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  #11  
Old 01-12-2014, 05:00 AM
Icewraithonyx Icewraithonyx is offline
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I think people have an inclination along the mono / non-mono relationship spectrum. (Does single / plural work better?) But I think a person can be plural inclined but CHOOSE to have affairs, or CHOOSE to be ethically plural.

So my answer would be I think polyamorous is more of a choice as to how to realize a plural nature.
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  #12  
Old 01-12-2014, 05:02 AM
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I think it's important to clearly define what you mean by "being polyamorous." Do you mean "having polyamorous relationships" or do you mean "having the capacity to love multiple people simultaneously?" One is a choice, the other is innate.

I have the capacity to love multiple people. I can choose to have polyamorous relationships. By analogy, I have the capacity to eat meat. I can choose to eat meat or I can choose to be a vegetarian. As it turns out, I really enjoy eating meat and if for some reason I wasn't allowed to, I would find life just a little bit less satisfying.

Humans are incredibly adaptive. We're able to survive (in a basic "not dying" sense) in an incredible range of environments. However, in order to thrive and be happy and fully express our potential, we have a need for autonomy and self-expression, and this means being able to do the things we want to do. So if we want to love more than one person, our need for autonomy and self-expression means we'll be most happy and satisfied if we're able to have relationships that support this multiple love desire.

Every act that any person does is a choice. Everyone who practices polyamory does so by choice.

However, some people have tendencies towards certain choices, and having these tendencies is not itself a choice.

There's a difference between choosing to practice polyamory and choosing to have a tendency towards polyamorous feelings. We don't choose whether to have the capacity to love more than one person romantically, just like we don't choose whether to have the capacity to understand math equations at first glance or to reproduce musical works after hearing them once. Some people can practice and practice until their fingers fall off, and they'll never learn to play the guitar.

For some people, the monogamy option is so stifling and oppressive that it's not really an option, insofar as everyone wants to be happy and fulfilled in life. But that does not equate to a "need to have polyamorous relationships." Rather, it's a need for autonomy, and having polyamorous relationships is a strategy for meeting that need.
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  #13  
Old 01-12-2014, 04:34 PM
InsaneMystic InsaneMystic is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SchrodingersCat View Post
For some people, the monogamy option is so stifling and oppressive that it's not really an option, insofar as everyone wants to be happy and fulfilled in life. But that does not equate to a "need to have polyamorous relationships." Rather, it's a need for autonomy, and having polyamorous relationships is a strategy for meeting that need.
This. *nods*

Describes me to a T - I can be happy alone, I can be happy with one partner or with several partners; however, I know that I cannot be happy in a mono/closed relationship, for lack-of-autonomy reasons. If I'm with one partner - as I currently am and have been for 5 1/2 years - is just a result of situational lack of opportunity (there are very few folks with partner-compatibility to the complicated human being I am, so that opportunity hardly ever arises. That's okay. ), not because of any stifling relationship contracts denying me the right for being with more than one.
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  #14  
Old 01-12-2014, 09:04 PM
Tonberry Tonberry is offline
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I don't believe it was a choice I made. However, that doesn't mean I think I was necessarily born with it. There are many things you don't choose that aren't necessarily genetic either.
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  #15  
Old 01-13-2014, 07:45 AM
Eponine Eponine is offline
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Completely agree with what SchrodingersCat said.

Quote:
Originally Posted by InsaneMystic View Post

I can be happy alone, I can be happy with one partner or with several partners; however, I know that I cannot be happy in a mono/closed relationship, for lack-of-autonomy reasons. If I'm with one partner - as I currently am and have been for 5 1/2 years - is just a result of situational lack of opportunity (there are very few folks with partner-compatibility to the complicated human being I am, so that opportunity hardly ever arises. That's okay. ), not because of any stifling relationship contracts denying me the right for being with more than one.
Yeah, me too. I don't need to have multiple relationships, but it's a non-negotiable that any relationship of mine has to be poly.

I've heard some mono people say they're mono because it's rare for them to develop feelings for even one person, let alone more than one at the same time. That reason doesn't make sense to me at all. No matter how rarely I'm attracted to people, a mono relationship would still be denying my autonomy. Whether I end up having multiple partners or not isn't important, but I need to know I'm free to love whomever I want.
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  #16  
Old 01-15-2014, 06:09 PM
Spock Spock is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eponine View Post
Completely agree with what SchrodingersCat said.


Yeah, me too. I don't need to have multiple relationships, but it's a non-negotiable that any relationship of mine has to be poly.

I've heard some mono people say they're mono because it's rare for them to develop feelings for even one person, let alone more than one at the same time. That reason doesn't make sense to me at all. No matter how rarely I'm attracted to people, a mono relationship would still be denying my autonomy.
It makes sense if you've never had the context of poly, though.

If you think of a relationship like moving to a new city, where you have to build a new internal map of the area, create a time-wise map of the traffic patterns, locate new places to eat and shop and hang out, meet new people to do the above with, get a new job, a new place to live, etc, then a mono person might be like that:
1) Want to find a new apartment rarely (so that the overhead cost is minimized)
2) Move to a new city rarely (so that some retained information can be reused)
3) Move states once in their whole life (so that laws, taxes, registrations, etc don't have to be relearned)
4) Don't even want to get a new job more than once every 10 years

Where a poly person would be:
1) I move to a new apartment every six months when my lease is up
2) I move to a new city every year because I love exploring
3) Move states every other year when a new job is in a different state
4) Go out of my way to look for jobs in different states so I can try new things, find new place, meet new people

Quote:
Whether I end up having multiple partners or not isn't important, but I need to know I'm free to love whomever I want.
That's exactly the same as a mono person, the difference being that the mono person has picked exactly one person to love at a time, I think.
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  #17  
Old 01-15-2014, 07:29 PM
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nycindie nycindie is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eponine View Post
No matter how rarely I'm attracted to people, a mono relationship would still be denying my autonomy.
Monogamy, in and of itself, doesn't deny anyone's autonomy. It's just one way to have relationships, just an approach. In your autonomy, you can choose and agree to be monogamous... or polyamorous and open... or polyamorous and polyfidelitous... or without any love relationships at all.

That's what autonomy is - self-government, or being your own person and determining how to live your life. Something inanimate can't take it away. One's autonomy and individuality are what a person utilizes to choose the type of relationship structure they want for themselves. I was always an individual making my own autonomous choice to be a monogamist. Now at this point inmy life, in my autonomy, I choose polyamory. If I choose monogamy again in the future, being in a monogamous relationship would not negate my autonomy.
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Last edited by nycindie; 01-16-2014 at 04:51 AM.
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  #18  
Old 01-15-2014, 07:31 PM
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In my own case, I certainly chose to enter into a plural relationships, however I think that everyone has the inate capacity to love more than one person. Wither we do so one person at a time, or multiple partners at the same time depends on a variety of conditions, beliefs, life experiences, and or societal/religious expectations.
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Cat Wrote:
I think it's important to clearly define what you mean by "being polyamorous." Do you mean "having polyamorous relationships" or do you mean "having the capacity to love multiple people simultaneously?" One is a choice, the other is innate.
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  #19  
Old 01-16-2014, 02:38 AM
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It was a choice. Like I told our marriage counsellor, "I am not wired or predisposed to do anything relating to poly." My upbringing had nothing to do with my polyamorist tendencies. I dipped into poly when I was a teenager. If I had never met my ex, I would have been in a mono marriage because I was never going to seek another relationship. We have been married almost 12 years and not once did I ever date or feel any attraction towards anyone but him or her. She is out of the picture, and he is still the only one I want to be with.

SC made some valid points, and her post resonates within me and where I am today. There is a difference between the two. Case and point. I love more than one person right now, so I suppose I could be classified as having polyamorous feelings. However, I do not want to practise polyamory or be romantically involved. I have opted not to act on said feelings towards her. With that understanding in place, she knows there will never be a romantic relationship between us.

If I had some predisposed "need" for poly, it is being met simply by me acknowledging that there are romantic feelings for someone outside of my DH.
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  #20  
Old 01-16-2014, 03:47 AM
JaneQSmythe JaneQSmythe is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eponine View Post
...I've heard some mono people say they're mono because it's rare for them to develop feelings for even one person, let alone more than one at the same time. That reason doesn't make sense to me at all...
That one confuses me too...I do NOT develop "feelings" for people easily (it's happened twice in my life - once with MrS, and again with Dude) but still considered myself poly even when I was with MrS (and various FWBs ). (To be perfectly honest, however, I can definitely experience "sexual attraction" for people that I don't have "feelings" for - which is not universal.)
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