Just didn't have a name for it.
The term polyamory didn't come into my life until I was in my late twenties. I had always just used the term "lover" to explain the structure of some of my relationships. FWB was never a term that I used, because I loved my partners - lover seemed to fit, and had a vaguely European flair that appealed to the romantic in me. I had sketchy fantasies about living with a couple, and did some internet research about it. I found that a LOT of couples were looking for that, and found sites with the poly symbol. I ordered The Ethical Slut online and read it with a voyeuristic curiousity. I found other websites. I guess that up until that point I hadn't given much thought to the concept that other people might be doing what I was doing. Didn't feel like I needed to "identify" as anything; I was who I was, and had always accepted that, and been the best person that I could be to the people I was involved with (honesty, communication, etc). A lot of it didn't sound at all like what I had been doing, or wanted to do, but it was interesting to come across terms to explain what I had been doing for my entire sexual life, and titillating to read other people's stories.
I really question whether or not I indentify as "poly". Increasingly I am drawn to the word Queer ("odd, unconventional, somewhat eccentric") to describe my style of relationship and sexuality. In some ways, I feel that EVERYONE is poly - we all love more than one person in our life (parents, siblings, friends, etc), and attaching sex to it actually doesn't change much for me; I don't feel like sex always defines the level of romance/connection in a relationship. Trying to align myself with a larger social group/norm has always been tricky for me; I believe in living individual truths and learning from those experiences, and while there is certainly lots to learn from reading other people's stories, I don't like preconceived blueprints or ideals being laid on my life very much.
Last edited by CherryBlossomGirl; 03-16-2013 at 04:57 PM.