Despite my own mixed experiences with poly, I think I remain quite poly positive. I’m positive that I don’t want to do it again in the short term future, but I get annoyed when I hear the mainstream line about how relationships should be. My middle daughter the other day was complaining about a friend who was seeing two different boys. Keep in mind these are exploratory relationships, we’re talking teenaged kids. But she said with the utmost certainty well obviously neither of them are that into her, or they wouldn’t be ok with her going out with both of them.

I suppose it was obvious to her, because that’s the societal line that she’s been exposed to, but may I just say “augh!!!!!”

I mentioned to her that so far as everyone knew about everyone else, I didn’t see why it should be an issue. And that it absolutely does not mean someone doesn’t care about you, just because they are ok with dating more than one person. Geez. We’re really raising serial monogamists in this country, starting at the age of mostly-innocent “going with” each other kids. Which is no different than when I was a kid, but still.

Anyhow. While I wish she was not so quick to judge and decide what’s going on in someone else’s relationships, I will now veer to why I’m not currently (or in the foreseeable future) poly, and quite grateful for the fact.

It’s a number of things, I suppose, but the biggest one is family. Having 3 kids who actually did desire some semblance of family life like occasional outings to movies and parks, dinners together in the evening and such, it’s a relief to no longer have to juggle the scheduling required to maintain multiple relationships. And I’m not just talking my own. When I was attempting to co-parent before, it basically had started to mean taking shifts of who was off in their outside-of-the-family life and who was home with the kids. There was almost no time when we BOTH were home. He had two other committed partners, along with the odd date here and there, and for awhile I had another regular partner as well. Do the math: once you’re committing even weekly time to someone outside of your immediate family, multiplied times 3 or more, there isn’t much left.

I love that I have time to spend with all of us together. I love that we sit down to dinner together on most evenings. I love that I don’t have to dance around the truth when one of us in going to be gone for an evening, with a vague “he’s out with a friend/at a meeting/ out of town” answer. In short, I love having a life that has lots of sex in it, but doesn’t revolve around sex. Or romantic entanglements.

This is not to say that Elliott and I will never be poly. I’ve learned enough in life to never say never. But I know it won’t be in the next few years, as we get through raising 3 teenagers, getting them into college, competitive sailing and all of our other hobbies and time commitments. And I’m awfully glad for that.

~Jane

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