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There are some people who would argue that one person can’t fulfill all those needs, and that it’s foolish to make one person try. Monogamy is a thing of the past to the people who practice polyamory, or the practice of having multiple romantic relationships.

I was a late learner when it came to polyamorous relationships. It wasn’t a concept I was familiar with until I met a couple who lived that lifestyle. What I didn’t understand were the hows and whys behind such relationships. Why would anyone want to ‘share’? What was the point in being in these relationships, why not stay single?

I always assumed polyamory was associated with sneaking around. I always equated it with people going around sexing other people, while in a committed relationship or marriage, even if the other person didn’t know. But what I learned, if done correctly, polyamory isn’t based on deceit but it’s based on honesty. The partners cognizant, and accepting of the others.

Sometimes I ask myself, would it be easier to accept the notion that one person can’t fulfill every need and set parameters in a relationship that would take on the traits of a polyamorous lifestyle? But then again, I grew up with 3 siblings, and I was never good with sharing. I can’t imagine the time and effort that it takes to pull off this type of relationship. Having a monogamous relationship is tough enough, but involving 3, 4, or 6 more people definitely feels like it would be stressful.

But what about jealousy? How does a person keep their emotions safeguarded when it comes to seeing their partner with other people. According to writer, Ben Barnett, 41, who engages in polyamorous relationships, “Everybody has jealousy…I think that the thing to do [when feeling jealous] is quiet down one’s emotions…Secondarily, try to practice a bit of objectivity. Imagine the situation if the roles were reversed. Think of your other passions for other people. They don’t diminish the feelings you have for your primary relationship…But, if you can’t abide by the terms of that agreement, you shouldn’t enter into it.”

I can’t say that a polyamorous lifestyle is one that I could ever choose, but I don’t judge those who have no problem living that way. I guess I’m old fashioned when it comes to relationships. One is all I need.

Have you ever been in a polyamorous relationship? Do you think it could work for you?

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  • Vanesa

    I’m in the category of ‘one relationship is so much work, I wouldn’t want more than just one’. Even to the point of constantly trying to figure out if I even want to stay in the one I’m in right now. I found out, much later than I should have, that he’s polyamorous. I’m not, but amazingly I don’t tend to get jealous like some people do. I am totally fine with sharing as long as we’re respectful of each other and my partner is safe (protection) and honest with me (before we are physically intimate again) if he is not. I honestly wish that there was more understanding about and acceptance of polyamory in society, because perhaps then what I currently have would be easier. The thing is that we have a trust issue, because he hid from me that he’s the type of man who needs more than one romantic relationship at a time to feel good. He actually, even when I’ve expressed I am not possessive, went out of his way to try to convince me that he’s the most monogamous man on the face of the planet. I don’t care if he’s monogamous or not, but I DO care that he’s honest. He’s often not. It’s one of only a few shortcomings with him, but it’s one HECK of a big one.
    Honesty is key. If you want a partner to love you as you are, be honest. You don’t have to use the word ‘polyamory’, but you can at least explain that you’re capable and more happy loving more than just one person at any given time in your life. For those of us who admire honesty much more than fidelity, it will mean the world.