Some will come and some will go
and we shall surely pass
When the one that left us here
returns for us at last
We are but a moments sunlight
fading in the grass.
C’mon people, now
smile on your brother,
ev’ry-body get together,
try to love one another right now.
The Carpenter, Get Together
I’ve written several articles over the last couple weeks about my honey and I exploring the possibilities of polyamory. I’ve told you about his girlfriend, my old love, and earlier on, I talked about the idea from a more philosophical bent.
Over the last couple of weeks, we have explored a variety of website, discussion groups and meetup organizations relating to polyamory. We’ve been looking for other people with similar experiences, issues and concerns – people we might be able to talk with when we have concerns or one or the other of us needs an outlet for all of the emotions something like this inevitable raises in our day to day lives.
A lot of what we have read has really made a lot of sense to us. We have been quickly disabused of some of the more idealistic ideas we had early on. At the same time, our personal experiences have also made us see, much more clearly, how critically important it is to view each person involved as an individual person with their own needs and wants. It’s been a very useful period for both of us.
This weekend, we ran across a local poly meetup group and had a look at it. It’s fairly sizable, although small enough to be personal, and they have had increasingly more frequent get togethers over recent months. We discovered that they are planning a potluck/discussion group several weeks from now. This was really rather interesting to us, so we went ahead and created an account and introduced ourselves. We don’t know, yet, whether we will be able to attend this particular function, but we are hoping that it will work out.
Now here is the interesting part. Talking yesterday afternoon, my honey says to me that the possibility of attending this potluck seems to make this whole poly thing we are talking about far more real even in comparison to the time he has been spending with ‘Laura.’ Instinctively, I immediately agreed with him. But then we had to figure out why…
I’m sure it is something that we will be giving more thought to over the next weeks, but I do have an initial theory that may cover it pretty well. So far, we have been pretty close to the vest regarding the ideas we have been exploring. We have told a couple friends and they have expressed support – but there is the feeling, nonetheless, that any stress or strain we express could quickly turn their opinions of what we are doing. Lead into quite negative discussions, perhaps even into discussions critical of each other. However this whole thing works out, overt negativity won’t help us find our place together.
And then of course, there is the simple fact that while we are both pursuing relationships, they are both with people that are not immediately and overtly comfortable with the polyamory frame. Regardless of everything else, it is quite tenuous that either will work out in the long run – never mind both! So there may still be that thought in our mind that if these situations fall apart, then we are still not truly committed to pursuing polyamory itself. Which would be okay for us, if that is how we end up feeling about the whole thing.
Take these two things together, joining a local group invested in this lifestyle, getting to know individual people, building relationships (friendships: at this point I am not assuming that there will be anything more than that), and talking about both our individual circumstances and our philosophical perspectives: all of this creates an environment where our polyamorous considerations become no longer directly tied to the relationships we are currently involved with.
I think it’s going to be a good thing to get involved in this way. And we may yet come up with other explanations, or supplemental explanations for our gut reaction. But right now, I feel pretty good about it all.
(Originally Posted January 8, 2007)