice and sex negativity.
New thread?
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  #86  
Old 01-05-2010, 07:10 AM
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Perhaps I should add that I am openly living my life, I'm completely out to my family, friends and coworkers, I belong to many polyamorous groups, including national associations involved in activism, have given an interview and allowed photos to be taken that identified me as a polyamorous woman.

I'm a firm believer in working to affect the changes in society to reach those long term goals, while doing what I need to do to attain the shorter term goals and the immediate goal of protecting the children in my care.

I do this knowing the risk, believing that I am lucky enough to be better equipped than many others who are in my situation to fight the battle if needed - I have the resources, the network, the connections and the knowledge of the system that it takes to survives such a battle intact, if wounded.

That doesn't mean I want to engage in such a battle because I do know the cost would be far higher to the kids than it is to me, even if we end up "winning".
It's a very fine line to walk and I've been lucky to maintain my balance for this long.

And I certainly understand and empathize with the choice to stay out of the fray; during the time that I was actively dealing with getting the children out of the Department of Social Services' custody, I too stepped back from my activism. There was simply too much at risk.
And now that I have legal custody, there simply is no time!

I truly believe that these kids will feel happy to have been provided a safe, sane, stable, healthy and loving home far more than they will wish I had fought harder for an ideological cause, possibly at their expense.
thanks for this constlady. I am hope filled reading this. I know I am at the beginning of a long haul possibly and I need to make sure it is put on my shoulders, not my boys... hopefully he will be blissfully unaware and will still get to see his grand parents by the end of it. It's all timing and playing the game right. At least I haven't had to fight to get him back! What a journey you have been on... I admire your strength. I can't imagine what that must of been like other than that I burst into tears at the mere thought of being separated from my child. I love him more than my own life. Certainly more than anyone else.
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  #87  
Old 01-05-2010, 07:19 AM
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Originally Posted by StitchwitchD View Post
Very true. I know way more than I ever wanted to know about how broken our child protection/foster care system is in this country, and I feel like parents basically surrender all right to privacy from the day their first child is conceived until the last child turns 18.

Mandatory reporters have to report anything that they suspect might be child abuse or neglect, and CPS is required to investigate all of those reports, as well as any from anonymous tip lines, which could be well-meaning but misinformed, or could be someone with a vendetta lying to use CPS as a weapon in a personal conflict (seriously- my ex reported all my local friends to CPS in the months after I filed for divorce, and CPS had to take his claims of people having orgies in front of foster children seriously and do a thorough investigation.)

Combine this with the fact that we're in a recession, and actual child abuse goes up when parents are stressed out by money problems, and actual child neglect goes up when families can't afford to provide for their children's basic needs, and you have social workers who are overworked and have to make snap decisions based on too little information, frequently more their impression of people than any real facts. So, there's been cases where they decided that the child was safe in the home because the house was really clean, and didn't notice that the child was malnourished until it came up on the autopsy after the child was murdered, and there's been other times where families were torn apart because they were some combination of poor, non-white, and didn't keep their house clean enough to pass inspection 24/7.

But the people who know how CPS works enough to have a problem with it have too much to risk to make much of a stink about it, so most Americans still believe that as long as you aren't doing anything wrong, there's nothing to fear from CPS.

Oh, looking around I found a link to an agency that fights to defend sexual privacy rights.
thanks for this also stitchwitch, the same goes here I'm afraid. I deal with social workers everyday and although the clientele is different it opperates similarly.

Once families are in the system, it is near impossible to get out even when the next generation is having kids. The cycle continues. There is really no real place to get help other than to rely on community and get over our own stuff. The system does nothing but keep people down it seems. Especially when kids are involved.

My mum is doing a masters in social work and believes so strongly that she will save the world through social work....save her grandson. It's all magical thinking. But it sure can destroy families.
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  #88  
Old 01-05-2010, 08:40 AM
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A very good point and thank you for catching that. I suppose I was layering my battles there and am now examining how to address the intersection of prejudice and sex negativity.
You're right to. It's part of the base if not the base of the difference in how many are perceiving and using the term polyamory here. I think of sex positively. Others here either see sex negatively or have decided to accept mainstream sex-negativity.

It's been admitted here that some are willing to cut sex out of polyamory if it will put them in a positive or favorable light for their would be persecutors. They do this to save their children. Others have qualified this decision as being "good" parents. I don't qualify it as positive or the makings of a good parent. It is simply what it is. A choice made.

It's not a decision I would make.

An oversight when it comes to that poem which has been made by nearly everyone I've read so far is this: when they come for you, having cut yourself off from those who would have supported you, or having offered them up first, who will protect the children then? The persecutors?

Change has never happened quietly or by acquiescing to oppression. Any identity that you can put ahead of "rights" has had battles whether they were battles of philosophy or battles where blood ran in the streets. Some speak of ideals here with such contempt all while hiding from the reality. Clinging to *gasp* an ideal that if you just keep your heads down and not associate with "those people," not draw too much attention to yourselves, it will be ok. Patting each other on the back as if modeling that behavior is showing children independence and how to stand up for their rights as people.

Members of the queer community stood up one year and said fuck this shit. Women did the same. People of color did the same. People the world over have done the same. They stood up and said "this is who we are and it is not who you are but we are human. We demand equal rights."

But hey perhaps I am not acknowledging something. Many here run from even the term "oppression" because they're not used to it. They are taught that oppressed people are to blame for their own oppression as though they existed in a vacuum with a phantom oppressor. Similar to the mentality that a raped woman was to blame for her rape. They are taught this view or they are simply taught to ignore oppression, it's source and how it effects others. Unlike many, they have inhabited the proverbial normative center for most of their lives, are used to privilege in most aspects of their lives and see no reason why they should care about oppression. Bleeding hearts just end up bloody. Too much trouble and mess. Why not go the easy path in the rare instance where oppression does touch their lives and "pass." Passing is not new. It's been done by many within oppressed groups. Pass for white. Pass for straight. Pass for normal. Pass for someone who agrees with normative values.

The ones who choose to pass are not usually the ones instrumental in bringing the changes that end up benefiting them and allowing them to stop pretending.

~Raven~
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  #89  
Old 01-05-2010, 11:01 AM
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They do this to save their children. Others have qualified this decision as being "good" parents. I don't qualify it as positive or the makings of a good parent. It is simply what it is. A choice made.

It's not a decision I would make.

I'd suggest those without children go back and re-examine this line of thought if and when you have children. You might find the decisions you will be willing to make will be drastically different that those made as a non-parent/guardian.
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  #90  
Old 01-05-2010, 01:41 PM
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I'd suggest those without children go back and re-examine this line of thought if and when you have children. You might find the decisions you will be willing to make will be drastically different that those made as a non-parent/guardian.
I have to call this out because this line of thought often sits beneath a lot of misunderstandings. People who don't have children are perfectly capable of understanding the implications, obligations and challenges having a child brings to any dynamic. We may not understand what the actual experience feels like, but we can certainly get a good idea.

I've had poly friends raise their children in open sex positive environments while directly addressing the prejudice attached to such. I've had poly friends raise their children in such a way as to protect themselves and their children from such prejudices. Both choices are valid and both choices carry their own consequence.

But really, it's a bit insulting to to be told in effect "You can't possibly understand because you don't have kids". The subtext of that, whether intended or not, is "Your opinion is not valid in this area".

I've worked closely with children for most of my professional life and I've had that line dropped on me more than once when a parent disagreed with me on something. It's fair enough to disagree and and since it's their kid, I respect that. But respect the fact that not having kids does not automatically mean ignorance of all the issues that go along with having them.
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