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  #51  
Old 01-23-2010, 02:18 AM
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I have been trying to get to this thread for days now but life got too busy. I seem to be at a better place than I was before about these differences. Thanks to my friend. I understand it now as a sway from being more casual and less committed to others about ones sex life and a sway to being connected and bonded to certain partners. It has been suggested to me that we are all a part of a poly network and we can sway one way or the other sometimes. We can do this depending on the partner or persons we are with.

This lead me to think about boundaries and sexual self care. I think it is important for anyone, but especially those that identify as poly to think deeply on how they can practice self care in their sex lives.

So this lead me to my own self care... I think that mine revolves around my partners for sure. If such time arises when their need for certain boundaries makes my self care unhealthy then it is time to discuss or move on. Or both. I will remind myself of those boundaries and my own when engaging with a person on a sexual level. We will all remember that they are a work in progress in part and possess values that are exclusive to all of us.

So the other part of self care is to stay in my body and think about my psychological make up. Just because I have a lot of sexual experience and am very comfortable with just about anything, provided the safety and respect involved, does not mean that I should DO everything anyone asks.

I had a chance to say "no" twice this week. Once to a man half my age that started to flirt with me and to another long time friend who wanted to practice "yoni" massage (massaging of the genitals) on me. I love anything sexual and was thrilled at both, but it was not in the context of our group boundaries to pursue either and I had to respect that. I was disappointed at first, but now feel very secure in the integrity, thoughtfulness and compassion I had for my loves. My friend even told me that he was impressed that I was so.

The other important aspect I think is to remember to ask to be commended when I say no to activities that are unsuitable to my boundary agreements. Also to commend others too. I often find that I am left feeling like I am not being "cool" or that I am missing out and that is just not the case. There is no reason I have to engage in everything as soon as it comes up. I can be patient, wait, let it filter and then see how I feel. Quite often I realize that I have done it before and am not missing anything and besides, I don't have to follow what the crowd is doing... I just have to follow what I need/want and what is right for us. In doing so I keep my integrity.

So all this has come to the culmination of two things... I have started the process of creating a workshop on "sexual self care- knowing your boundaries and knowing when to push them" and a communication workshop based on NVC for poly people in my community. Oh this is so like me.... turn my shit into a workshop... I'm lucky, it looks like my friend wants to help and he is a doctor of sexology! I get to use some old skills I have a masters degree in too! Must dust off the old suitcase and use my brain for a different function. We will see where it goes. Early stages yet.
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  #52  
Old 01-23-2010, 04:52 AM
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In fact, I see the approach of allowing assumptions to govern defining of terms as fairly resistant to the idea of defining terms.
I'll agree that assumptions are not good. That is why I like to define words very specifically. This causes some level of exclusion but I am willing to accept that in order to create clarity. I am also willing to accept my own exclusion if I do not fit the ultimate definition. I'll find something else that applies

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If such time arises when their need for certain boundaries makes my self care unhealthy then it is time to discuss or move on. Or both.
This is an awesome statement and one that everyone no matter what approach to relationships should always keep in mind!

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In doing so I keep my integrity.
No amount of external love or affection can replace this.

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I have started the process of creating a workshop on "sexual self care- knowing your boundaries and knowing when to push them" and a communication workshop based on NVC for poly people in my community. .
This is great Lilo! I love the idea of sharing experiences and hopefully aiding in another persons journey.Very excited for you
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Last edited by NeonKaos; 01-23-2010 at 04:54 PM. Reason: merge posts
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  #53  
Old 01-23-2010, 05:03 AM
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I'll agree that assumptions are not good. That is why I like to define words very specifically. This causes some level of exclusion but I am willing to accept that in order to create clarity. I am also willing to accept my own exclusion if I do not fit the ultimate definition. I'll find something else that applies
Being specific and being clear are not always synonymous. In the case of polyamory, pretty much everyone agrees that it means multiple loving relationships. That definition seems pretty clear to me. The confusion comes in when people start trying to be specific about which relationships qualify as loving relationships and which don't. The more specific we attempt to be in the definition, the more we undermine the actual meaning of the word and leave assumptions unaddressed.

The trouble is people keep trying to make words mean more than they actually mean. This may be in the name of trying to define a word more specifically, but I've yet to see an instance where this actually clarifies things. Generally, all it does is create more confusion and debate.
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  #54  
Old 01-23-2010, 05:08 AM
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Generally, all it does is create more confusion and debate.
No argument there! I totally get your point. And so the cycle continues where my need to have definites results in my inability to fulfill my needs in this area.
Yet again I am left with explanations as opposed to terminology. My brain really doesn't like vagueness....it actually hurts
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  #55  
Old 01-23-2010, 05:20 AM
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My brain really doesn't like vagueness....it actually hurts
The thing is, when I let go of the assumptions, there's nothing vague about it at all to me. A broad term is not the same as a vague term. Nobody takes the word "man" and calls it a vague term that can't be defined very well even though there are hugely different ways the word "man" can manifest in reality. It's because it is designed to be a broad term and most people don't expect the word "man" to create a specific description of ALL the aspects of masculinity. We don't confuse the actual word with examples of the word.

It is entirely possible to create a more specific word that falls underneath the broad term of polyamory without rejecting the broad term itself but being included in it. I'm wondering where this need to exclude people from a broad term comes from.
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  #56  
Old 01-23-2010, 05:28 AM
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I'm wondering where this need to exclude people from a broad term comes from.

AHA! I think we figured this out. It is not about excluding people from a broad term, it's about finding a narrow term that defines my relationship. It does include separating that word from the umbrella for me though. This again is to avoid confusion. And yes, wanting to disassociate with something usually implies a certain judgment or conflict of values. I admit that. So I am in affect judgmental; I admit that too. But in order to overcome harmful judgmentS I must first be completely honest that they exist. I must also recognize that I do not consider all judgments harmful.
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  #57  
Old 01-23-2010, 05:38 AM
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And yes, wanting to disassociate with something usually implies a certain judgment or conflict of values. I admit that. So I am in affect judgmental; I admit that too. But in order to overcome harmful judgmentS I must first be completely honest that they exist. I must also recognize that I do not consider all judgments harmful.
I don't consider all judgments harmful either. But I do consider inaccurate and misinformed assumptions to be harmful and that's more what this is about for me. For me, disassociating from the umbrella term because of the assumptions attached to it means I'm tacitly saying that there is truth to the assumptions made about it when that's not the case. For me, there's more integrity in sticking to the truth of the term rather than yield to the assumptions attached to the term.
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  #58  
Old 01-23-2010, 05:46 AM
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For me, disassociating from the umbrella term because of the assumptions attached to it means I'm tacitly saying that there is truth to the assumptions made about it when that's not the case.
I think this perfectly describes a fundamental difference between you and I. You seem to have a certain passion and desire to protect the umbrella, where I do not.

In truth there are few things I am passionate about so my willingness to surrender things and move on is indicative of my nature.
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  #59  
Old 01-23-2010, 05:55 AM
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I think this perfectly describes a fundamental difference between you and I. You seem to have a certain passion and desire to protect the umbrella, where I do not.
I think my passion would be more accurately described as a desire to dismantle the harmful effects that prejudice and inaccurate assumptions can create in individuals, groups of people and society in general.

This isn't a poly-specific passion of mine It's why I'm a teacher and facilitator and why I work in sexuality education. It informs a lot of what I do in life.
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  #60  
Old 01-23-2010, 06:02 AM
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It's why I'm a teacher and facilitator and why I work in sexuality education. It informs a lot of what I do in life.
That's not unlike someone I love deeply. I understand I think.
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