Polyamory.com Forum  

Go Back   Polyamory.com Forum > Polyamory > Poly Relationships Corner

Notices

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #51  
Old 07-19-2012, 10:31 PM
katiesunshine katiesunshine is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 11
Default

yes yes of course she knows everything, and has so from the beginning
Reply With Quote
  #52  
Old 07-19-2012, 10:45 PM
Marcus's Avatar
Marcus Marcus is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Richardson, TX
Posts: 1,340
Default Mawage.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CielDuMatin View Post
No, no, a thousand times NO!

Look, this may not fit into YOUR model of what polyamory is and YOUR way of doing things, but please don't presume to extrapolate that on the rest of the poly community and make such sweeping judgements.
I'm happy to adjust my view on the poly "community" and to give each member a bit more breathing room. Upon my entry I was bombarded with what seemed to be a general consensus including ranking systems and rules about who meets whom when followed by veiled threats of backlash for misbehavior. It was this that prompted me to presume judgment on the community - I'm happy to be incorrect about that judgment and I appreciate you standing up for your views.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CielDuMatin View Post
A group relationship, for me, is a team. We are all working together in some way (some more closely with others, some more distantly) to make things work. There has to be a degree of co-operation, and an ability to problem-solve together so that life is just not chock-full of drama...
I have no truck with any of this. It sounds like you have a functional commune and that is a beautiful idea. As you no doubt have deduced, I am SUPER hesitant to be encumbered in that way but I'm glad to see someone is pulling it off.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CielDuMatin View Post
OH, so you are anti-marriage?
I'd rather have my penis nailed to a burning building.

Marriage is an old institution, riddled with traditions of ownership and overly sentimental promises of growing old together. If what you are calling marriage is not this traditional masterpiece of dysfunction then so be it. However, I find that many times a word carries its history with it and I use it accordingly.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CielDuMatin View Post
You appear to see this sort of set-up as being too dependent on each other, and this is harmful. It seems to me like you are advocating independence for all involved, and that that would work best. (Am I right so far?) What I am advocating, instead, is interdependence - the whole being greater than the sum of the parts - the ability for the group collectively to make a better decision than any individual in it.
I understand the sentiment and you are correct, I am much more in favor of independence. Granted, I also see the obvious power and value of having a community - so this is a balance I am still coming to understand.

I figure, as long as everyone understands that my time/body/emotions/resources belong to me and me alone then we're off to a good start. Once people assume that they have some say over these things (I'm not talking about asking, I'm talking about assuming) I call it "marriage" and start packing my things.
__________________
Me: male, 40, straight, single
Reply With Quote
  #53  
Old 07-20-2012, 03:25 AM
Tonberry Tonberry is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Canada
Posts: 1,391
Default

You asked about why people would want to meet metamours before sex occurs, here is my answer:

I think the main reason to meet metamours early on is to be sure they realise I'm here to stay, and what polyamory is about. Sadly, with an abstract gilfriend or wife, many women just think they'll get him for themselves as some point, even if they don't realise it themselves. There are preconceptions that seeing someone else means other relationships are unhealthy.
By meeting the person, I can show that I exist, that I'm a real person and not however they imagined me to best meet their needs of what I should be (for instance, a bitch to justify that he wants to see someone else) and I can also show how much love, respect and complicity there is between my partner and myself, so they know what to expect going in.
Even with a polyamorous metamour, it's good to get to know each other and the dynamics, since we're all involved in the relationship. I want my metamours to be able to contact me directly and not have to go through a partner we have in common.

The "before sex" isn't really a hard rule here, but for a lot of people sex is a turning point of when a relationship gets serious, and therefore it can become harder and more painful to leave a relationship after sex has occurred. Therefore, I find it best for them to know what to expect (and be able to make their decision) before that step has occurred, so that if they're uncomfortable with the whole thing or think it's not for them, they can just say "goodbye" without feeling used, or stupid, or like they well lied to.

In practicality, Seamus and I have always met potential partners before they became potential partners, so we don't really have a "when" rule. It just has never happened that we became interested in someone that didn't know both of us already. If it was to happen, I'm sure we'd discuss it and see how to deal with it.
Reply With Quote
  #54  
Old 07-20-2012, 03:46 AM
CielDuMatin's Avatar
CielDuMatin CielDuMatin is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Upstate New York, USA
Posts: 1,456
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Marcus View Post
I have no truck with any of this. It sounds like you have a functional commune and that is a beautiful idea. As you no doubt have deduced, I am SUPER hesitant to be encumbered in that way but I'm glad to see someone is pulling it off.
Nice try. Grabbing the first definition that comes to hand.. "A commune is an intentional community of people living together, sharing common interests, property, possessions, resources, and, in some communes, work and income." (Wikipedia).

We do not all live together, nor do we all share property, income, etc., etc., etc.

We're not a commune - we are simply a group of people, connected by several pair-bonds, who have decided to walk together through life rather than taking an "every man for himself" approach. If you believe that independence is the best way to go, then that's fine, but I'll put any soccer team up against twelve of you and your friends, and we'll see which one works better.

Yes, I'm snarky - first you judge with sweeping judgments and then you start labelling us a "commune" without bothering to find out a darned thing about us, because it seems that you already have all the answers.

Well, good for you. Glad you have found what makes your life work.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Marcus View Post
Marriage is an old institution, riddled with traditions of ownership and overly sentimental promises of growing old together. If what you are calling marriage is not this traditional masterpiece of dysfunction then so be it. However, I find that many times a word carries its history with it and I use it accordingly.
A nicely condescending evisceration of all those that are making marriages work very well without any ownership or dysfunction. Ah but you know better.... "Many times" a lot of folks are doing marriage extremely well and highly functional. Many are making monogamy work for them too, making promises and commitments to be with one another and then keep to them.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Marcus View Post
I understand the sentiment and you are correct, I am much more in favor of independence. Granted, I also see the obvious power and value of having a community - so this is a balance I am still coming to understand.
Just a small tip for you - if you want to increase understanding, it might be a good idea not to start your points of view by putting down the very folks that are making things work. You intimated that you have got a hostile reaction from other places you have joined - it may be your style of presenting your views as some sort of global truths that rub people up the wrong way, as you have done extremely effectively with me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Marcus View Post
I figure, as long as everyone understands that my time/body/emotions/resources belong to me and me alone then we're off to a good start.
You alone. Yes I can understand how that would work in this case.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Marcus View Post
Once people assume that they have some say over these things (I'm not talking about asking, I'm talking about assuming) I call it "marriage" and start packing my things.
This has nothing to do with having say over another person's actions. This has everything to do with developing a agreed-upon pattern of behaviour so that folks can have a relationship where they can live in some knowledge that folks understand what is important to them and don't go unknowingly trampling over things that cause hurt. It's about being considerate of your fellow human-being by having a dialogue and providing reassurance that you understand. It's about developing trust between strong individuals, to the point where you know that when times get tough, someone has your back. it's about living your life thinking about something other than "me, me, me".

Look, if you are working yourself out of situations in your life where you have been in some sort of dependent (or abusive or co-dependent) situation, then I can totally understand why independence seems exceedingly attractive, and any sort of reliance on another must necessarily be a weakness. But there is another way, without having to live in a commune or a cult, or being in an abusive, controlling situation.
__________________
Please check out The Birdcage - an open, friendly Polyamory forum for all parts of New York State
http://www.thebirdcage.org/

"Listen, or your tongue will make you deaf." - Native American Proverb
Reply With Quote
  #55  
Old 07-20-2012, 04:22 AM
lovefromgirl's Avatar
lovefromgirl lovefromgirl is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: The Great Soggy Northeast
Posts: 353
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Marcus View Post
Rules are not unique to polyamory. The exact same instincts of control and ownership which are involved in monogamy are carried over into our polyamorous relationships. All of these requirements of when people have to meet, how much they are allowed to share before hand, how "close" they are allowed to become before taking certain steps, are simply methods of control. We are trying to control the actions of our partners and their partners through fear that, if we don't we will be harmed.
You're right and you're not. Taking it from my personal perspective/How I Do This Stuff:

I meet the prospective partner (or the existing partner) and now we are real people to each other, faces, not just screen names. I meet hir and the fear of the unknown subsides, because now the unknown isn't. If zie decides that the reality of me is too much, then the sooner zie discovers that, the better off we all are.

I am more comfortable confirming, face to face, certain attitudes and personality traits about a person. I realise this is no guarantee against lying liars who lie, but it's a start. It's also nice to be able to state certain things and know I have said them to this person, preferably with a witness. If zie then proceeds to ignore what's been said, that's a sign I may not be able to trust hir. Is it born of fear? Perhaps, but I have learned with time and experience to trust my gut.

I still experience a far greater freedom than I had while practicing monogamy. CdM has no monopoly on my time or affections. I am my own woman. I care very much about keeping him in my life, but that is my choice. He has told me repeatedly that should I need to leave, he would be hurt but he would understand. There was also a freedom from the "dating = sex = exclusivity" paradigm I had experienced. While we were getting to know each other, I felt no pressure. This was a major first for me. My God, a man who wanted to know me for my mind before he knew me Biblically? Whoever heard of such a thing?

How We Do It is just that: how we do it. Plenty do it differently and you are welcome not to do it the way we do, though I daresay you'd not get very far with me in that case.

Worth noting also that if I married, I'd marry for security (e.g. health insurance, artistic patronage). Sexless. Bring on the rich, closeted gay men. I don't conflate marriage with commitment. I view it precisely as a legal agreement between two individuals, under the current letter of the law, to join fortunes and, um, fortune$. So I'm not a great fan of the institution, either; the notion of a white wedding breaks me out in hives. But I do believe in commitment, that choosing of my partner every time there's a choice. It's my choice to make and it means more to me that I make it freely. Also that he chooses me back without being compelled to do so. That's lovely.

We have made it work pretty well for years now, so I'm confident in saying that it can! Have you any experience that has told you it can't, with poly? I'm sorry if you have been hurt in the past by social expectations. I do hope you'll refrain in future from assuming that any two poly people think alike on Great Matters. Ask us first.
__________________
"I swear, if we live through this somebody's going to find their automatic shower preferences reprogrammed for ice water."

Refuge in Audacity { home of the post-raph stunner }
Reply With Quote
  #56  
Old 07-20-2012, 12:19 PM
Cleo Cleo is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Europe
Posts: 418
Default

I'm finding this to be a very interesting and thought provoking thread.
My 'practices' seem to be a bit different from most people's on these boards, and I definitily sympathize with the OP who felt that meeting the lovers girlfriend was maybe too soon. I would never be comfortable with meeting a potential lover's partner before potential lover (and I'm talking serious relationship material here, not casual sexual relationship material) and I had gotten a chance to get to know each other, test the waters, talk, flirt, have sex, see how compatible we are, what we want from a relationship.

While I agree with sparklepop that any person who is in a serious relationship is not single but +baggage, I still look at this person as an individual first before looking at them as part of a partnership. I trust that the person I'm getting to know is responsible, and honest with his partner(s). If he's not, I'll find out sooner or later - that's my responsibility and a risk I'm willing to take, just as I would be willing to take the risk that when I'm dating a person who declares to be single and unattached, that he actually is. And yes I did get burned here a couple of times.

Maybe it's because my husband and I don't have kids, and therefore fewer domestic responsibilities, but even in our 15+ years of monogamy we always very much operated as inviduals. We have our own friends, (also mutual friends of course), our own hobbies, and both value our time alone or with others just as much as the time we spend together. When we were younger, and my girlfriends had partners but no kids, it always amazed me that when I called a friend to get together she said 'yes, but I have to check with X first'. While of course there are a numer of situations where checking or discussing might be appropriate, this happened every single time - whereas for me it was much more common to just call my husband and say 'hey I just made plans with so and so, you're on your own tonight!'.
I think we brought this sense of individuality to our poly life - I only met his first serious GF after a couple of months, by that time she had spent weekends at my house and nights in my bed, and I was fine with that. He told me a lot about her, I knew her name, saw her picture, and beyond that, I trusted his judgment.

His next girlfriend I met much sooner, because my husband really wanted me to. We talked about being open, about my relationship with my husband, my boundaries, being open. We met a couple of times after that, also in social settings. After a year she turned out to be untrustworthy. I had a feeling about this from the very beginning, and more so after meeting her. But my husband had to find this out for himself, which he eventually did, and nothing I said or could have said about her, would have made him come to this realization any sooner.

My husband has met my boyfriend, and they seem to hit it off, and they even had lunch together without me one day when I was away, and tomorrow we're going for drinks all 3 of us - but I never expected this to happen, and would have been perfectly fine with it if they only met the one time.

My other boyfriend has another partner, and I've never met her and I think it's unlikely that I will, although I'm not opposed to it. He talks about her, he talks about talking to her about me, and I trust him. I know her name and where she works, just as my husband knows the name of this boyfriend.

So when it comes to me dating someone, the most important thing is that I am willing to trust him, and base this trust on how he talks about his other partner(s) and the information he's willing to give. To me it would feel seriously off putting if a guy I was interested in would require me to meet his partner before we could take the relationship to another level. It would make me feel like I was judged, needing to be approved, interviewed. Meeting after some time, just because it's fun and interesting to meet new people who will possibly like each other and wil have good time (like what's now happening with my husband and my BF) is whole other story.

And when it comes to my husband dating someone, or one of my boyfriends dating someone: I trust them to make good choices, I trust them to tell me what's going on, I trust them to build their own relationships the way they see fit.
__________________
early forties, straight.

Last edited by Cleo; 07-20-2012 at 12:24 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #57  
Old 07-20-2012, 01:48 PM
CielDuMatin's Avatar
CielDuMatin CielDuMatin is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Upstate New York, USA
Posts: 1,456
Default

I absolutely applaud anyone who has stuff worked out in terms of the order that they would rather things happen. I think that this shows that there are many legitimate ways of approaching this, depending on the individuals resolved.

This will lead to situations where some folks who were otherwise quite compatible relationship material being show-stoppers because of the difference in requirements - classic example - person 1 absolutely feels they need to have sex with someone before meeting their other partners, person 2 absolutely feels they need to meet the partners before sex can happen. I think it's worth it for those that have strong feelings one way or the other to sort out for themselves (and discuss with others as appropriate) how much "wiggle-room" there is in this.

It seems like it is hard enough to find compatible poly people out there (in my time with the various poly communities I have met exactly 2 people I would have been interested in having a relationship with, and am now in a relationship with one of them) - even more of a shame when something like this excludes even more potential partners from the mix.
__________________
Please check out The Birdcage - an open, friendly Polyamory forum for all parts of New York State
http://www.thebirdcage.org/

"Listen, or your tongue will make you deaf." - Native American Proverb
Reply With Quote
  #58  
Old 07-20-2012, 02:00 PM
Marcus's Avatar
Marcus Marcus is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Richardson, TX
Posts: 1,340
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by CielDuMatin View Post
Nice try.
It is clear that I have gotten under your skin and now you just want to fight me.

I'm not interested in fighting so let's just ignore each other and we can all move on with our happy lives.
__________________
Me: male, 40, straight, single
Reply With Quote
  #59  
Old 07-20-2012, 02:18 PM
CielDuMatin's Avatar
CielDuMatin CielDuMatin is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Upstate New York, USA
Posts: 1,456
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Marcus View Post
It is clear that I have gotten under your skin and now you just want to fight me.
It is clear that you have come in and made sweeping generalisations based on your own paradigms and that has upset me. I have been trying to point out to you (yes, rather testily, due to what I experience as a combative writing style) that there may be other quite legitimate ways of thinking about this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Marcus View Post
I'm not interested in fighting so let's just ignore each other and we can all move on with our happy lives.
We are heatedly discussing the issue, not fighting. I find it interesting that you see this as a "fight". We merely have very differing viewpoints (which I can respect, as I do many other members of this forum and the poly community in general) and have been putting them out there. My only issue with you that is making me upset is your style of posting, not your substance.

I like to discuss with everyone, whether they agree with me or not. As long as there is mutual respect there I can have discussions about issues till the cows come home - and do, regularly. I wasn't sensing a lot of respect from you for differing points of view - and still am not.

However, if you feel that the best solution when you have upset someone is to just walk away and cast it as their problem, then fine, I accept that.

Good luck with your independence.
__________________
Please check out The Birdcage - an open, friendly Polyamory forum for all parts of New York State
http://www.thebirdcage.org/

"Listen, or your tongue will make you deaf." - Native American Proverb
Reply With Quote
  #60  
Old 07-20-2012, 02:21 PM
Marcus's Avatar
Marcus Marcus is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Richardson, TX
Posts: 1,340
Default Issue of Trust

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cleo View Post
So when it comes to me dating someone, the most important thing is that I am willing to trust him, and base this trust on how he talks about his other partner(s) and the information he's willing to give. To me it would feel seriously off putting if a guy I was interested in would require me to meet his partner before we could take the relationship to another level. It would make me feel like I was judged, needing to be approved, interviewed. Meeting after some time, just because it's fun and interesting to meet new people who will possibly like each other and wil have good time (like what's now happening with my husband and my BF) is whole other story.

And when it comes to my husband dating someone, or one of my boyfriends dating someone: I trust them to make good choices, I trust them to tell me what's going on, I trust them to build their own relationships the way they see fit.
Very very well said.

In private message I have found that this is the confusion I was having in understanding the rules of one of our fellow members. It seems that the rules put in place about meeting new partners was directly related to the fact that they didn't trust their partner. In fact, they seem quite certain that their partner will cause destruction and rules needed to be put into place to protect from their bumbling ways. For me, this is a way strange kind of operation - but I guess if one of my lovers is too dumb to survive and will almost certainly cause me harm with how they conduct themselves with new lovers, I need to make rules or see them to the door.

I absolutely insist that my partners trust me to look out for their best interests. If my partners think I'm an idiot, I wouldn't expect the relationship to last very long.

Now, as far as the benefits of meeting everyone directly connected to our romantic community, that much is clear. Obviously their are great benefits to everyone knowing each other and hopefully getting along (as I've said before). But, like you said, meeting someone because there can be social value (new friends, broader support network, etc) is VERY different from meeting someone because I am told I have to.

I will almost certainly accept an invitation, and will almost certainly decline an order.
__________________
Me: male, 40, straight, single
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 01:03 AM.