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  #1  
Old 11-09-2011, 03:58 PM
tdn tdn is offline
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Default Question about discloser

I'm pretty new to the poly thing, and I have one big question.

I've dated several women this year, and some of those relationships have overlapped, but exclusivity was never discussed. And while they were all nice women, none of them really "rang my bells" in any serious way.

But just the other day I went out with someone who really does it for me. She's all kinds of awesome, and I could see myself becoming exclusive with her. But she doesn't do exclusive. She's known for a long time that she's born to be poly.

I guess that fits with my life right now, because right now I just want to date a lot of women without getting serious with any of them.

When she was married, she had an agreement with her husband. They had to introduce their potential lovers to each other and get approval to sleep with said potential lover.

Is that normal? Is that generally how things are done?

I'd much rather have a "don't ask, don't tell" arrangement. I don't want to know who else she's with. Is that reasonable?
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  #2  
Old 11-09-2011, 06:40 PM
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ImaginaryIllusion ImaginaryIllusion is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tdn View Post
When she was married, she had an agreement with her husband. They had to introduce their potential lovers to each other and get approval to sleep with said potential lover.

Is that normal? Is that generally how things are done?
One way of many, and not at all uncommon. It all depends on the people involved.

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Originally Posted by tdn View Post
I'd much rather have a "don't ask, don't tell" arrangement. I don't want to know who else she's with. Is that reasonable?
Again, depends on the people...and in this case it'll be more between you and her. DADT may not work for her, for whatever reason, and she may be very interested in knowing who it is that you're getting involved with as well. Some can be an emotional requirement, and sometimes it's a matter of maintaining awareness for sexual health reasons...etc.

So, if DADT is not acceptable to her, you may have to decide what level of information you need, and what point it becomes overshare...as well as what you're comfortable sharing with her.
It all comes down to your own negotiations.
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Old 11-09-2011, 06:46 PM
tdn tdn is offline
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Thanks for the response.

Of course, we'll have to work it out for ourselves. But she just offered to let me meet two people she's currently with (secondaries). I told her I'm not sure I'm comfortable with that.
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Old 11-09-2011, 06:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tdn View Post
... I could see myself becoming exclusive with her. But she doesn't do exclusive. She's known for a long time that she's born to be poly.

I guess that fits with my life right now, because right now I just want to date a lot of women without getting serious with any of them.
Serious and exclusive are not the same things. Casual and non-exclusive are not the same things, either. My point is that poly doesn't mean necessarily that all her relationships are casual. She may indeed want something serious and committed -- she just doesn't see the need for limiting that to only one relationship.

In a few sentences you say you could be exclusive with her, then you say you just want to date lots of women without getting serious. After just one date, it could be too early to commit to exclusivity anyway, but you know another option is that you can be exclusive with her, even if she is not exclusive with you. It's known as a poly/mono arrangement and works for some people. Just thought I'd toss that idea out there to totally mess with your head.

So.. about "don't ask, don't tell" ...

There is no "usual" way - people make whatever arrangements and agreements they are comfortable with. Lots of married poly peeps do like to have their OSOs meet their SOs, but it's not a requirement for everyone. You don't have to meet anyone else she's seeing, but you certainly should inquire about her safer sex practices. DADT is fine if you agree to it. The thing is to come to a consensus that makes sense to both of you. It sounds like she's not married anymore, so at least she doesn't have to intro you to a husband.

You can certainly tell her you're not comfortable meeting her other lovers now, but as you get to know each other better you might consider it.

But you've only had one date - it's a little early to be freaking out. Why not go out with her one or two more times and figure out if she's actually someone you want to continue seeing, before making rules? Did she tell you anything about the other people she dates, like how many there are?

If you do have a relationship with her, then her other partners would be called your metamours. If you want to learn about metamours, do a search here for that word and read up!
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Last edited by nycindie; 11-10-2011 at 05:47 AM.
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Old 11-09-2011, 07:01 PM
tdn tdn is offline
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True, we've only been on one date, but it was a fantastic date!

Yes, she has told me how many others there are. I haven't told her anything about my other lovers.
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Old 11-10-2011, 05:03 AM
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I would be really careful where you are going with this. If you are okay with dating around for a while because you get poly as a lifestyle of honesty in your dating style rather than secretiveness then make sure she knows that. She sounds like someone that is dating a lot right now and may have other partners that are more secure and committed but is someone that will be like this for the long haul. Poly identity and lifestyle are two different things I think. Which are you, which is she and what do you know of yourselves in that? This is an important discussion I think.

DADT dating is not poly to me. Its just dating. Nothing wrong with that at all. Most of the world dates like that, but to me, it just isn't poly... you can decide for yourself what you think and so can she. Its just my opinion and I am expressing it in case its useful in clarifying where you are both at.

I agree that waiting until three dates has past is a good idea before negotiating agreements on who you will see, who you will sleep with, who you will meet and how much info to give. I think date two should be about you telling her who you are sleeping with and seeing. It sounds a little one sided at the moment. She has made herself vulnerable to you by telling you what her world is like. I think it is respectful to do the same. How much you say is up to your boundaries, but I would at least tell her how many people you are seeing and sleeping with. Especially if sex is a possibility.
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Old 11-11-2011, 02:17 PM
MichelleZed MichelleZed is offline
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I agree that, if this becomes a long-term thing, you may grow out of the DADT thing. You might want a bit more information and the security of knowing a bit more about what she's doing.

But for now, when you've just been on one date? This is casual! I'm not sure if it's important that you meet whole scores of other people when you're just getting to know her.

How many people want to meet the extended family of a first date?
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Old 11-11-2011, 05:03 PM
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I think it would be good to at least tell her, clearly, that you are seeing other people, and to let her know there's no one serious -- that way she can know that you're being as straightforward with her as she's being with you. But since none of the others are serious, there's no reason to do introductions.

And yeah, after the first date may be too soon to meet her other bf's. I think if I felt like you do I'd tell her that I'd be open to meeting them someday if it's important to her, but that I want to are where things are going first.

DADT can work fine when things are casual, but it can really force someone to "compartmentalize" their life if things get serious. For instance, let's say she wants to have a birthday party but you still don't want to meet the other guys in her life. Does she insult them by not inviting them or by asking them to pretend they're just friends so as to cater to your feelings, does she tell you that you just can't come if you're not cool with it, or does she just avoid any situations like this?

Openness may feel uncomfortable at first, but ultimately it can make things way simpler and more chill for everyone involved.
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Old 11-11-2011, 07:09 PM
FireChild FireChild is offline
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Poly is about honesty right? So if you're honest with each other and you know at some point the other person might be dating someone else....how is that not poly? And why does it have to go beyond that?

I wouldn't feel the need to introduce someone to my DH if we weren't married. I'd tell him I've been interesting in this person and we're going to a movie but before we were married and before we lived together? Nah. My life is my life. There's a difference between honesty and full disclosure I think. Not a bad difference just a difference.
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Old 11-11-2011, 07:31 PM
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But what about the serious dating stage and my scenario above with the birthday party or other similar situations that could come up (let's say you just got a promotion at work and are inviting your closest peeps out for drinks to celebrate)? I'm really curious how you're supposed to just live your life if you don't want your loves to meet, or they themselves don't want to meet? Seems like such a hassle... Maybe I'm more social than some people?
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