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  #11  
Old 02-20-2018, 11:42 PM
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Hello MagDahlia15,

Honestly, the best way I know of to come out as poly to judgmental people (e.g. your parents) is, short and simple. "I want to let you know that we are nonmonogamous." After that you can answer questions (within reason). Or maybe they'll freak out so bad that you'll just have to leave. Some people freak out for a year before they finally accept it. Some never accept it. If you want to come out, that's something you should prepare for. As far as I know, nobody knows of a "safe" way to tell them.

Sympathetically,
Kevin T.
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  #12  
Old 02-21-2018, 04:18 AM
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I was raised very strict back woods (my words) Southern Baptist and no one in my family would understand that I have chosen to live my life in a poly relationship. I would never open a conversation with my family about this. To me, it's just not worth the headache. The three of us are very happy in our poly and we fit well together. For the first time in my life, I feel very fulfilled, respected and loved for exactly who and what I am. That means the world to me.

Hope that makes sense and helps.
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  #13  
Old 02-21-2018, 02:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MagDahlia15 View Post
I Am in a polyamorous relationship with my Husband and my Boyfriend. We are all very happy and have been together for a while.
I'm curious how long you've been together, both with your husband and your boyfriend.
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  #14  
Old 02-22-2018, 01:28 PM
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If you are happy, perhaps you don't need to do anything around disclosing. It sounds like there would be major upheaval if you all came out poly, but maybe hiding is becoming too much as well?
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Old 02-22-2018, 02:16 PM
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Is being out going to bring damages? (Ex: At workplace/job? Hate crime? Something else?)
Good point, imo - and not just the damage potential to the one coming out but also the damage to the relationship with whomever your coming out to (parents, for example). And the damage to that person - will it cause them severe emotional pain?

Coming out to devoutly fundamentalist or Catholic parents might indeed cause them a great deal of emotional trauma. So coming out to devoutly religious parents may not be the kindest thing to do. There is a axiom in recovery circles that others should not be hurt in the process of recovery - as the problem is then just compounded. (For example - confessing to your spouse that you had an affair as part of "making amends" in 12 step recovery might cause unnecessary severe emotional pain to your spouse - so it is sometimes suggested that the amend is better made by being a faithful and considerate spouse - the so-called "living amends". )

Of course, a devoutly religious sibling may or may not care - since they don't have the same type of emotional investment in your lifestyle as your parents might. So coming out to them may not involve any significant emotional pain to them.

Then again, there is another school of thought that would suggest that being true to yourself and coming out to all regardless of the damage to the emotional state of others is more important and the healthier choice - and it is on the other party to deal with their pain and perhaps learn from it.

I would guess it comes down to how one's personal values lie along these lines. I personally would opt to do what I believed to be the kindest thing to do - which might be coming out or not - depending on the circumstances - but would not do so for my own emotional benefit at the expenses of other's emotional pain. Others, and in good conscience, may feel differently...

Just a couple of cent worth.... Al
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  #16  
Old 02-22-2018, 02:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Al99 View Post
(For example - confessing to your spouse that you had an affair as part of "making amends" in 12 step recovery might cause unnecessary severe emotional pain to your spouse - so it is sometimes suggested that the amend is better made by being a faithful and considerate spouse - the so-called "living amends". )
This is an oft-cited example of a good reason to spare another her pain, but in my experience, this option to not disclose the full truth of oneself (and an affair is very much part of the full truth of oneself) is an option to turn away from full intimacy. A truly intimate relationship requires honesty. A spouse certainly can choose to "spare the other her pain," but it always comes at the expense of some degree of closeness. People are perhaps driven by guilt to disclose an affair, but I don't believe that anyone does it selfishly and solely to alleviate that guilt. Most do it because there is some need and hope for authenticity, wherever that may lead. Active alcoholics indeed hurt others in many and varied ways, and there's much to atone for, but this old trope about "sparing the other her pain" when the alcoholic has cheated, which is an enormous breach of the intimacy contract, is the choice to maintain a lie - and that choice always comes at the expense of some degree of authentic intimacy.

In the case of poly and coming out to family, the same holds true. Yes, we do "spare the other her pain" or even spare ourselves the unwanted agita when we choose to remain closeted, but it comes at the expense of some degree of authentic connection. It's never for anyone else to say to whom we should come out, but it's really important for us to be honest with ourselves and know that choosing not to show who we are is indeed keeping secrets - and keeping secrets always comes at the price of true intimacy. There are many people we have no desire to be all that close to, so the secrets work perfectly well. But there are some people with whom we want to be able to share our full selves and if that's what we want, then it's necessary for us to share the truth about our beloveds. I suppose that some family members will feel pain because of that, but that is their pain that they experience because of their beliefs. When the aim is to remain close with someone, I don't think it is ever helpful in the long run to keep secrets in order to "spare the other her pain" when that secret is an essential aspect of our intimate life. Secrets always erode intimacy.
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  #17  
Old 02-22-2018, 03:45 PM
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Quote:
Then again, there is another school of thought....
Karen wrote:
Quote:
In the case of poly and coming out to family, the same holds true. Yes, we do "spare the other her pain" or even spare ourselves the unwanted agita when we choose to remain closeted, but it comes at the expense of some degree of authentic connection. It's never for anyone else to say to whom we should come out, but it's really important for us to be honest with ourselves and know that choosing not to show who we are is indeed keeping secrets - and keeping secrets always comes at the price of true intimacy. There are many people we have no desire to be all that close to, so the secrets work perfectly well. But there are some people with whom we want to be able to share our full selves and if that's what we want, then it's necessary for us to share the truth about our beloveds. I suppose that some family members will feel pain because of that, but that is their pain that they experience because of their beliefs. When the aim is to remain close with someone, I don't think it is ever helpful in the long run to keep secrets in order to "spare the other her pain" when that secret is an essential aspect of our intimate life. Secrets always erode intimacy.
And there you have the other side of the coin - well said, Karen. I would not argue that either view is right or wrong or that either is morally superior - just a matter of individual conscience. Al
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Dramatis Personae:
Me: Al99, poly, heterosexual male, 50's
Becky: married to Al99, poly, heterosexual female, late 30's
Bouncingbetty: ldr girlfriend to Al99, poly, pansexual female, early 30's
Jill: local fwb to Al99, heterosexual female, early 50's.
Ben: Becky's medium-ldr bf, heterosexual male, 40's
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My Introductory Post - An Unexpected Introduction to Poly.
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  #18  
Old 02-22-2018, 10:55 PM
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Much depends on how close the parent / grown child relationship is ... or wants to be. If not very close, well, why even bother with coming out? If very close, well, coming out will probably become necessary at some point.
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