8 Things I Wish I’d Known About Polyamory

I’m here at Winter Wickedness for the first time and having a great time! Thanks to everyone who came out to this session today.

And this was also my first time presenting a shiny, brand-new class: Eight Things I Wish I’d Known About Polyamory (Before I Tried It and Fucked It Up). The full presentation is below:

And if you’re interested in having me present at your event, contact Minx at Poly Weekly

PW 382: Poly for realz

pick me lolcatHow do you deal with the reality of bringing up poly with a partner and with choosing partners that are poly-friendly?

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1:00 Announcements and Host Chat

  • Minx will be teaching two sessions at Winter Wickedness February 7-8 in Columbus, Ohio! Classes will include Kicking Poly Drama on Its Ass and Eight Things I Wish I’d Known about Poly (Before I Tried and Fucked It Up). Both are new classes and hopefully will fit into the kink venue!
  • The wacky poly-friendly Butterfinger Superbowl commercial got quite a negative reaction, but Dan Savage praised it as monogamish
  • The movie Her is about a guy who falls in love with his AI and has some poly messaging, including “I’m yours, and I’m not yours”

7:30 Topic: Poly for realz and partner selection

B wrote in to ask about how to deal with actively dating and possibly attracting partners who might not identify as poly. A great episode is always Getting Over the Poly Hump, even though B has been open for quite a few years. Focus on more communication, not less and yes, 99% of successful poly is partner selection.

Also, P from NY state asks about how to bring polyamory up to a partner he’s been seeing for a while. Minx recommends the poly hump podcast and also considering poly an ongoing conversation rather than a one-time, all-or-nothing deal.

22:50 Feedback

  • Episode 379 Owning your own shit got a lot of feedback!
  • Vaughn comments that saying something out loud often mitigates the issue
  • Heather asks where to draw the line on disclosing one’s emotions

27:50 Happy Poly Moment

  • Hayley wrote in with a very cute car analogy to deal with a partner’s possessiveness
  • S in Australia shared a moment of poly joy as his partners found a shared interest in architecture and design

31:45 Wrap up

Questions? Comments? Feedback? Email polyweekly@gmail.com or call the listener comment line at 802-505-POLY. And hey, why not attach an audio comment to that email? :-) Check out PolyWeekly at Blubrry.com. Share this with a friend or write an iTunes review!

PW 379: Owning your own shit

ShitHappensWhat does it mean to “own your own emotional shit”?

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1:00 HostChat

Minx and LustyGuy talk briefly about the holidays with their new blended family

2:30 Topic: Owning your own shit

Guillaume wrote in to ask what “owning your own shit/emotions/baggage” means exactly and for specific examples.

  • Owning your emotions involves taking personal responsibility for understanding, diagnosing and stating your emotions
  • It also requires recognizing that your emotions are primarily created within you rather than caused by someone else (except in cases of abuse)
  • Owning your own emotions is empowering and usually very much appreciated by your partners. Once you can name an emotion, you can do something about it.
  • However you feel is OK, including negative emotions such as pettiness, jealousy, envy, resentment and anger. Avoid “shoulds” and just accept how you feel.
  • Also, it’s important to let others own their own emotions. The proper response to a friend or partner owning an emotional response is, “Good for you for knowing that” and or “thank you.” Don’t argue, agree or pile on. At most, disagree by saying, “You are the expert on you. However, I haven’t seen in you that negative emotion you just described.”

17:15 Happy Poly Moment

We are blessed with two happy poly moments this week!

  1. K wrote in to share her gratitude that, when her partner and that partner’s kids ended up moving into her and her husband’s home, that everyone was supportive, happy and shared very nicely.
  2. Leelee shared a story of one metamour offering to go out of his way so she could see another lover. Very sweet!

21:00 Feedback

Steve offered feedback on episode 376 and gave us lots of food for thought!

  • How to address listener questions Minx’s philosophy on being a podcast host and her goals of helping listeners while providing useful content to others
  • Avoiding judgment LustyGuy chimes in and vehemently disagrees with Steve’s assessment, saying that we have no right to judge if someone else is “really” poly. Also he posits we should avoid making assumptions and judgments about the health of other people’s relationships, especially based on minimal information.
  • 31:45 When to speak up Minx and LustyGuy address when you SHOULD say something about a good friend’s relationship—if you are a very good friend and really fear a friend is on an unhealthy path, you should absolutely express your concerns. ONCE. And then (barring extreme situations such as abuse), stand by them no matter where the path leads them.

34:45 Thanks!

Thanks to Steve, our newest Poly Weekly Playmate!

Wrap up

Questions? Comments? Feedback? Email polyweekly@gmail.com or call the listener comment line at 802-505-POLY. And hey, why not attach an audio comment to that email? :-) Check out PolyWeekly at Blubrry.com. Share this with a friend or write an iTunes review!

PW 377: What commitment means

LustyGuy and Cunning Minx handfastingWhy have a handfasting or any type of public commitment ceremony?

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1:00 HostChat

Welcome our sponsor, GetSTDTested. Use code polyweekly to save 10% at checkout!

4:00 Topic: What does commitment mean to you?

In light of our commitment ceremony last week, listener Vir wrote in to ask about why we decided to commit as well as

  • What did your vows cover?
  • What happens when someone breaks that promise?
  • Why makes your promise in front of witnesses different from what you were already doing?
  • What will the renewal process look like?
  • What did this ceremony give you that you didn’t already have?

Excellent questions, and ones that, frankly, even monogamous couples entering a traditional marriage should be able to answer as well!

18:00 Special segment: Minx and LustyGuy’s commitment ceremony

Our beach handfasting, officiated by L, with my friends M and J reading as well.

27:45 Happy Poly Moment

Rachel in NYC writes in to share a great first poly experience!

31:00 Thanks

Thanks for Hayley and Rachel for their generous donations this week!

32:00 Wrap up

Questions? Comments? Feedback? Email polyweekly@gmail.com or call the listener comment line at 802-505-POLY. And hey, why not attach an audio comment to that email? :-) Check out PolyWeekly at Blubrry.com. Share this with a friend or write an iTunes review!

PW 376: When to bow out

 

The people in the relationship are the only ones who decide when it ends

The people in the relationship are the only ones who decide when it ends

Should you leave a relationship because others tell you to?

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1:30 Topic: When to bow out

K has been in a relationship for over two years for over 40 hours a week and feel completely committed. His wife refuses to see or communicate with K, and that wife has been diagnosed with stage three terminal cancer. Should K bow out of this relationship she’s put so much into?

Our response:

  • Resist the urge to value the original couple more highly than subsequent relationships. When a partner or metamour faces hard times, support rather than absence is generally a compassionate response.
  •  Rather than taking advice from others, ask the people involved what they want. Ask him and her what they want. No one else’s opinion matters.
  • Say what you want. You are in a valid relationship and have a voice.
  • Remember that you do also always have the power to leave if the situation becomes untenable or unhealthy for you.

10:45 Happy Poly Moment

K shares a fabulous happy poly moment of spending casual, pizza-and-pajamas time with a metamour and that metamour’s wife.

13:00 Wrap up

Questions? Comments? Feedback? Email polyweekly@gmail.com or call the listener comment line at 802-505-POLY. And hey, why not attach an audio comment to that email? :-) Check out PolyWeekly at Blubrry.com. Share this with a friend or write an iTunes review!

PW 375: Minx’s big announcement

 

Our handfasting ceremony journal and ribbons

Our handfasting ceremony journal and ribbons

Minx and LustyGuy share a personal announcement

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1:00 Host chat

Welcome our sponsor, GetSTDTested. Use code polyweekly to save 10% at checkout!

4:30 Topic: Minx’s big announcement

Minx, LustyGuy and L are headed to Costa Rica for their commitment ceremony, with L officiating. Minx and LustyGuy share stories of how it came about and some of the mononormative pitfalls they ran across.

22:45 Happy Poly Moment

Kev shares stories of poly meetup groups in Sweden for fikas as well as a poly pub crawl, something we should implement in Seattle! Swedish Poly Organization

26:30 Wrap up

Questions? Comments? Feedback? Email polyweekly@gmail.com or call the listener comment line at 802-505-POLY. And hey, why not attach an audio comment to that email? :-) Check out PolyWeekly at Blubrry.com. Share this with a friend or write an iTunes review!

PW 374: Four mistakes couples make when opening up

 

Marcia Baczynski and Minx at CatalystCon West 2013

Marcia Baczynski and Minx at CatalystCon West 2013

How to avoid the classic mistakes couples make when trying nonmonogamy

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1:00 Host chat

Nothing to see here; move along!

2:00 Interview: Four mistakes couples make when opening up with Marcia Baczynski

Thanks to Marcia for sharing with us these four tips! Where to find Marcia:

And here we go! The classic mistakes:

  1. Not knowing what you want. Poly may mean different things to different folks. Take the time to talk about what you want and direct the picture in your head; this also means you develop terminology for future discussions. It’s also useful to take stock of your current relationship.
  2. Going too fast. Many couples move way too fast, and a few move too slowly. Find your comfortable pace. This isn’t about restrictions; it’s about taking the time to enjoy experience, as with any romance. Enjoy the journey! Take the time to find your comfort zone rather than diving in headfirst.
  3. Avoiding jealousy. Don’t ignore the truth of negative emotions because you think it makes you a bad poly person. That only leads to uncomfortable situations. No one is too “good” to be jealous. Just admit and deal with your jealousy.
  4. Trying to be the perfect poly person. Feeling that you have to be perfect either for your partner or to prove that poly was a good choice for you are both self-destructive beliefs to hold. Nothing beats admitting your emotions. Practice some tough love on yourself! No one was perfect at poly the first (or even the last) time they tried it. Be willing to be vulnerable.

35:20 Wrap up

Questions? Comments? Feedback? Email polyweekly@gmail.com or call the listener comment line at 802-505-POLY. And hey, why not attach an audio comment to that email? :-) Check out PolyWeekly at Blubrry.com. Share this with a friend or write an iTunes review!

PW 368: Metamour cock block

What do you do when your metamour cuts off communications?

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1:00 Host chat with Minx and LustyGuy

9:00 Topic: Metamour cock block

Listener R writes in asking for advice on a situation in which her once-friendly metamour J asked for personal time and space that lead to a six-month communication blockade. The silence adversely affected both R and her partner’s (J’s husband) relationship. Question: how do you reopen lines of communication with someone who won’t talk to you anymore? Minx and LustyGuy suggest:

  • You can’t force someone to communicate with you, so it’s pointless to keep asking.
  • Do your best to take care of yourself and tend your own garden: deal with your own jealousy and insecurities.
  • Do your best to nurture the health of your relationship with R.

18:00 Happy Poly Moment

  • GreedyPaul shares a moment of joy at Camp Perv
  • Timothy shares some fun, snuggly HPMs derived from starting up a regular movie night with his poly family! “THIS is how poly should work, THIS is what I’ve been hoping for. It was a simple moment, but it was memorable.”

21:50 Feedback

  • Our estimable solo poly guru, AggieSez, calls in to respond to episode 364 on being in love and vetoed and recommends that even if your time with your partner is so rare that it seems a shame to bring up tough relationship stuff, ovary/man up and do it!
  • Emma asks about an issue mentioned in episode 365 on meetups: how do you deal with people feeling stuck next to someone they might not be interested in talking to?
  • Isha calls in to ask about how to handle a long-distance poly relationship, and LustyGuy offers some great advice:
    • Never underestimate the power of a distraction. Do something fun!
    • Make dates—schedule phone calls like a date, complete with dinner, wine and dress up for it.
    • Keep a paper journal every day and exchange it with your partner at your next meeting.
  • Southern Poly Gathering is a poly camping weekend happening October 17-20 in Florida—join a great group of polys!

Thanks!

Thanks to Elizabeth and Yani for their donations this week!

37:50 Poly music

Rolling out with a cool poly composition Can’t Help But Fly from Naima Penniman and A McNatt

Wrap up

Questions? Comments? Feedback? Email polyweekly@gmail.com or call the listener comment line at 802-505-POLY. And hey, why not attach an audio comment to that email? :-) Check out PolyWeekly at Blubrry.com. Share this with a friend or write an iTunes review!

PW 364: I’m in love and got vetoed!

What to do when your relationship is vetoed AFTER you fell in love

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1:00 Host chat

Showtime poly series starts a new season

Now we’re “stuck” with non traditional marriage

10:30 Topic: I’m in love but just got vetoed!

L writes in for advice. What do you do when you trust that the couple really is poly and end up falling in love with the guy, only to have his wife veto you a bit later when she breaks up with her own boyfriend?

  • This sucks and is unfair and unkind.
  • Lying about the nature of your relationship isn’t healthy.
  • Expecting him to leave her isn’t terribly healthy, either.
  • Accept and grieve the loss. Value yourself and the experience.
  • Next time, vet the couple to be sure each person is stable, fully embraces polyamory and is personally secure.

22:35 Happy Poly Moment

  • B in Seattle shares a Happy Poly Moment. British comedies FTW!
  • Cate shares a beautiful story of a metamour leaving a footprint of food and love. Want to win a metamour of the year award? Be a Hot Dish Elf!

26:00 Feedback

32:00 Wrap up

Questions? Comments? Feedback? Email polyweekly@gmail.com or call the listener comment line at 802-505-POLY. And hey, why not attach an audio comment to that email? :-) Check out PolyWeekly at Blubrry.com. Share this with a friend or write an iTunes review!

PW 361: How many partners is too many?

How do you know when you’ve hit polysaturation?

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1:00 Announcements

7:00 Topic: should there be a limit on partners?

Listener Addie asked; you gave your advice on Facebook and Twitter. Is there a limit on partners? What should it be? How should it be determined?

  • When you run out of time/energy/bandwidth
  • When communication breaks down
  • When your partners stop feeling appreciated

Other markers:

  • When you/they aren’t emotionally satisfied
  • When you don’t recognize them at the grocery store
  • When you can’t remember their kids’ names
  • When you’re worn out and don’t have enough time for yourself
  • If you couldn’t fit them all into a D&D campaign, it’s too many

Personal examples:

  • Clara: Up to seven. For committed, romantic, generally two boyfriends, a girlfriend and a metamour with benefits
  • Misha: one per area code
  • Elizabeth: No more that six: two lovers and a pair of grown children, two close friends.
  • Hydro: Two to five. Ramp down Dunbar’s number into scaled tiers and you have similar. Core 2-5, first tier 10-15, 2nd say 30, and rest in the large gradient fade out of tier 3 to Dunbar’s 150-200.

22:00 Wrap up

Questions? Comments? Feedback? Email polyweekly@gmail.com or call the listener comment line at 802-505-POLY. And hey, why not attach an audio comment to that email? :-) Check out PolyWeekly at Blubrry.com. Share this with a friend or write an iTunes review!

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