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  #1  
Old 04-21-2012, 10:32 PM
Verabean Verabean is offline
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Post Where does lust fit in?

Where does lust fit in to all this? I am also very new to poly. I am not sure I understand what romantic love as opposed to friendly love. To me, the difference is lust. I don't consider a person my friend unless we have been emotionally and intellectually involved together. Through our experiences we bond very strongly and often this leads to physical encounters, always very different from person to person, ranging from holding hands to kissing to sex, in some cases making me feel more like we are lovers. But when I am with my main boyfriend, my number one (I don't know what the poly term for him would be), it's quite easy to let all my lovers and/or friends fall to the back of my mind, and live comfortably as a mono couple. We both travel a lot, and end up having to spend weeks or even months apart. At those times, we are usually meeting lots of new and very interesting people, and often we get caught up in the magic of the place or the moment and end up having sex with someone else. Usually very interesting people with whom we form some kind of bond, but also usually people who live in other parts of the world and whom we don't really ever see again. If we do, the romantic feelings dissipate because when he and I are together, there isn't much room for anyone else.
What I want to know is this - I thought I was poly, because I am able to love many people at the same time. But when I look at my situation, it seems like I am just having sex with some people I love every once in a while. I have some important loving relationships without sex as well, but they are not considered as threats to my boyfriend. Only sex is a threat. Why is sex a threat any more than an important loving relationship is? What is it about sex and lust specifically, that makes us feel jealous?

I hope someone will have the courage to read this - I do realize it's not very well organized. I have many questions and no one to really ask them to. I look forward to your input.
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Old 04-22-2012, 06:39 AM
Shadowgbq Shadowgbq is offline
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It's very well organized. :-) I admire your honesty and willingness to share with strangers. I'm new here, but as a philosophy writer I give advice for a living, so DUCK...

The first thing to think about is whether "lust" is a valid concept or a myth. Our culture is very sex-negative and we've all been conditioned to think these low, vile thoughts about ourselves when we're turned on. It sounds like your sexual encounters are not a matter of shallow, physical-only attractions but of an honest interest in fascinating people and the way you feel when you befriend them. Which isn't shallow lust by any stretch of the imagination.

Monogamists have been taught that their partner's sexuality belongs to only them, within certain limits which are arbitrary. The more a person decides to accept this & cultivate feelings of jealousy & possession the stricter the ownership becomes. For instance some husbands "allow" their wives to have platonic guy friends, some truly grade-A assholes forbid them on the basis that attraction may take place.

If you're in love with your boyfriend based on his character and his personality, then it's natural that he's not the only person in the world you are going to find the same character traits in. I don't think any emotional expression, sexual or not, is a real threat to your relationship, unless somebody comes along who you could see replacing him as a primary love relationship, domestic partner etc. And from the sound of it, that's not going to happen.

My best advice is to continue to manifest a free sexuality, because it's a part of who you both are. It's a part of your identity. When you say "I love you," there's not an "except for THAT part of you" attached to it. Be free, be happy, and unless you're having anonymous sex in bath houses I wouldn't cast myself as lustful or selfish.
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Old 04-22-2012, 01:49 PM
Hannahfluke Hannahfluke is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Verabean View Post
What I want to know is this - I thought I was poly, because I am able to love many people at the same time. But when I look at my situation, it seems like I am just having sex with some people I love every once in a while. I have some important loving relationships without sex as well, but they are not considered as threats to my boyfriend. Only sex is a threat. Why is sex a threat any more than an important loving relationship is? What is it about sex and lust specifically, that makes us feel jealous?

I hope someone will have the courage to read this - I do realize it's not very well organized. I have many questions and no one to really ask them to. I look forward to your input.
I think it's because, in our society, we've been conditioned to think that sex with only one partner is the thing that sets a romantic relationship apart as special. I love my mom, my husband, my children, my siblings, my best friend, etc. but I'm only supposed to be having sex with my husband. It's seen as the marker of what sets that relationship aside as "important" or "special". It's what makes it unique. Plenty of people I talk to have no issue with being emotional closer to their best friend, mom or sister than their spouse, but the whole fidelity thing is what sets the marriage or other romantic relationship up as unique and special and worthy of celebrating. Does that make any sense? it's early and I haven't had much coffee
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Old 04-23-2012, 02:04 PM
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CielDuMatin CielDuMatin is offline
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This looks like another one of those cases where for the male having sex is more threatening to the relationship than falling in love, while for the female, it's the falling in love part that is considered more of a threat than "just sex". (I'm not sure that "threat" is the right word for both sides, but I left it here for symmetry).

I strongly believe that we should be free to have whatever relationships we want to, whether they be friends, friends with sex, romantic with sex, romantic without sex... etc., all the way to live together and raise kids... I like the idea of things growing naturally according to our own wishes, rather than feeling boxed in by a partner or society. I definitely wish that for my partners.
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Old 04-23-2012, 07:50 PM
dingedheart dingedheart is offline
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hannah,

Are you saying you'd like the opportunity to be sexual with your mom or sibling or children, or best friend if romantic attractions occurred..( mutually from both sides) and the societal programing were removed? Really free Love.... is love concept
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Old 04-23-2012, 08:02 PM
Hannahfluke Hannahfluke is offline
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Originally Posted by dingedheart View Post
hannah,

Are you saying you'd like the opportunity to be sexual with your mom or sibling or children, or best friend if romantic attractions occurred..( mutually from both sides) and the societal programing were removed? Really free Love.... is love concept
No, I'm saying that in our society, sex is the thing that sets romantic love apart from all other types of love. How on earth you got that I wanted to have sex with my siblings, mother or children out of that is beyond me. Sex is what sets the love I have for my husband apart from the love I have for everyone else in my life for most of society. Even if there weren't societal restrictions on love, sex with my mother, siblings and children wouldn't ever be an option for me.

Reading it over, I guess it's possible to interpret what I said as saying that if I felt romantic love for those people, that I might want to have sex with them. But that's not even close to what I meant and seems like the most cynical and mocking way to interpret what I said. Are you purposefully trying to mock?

Last edited by Hannahfluke; 04-23-2012 at 08:05 PM.
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Old 04-24-2012, 08:01 AM
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nycindie nycindie is offline
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Originally Posted by Hannahfluke View Post
Are you purposefully trying to mock?
I guess you're not used to Dinged's sense of humor. He did leave a smiley face in his wake, so I assumed he was teasing you for the way it read, and not mocking.
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Old 04-24-2012, 08:55 AM
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Why is sex a threat any more than an important loving relationship is?

I think the weight that sex carries in a broader society sense has a lot to do with it, so a romantic nonsexual relationship may not be deemed as 'romantic' in general, because there is no sex involved. For some people it's not a 'real' relationship.


What is it about sex and lust specifically, that makes us feel jealous?

We're taught that lust should be channeled in one direction, and not anywhere else. To acknowledge out loud, and accept, that you lust in a broader sense even when you're in a monogamous relationship, is cause for concern because it goes against what we've been taught. You informally give up your right to feel desire towards anyone who isn't your significant other, which might be where the whole "Well, if you still wanna have sex with other people, why are you in a relationship/engaged/married?!?!?! Just be single!" argument comes from.
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Old 04-24-2012, 05:23 PM
dingedheart dingedheart is offline
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Sorry ...

Indie is very right I must say ...my bad I never use them enough.

It did read as society conditioning as a primary reason for behavior. If you remove the conditioning ....would that change certain behaviors... I didn't think so in all cases. ...plus I thought it was funny ...because Im sure you didn't mean that or even think that.
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Old 04-24-2012, 10:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Verabean View Post
I have some important loving relationships without sex as well, but they are not considered as threats to my boyfriend. Only sex is a threat. Why is sex a threat any more than an important loving relationship is? What is it about sex and lust specifically, that makes us feel jealous?
But there are some people who feel the opposite. They and their partners can have all the sex they want with whomever they want, but they reserve love for only each other, and get really bent out of shape when feelings develop.
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