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  #21  
Old 08-02-2009, 05:24 PM
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Unfortunately, as the law currently stands, with marriage comes all sorts of legal rights and privileges. Regardless of how people may "feel in their heart", it still stands that two members of the triad have more legal rights and security than the third. This includes rights to hospital visitation, child custody, health insurance, power of attorney, etc. If a third does join a poly couple in some form of marriage, that third is doing so with a great deal more risk than the couple is, regardless of how committed everybody is emotionally. I find it amazing that lots of couples can't understand why this inherent practical inequity can be an issue for a third. I often wonder of married couples wanting a third to join them- would they be willing to divorce each other and one of them marry the third instead?

This (among other reasons I have laid out in other posts) is why I never desire to be a third that joins a couple in a polyfi triad. If being in a closed triad was my relationship style, I might be more willing to consider three people if we all three came together at the same time and none of us were married, but honestly, that's not what I'm looking for.
THIS is exactly why I am leery of being that elusive unicorn.
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  #22  
Old 08-03-2009, 01:00 AM
XYZ123 XYZ123 is offline
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Would I divorce? No. The legal issues aside (and I know they are many) marriage to me means more than what the government tells me it means. But for practical reasons, like my healthcare and the fact N and I have a child together, no, I would not divorce.

I hadn't given the matter of being married and forming a V or a triad much thought because, again, I married legally for practical reasons while I have relationships for emotional reasons. Hmmm

I do have a question for poly singles that has been buzzing around though. Is it the MARRIED couple you do not feel the desire to become involved with or a couple in general? I've heard the reasons that a single becoming involved in a couple has much to lose and has been left out of many of the decisions that coupe has made prior to forming a new relationship. I understand that hesitation. However, if you as a single, form a relationship on your own, aren't YOU two then the very original relationship you're leery to get into? Because, if you're forming a poly relationship, you presumably find a partner-and usually start with one-and then each of you may find other partners. So, if you don't want to join relationships and don't want to become a "primary" relationship then how do you find poly relationships at all?

I mean no disrespect and I do hope you understand what I'm asking as I'm having a hard time wording it. I just wonder how a single poly can form relationships while maintaining a single status and not becoming the very primary relationship type they're trying not to become entangled in.
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  #23  
Old 08-03-2009, 02:44 PM
Ceoli Ceoli is offline
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Would I divorce? No. The legal issues aside (and I know they are many) marriage to me means more than what the government tells me it means. But for practical reasons, like my healthcare and the fact N and I have a child together, no, I would not divorce.

I hadn't given the matter of being married and forming a V or a triad much thought because, again, I married legally for practical reasons while I have relationships for emotional reasons. Hmmm
That then leaves the question- would the third be able to benefit from the same practicalities that you benefit from by your privilege (and yes, in this society the ability to marry is a privilege, since that right is denied to many) of being married? Suppose your third was female and got pregnant? Suppose the third was unable to work and lost healthcare coverage. When a third agrees to be polyfi with a couple, that person essentially agrees to give up the right to be married in a relationship and therefore will never receive any of the practical benefits of a marriage. For some, that may not be a problem at all. Until marriage is not the gate one must pass through for those legal and financial privileges, it's not something I want to deny myself.

Also I consider marriage a type of relationship, not something that's separate from a relationship, as I would probably not get married to a person I didn't trust or know if we share similar life goals.

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Originally Posted by XYZ123 View Post
I do have a question for poly singles that has been buzzing around though. Is it the MARRIED couple you do not feel the desire to become involved with or a couple in general? I've heard the reasons that a single becoming involved in a couple has much to lose and has been left out of many of the decisions that coupe has made prior to forming a new relationship. I understand that hesitation. However, if you as a single, form a relationship on your own, aren't YOU two then the very original relationship you're leery to get into? Because, if you're forming a poly relationship, you presumably find a partner-and usually start with one-and then each of you may find other partners. So, if you don't want to join relationships and don't want to become a "primary" relationship then how do you find poly relationships at all?

I mean no disrespect and I do hope you understand what I'm asking as I'm having a hard time wording it. I just wonder how a single poly can form relationships while maintaining a single status and not becoming the very primary relationship type they're trying not to become entangled in.
Ok, I actually see a couple of questions in here and I'll do my best to answer them for myself, as I can't say that I speak on behalf of all poly singles. The first one seems to ask if marriage is more of an issue than if the it's just a couple. Well, I've stated before why getting involved with a couple in a closed triad isn't for me, and there are several factors involved such as decisions already made that never included me, having to fall "equally" in love with two different people, etc. Many of those factors don't include the couple being married. Marriage simply adds another factor of legal security that they would have that I would not have access to. So it's not a heck of a lot of difference to me if they're married or not.

The second question seems to be asking that if poly singles don't want to get involved with people already in primary relationships then end up having some relationship with another single, doesn't that form a primary relationship- just the thing that puts off single people in other relationships?


I think that question carries with it some assumptions:

1. Poly single people don't want to have primary relationships.
2. Poly single people don't want to be secondary to someone else's primary relationship.
3. People in poly relationships must be involved with everybody attached to the relationship.

I'm really not sure where you get that I'm leery of getting into a primary relationship or that single people are put off by being involved with others in primary relationships.

I am not averse to either getting involved with people already in primary relationships or having a primary relationship of my own. On the contrary, I very much want my own primary relationship. However, I am averse to getting involved with a couple in a closed triad way. That is, in a way that expects me to be monogamous with only them and not to be able to see other people outside their triad. Maybe the perception of leeriness comes from the fact that I frequently get annoyed with the sense of entitlement that couples can often approach single people with. As if we were made to fill their needs as a couple and be an accessory to their primary relationship.

I'm currently dating a couple as secondary to both of them and enjoy it immensely. But that's because they do not carry the expectation that I'm monogamous with only them and because we see each other individually as well as all together. But I'll never be moving in with them to become their "third". That doesn't mean that we share a deep connection and affection with each other. They are happy to be with me in the way that I'm available to them without having to fit into some mold of what they think I should be. I also dated a guy in an open marriage and it was a wonderful relationship (put on hold because I had to move away). I was clearly secondary in that situation too, but it was right for the type of relationship we had with each other.

I have no problem being a secondary in relationships if that's what the relationship naturally develops into. However, if being a secondary becomes the only relationship type that's available to me in this life, that would be highly unsatisfying. I would like to build a life, home and family with a partner. I would also like to be open to other loves while I'm doing that, and I would hope the same for my partner. It's that simple. I don't really see how that defies logic.
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  #24  
Old 08-03-2009, 03:19 PM
XYZ123 XYZ123 is offline
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It didn't defy logic. It was just a question and, again, not meant as an offensive one. Yet your reply comes off as seeming offended. (It could just be so much is lost in text.) I'm simply and honestly trying to understand ALL sides of polyamory, from the perspective of couples, triads, singles, etc. Since I AM married and AM hoping to meet a woman some day when the stars are properly aligned, I'd just like to have an idea of what goes on for singles so I don't put anyone off or offend or assume too much. Despite being married I do seek at least a healthy balance and equality in loving relationships. So thank you for your answers.

I take what you wrote to mean that your issues with joining a couple aren't with the couple per say but with the idea of coming in as a monogamous partner to both parties. You don't necessarily want a closed triad that expects much from you but leaves you without the same freedoms and securities (legally, decision wise, etc) that the other members have? To address that, I personally have no issue with a relationship with a woman who wishes to or already has a married partner as I do. A closed triad may be my IDEAL, but I'm not so closed off to other possibilities that it's unicorns or nothing. I know for my own sanity, however, I can't go beyond an N or a quad relationship. I need some form of polyfidelity just for myself.

As far as being married, I would not have married N if I didn't love him deeply. As I've said, to us, we were already "married" long before crossing the T's and dotting the I's. The legal contract just, as you've said, gave each of us more legal priveledges which became important as time moved on and our son grew up. I don't think it's fair only two members of a closed relationship should have those rights while the other(s) are left without either. At the moment though, there is nothing to be done to remedy that issue.
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  #25  
Old 08-03-2009, 03:36 PM
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Originally Posted by XYZ123 View Post
I know for my own sanity, however, I can't go beyond an N or a quad relationship. I need some form of polyfidelity just for myself.

.
You're not alone in this thinking or requirement to maintain sanity. For me it's a product of my monogamous nature and the insecurity an "open" world of possibilities generates. I compare it to being constantly shoved from behind towards a cliff; eventually I'll reach the edge LOL!

As far as marriage goes for me. I have been married for a considerable time, more than most these days it seems. Although I can see a ceremony taking place to honour my commitment to Redpepper, the shape and details of that are very unclear. I see it as almost a very quiet, very small and private thing in a forest. I certainly don't expect anything like the benefits to traditional marriage. This works for me, as I will always be a bit autonomous.
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  #26  
Old 08-03-2009, 03:38 PM
Ceoli Ceoli is offline
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I was't offended by the questions at all. However, I did see some misconceptions within them, so I felt the need to point that out. I've often found that poly communities can make a pretty harsh environment for poly singles because of those very misconceptions and assumptions made about us and what place we may hold in relationships. It's good that you're wanting to see as many sides of this as you can.
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  #27  
Old 08-03-2009, 03:50 PM
XYZ123 XYZ123 is offline
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Beyond a quad's not so much my insecurity (maybe a little) but my outlook on life and how it affects relationships in general. I have a husband, two kids, back to a job after this second is born, a home to take care of, bills to pay, pets to care for, family, friends, etc. I have relationships on many levels plus my own life including hobbies, personal goals, and needing private time. I assume most people have all or many of these things plus their own wants, needs, goals, etc. Trying to develop loving relationships and closeness and honesty with too many people while simultaneously having all these other things in my life doesn't seem possible. And I don't understand how it would be possible for others. I'm not saying it isn't, as everyone isn't cookie cutter, but I don't think I'd be able to accept the possibility that there are lovers for every day of the week and they're all wonderful balanced relationships. I'd always feel some relationship somewhere is suffering, be it the one with me or another because of me.
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  #28  
Old 08-03-2009, 07:06 PM
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The above conversation about "primary" and "secondary" relationships was interesting to read. It really gets me thinking!

Although I am not legally married, my partner and I have been an open couple for roughly 13 years. We've both had other not-exactly platonic relationships in the mean time, but not many (very few!) and none lasting long. I live with my partner, Kevin, as well -- and so I suppose we are in some sense "primary" by some folks way of evaluating such matters. But I feel as if I am capable of having two (three at the very most!) partners with a similar level of commitment, involvement, love, etc. I'm pretty sure Kevin is also capable of that, and we could do that whether or not we're all involved with each "romantically" or whether or not we're all living together, regardless.

If I had another true love, he or she would be a full true love, not a partial love that would lead to me wanting to think of him or her as a "secondary". That said, I think it would be possible to have a partner, aside from Kevin, who doesn't want the same level of involvement and commitment as I share with Kevin. But I simply don't find myself interested in casual sex -- or sex without some sort or degree of emotional bonding, tenderness, warmth, affection... and even commitment.

But "commitiment" needn't mean "forever". It has to be commitment to loving, intimacy, honesty, vulnerability.... So it can't be primarily about sex. I've had my fill of being used as a sex toy.
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  #29  
Old 08-04-2009, 05:59 AM
Degenerate Degenerate is offline
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Bah logged in, typed reply, then when I posted it asked me to log in again and now it's gone. Bah no time to type whole thing again- for now thanks for your replies


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  #30  
Old 08-04-2009, 06:00 AM
Degenerate Degenerate is offline
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Ah tried back button again and now I have it!


Hi everyone. I just wanted to say thanks , as this has been a really interesting discussion to read.

It's frustrating that we can't legally marry more than one partner, as the inequality of the idea of marrying one and not the other is really edgy for me. Maybe also because I have not used what I consider to be a primary/secondary/tertiary type model for a while, since I don't live with any of my partners full time. I also don't like the hierarchy and prefer my relationships to have fewer unnatural boundaries, and it just doesn't seem to work that way for me right now. I do have two relationships which are more involved than the third, so using this model the closest I could say is that I have two primaries and a partner who is secondary to them (which defeats the point of having a word to mean primary ;-) ) and although it is by no means a triad, we spend time all together and there is some level of non-platonic intimacy between the other two some of those times.

In a way I am already 'engaged' to two.. My other more serious partner also wears a ring to symbolise our commitment, but this refers to a different dynamic (a BDSM world one, which is similar, but more a statement of intent than a promise like an engagement). I guess the 'weddings' in both instances will just end up being non legal ones which we created ourselves, unless legal needs arise (luckily here we get free healthcare anyway).

Aw it';s a shame nobody here has a story to share of multiple weddings of any kind. Although obviously lots of us here have great stories about multiple commitments.. I guess a non legal wedding in this context just becomes a commitment ceremony/celebration.

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