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  #21  
Old 07-14-2010, 06:54 PM
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Sorry to cut and paste but this reply sums up how I am so fulfilled in my relationship as a mono in a poly dynamic.

My monogamous needs (traditional marriage, traditional family, social blending, experiencing being some one's one and only love/lover ..etc, etc, etc,) were met in a previous relationship and therefore are not needs anymore. These needs could not be met in a poly relationship.

For a monogamous person to not experience a monogamous relationship is to perhaps sacrifice those possible needs I mentioned above....I think this is a much more difficult dynamic. Similarly, I think a poly person should explore a poly relationship before trying a monogamous one.



In short, I believe people should try to engage in relationships where both partners have matching natures before investing in one that does not. That way both are fully aware of what they are possibly missing and at least have a basic understanding of how the different dynamics feel.
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Last edited by MonoVCPHG; 07-14-2010 at 07:09 PM.
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  #22  
Old 07-14-2010, 08:49 PM
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Hi Mono,
Thanks for the reply.

Mono - So, then do you think those needs of yours were only temporary? That you just needed to experience them once?

Others - What about others who haven't experienced things in this way?
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  #23  
Old 07-14-2010, 08:59 PM
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Yes, they were things I needed to experience. Those needs have been filled by the right person to do that. My needs are different now and are being filled by the right person.
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  #24  
Old 07-14-2010, 09:53 PM
immaterial immaterial is offline
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Default Monogamy Explored

Erato's thread, "Please Help Me Understand Monogamy" http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=3203, along with a few other comments here and there all over the forum, got me thinking about monogamy yesterday. I posted to my blog here some comments on a negative definition of monogamy that were offensive to Mono and perhaps others and Red Pepper smartly suggested I just start a new thread, out of the blogs section.

So here we are.

I have a little piece of paper on my kitchen window sill that has written on it:

"I am free of fear. I know that I am in the right place and the right time. I am doing the right thing and I continue to do the next right thing."

If this affirmation is true for myself, it is of course just as true for anyone.

I also remember what I mentioned in another post today: "Be kind to everyone you meet, for each is fighting a hard battle."

I preface my remarks with these reminders because otherwise I am in danger of being unclear, stepping on toes, etc. Monogamy is a difficult subject to discuss respectfully, it seems, just like any other sexual and relationship choice.

Okay, enough "kittens and puppies," as Ariakis would say. :-)

I have been doing an inventory of where I got my views and opinions about monogamy. A starting place is my family of origin. My mother and father drift toward 80 and are still married, after 57 years. In my white, middle class Presbyterian upbringing, this is just "what is done." When the so-called "sexual revolution" of the '70s hit, the only impact it seemed to have on my parents was that my mom either bought herself or was given by my dad a copy of the book The Joy of Sex. (This was the original '70s edition, with the long-haired hippie lovers, the beautiful lithe hippie woman with armpit hair, who definitely became a type for me as I started being interested in women. Yes, I snuck into my parents' bedroom and read my mother's copy of The Joy of Sex. haha). I learned later that my father was not sexually faithful. I don't know the details, just that a sex worker was involved. I don't know if my mother has ever been sexual with anyone other than my father. I wouldn't be surprised. I just learned last summer that she used to drink at home all day when we were kids. Their generation seems to be the generation of secrets.

Anyway, sorry, I rambled a bit there.

I have mostly been a serial monogamist. I have always been intensely focused and loyal for the first phase of relationships. Then my heart starts to attach to others. Then the monogamous relationship ends, one way or the other. I go through a period of mourning and then I get into another intensely focused monogamous relationship. Lather, rinse, repeat.

In those intense phases of focus and connection, I have perhaps gotten some slight indication of what monogamy is. I'm not really sure as I am questioning everything these days. I suspect I am not only a sex addict, but a love and relationship addict as well. I also suspect I have not ever been in a healthy relationship. I also suspect I have never actually been truthfully monogamous, but only expediently or conveniently so. As you can see, all of my cards are on the table, everything is up for examination and overhaul right now.

What is the most positive definition of monogamy people have? Every time I try to offer a definition, my words fall short. Obviously, on the most basic level, it's having one sexual partner. But I'm interested in a deeper exploration of monogamy. Perhaps this thread will end up being helpful for the many questioning souls who stop by.

Immaterial
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  #25  
Old 07-14-2010, 10:32 PM
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First of all, thanks for the post. I always want to discuss monogamy on this forum as well and there have been some great conversation starters here.

I think that every relationship style comes with it's own pluses and minuses.

I think that monogamy gives two people an environment in which they learn to explore each other and themselves more deeply.

In an open or poly context, if your partner in not into a certain sexual position, for example, you can just find it elsewhere, never having explored that with your partner, never having talked through what it meant for them or for you, never deepening a part of your bond that could have been deepened. For lack of a better work, it can "force" you to dig in order to keep a relationship fresh and alive.

The beauty to me is that you commit to being in a position that will both promote growth within each other while staying with each other and only each other for a very long time.

Of course, it is possible to do this if not monogamous, and it may not happen if you were monogamous... ah caveats. Again, there are very similar pluses and minuses to each... but they can both be honest and beautiful.
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  #26  
Old 07-14-2010, 10:45 PM
Ariakas Ariakas is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by immaterial View Post
Okay, enough "kittens and puppies," as Ariakis would say. :-)
...haha

Quote:
I have mostly been a serial monogamist. I have always been intensely focused and loyal for the first phase of relationships. Then my heart starts to attach to others. Then the monogamous relationship ends, one way or the other. I go through a period of mourning and then I get into another intensely focused monogamous relationship. Lather, rinse, repeat.
This seems like one of the many ways people find poly. Excellent explanation of serial monogamy btw


Quote:
What is the most positive definition of monogamy people have? Every time I try to offer a definition, my words fall short. Obviously, on the most basic level, it's having one sexual partner. But I'm interested in a deeper exploration of monogamy. Perhaps this thread will end up being helpful for the many questioning souls who stop by.

Immaterial
I think you were trying to make it too complicated in the other thread. And while I don't plan to go digging up what was said (new slate and all that) monogamy simply means one love. That simple. Its as simple as poly at its simplest. Multiple loves. All the crap built on top of that is the extras that build a, hopefully, healthy relationship.

Not unless you disbelieve in a persons ability to only have one love. There is no argument or debate. However, you would be hard pressed to convince me of the reality of that, my parents only loved each other and only each other. They couldn't conceptualize loving someone else. It was all encompassing and beautiful. I also saw fault with how they did it. It was too dependent. I swore when I got married I would love like them, but not live like them. Throw in my kinky side, shake it in a blender and spit me out the other end, and I end up poly...go figure.

While I am not a mono, I can understand their view through my parents eyes.

I have room in my heart for multiple romantic loves at one time...my parents didn't.
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  #27  
Old 07-14-2010, 11:51 PM
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Originally Posted by geminigirl View Post
Just to play devil's advocate here, I'd like to mention that sometimes there are poly agendas.. ie. a poly person dates a mono person with the intention of "converting" them. In my observation (close-hand experience) this does not go over well for either person.

Sometimes agendas are not conscious, though. A culturally conditioned agenda just seems normal to the person who holds the belief. Even poly people dating other poly people can have "agendas", which is why it's important to discuss (and keep on discussing) relationship goals and needs as time goes on.
@gemmigirl I agree with this statement too, but that is why communication and discussion is key in ANY relationship... in this case mentioned it is just as important for the monogamous person to make it clear that they aren't changing their beliefs and suddenly start being poly just as it is equally important for the poly person to make it clear they aren't changing their beliefs and start being mono neither. i think any relationship whereby we either consciously or subconsciously ask our partners to change merely to better suit us doesn't normally go over well.

we don't have to all come from the same cookie cutter and we do need to respect and acknowledge that there are other shapes and even other types of cookies out there which are all just as delicious as the other cookies and we needs to be upfront about the fact that if we are a chocolate chip cookie we are not going to magically become a gingerbread man cookie or vice verse just because that's what the other wants... :-) damn, now i gotta go eat a cookie or 2, and i don't mean figuratively.... LOL ...can u tell i work with kids based on my analogy????
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  #28  
Old 07-15-2010, 12:39 AM
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There is no negative definition of monogamy. There are only negative attributes and behaviors associated with some of it's participants. Possessiveness, ownership, control, insecurity and fear are all attributes of some individuals and should not be considered a quality of the way a body of people love. The same application of negative attributes in regards to polyamory are exploited by those who are afraid of it or don't understand it. Slutty, fear of responsibility, immaturity, inability to commit, sexually unhealthy are not the qualities of the entire poly community but they are the attributes of some of it's participants. Again, to blanket the whole community with the negative attributes of a few is to do a whole body of people an injustice.

Monogamy is the achievement of intimate completion through the sharing of energy and sexuality with one person. If that is how you work, it is a wonderful and peaceful place that gives you confidence and strength to take on challenges in other areas of your life knowing that at least one part of it is solid and constant.

That's my monogamy
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  #29  
Old 07-15-2010, 01:34 AM
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I grew up watching a serial monogomist.

I swore, upside down and sideways that when I got married, that was it. He was the one for the rest of my life. I was NOT going to be like her, I was NOT going to go through marriage after marriage, boyfriend after boyfriend. (If she marries again - it will be #5)

So I got married. I'm still married after almost 11 years. I will stay married to him as long as we both live. He is my husband.

SO I understand the desire to have One Love, One Spouse, Mate for Life type thing. I respect it.

I am more comfortable in a (theoretically at this point) poly relationship. We have been swingers, and that was a comfortable place for us. I think having other loves will be a comfortable place for us as well.

COULD I remain monogamous if he asked me to? Probably. If given the choice - I won't. And I am so grateful that he has chosen to allow us BOTH to walk through door #3 and see what's down the rabbit hole.

*You take the blue pill - the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill - you stay in Wonderland and I show you how deep the rabbit-hole goes.*
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  #30  
Old 07-15-2010, 07:19 AM
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monaural wrote this on another thread (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showt...?t=3203&page=3)

"@Erato - Here's my take on monogamy.

What I want in a partner is pretty simple. I want an amazing friend that I get to f*** and do awesome stuff with, who has my back.

My life is busy. My tech/creative split means I kinda work two jobs. I also need a decent amount of personal time and space to geek out in. There's a limited amount of space in my life for someone else, to begin with.

When I find a partner that's great in bed, intelligent, driven, and attractive, f***, I'm done! I'm totally taken care of. Then I can get down to the fun of building that relationship, and reap the security, connection, and passion that it brings. That's just the end of the equation for me.

If I find my heart wandering or start feeling like something's missing, then it's clear I'm either with the wrong person, or something's up in the relationship. Either things get resolved, or we break up, and move on.

Between work and cooking and throwing parties and making art and cleaning the house and hanging with friends and traveling and playing shows and everything else, love is but a facet of my life, though its influence pervades everything. I never seek to complicate it, test it, or otherwise monkey with it, if it's working.

To me, more partners just sounds like trouble, and work. More personalities to balance, tears to dry, work issues to shoulder, and logistics to consider. Eff it, if I've got a good partner, I'm happy."

I love this. It makes me understand entirely why my mono relationships worked for a very long time (two 4 year ones, and one 3 year one. two with men, one with my wife). It was as simple as basic needs being met, compatibility and getting on with other stuff. Poly is constant and consistent work, little down time, little privacy about personal issues and things I am personally working on and really, next to know time to be with others who I am not lovers with.

yup, totally get monogamy in this way and sometimes wish I would be satisfied with that... then I realize what I would not have and am more than satisfied with what I have. Still, I embrace my fellow mono's for standing where they are at and feeling content. Even more so when they allow me to be content where I am in their presence. Such a gift of mutual respect when that happens.
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