Cheers Sexy People!
Three years ago today, my beloved husband dropped me off for a date with another man… Then he picked me up at the end of the date…
…Yeah, that’s right. Does that sound weird to you? It almost did to us too, but we decided to give this polyamory stuff a try… like for real. We decided to open our lives and our hearts to other people, and see what happened. Our minds had been opened to the idea, and we had an “aha” moment and decided to go for it.
Fast forward three years to the day later, that man I met at the funny little bar that nite is now my boyfriend, lover, dear friend, and roommate! Is it ALWAYS easy and full of fairytale love and romance and candles and great sex for all involved? No, but a fair amount of the time it is. And really… is every monogamous relationship a beautiful fairytale all the time? Heck no! They all take at least some work, some improved communication skills, some soul searching so that you know yourself well enough to share the real you with another human being. But to us, it’s all worth it. Also, to make it work, it takes two people (or three or four or eight) who REALLY want to be together and do the occasional work, talking through struggles and issues, and giving big hugs and kisses, all while supporting each other. Mutual desire to be there. Mutual respect. Hey, this is starting to sound like a family… but a chosen one in this case.
But yes, having relationships that don’t follow society’s standards – in this case of non-monogamy – can sometimes prove challenging. I have a husband who I share finances with, a marriage certificate with, a mortgage, pets, etc “til death do us part.” Society and all of our friends and family recognize that relationship easily. We all have a script for that. Some people would call this relationship “primary” due to the nature of the structure of it. But what about my boyfriend? We happen to currently also live together, share trips, life experiences, household duties, etc together. Some would call this relationship “secondary.” I am legally bound to my husband and we had a wedding. But with my boyfriend, there is no societal structure to honor our relationship. Even though we “came out” to most of our close family and friends, when there’s an event coming up, who do they send the invitation to? And would the awkwardness move people to maybe not invite us at all? It’s just… too… weird… Will she be bringing that boyfriend of hers that we hardly know? Will he “fit in”? Maybe it’s just easier for others to ignore that relationship altogether. Out of sight, out of mind. But then I feel he is part of my family, my poly family. Also, they don’t have greeting cards for this…
When I was searching for a greeting card to honor our anniversary today, I had some funny moments in the greeting card aisle where our society’s recognition for monogamy kept pointing itself out to me…
“To my one and only…” (but I don’t think of love as something scarce where I only have enough for one)
“To the love of my life…” (but I enjoy multiple loves in my life)
“I feel complete with you…” (I feel complete by myself, and more is more in some cases! Love grows!)
“To my husband on our anniversary…” (what about my NOT husband on our anniversary?)
“I’m yours alone…” (But I like to share, and don’t believe in “owning” another or being “owned” for that matter)
I finally opted for a card that said “To another magical year together” and “If I had to choose all over again, I’d choose you.” (yes, I’m one of those people who likes to give two cards sometimes. Actually I bought three but figured I’d give my husband the third at our upcoming anniversary. That’s one perk of polyamory! HAHA).
Speaking of greeting cards, a close friend of mine (who happens to be following this blog, “hiiiiiii, you lovely lady!”) purposely sent a greeting card to our house with all three of our last names on it followed by the word “Family”. And the card literally said on the front “This card has no purpose.” Ah, but it did. It illustrated her acceptance of our funny family. It signified her willingness to connect, to include, to let us know she ACKNOWLEDGES all three of us who live in this house, including my beau. I thought it was a beautiful gesture. Thank you, my dear friend.
So if one is polyamorous, how do we honor the various loves of our life? (and when will greeting cards reflect this? Haha I won’t hold my breath). Do we feel the need to categorize them into “secondary” and “primary”? Can you really categorize the love that you feel for someone? Can’t we love several people but still define some of those loving feelings as overlapping and similar, but others might FEEL different to each unique individual? I can also love and connect with someone in certain ways, and love and connect with someone else in very different ways, but still love them with all my heart. Love is only one word after all to describe some pretty complex emotions.
I do my best to treat both my husband and my beau as good as I possibly can, being there for them emotionally and physically. I don’t want my beau to feel like a second class citizen. It’s a bummer that society refuses to or doesn’t know how to recognize him, but I want him to be treated properly and respectfully by yours truly first and foremost. Maybe everyone else will eventually come around. I’ll wait… and keep writing this blog (maybe someday not anonymously). Ironically, since I am already married, I realized the other day that for all intents and purposes, I am HIS secondary if we are going to use those terms. How will he honor his relationship with me as he finds more loves of his own? Will they accept me and my place in his life? Or will they try to drive me out partly based on what society has taught them about how relationships are SUPPOSED to look?
…These are challenging times, my friends, in the sense that we are partly making this up as we go along – a somewhat grass roots effort since a very small percentage of the population is navigating these waters. I look for helpful information anywhere I can. The following article does an EXCELLENT job of speaking to how we honor “non-primaries” in our lives and how to treat them well. It also raises some great issues. Give it a read and bookmark it. It rocks.
…Happy Anniversary, my love (one of them). Thanks for walking into my life and rocking my world. I hate to be bored. 🙂
Wishing you love, peace and happiness,
(and thrilling, fun sex too!)