Your Poly/RA Experience

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Your Poly/RA Experience

  • Serenity

    Hi everyone!  I figured that we should introduce ourselves and get to know each other.

    So tell us about your experience with poly/RA.  If you don’t have any experience, tell us why you’re interested in poly/RA.

    I’ll follow up with a post about my experience soon.  (I’m at work right now and should probably do something productive…)

     

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  • Brendan

    I was introduced to the idea of poly back in 2001. I came back to school from spring break to find that my best friend had met a really cute girl that he’d hit it off with (he’d been staying at the school over the week). She and I really hit it off too, and she introduced us both to the idea – she’d been in a poly relationship before that, but it was new to the two of us guys. I did a bunch of reading on the topic, and decided it fit pretty well for me. Thirteen years later, she and I are married and still poly – for various reasons he’s no longer a part of our social circle (to put it very politely), but she’s had several long and fulfilling relationships since then. I’ve had a a lot less success in that area, mainly because I’ve been dealing with social anxiety and shyness. We’ve had a couple of short-ish triad situations, which were amazing, but neither really worked out.

     

    I definitely consider myself polyamorous regardless of the fact that I’m only in the one relationship at the moment, but I don’t consider myself a relationship anarchist. I do tend to categorize relationships, and if nothing else, the fact that I’m married means that in the practical realm, that relationship does come first for me. I think RA is an interesting concept, but not sure it matches up to the way I think.

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    Dan B

    My wife and I aren’t poly. I’ve lived most of my life thinking that a poly lifestyle was wrong, but the more I think about it, the more I believe that relationship decisions are decisions that consenting adults should make themselves. I’m interested in hearing what the opinions of others are about the topic.

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    Serenity

    Wow, awesome story, Brendan!  I definitely agree that whether you’re poly or not depends on your attitude/philosophy and not the number of partners you have at the moment.

    Daniel–I hope this group could be a place for constructive discussions regarding the pros and cons of poly.  I think there’s a lot to explore!

    As for me, I first started seriously thinking about polyamory about two years ago when a Facebook friend introduced me to Sex at Dawn.  I was in a long-term, monogamous, and incredibly unhappy relationship at the time.  That relationship lasted until October of last year, when I finally broke up with my boyfriend and moved back to California.

    Once I moved back to California, I started dating the Facebook friend who introduced me to Sex at Dawn two years ago.  It was supposed to be a non-monogamous relationship, but I don’t think I really knew how to deal with it.  I didn’t *get* it yet.  It was kind of a messed up situation for other reasons, and I was clearly on rebound.  Anyway, that relationship ended at the beginning of the year, and I started to really explore life in the Silicon Valley.

    My real experience with polyamory started almost exactly two months ago (yes, I’m a total newbie!) when I started dating a guy who was in an open relationship at the time.   Since then, he has transitioned from being in an open relationship with a primary partner to non-hierarchical polyamory.  This time around, I took to polyamory like a fish to water.

    My lover–let’s call him K–introduced me to one of the poly communities in the Bay Area.  These days, K, myself, and one of K’s other partners often attend events together.  I have developed sisterly feelings towards my metamour (luckily for me, she’s an awesome and likeable person) and really enjoy spending time with the two of them.

    In some ways, my relationship with K is the best I’ve ever had.  We share a deep and intimate emotional connection, unburdened by the myriad expectations and restrictions characteristic of monogamous relationships.  Because we don’t have to put up a pretense of exclusive devotion to one another, we can be completely honest with each other.  This means that he tells me about his experiences and relationships with other women, and I tell him about my experiences and relationships with other men.  We listen to each other’s problems and give advice when advice is sought.

    Because K has other options and we’re not shackled to each other the way monogamous couples are, I know that he spends time with me because he wants to–that, at that moment, of all the women he could have chosen to be with, he has chosen me.  This has actually made me feel more secure about our relationship, and because I feel secure about our relationship, I very rarely experience jealousy.  And, in the rare instances when I have experienced it, it was easily brushed aside.

    I recently met another guy–let’s call him V–with whom I am completely, ridiculously, and irrationally infatuated with.  But I really don’t love K any less because of it.  In fact, my experience with V has made me love K more.  K has supported me through the frenzy and uncertainty of a new romantic encounter.  How many people can truthfully say that they have the support of an established partner in their adventures (or misadventures) with a new lover?

    Anyway…long story…to be continued.  🙂

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    Brendan

    Great story, Serenity. I’ve definitely found that my relationship with my wife has been strengthened by having been there for each other through the good and bad times of our other relationships. If nothing else, the habit of talking everything through and being as open as possible in our communication has been a very healthy thing.

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    Jon Kalb

    Thanks all for sharing your stories. I don’t have a story to share. I’m afraid that although I’m poly-friendly, I’m boringly monogamous.

    But I’m very interested in hearing about all of your stories and particularly I’d like to hear from Serenity about how her libertarian opinions go over with the poly communities here in the Bay Area. Serenity, do you feel like you have to downplay or hide your political beliefs?

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      Serenity

      Hey Jon,

      I don’t downplay or hide my political beliefs from people in the poly community here in the Bay Area.  I do downplay/hide them from people at work and people in my professional network, but I don’t downplay/hide them from friends.  Most people in the poly community here (hell, most people in the Bay Area) are liberal, but I don’t feel the need to hide my politics from them.

      I went to UC Berkeley as an undergrad, and I didn’t hide my political views there.  I just don’t do that.  If people dislike my political views, they can unfriend me or go to hell.  😉

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    Mike Reid

    I’m just responding here to tag @rachelmills, who is looking for a guest for her upcoming Liberty After Dark podcast on polyamory + polygamy.

    (I’m so monogamous I don’t even now what “RA” is!)

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      rachel mills

      Thanks, Mike! Actually I think I am looking for several people to share stories, good and bad. Can be anonymous if you wish. Just want some perspectives on when it works and when it doesn’t. Its not about if its right or wrong, its interesting to talk about.  Non-judgmental podcast.  🙂

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        Serenity

        Hey Rachel,

        It is interesting to talk about!  But I’m afraid there’s no easy answer to the question of when it works and when it doesn’t.  For me, it’s been a lot of trial and error, and every relationship has been different.  Are you specifically looking for libertarians to share their stories?  There’s the poly porcupines facebook group where you might find people to interview.  When are you looking to record the podcast?

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    rachel mills

    Liberty After Dark is ready to start taking calls for the Big Polyamory episode.

    This episode is not to promote or condemn the practice, just to talk about the good, the bad and the ugly of it. You can participate anonymously. I want to hear stories of good experiences and bad experiences, what to do, what not to do. I define polyamory as having multiple partners with the consent and knowledge of all involved. It is distinct from *cheating*.

    So if you want to tell your story, call my Skype number and leave me a message telling your story and I will put selected stories in the next episode, along with an interview with a polyamorous couple. (how does THAT work??? Right?)

    The number is nine one nine seven four seven four one one one. I will not be answering it for several days. Please share this with anyone you think would have interesting things to say.

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