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  #31  
Old 08-22-2011, 05:37 PM
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Every macro community has micro communities. Some neighbors hang out on weekends and some don't. Some people play baseball with certain people and play cards with entirely different people. A community divide is only as real as our personal perceptions allows it to be.
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  #32  
Old 08-22-2011, 05:37 PM
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The closest thing I can think to compare to is “church”. There are many, many different denominations that all have differing ways of “believing” and each think that their way is better than the next and some go so far as to say that their way is the only right way to believe. Within the church there are also many different groups, singles, young marrieds, adults with families, empty nesters, etc.

I don’t see people intentionally setting out to ONLY spend time with those that “fit” into their same grouping, but it just happens that way. Those with kids have a definite priority, time and attention shift that those without kids can sympathies with, but can’t truly grasp the full impact. Let's face it, how many of us truly understood how much would change when we first held our newborn, it's impacts us way more than just some sleepless nights, it effect our whole phychy. My boss (who doesn’t have any kids) has brought up the topic many times that he can’t comprehend how those of us that do have kids do it, I think this is especially true as he compares his life/business with that of his business partner, who does have kids. Of course I also see the reverse and it's unfair of those of us with kids to expect those without kids to react, view things or even think the same way as we do.

@Autumnal Tone: The problem is that ESPECIALLY in the English language, one word will have different connotations. Is it being used as an adjective (identity), a verb (lifestyle), etc? Now if the definition is only "many loves", then a cheater can definitely be poly as, he/she may actually love both partners even if said cheater isn't being ethical.

Like I said at the beginning this reminds me so much of the debates within the church.

---
There, Mono said almost the same thing in only 4 sentences.

Last edited by SNeacail; 08-22-2011 at 06:06 PM.
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  #33  
Old 08-22-2011, 05:47 PM
AutumnalTone AutumnalTone is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bahalana View Post
I'll call BS on your calling BS.

[SIZE="2"]From Wikipedia:

My point is that English is a fluid language that is defined by usage. If we want to make up a word, and lexicographically Polyamory is a very recent acquisition, we have to fight with everybody else who may choose to use our newly invented word for the privilege of defining it. It is certainly possible for two people to have very different definitions for the same word.
Ah, christ, please.

When the word "polyamory" was being coined, it was due to a need. The folks who coined it needed a term for a form of nonmonogamy for which there was no accurate term. Both swinging and open relationships had been in long use and had known meanings when referring to those forms of nonmonogamy.

Why were folks searching for a new term? Because what they needed to describe *is something different than what the terms "swinging" and "open" describe.* They needed a different term to describe a different way of doing nonmonogamy.

So, what do we know about the meaning of this new term, "polyamory?" We find that the it was coined specifically to describe a subset of nonmonogamy involving romantic relationships, and approach that the terms "swinging" and "open" do not describe.

As for the living language argument, I'll observe that the term qualifies as jargon and is not subject to the same sort of frippery that general language is. As technical terms in engineering or law or jewelrymaking or any of a multitude of fields show, jargon is held to different standards than general usage words so that the meaning is constant and useful. So, while "awful" may have some common connotations today that it didn't have 150 years ago, there are many terms that have the exact same connotations now as they did then. (I won't bother getting into how such slippage appears to happen primarily to adjectives....)
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When speaking of various forms of non-monogamy...it ain't poly if you're just fucking around.

While polyamory, open relationships, and swinging are all distinctly different approaches to non-monogamy, they are not mutually exlusive. Folks can, and some do, engage in more than one of them at a time--and it's all good.
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  #34  
Old 08-22-2011, 05:52 PM
AutumnalTone AutumnalTone is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Minxxa View Post

As for polyamory, specifically -- all that word means is many loves.
That is incorrect. The word "polyamory" was coined for a specific purpose with a specific meaning. The roots used to form the word do mean "multiple" and "love" though that doesn't provide the specifc meaning attached to the term when it was coined.
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When speaking of various forms of non-monogamy...it ain't poly if you're just fucking around.

While polyamory, open relationships, and swinging are all distinctly different approaches to non-monogamy, they are not mutually exlusive. Folks can, and some do, engage in more than one of them at a time--and it's all good.
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  #35  
Old 08-22-2011, 06:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by others
poly vs. open
I'm really rather confused about the difference between the two. Suppose I am seeing more than one person, and everyone involved actively consents and knows about the others. If it was purely about sex, that would be swinging -at least that much seems pretty clear-cut- but what if I have genuine and deeply-felt emotional attachments to more than one of these people?

Is the difference between poly and open when one reaches the point where "I love you" is said?

Perhaps it's topography- like the difference between a mesh network (poly) and a modified star network (open)?



edit: This is doubtless overly simplified, but I made this Venn diagram.


Last edited by SoCalExile; 08-22-2011 at 07:09 PM.
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  #36  
Old 08-22-2011, 06:31 PM
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I am getting the church analogy. It helps me step out side of the discussion and see it from the outside actually as I am not religious. Very helpful, thanls for that. The neighbor analogy is helpful for me also.

So, non-monogamy is more the umbrella term than poly then? Sometimes I hear that polyamory is an umbrella term for anything between swinging and poly fi. It seems that poly is more on the latter end maybe and all of it ia non-monogamy.
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  #37  
Old 08-22-2011, 06:42 PM
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In the practice of all the levels or sub sets of non monogamy it seems to require high degree of open mindedness ...however its funny that same open mindedness is not afforded to the different factions or sub sets....actually I find it really ironic.


Nycindiie,

I'm confused.... one post you say you don't identity as poly..... a couple postings later you feel exasperated and offended when someone see's you as just dating ( and not being poly). How can you have it both ways....
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  #38  
Old 08-22-2011, 06:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nycindie View Post
Funny how people are really responding to the kids or no kids issue, though I didn't think that was RP's focus in her original post. Must be a sensitive issue for many. Now in re-reading it, maybe that is a big part of the question, but it seems that the divide between "poly family" (however one defines family) and a much looser practice of poly, was her main concern or at least what prompted the question.

As a kid, I used to fantasize about being part of a big family. But as I got older, I have come to enjoy my solitude and independence, although there are times I am quite lonesome. A poly tribe, or big poly family, is nothing I would ever want, whether there were kids in the equation or not. Maybe if I were still in my 20s or 30s, I'd be into it - but now in my 50s? Nuh-uh. It probably does have largely to do with my lifelong choice to be childfree, but not the only reason. I relish my privacy, and have had enough roommates from hell to find communal living rather off-putting. In embracing poly, I reignited an old dream of mine to be a truly independent woman openly living on her own with a number of lovers.

Now, getting to the question of divisions in the poly community...

I believe any divisions we do see will mostly be predicated upon our own experiences and viewpoints. I guess the "poly family" question is a non-issue for me, since I am satisfied with my choice and don't find myself in situations where it is challenged. And in NYC I don't seem to meet many people trying to build a poly tribe (real estate being a huge factor, probably!). So, I don't notice a divide so much from that perspective, but more so from the view of solo vs. married. For example, I frequently reach a saturation point at which I cannot hear one more story about opening up a marriage, or the struggles of a couple dealing with their "thirds" or in-laws or whatever. I want to hear more from solo poly people who choose not to have any primaries. For me, it's a divide I feel a lot, because I am alone and set apart from most of the people I've met at the few poly gatherings I've attended, and here, and other poly forums I have visited. I find it exasperating when someone says to me, "But you're not poly, you're just dating." It has happened.

That's one divide I see, but if I look at how I feel when I'm in a poly group, I see more -- these are all based on my choices that seem different from the majority of those who go to hang out at poly gatherings (being solo, a straight woman, not into kink, etc.). For me, I have never felt like I fit in anywhere in my entire life, so I think I'm used to it, sad though that may seem. Now, I have not experienced any outright rejection from the poly community, so I think the divisions I see are totally subjective. As I stated earlier, I don't see the need to label myself or be part of some organized poly machine, so it doesn't affect me much, other than bring up some occasional feelings of frustration.

Geez, I fucking hope that made some sense, I got distracted halfway through writing it.
Well, I'm a solo poly at the moment and loving it. Not really sure if I will be forever, but I enjoy it now and remain open to what might come up. I wouldn't move in with my lover, though I think he and his GF would be up for it. I need my space too. Lots of it. In fact, I try not to visit more than one sleep-over per week, because it gets too much for me.

On the other hand, I consider myself part of a poly family. My lover and his GF, her lover, her daugter, one of my lover's ex girlfriends, my best friend and her BF, and his two teenage sons. We dont' live together: we don't even live all in the same town. But we function the way my extended family did when I was small, getting together regularly for social functions and taking care of one another. It's important to me to have that, but I don't really see it as a commune or anything fluffy like that. It just happens that we're all a bit non-traditional in our attutudes & behaviours around romantic relationships. I'm still independant in my decisionmaking, finance, and whatnot.
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  #39  
Old 08-22-2011, 06:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redpepper View Post
So, non-monogamy is more the umbrella term than poly then?
I would say that poly is definitely a subset of non-monogamy.
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  #40  
Old 08-22-2011, 07:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redpepper View Post
I am getting the church analogy. It helps me step out side of the discussion and see it from the outside actually as I am not religious. Very helpful, thanls for that. The neighbor analogy is helpful for me also.

So, non-monogamy is more the umbrella term than poly then? Sometimes I hear that polyamory is an umbrella term for anything between swinging and poly fi. It seems that poly is more on the latter end maybe and all of it ia non-monogamy.
Ding, ding, ding,.... yep to all.

******

For my own personal interpretation, poly has to mean more then 'loves in multiples' otherwise, pretty much anyone is poly. You could be monogamous, and still carry a torch for a old flame, and,..bam, you`re poly.

To me, it means being committed to working on loving relationships in multiples. There is a lot of work, and a process, no matter how you go about it, or what your personal belief, on those processes are.

***

To me, 'Open' means you are literally open to a wide variety of non-mongamous scenarios. This could include a 'mix' of dating, caring, sex, LTR, with all, or some people that come into your life.
That is where I place myself.

I think a lot of misunderstanding is definitely due to the process of learning about ones' self. When you come into any non-monogamy, there is a thinking process that pretty much puts people into one of two camps.

Are you a Swinger, or are you Poly ?

The longer you are in this, the more you see all the variables in between the two ends of a spectrum. Its a matter of going through experience, and learning about ones' self.

I think we need to remind ourselves, when we hear others use a term differently then us, that they are probably at a different process point, and that is how their definition is based.

AKA,..ask them 5 years from now, the same thing.
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