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Old 09-24-2014, 06:32 PM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 7,382

I feel this whole ideal of "equality" is just another way of making poly "shinier" than anything else. It's the wrong word and it gives a wrong impression!
I think people sometimes trip up on the words "fair" and "equal." Every time this comes up, I think of this picture:


The people in that 2nd picture are treated fairly -- they all can see the ball game. They are not treated equally -- not all of them needs a box to stand on to see over the fence.

Sometimes arrangements can be both "fair and equal" for the participants "at this time." They are ok with it and it meets their needs that way for now.

Sometimes arrangements can be "fair but not equal" for the participants "at this time." They are ok with it and it meets their needs that way for now.

Time can change a situation. It is up to the participants to sort all that out as they go along over time. I would not give the key to my house to someone I just started dating, but an older established dating partner might have it already. Why? Because over time they may have earned that privilege with me. It isn't that the new person cannot earn it too... over TIME. I am not treating anyone disrespectfully there.

Time can change a situation in other ways. Maybe someone's mother died -- time management changes. Maybe someone is taking a college class this term. Things change yet again. It is up to the participants to sort all that out as they go along over time.

I may care for the happiness of my partner, but if mine is also to be equally as important and I foresee a situation like the above, I would be really freaking crazy to put my couple at risk by accepting that my partner should have an "equal" partnership to ours with another person.
it only makes sense to split equally once the new relationship has had time to mature.
If you have a natural preference for a primary-secondary model to start and change co-primary or something else later? Just say so up front to all. You are allowed to have a preference. You are allowed to have personal boundaries. You are responsible for knowing and stating you wants, needs, hard limits, soft limits so other people can know what those might be.

Before going there with these people? You could also agree on how to break up, if a break up has to happen for some unforeseen reason. Even down to everyone single again! Then everyone is entering into relationship with eyes wide open. They know the deal breakers. They know what to expect in the event of a break up.

Otherwise, could not go there with those people who do NOT agree. Keeps things simpler on you.


Last edited by GalaGirl; 09-25-2014 at 03:22 AM.
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Old 09-25-2014, 02:55 AM
bookbug bookbug is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 757

Abstract concepts don't always translate perfectly to real life. What is important to consider is that all relationships will have different characteristics - different levels of entanglement (kids, finances, etc), different lengths of time, different joint interests, etc, but every person deserves to be treated with respect. Emotions are no less valid or genuine within a new relationship than within an older relationship. And the thats often where the rub comes - when there are issues, feelings in the newer relationships often are easily dismissed.
-Me: 51, female, relationship anarchist
-The Philosopher: semi-LDR, 44, male - my intellectual twin; relationship anarchist.
-Intellectual Elf, 27, female, the Philosopher's LDR
-Polkadot, 36, dating the Philosopher
-Wiseman, 68, male, solo-poly, my budding LDR
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Old 09-25-2014, 02:44 PM
whereami whereami is offline
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: California
Posts: 6

Originally Posted by nycindie View Post

My personal criteria for whether a relationship is working, fulfilling, and satisfying to me, is the following:

I am respected,
I feel valued and appreciated,
I am heard and acknowledged when I express myself,
I feel safe and free to be myself,
I can share my affection in a way that works for me,
I look forward to being with the person, and
there is way more fun, caring, and quality time when we are together than "hard work" and the processing of "issues."

I am not someone who needs to be in contact or see a lover every single day, and I feel that the frequency of seeing someone can fluctuate, but hopefully we can get together enough to allow for development of all the points above. Do I ask myself whether or not someone is giving me the same kinds of time, love, and attention he gives anyone else? No. The important thing, to me, is that my relationships meet my standards and no one else's.
NYCindie - This is extremely helpful, and is how I am starting to feel in my situation. I am going to swipe/adopt this list
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autonomy, balance, couple privilege, egalitarian poly, equal treatment, equality, fairness, managing relationships, primary/secondary, privilege, respect

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