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Old 06-04-2010, 08:47 PM
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rpcrazy rpcrazy is offline
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Default Need help finding a guide on platonic vs romantic, help please :)

I'm trying to find articles on platonic relationships vs romantic relationships. I think it's something that's very important. What are some key indicators that even though there are copious amounts of love and connection between you and another, in the big picture you should prob be best friends. Everyone says in hindsight, "we probably should of just been friends...". How can you preemptively figure that out?

-gabe
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Old 06-05-2010, 07:22 PM
AutumnalTone AutumnalTone is offline
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Hoe do you preemptively figure that out? You don't get romantically involved with a person until you've known them long enough for the infatuation to have worn off and you've interacted with them in a wide variety of situations over many months.

I've one friend with whom there were sparks, though when we first met we weren't in a situation conducive to us getting together (her mono marriage was a major barrier). By the time we were in a situation where we could get together, I'd figured out that we weren't compatible as a primary couple. As much as I love her, we couldn't coexist that closely without some regular conflict. As she seems to be mono, I'd have to be primary with her and it just wouldn't be good, so we have a friendship.

The only thing that allowed me to figure that out was the time involved from meeting to when we could have gotten together. It likely would have taken the same amount of time to figure out had we just hooked up at the beginning. The difference is that the one situation involves an ongoing friendship while the other would have involved an ended romance.

So, if you meet somebody new and interesting, I figure you can figure out whether you're compatible for the long term by spending time assessing that. If you're more afraid of not being compatible than you're optimistic about it working out, be friends for a couple of years first. Otherwise begin dating to figure it out.
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Old 06-06-2010, 02:57 AM
saudade saudade is offline
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Smile What I do...

First, an AWFUL song quote, from Fallout Boy: "Best friends, ex friends to the end, better off as lovers and not the other way around!" That was a breakup cd for me once, and I adore it on that basis.

Honestly, RP, I handle this in a bit of an unorthodox fashion. My definition, personally, of poly is being in the relationship with every person in your life that makes the most sense for the two of you.

The biggest predictors to me of whether or not primary status is a good idea are:
  • compatible life goals: I could NEVER be with someone who wouldn't want to raise my presently non-existent children, and the thought of a white picket two bedroom home in the suburbs makes me nauseous, for example.
  • compatible conflict resolution styles: If you don't know how to fight when she does X or he says Y, you're going to hate each other.
  • mutual interest: Obvious, but worth stating IMO.

Beyond the primary stereotype, anything goes once we're friends. If you'd make a good housemate with me, I want you in my house. If you'd make a good lover with me, I want you in my bed (and... details, details, etc.). If we could start a business that'd function and make us happy, let's do it! I have a nonsexual girlfriend and a sexual friend as a result of this policy... We have the relationship we want, how we want it. If we decide we don't want that thing anymore, we change the particulars.
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Old 06-06-2010, 03:25 AM
Dragonmom Dragonmom is offline
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i'm new to the poly life so bare with me....

The man i met first will most likely end up as a non sexual bf. The one i met 2nd will most likely end up being a sexual bf. Red and i started as friends and it has grown from there. Frosty and i will have a more sexual relationship because there is a spark there that's not there with Red. Sadly both at this point are long distance. It can be done, and i hope someday it gets worked out and we can all live happily together.

good luck figuring it all out
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Old 06-06-2010, 04:38 AM
jkelly jkelly is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rpcrazy View Post
Everyone says in hindsight, "we probably should of just been friends...". How can you preemptively figure that out?
Honestly, I think that the "sex messes up friendships" thing is largely a myth. I suspect that a number of people who say "we probably should have just been friends" are conveniently forgetting that there was some kind of attraction going on that created the friendship in the first place.

As far as guides go, I have nothing.
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Old 06-06-2010, 04:50 AM
Ariakas Ariakas is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jkelly View Post
Honestly, I think that the "sex messes up friendships" thing is largely a myth. I suspect that a number of people who say "we probably should have just been friends" are conveniently forgetting that there was some kind of attraction going on that created the friendship in the first place.

As far as guides go, I have nothing.
Simple scenario problem with assuming that

person 1 - wants sex with person 2
person 2 - thinks its a grand idea

Person 1 and 2 are friends.

they both start bumping pelvises.

Person 2 falls in love with person 1
person 1 doesn't want to loose the sex

Series of many uncomfortable nights, rebound days and months...turn into the two people not being able to talk. Friendship disolves.

More common than you think
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Old 06-06-2010, 05:56 AM
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SchrodingersCat SchrodingersCat is offline
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There's a great Wiki article on the 7 forms of relationships. I summarized it a couple weeks ago in another post. It covers platonic and romantic love, as well as companionate, infatuation, empty love, etc. Very good read, simple too, and it has pictures!

Quote:
Originally Posted by AutumnalTone View Post
Hoe do you preemptively figure that out? You don't get romantically involved with a person until you've known them long enough for the infatuation to have worn off and you've interacted with them in a wide variety of situations over many months.

So, if you meet somebody new and interesting, I figure you can figure out whether you're compatible for the long term by spending time assessing that. If you're more afraid of not being compatible than you're optimistic about it working out, be friends for a couple of years first. Otherwise begin dating to figure it out.
Based on my personal experience, I totally disagree.

3 days into our "7-day-long, sex-free first date", I knew how I felt about my now-husband, and that I never wanted him to be out of my life. That was three and a half years ago, and it just gets better and better every year.

The honeymoon "no problems, no arguments" phase (what you call infatuation) has long since worn off. We have our issues, like any couple, but we have that "special something" that makes us want to work them out rather than hit the road.

I guess I just believe in "true love", because I've found it (cue cheesy music). It's sort of like an orgasm: if you have to ask whether you have it... you don't. If you meet someone and there's any question whether you could spend the rest of your life with them, you probably can't. Because when you meet that [those] special person [people], you just know. At least, that's how it was for me. YMMV
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Old 06-06-2010, 06:27 AM
jkelly jkelly is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ariakas View Post
Person 2 falls in love with person 1
person 1 doesn't want to loose the sex

Series of many uncomfortable nights, rebound days and months...turn into the two people not being able to talk. Friendship disolves.
That's probably a common story to tell, but it posits that sex is the thing that caused the falling in love, which I don't buy. It also posits that the friendship would have continued indefinitely if it hadn't been for the person wanting sex actually getting it, which I also don't buy.

There are a lot of platonic friendships out there that look an awful lot like poly- relationships, and they take communication, honesty, commitment, time and energy. It's questionable to point to sex as the thing to blame when the real problem is mismatched needs and a failure to communicate and negotiate.
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Old 06-06-2010, 06:39 AM
Ariakas Ariakas is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jkelly View Post
That's probably a common story to tell, but it posits that sex is the thing that caused the falling in love, which I don't buy. It also posits that the friendship would have continued indefinitely if it hadn't been for the person wanting sex actually getting it, which I also don't buy.
actually thats partially chemically proven. Too tired to find it now, but sex causes chemical reactions that do mimic love...follow that with actual feelings......

Quote:
There are a lot of platonic friendships out there that look an awful lot like poly- relationships, and they take communication, honesty, commitment, time and energy. It's questionable to point to sex as the thing to blame when the real problem is mismatched needs and a failure to communicate and negotiate.
yes...I have one friendship which I could call poly...but don't because *I* have to separate romance from platonic...my be the conservative in me...
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Old 06-06-2010, 07:30 AM
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LovingRadiance LovingRadiance is offline
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I have a number of friendships that at some point were "lover" relationships and then changed BACK to "just friendship".
The key is in not "owning" or "pretending to own" the other person.

I allow my relationships to mutate to fit the dynamics that work at any given time. It makes it SO much easier to keep relationships, because it's OK to change roles as needed.

GG and I were "just friends".
Then we were lovers.
Then we were "just friends".
At some point I was a tease to his DESPERATELY wanting more and not getting any.
Then we were lovers.
Then we were "just friends".

Now we're lovers with intent to stay that way for life.

NONE of those changes was the result or cause of an argument between us. NOT A SINGLE ONE.

The best way to find out what role a person "should" hold in your life is to talk to them about what role YOU want them to hold in your life and what role THEY want in your life and see if there is a match or agreeable compromise.

Also-it helps A LOT to recognize that what role you want them in and/or what role they want to be in, can change with time and that is OK.

(I also knew in the first day I met my husband that I wanted him in my life forever. I also knew that with Em and I knew that with GG)
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