Cheers Sexy People!
A funny thing happened to me on my way home from pole fitness class. An old friend was in town, a friend that I used to have a crush on at different periods of my life, including my former life as a serial monogamist. We had never gotten together in the past because we were never “single and available” at the same time back then. My friend had let me know he was going through a rough time, and I was looking forward to re-connecting with him, giving him a shoulder to lean on, and finding out what was troubling him.
We walked over to a Mexican restaurant across the street where they were doing karaoke night. It was INCREDIBLY LOUD in there, with the karaoke dude screaming songs in Spanish over the music while he was waiting for his next victim to come up and sing. It was quite empty, so one of the female bartenders started singing off-key loudly over the music, to one, two and then three songs. I thought…. REALLY? This is where we’re going to have a sensitive, intimate conversation about troubling stuff? Ha! This is hilarious and annoying at the same time! THIS should be an interesting night.
Turns out his three year old marriage is on the rocks. His wife has been living in an apartment for six months, somewhat estranged from him. They are considering talking to a couples therapist soon, but the jury is still out on that one. Is it even worth it, they wonder? Where has the love gone? They miss each other as they feel they are each other’s best friend. But he doesn’t know if he can forgive her, you see. She cheated on him. She had an “affair” with another man, a man he has never met. How did he find this out? Well, first she revealed to him that she was lying about her finances to him, so he had to deal with that revelation. He had asked her if there was anything else that she was keeping from him or being dishonest about. She said no. Then as time wore on, and their marriage continued to crumble, she revealed that she had been cheating on him with this other man, and had been seeing him for months behind his back. Ouch! Upsetting and hurtful. He was especially upset that she had what he called “an affair of the heart.” (vs. just sex I suppose). So she moved out and they have been trying to figure out what to do ever since. She claims that she is no longer seeing this other man. But she’s not sure if she wants to go through couples therapy or not.
Oh, but the plot thickens. This is only part of the story.
The other part of the story is what I know about my friend – the husband in this equation. I find everything that he is telling me very ironic…. and filled with hypocrisy. Why? Because he and I have gone on dates, per se. This man knows that I am in an open marriage. How does he know this? Well, let’s see. Let’s start with that he, my husband and I all had an MMF threesome about four years ago, while he was dating his later-to-be-wife. When this occurred, I thought, well, he’s not married. If he wants to fool around behind his girlfriend’s back (if that’s what he’s doing), that’s his business — I am being ethical in MY relationship, and that’s all that matters. We had a blast. My husband was participating, so obviously he consented to our threesome fun, so whoop-dee-do, let’s party, fellas! This girl is enjoying her sexual awakening!
After he was married, during another evening out, he informed me that he and his now-wife have a Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell sort of arrangement. I ask him what does that mean to them exactly… he says something along the lines of … “well, she doesn’t want to know about it if I fool around with other women, just… don’t talk about it.” Hmmmm, that sounds… fishy… to me. Plus at this point, I have identified as full on polyamorous. So at the end of the night, we kiss, I let him touch my boob <gasp>… it started getting steamier. Then I thought… I just don’t know about this. It feels… wrong. The WIFE didn’t tell me she’s in a “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” with my old friend. I think I’m not cool with this. So I say… “I’ve had a great time, but I gotta go.” After all, I have a husband and a boyfriend waiting for me. Do I really need to fool around with my friend who I think may not be acting ethically with his wife? No, I don’t! The next time we meet up, I tell him about my poly blog I’m crafting and text him the link later to check it out. I never hear a word from him about it. Hmmmm.
So fast forward to the loud, obnoxious Mexican restaurant…. So who is lying to who here? His wife lied to him and cheated behind his back. But, but…. so did he…! Also, he tells me he has never informed her of these other women, because, well… “she didn’t want to know about it… and these women didn’t mean anything to me.” Do you see the hypocrisy here? DOINK!!!! I mean… What. The. Fuck! Also, I happen to be one of those women! (I was so glad that I didn’t ever let things go too far, and I listened to my Spidey senses.) So… you don’t know if you can “forgive” her… ? Well, she doesn’t even get the chance to try to forgive you for whatever you’ve done behind her back in this fishy arrangement, because you have not been honest and revealed your shenanigans to her!!! Also, he’s telling this story to a known polyamorist who has a blog about ethical non-monogamy. MORE IRONY! And yes, a part of me hopes he does not read this post. But somehow, I don’t think he will…
Fast forward to last nite…. I am out to dinner with my old time friend, one of the first people I had ever come out to as polyamorous – so she knows my deal and accepts me, and we are having a nice dinner and chat. We are scheming for my big blowout birthday party this spring. Yay! As we are dining, we run into an old friend / colleague of mine. Turns out his second marriage crumbled recently, he’s twice divorced now and he has moved back to the east coast, and he was on a date. Well, hello date! You look an awful lot like his former two wives! I have no idea why his second marriage crumbled and it’s none of my business. But I do know that with his first wife, he cheated on her several times… because one of them was with a friend of mine. That deception behind his first wife’s back couldn’t have helped their marriage. Were there more deceptions? Perhaps…
I have to wonder… if there are people out there in this world who KNOW they are not capable or desiring or even GOOD AT loving only one person for the rest of their life… why don’t they just accept that about themselves, be honest about who they are… and stop lying to both themselves and the people they are in relationships with? Why can’t we just say… hey! I suck at monogamy! I’m NO GOOD at it! And I don’t even like it! (if that’s the case). And then just be ethically non-monogamous! What is so horrible about that? NOTHING! Stop kidding yourselves, I say. Seems simple to me. YES, I know that society makes it hard, because people who are ethically non-monogamous are a minority. But that doesn’t make it impossible, does it?
I found the article I link to below to be a propos to this discussion. Here’s some great excerpts that I think are wonderfully related:
Before I knew of polyamory, I thought I was defective and unfit to be in a relationship. After years of disappointing my partners… I resigned myself to remaining single.
Our nation is one of serial monogamy. Polyamory applies the same concept of loving more than one person in a lifetime, the only difference being that these relationships overlap in the case of polyamory, because life is too short.
So often monogamous couples have mismatched libidos or similar challenges, and have limited options on how to remedy that situation. This adds up to a LOT of people not getting their needs met, which results in a bunch of unfulfilled and unhappy folks. Our brains thrive on novel experiences. It’s natural for that to have a sexual outlet, as sex is such an integral part of our makeup.
Why is it acceptable in our society to love more than one sport with a passion? Read different books? Why is it acceptable to love more than one child? Yet it’s not okay to love more than one person romantically at a time. My friend says, “Love is like an ocean, not a bathtub. One person doesn’t need to get out in order for another to get in.”
…embarking on emotional uncharted territories comes with risk. But it can also reap huge rewards… [a polyamorous person] is living open and honestly in a culture that treats sex as something to be ashamed of. I have huge respect for their authentic approach.
Before you dive in, however, please take note: Regardless of the relationship style, the following traits are desirable for ANY healthy relationship: agreeability, confidence, conscientiousness, and, the trickiest one — being emotionally stable. In order to be emotionally stable, you need to embrace honesty and love yourself and others for who they are.
There’s a lot of talk about the importance of honest communication. Here is what that means: talking to your loved ones about EVERYTHING, including things they might not want to hear. Guess what? You’re not allowed to say, “I married my best friend,” and then keep secrets from them. You should be able to be yourself and share everything with your best friend.
As for our friends and lovers, our love is fluid. They come in town, we love them for the weekend, and then we release them back into the ocean like a message in a bottle. The respect and acceptance is there, and so is the glorious freedom.
Click below to read the full article, if you wish:
What do you think, dear readers? Anyone else have similar anecdotes to share, humorous or not, or thoughts on the topics here? I’d love to hear from you.
Wishing you peace, love and happiness,
(and thrilling, fun sex too!)