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  #21  
Old 03-17-2014, 04:20 AM
Eponine Eponine is offline
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Originally Posted by PolyinPractice View Post
I usually interpret polyamory to mean romantic love. Friendship is a form of love, but then isn't everyone poly? Monogamous couples have friends, too.
Most people's (especially monogamists') friendships are limited in physical and emotional intimacy, affection, commitment, and priority. A lot of things (e.g. cuddling, sex, sharing a bed, traveling together, cohabitation, co-parenting) are reserved to romantic relationships. That's why there's the expression "just friends" but not "just romantic partners." Also, the meaning of "friend" is incredibly broad in English. A lot of so-called "friendships" involve no real emotional connections at all.

However, if a friendship is extremely intimate and as significant as a romantic relationship for both parties, I don't see why having multiple such friendships (or having one romantic relationship and one intimate friendship) isn't a form of poly. I used to not get this, but my non-romantic relationship with L made me realize non-romantic love can be as strong as romantic love, and it would be arbitrary to say it wasn't a significant loving relationship just because it's not romantic.

This blog post explained non-romantic poly more thoroughly (see the last section "aromantic poly"): http://thethinkingasexual.wordpress....-asexual-post/
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  #22  
Old 03-18-2014, 01:40 AM
JaneQSmythe JaneQSmythe is offline
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This conversation definitely highlights that the different relationships we have with people may be viewed or defined differently ... so it is important to communicate expectations regardless of the "labels" we are using.

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Originally Posted by PolyinPractice View Post
.. what IS the difference between casual sex and sex with a close friend? Can't you have a casual relationship with a friend involving sex?
For me there is a big difference between casual sex and sex with a friend.

For me "casual sex" involves sex with someone that I am not particularly close to - someone I meet at a party, have a good time with, but don't necessarily care if we ever see each other or speak again - although I might be up for a second go-round if we happen to run into each other again - I wouldn't necessarily go to any special effort to make that happen.

On the other hand, I don't have any "casual" friendships - by the time I consider someone a friend they are an integral part of my life and my heart (anyone else is an acquaintance). Their needs and feelings are very, very important to me. Which is why I generally don't have more than a few friends at any given time. (I am easily "friend"-saturated). While the sexual nature of a "FWB" situation might be "casual" - the friendship itself never would be - the sex part is a small part of the relationship.

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Originally Posted by Eponine View Post
Most people's (especially monogamists') friendships are limited in physical and emotional intimacy, affection, commitment, and priority. A lot of things (e.g. cuddling, sex, sharing a bed, traveling together, cohabitation, co-parenting) are reserved to romantic relationships. That's why there's the expression "just friends" but not "just romantic partners."
Well, see - with the exception of "co-parenting" - I would share all of the other things on that list with someone who was my friend - no romantic involvement necessary.


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Originally Posted by Eponine View Post
Also, the meaning of "friend" is incredibly broad in English. A lot of so-called "friendships" involve no real emotional connections at all.
Which utterly baffles me - as an introvert, I can't fathom bothering to spend ANY time with someone that I didn't feel a real kind of connection with...

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Originally Posted by Eponine View Post
However, if a friendship is extremely intimate and as significant as a romantic relationship for both parties, I don't see why having multiple such friendships (or having one romantic relationship and one intimate friendship) isn't a form of poly. I used to not get this, but my non-romantic relationship with L made me realize non-romantic love can be as strong as romantic love, and it would be arbitrary to say it wasn't a significant loving relationship just because it's not romantic.
20 years ago my best friend in school decided that if my long time, long-distance FWB/GF "counted" as a poly relationship, then she did too! After all we spent more time together then we did with our spouses, shared intimate details of our lives and innermost thoughts, cuddled and napped together, had free run of each other's homes, etc. No sexual relationship, but she was jealous when I moved away with my husband - 'cause then HE got me all the time If her husband had agreed, she would have moved with us and kept house.

Poly is a great umbrella to have these conversations - but labels are only as useful as they are...get too bogged down in the semantics and you lose the ability to see the infinite variety and richness of the possibilities of all of the satisfying ways that we can relate to each other as individuals.


PS. Didn't read the whole article but skipped to the suggested section - "queerplatonic" yup, like...
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Me: poly bi female, in an "open-but-not-looking" Vee-plus with -
MrS: hetero polyflexible male, live-in husband (together 21+ yrs)
Dude: hetero poly male, live-in boyfriend (together 3+ yrs) and MrS's best friend
Lotus: poly bi female, "it's complicated" relationships with Dude/JaneQ/MrS
TT: poly bi male, married to Lotus, FB with JaneQ
VV and MsJ: bi-women with male primaries, LTR LDR FWBs to JaneQ


My poly blogs on this site:
The Journey of JaneQSmythe
The Notebook of JaneQSmythe

Last edited by JaneQSmythe; 03-18-2014 at 01:47 AM.
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  #23  
Old 03-18-2014, 02:17 AM
Tonberry Tonberry is offline
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Originally Posted by PolyinPractice View Post
I usually interpret polyamory to mean romantic love. Friendship is a form of love, but then isn't everyone poly? Monogamous couples have friends, too.

Also, I'm not saying you have to change your opinion, but what IS the difference between casual sex and sex with a close friend? Can't you have a casual relationship with a friend involving sex?
Well, FWBs are not the same as the friendships monogamous people would consider "fine". And I don't think it's only about the sexual component. There is a form of intimacy which involves hugging, kissing, confiding into each other in more emotional ways... I think some people might already do that with their friends but a lot don't, sex or not.

As for the difference, to me, between casual sex and sex with a friend, it's pretty easy: to me casual sex is sex with no attachment. Friendship is an attachment. My friends will stay part of my life and there will be consequences, I can't just treat them like shit because we'll never see again, and vice-versa.
When I say I'm not into casual sex, really, what it means is that I require a large amount of trust to be willing to have a sexual relationship with someone. That trust is present with friends but not with strangers.

To me, a friend with benefits is not casual because you are committed to them, just in a different way. You might not be committed to be in a relationship forever, or to raise children together, or get married, but there is a certain commitment to being in each other lives forever, even if one moves away for work or whatever (and the other wouldn't follow, another difference between friends and romantic partners)
Even if you spend years without being in contact, when you're in contact again, be it face to face or through another medium (phone, internet, etc), it will be like you saw each other yesterday.

So I guess to me a friend with benefits is fairly similar to a romantic relationship, there is just less neediness and co-dependence involved, it's more independent. And while co-dependency is not the best idea ever, it does make sense in some relationships where you really need each other to keep moving forward, and one person just deciding "I'm going to [insert country or continent there] for a year! Alone." would be considering "abandoning the family" rather than being independent and following your path.
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  #24  
Old 03-18-2014, 05:34 PM
PolyinPractice PolyinPractice is offline
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Originally Posted by Tonberry View Post
Well, FWBs are not the same as the friendships monogamous people would consider "fine". And I don't think it's only about the sexual component. There is a form of intimacy which involves hugging, kissing, confiding into each other in more emotional ways... I think some people might already do that with their friends but a lot don't, sex or not.

As for the difference, to me, between casual sex and sex with a friend, it's pretty easy: to me casual sex is sex with no attachment. Friendship is an attachment. My friends will stay part of my life and there will be consequences, I can't just treat them like shit because we'll never see again, and vice-versa.
When I say I'm not into casual sex, really, what it means is that I require a large amount of trust to be willing to have a sexual relationship with someone. That trust is present with friends but not with strangers.

To me, a friend with benefits is not casual because you are committed to them, just in a different way. You might not be committed to be in a relationship forever, or to raise children together, or get married, but there is a certain commitment to being in each other lives forever, even if one moves away for work or whatever (and the other wouldn't follow, another difference between friends and romantic partners)
Even if you spend years without being in contact, when you're in contact again, be it face to face or through another medium (phone, internet, etc), it will be like you saw each other yesterday.

So I guess to me a friend with benefits is fairly similar to a romantic relationship, there is just less neediness and co-dependence involved, it's more independent. And while co-dependency is not the best idea ever, it does make sense in some relationships where you really need each other to keep moving forward, and one person just deciding "I'm going to [insert country or continent there] for a year! Alone." would be considering "abandoning the family" rather than being independent and following your path.
I've had FWB relationships before; they could be ended by either person, for any reason, at any moment. To me, that is casual. There was no "relationship"; just sex.
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  #25  
Old 03-18-2014, 06:18 PM
JaneQSmythe JaneQSmythe is offline
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Originally Posted by PolyinPractice View Post
I've had FWB relationships before; they could be ended by either person, for any reason, at any moment. To me, that is casual. There was no "relationship"; just sex.
In my personal terminology I wouldn't describe that as FWB - since there is no "relationship" and I consider friendship to be a very significant relationship. I'd consider a person like that a FB ("fuck-buddy") (or, when I'm feeling mean "Dick-On-Call").

Again, it doesn't really matter what you call it - as long as you define your terms (when discussing things on a board like this - where people may define terms differently) and everyone is in agreement about what the expectations are.

PS - I just have to point out, to be brutally honest, ANY relationship can "be ended by either person, for any reason, at any moment" - it takes two to tango. It's just that in a casual-type situation that is more expected and less painful.
__________________
Me: poly bi female, in an "open-but-not-looking" Vee-plus with -
MrS: hetero polyflexible male, live-in husband (together 21+ yrs)
Dude: hetero poly male, live-in boyfriend (together 3+ yrs) and MrS's best friend
Lotus: poly bi female, "it's complicated" relationships with Dude/JaneQ/MrS
TT: poly bi male, married to Lotus, FB with JaneQ
VV and MsJ: bi-women with male primaries, LTR LDR FWBs to JaneQ


My poly blogs on this site:
The Journey of JaneQSmythe
The Notebook of JaneQSmythe

Last edited by JaneQSmythe; 03-18-2014 at 06:21 PM.
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  #26  
Old 03-18-2014, 09:40 PM
PolyinPractice PolyinPractice is offline
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Originally Posted by JaneQSmythe View Post
In my personal terminology I wouldn't describe that as FWB - since there is no "relationship" and I consider friendship to be a very significant relationship. I'd consider a person like that a FB ("fuck-buddy") (or, when I'm feeling mean "Dick-On-Call").

Again, it doesn't really matter what you call it - as long as you define your terms (when discussing things on a board like this - where people may define terms differently) and everyone is in agreement about what the expectations are.

PS - I just have to point out, to be brutally honest, ANY relationship can "be ended by either person, for any reason, at any moment" - it takes two to tango. It's just that in a casual-type situation that is more expected and less painful.
Sorry, I meant the PHYSICAL relationship could be ended at any point. The friendship usually continues; although I have lost friendships that just became too awkward after that...

Emotional relationships generally don't end that cleanly.
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  #27  
Old 03-20-2014, 01:11 AM
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nycindie nycindie is offline
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Originally Posted by PolyinPractice View Post
I've had FWB relationships before; they could be ended by either person, for any reason, at any moment. To me, that is casual. There was no "relationship"; just sex.
I would consider those fuck buddies, not friends with benefits. I value my friends highly, care about them, have deep conversations with them, nurture my relationships with friends, and want them in my life. Fuck buddies are just for sex.
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  #28  
Old 03-20-2014, 06:35 AM
PolyinPractice PolyinPractice is offline
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I would consider those fuck buddies, not friends with benefits. I value my friends highly, care about them, have deep conversations with them, nurture my relationships with friends, and want them in my life. Fuck buddies are just for sex.
Oh, some of these people in my life were friends I cared very deeply about and often had intense conversations with, comforted, etc. I don't really have sexual relations with someone I don't trust. It's simply that the physical relations between us were very casual and terminated at a moment's notice. The friendship wasn't casual; but the sexual relation was very much so.
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  #29  
Old 03-20-2014, 07:03 AM
london london is offline
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So arguably the most important aspects survived? Trust, loyalty, respect etc
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  #30  
Old 03-20-2014, 03:24 PM
PolyinPractice PolyinPractice is offline
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So arguably the most important aspects survived? Trust, loyalty, respect etc
Again, sex often changes things. But a lot of times, yes, the most important values remain
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