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  #1  
Old 01-26-2015, 05:56 AM
GreenApples918 GreenApples918 is offline
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Post Long time poly at heart, recently acts on beliefs!

My wife and I have been married 10 years (as of last week) and actively poly for ~4 months now - but I've always had an element of poly in my personality.

Just for reference, I'm stoic (not intentional or religious about it, just naturally trending that way), an ISTJ on the Meyers Briggs Temperament Indicator, a secure attachment style (leaning more towards avoidant than anxious if pressed), and just generally introspective and intellectual.

I say I've always had an element of poly because during the ~3 months that my first serious relationship lasted (we're talking 2001 here), my girlfriend spent fall break with another boyfriend (he was an out-of-towner and the plans for fall break had been arranged before I started going out with her). While I had some jealousy with it, I realized he was fulfilling her needs in ways I wasn't ready to do yet.

A couple other traits: I was homeschooled up until college, and am a dedicated Christian.

A few of my reasons for going poly:
Even from my early teens I've been frustrated by Christianity's double standard, where almost every patriarch is a polygamist, but monogamy is one of the last standing moral requirements in 'christian' society. After all, if our scriptures say "god hates divorce," then why is it more common among Christians than polyamory (which seems only to be restricted by the mosaic laws on polygamy)? It seems that the moral superiority of monogamy is just one more legalistic cultural value that got picked up and associated with the most popular religion(s) through time.

I've seen a few situations in very close family where a chronically/terminally ill spouse hangs on to life for years and monogamy essentially cheats the healthy spouse out of a lot of life. It seems that with the right understanding, the sick spouse could receive more care, and the healthy spouse could live a more fulfilled life if poly was an option....not to mention the benefits the kids would have with two healthy parent figures in the house.

Beyond theory, the really personal reasons for opening our marriage involve realizing that there are needs and desires we don't completely fulfill for each other. In an effort to avoid the unhappy->cheating->divorce scenario which seems pretty common, I began suggesting to my wife that I was OK with her taking some fulfillment from people who naturally pander to her needs that I don't meet. Just like we don't depend on each other's home cooking to meet all our nutritional needs, I reasoned we (especially she, the non-stoic, extravert) should be able to get fulfillment from others for those needs that I don't meet.

My poly experience so far:
At first, I was just looking to add female friends to my life, hoping to become a little more extroverted and enjoy flirting again - something I hadn't done since college. I was intentionally NOT looking for a deep relationship.

A couple weeks after my wife opened up to the guy she had a crush on, I met and fell madly for a woman who was already in the poly lifestyle (for over a year), living with her husband and partner for several months.

I didn't think "polyamory" was what I wanted as I wasn't looking for a deep relationship, but my mind was quickly changed. This makes sense, as I haven't ever done well doing things halfheartedly and I should have known that I wouldn't be able to just fool around with someone without becoming emotionally invested. We bonded deep and quick over similar backgrounds such as homeschooling, country living, spiritual topics, etc.

My girlfriend has a busy life with her primary relationships, her kids, and her own school. Our new relationship and its energy were unexpected, so they caused a shock in her existing relationships with mixed results. Naturally, as the tertiary love interest, I am taking a back seat to everything else in her life - the way I've said it is "I exist in her life only by her permission..." and "I dance to the music that she plays."

While I may eventually seek to add another poly relationship, I'm good with just this arrangement for now. You know, as an introvert...that's about all the people I can handle.

I'm here on this board mostly to observe, learn, and as a way of saying "Hey, we're in this together..." with my wife, PolyRed.
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Old 01-26-2015, 07:55 PM
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Greetings GreenApples918 (and PolyRed),
Welcome to our forum. Please feel free to lurk, browse, etc.

Enjoyed your intro and it made a lot of sense. I hope you'll enjoy your time on our site, and read and post on many threads. A couple of religious threads I started that might interest you are:
Both threads include a poll you can take with various answers to the title questions, and of course you can post more explanation in the threads as well.

Anyway, pleased to have you onboard, and hope we'll have many interesting conversations. Congrats on your success with poly so far!

Sincerely,
Kevin T., "official greeter"

Notes:

There's a *lot* of good info in Golden Nuggets. Have a look!

Please read through the guidelines if you haven't already.

Note: You needn't read every reply to your posts, especially if someone posts in a disagreeable way. Given the size and scope of the site it's hard not to run into the occasional disagreeable person. Please contact the mods if you do (or if you see any spam), and you can block the person if you want.

If you have any questions about the board itself, please private-message a mod and they'll do their best to help.

Welcome aboard!
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Old 09-16-2016, 03:55 AM
GreenApples918 GreenApples918 is offline
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Default So, it's been a while...

Wow. The last couple years went fast.
About the time of my intro post, the first poly GF went completely mono. She's on a good path in life and we're still friends-but-mostly-just-on-facebook.

I've had a few relationships since then with several false starts. But now I'm in a 6 month long, slow and steady relationship that feels pretty good. As in, I think this one will last for a while. And, as in, I haven't been coming here to find out what's wrong with me or them or others.

Key things I've learned:
  • It never turns out exactly the way you think it will
  • That's OK.

Honestly, I just came back to change the ole password, I'd stupidly used a generic one that ended up on some list somewhere. So yeah. But I think I'll make a habit of checking in more often.
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Old 09-16-2016, 07:13 AM
Leetah Leetah is offline
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Two succinctly put aphorisms! I hope you will drop in for administrative issues more often!

Leetah
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Old 09-16-2016, 02:18 PM
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Quote:
Even from my early teens I've been frustrated by Christianity's double standard, where almost every patriarch is a polygamist, but monogamy is one of the last standing moral requirements in 'christian' society.
Well, that became Jewish law once the Hebrews attempted to become monotheistic, with a male god named Yahweh at their head. When agriculture was invented, men started stockpiling food. And building businesses. This began in the great empires of Egypt and Babylon, then spread to the tiny provinces of Judah and Israel. They wanted to leave their goods and land and businesses to their own biological sons. Wives and daughters couldn't inherit goods or own land. Females were mere property... chattel (yes, it means cattle).

Judean leaders of the 7th century BC attempted to wipe out worship of the main god(dess) of the time, Asherah. Perhaps you've heard of her? Sometimes her name is merely translated "pole" (esp in the KJV). Women were devalued and their goddess was too. So, with the new war and fire god as their reputed head, making laws, men could take several wives, to produce more sons to work their land or business. Their daughters were only worth what they could be sold for.

Women couldn't take more than one husband because no man wanted to be financially responsible for another man's biological child. There is no law against women having other female sex/love partners, because the men didn't care what the women did with each other in the harem or tent, as long as they weren't getting knocked up.

Quote:
After all, if our scriptures say "god hates divorce," then why is it more common among Christians than polyamory (which seems only to be restricted by the mosaic laws on polygamy)? It seems that the moral superiority of monogamy is just one more legalistic cultural value that got picked up and associated with the most popular religion(s) through time.
The Bible doesn't say, specifically, "god hates divorce." Divorce however, back in ancient times, would not benefit a woman much, since she would be seen as damaged goods, and couldn't earn money (except maybe as a prostitute) and wouldn't be able to find another man to marry her, and her own family probably wouldn't accept her back either. So she was condemned to live out her days with a neglectful or abusive husband, or to starve, and probably have her daughters starve along with her.

However, in the early AD years, Jewish rabbis continued to tweak their laws and did allow for divorce if a woman was abused or sexually neglected. In the first books of the New Testament, St Paul condemned both sex and marriage, never mind divorce! lol But he foolishly thought the world was about to end.

I applaud you for combining polyamory and devout Christianity. They make strange bedfellows, unless it's one male and 2 or more women. Women are strictly prohibited from having more than one male sex partner in the Bible. There are no exceptions, unless you throw out a lot of law, that is supposed to be eternal, and just go with the "love your neighbors" message, loosely interpreted, from the New Testament.


Quote:
I've seen a few situations in very close family where a chronically/terminally ill spouse hangs on to life for years and monogamy essentially cheats the healthy spouse out of a lot of life. It seems that with the right understanding, the sick spouse could receive more care, and the healthy spouse could live a more fulfilled life if poly was an option....not to mention the benefits the kids would have with two healthy parent figures in the house.
You're assuming here that "polyamory" includes the long term cohabitation of 3 "spouses." Usually, as I think you now know, it doesn't. And what happens if one of the healthy spouses gets ill, anyway? Then you have 2 ill people to one healthy one. It's not so simple.
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Old 09-17-2016, 09:01 PM
GreenApples918 GreenApples918 is offline
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Hi Magdlyn, you have some interesting comments

I'll respond to a few of those but I hope you understood my main point about the biblical references: One form of nonmonagamy is common in scriptures, and not shamed (again, except for Paul's personal opinions).

So, when I referred to the patriarchs, I meant to include all the revered men, even before there was Jewish law. Jacob and Esau, for example, both had multiple wives. This was in no way required due to monotheism....just was. And seemed to be culturally accepted, too.

Jewish law specifically provided for women to own land if there were only daughters and no brothers for inheritance, but Jewish law regarding land and other ownership was much different than we're used to. Call it oppressive if you must, but I dare you to find the equivalence of a Jubilee in any modern society.

Malachi 2:16 states that God hates divorce (or putting away, if you're KJVing.) Maybe when you said this wasn't in scripture...were you were splitting hairs between divorce, per se, and the sad state of a Jewish divorced woman in ancient times (which is the explanation in Malachi for why God hates divorce, anyway)?

Last edited by GreenApples918; 09-17-2016 at 10:57 PM.
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Old 09-17-2016, 11:17 PM
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Magdlyn Magdlyn is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GreenApples918 View Post
Hi Magdlyn, you have some interesting comments

I'll respond to a few of those but I hope you understood my main point about the biblical references: One form of non-monogamy is common in scriptures, and not shamed (again, except for Paul's personal opinions).
So who are you going with, Yahweh, or the "Christian" celibate, Paul? You can't have both. Christianity is a syncretisation of Judaism and Greek mystery religion, strange bedfellows. Confusing when applied 2000+ years later in any literal fashion! I'm guessing you're going with something Pauline, and dismissing OT law as "legalistic," a nice sidestep.

Quote:
So, when I referred to the patriarchs, I meant to include all the revered men, even before there was Jewish law. Jacob and Esau, for example, both had multiple wives. This was in no way required due to monotheism....just was. And seemed to be culturally accepted, too.
Men had the power, made the rules, and got the sexual variety they wanted. Then said, Yahweh told us this is right.

Of course, Genesis and the entire Torah/Pentateuch wasn't written down until the Judean leaders were exiled in Babylon in the 7th century BCE, and longing for home. They basically had nothing else to do but write down the old stories/myths, interpreted through a filter of more recent goings-on. ("Modern" Judaism, "the people of the Book," it is argued, was born then, when there was no temple to continue the old sacrifices.) So they looked backward, but with their more modern viewpoints coloring the old myths. Dunno if you take the Torah literally. Jews don't! I personally do not believe any Torah people existed literally; they are similar to demi-gods of other ancient religions. Moses was an Egyptian after all.

Quote:
Jewish law specifically provided for women to own land if there were only daughters and no brothers for inheritance, but Jewish law regarding land and other ownership was much different than we're used to. Call it oppressive if you must, but I dare you to find the equivalence of a Jubilee in any modern society.

Malachi 2:16 states that God hates divorce (or putting away, if you're KJVing.) Maybe you were trying to expound on the sad state of a Jewish divorced woman in ancient times, just like the explanation in Malachi.
Malachi was a late prophet, supposedly speaking for Yahweh or El Shaddai, but of course, each prophet put their own spin on things. He seems highly dismissive of Temple sacrifices, and in favor of a Shaddai type of god who favored women. At any rate, in the previous verse, he warns against marrying women who worship (Asherah) "a foreign god(dess)." Then he goes on to say, do not be unfaithful to the wife of your youth. In other words, don't kick the old lady out when you get a new younger wife who is more sexually exciting (NRE and all that).

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage...h=Malachi+2:16

With my translations:

Quote:
16 “The man who hates and divorces his wife,” says Yahweh, the El of Israel, “does violence to the one he should protect.” [Also] says El Shaddai (incorrectly translated God Almighty).

So be on your guard, and do not be unfaithful.

Footnotes:

Malachi 2:16 Or “I hate divorce,” says Yahweh, the El of Israel, “because the man who divorces his wife covers his garment with violence...”
I read El Shaddai as a goddess ("god of breasts") who was invoked in cases of fertility and protection of women. (Check it out: every time "god almighty"/El Shaddai is invoked, is when fertility is the topic. In this case, her name is conflated with Yahweh's name.) So, divorce was not looked on favorably by this goddess since, as I said above, it would basically cause a woman to lose status and, by the way, die of starvation. Surely men would neglect and try to divorce their older wife or wives when in NRE with their newer younger hotter wives.

Malachi rails against marrying wives who worship Asherah or other similar goddesses, such as Asarte (aka Ishtar). It's not clear if he thinks it's OK to divorce those women. Haha (Note that one of Jacob/Israel's sons was named after Asherah-- Asher! Fascinating.)

And "Yahweh" also told his people that a rapist must marry the woman he raped, which seems horrific to us, but again, it was for protection of the "damaged goods" victim. Once raped, she became unmarriagable.

At any rate, it's a different world now, and we struggle to apply ancient Law to modern life, what with feminism, womens' rights, and child protections and all...
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Mags (poly, F, 61) loving miss pixi (poly, F, 39) since January 2009, living together since 2013
"Master," (mono, 36), miss pixi's Dom for 3 years

Last edited by Magdlyn; 09-18-2016 at 04:50 AM.
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  #8  
Old 09-17-2016, 11:56 PM
GreenApples918 GreenApples918 is offline
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Magdlyn:
Hey, you know what? I didn't come here to argue religion. I explained my journey and you've told me that it was a bastard experience, along with anything I could possibly believe now.

Last edited by GreenApples918; 09-17-2016 at 11:58 PM.
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Old 09-18-2016, 12:21 AM
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I find it very difficult to fathom how fundamentalist Christians are told that God hates divorce. They sure took license when rewriting the Bible if there is a verse in fundie versions where it's stated that God hates anything. I grew up in the Lutheran and then Dutch Reformed churches and we were always taught that God is love. So, to my mind, since God is love, it is impossible for God to hate anything or anyone.
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Old 09-18-2016, 12:34 AM
GreenApples918 GreenApples918 is offline
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Oh, it's in there. People definitely pick and chose what they emphasize or teach to others.

Just as it is written: “Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.”
Romans 9:13 NIV
http://bible.com/111/rom.9.13.NIV

Hate is even used in The Message, which is just about as un-fundie as I can think of....

But your point is well taken. A couple generations ago, divorce was as big a scandle in churches as queerness, or poly, would be today. Shoot, they even used to preach that debt was evil.

Anyway, it always puzzled me that monogamy was such a core value...

Last edited by GreenApples918; 09-18-2016 at 12:44 AM.
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