PW 406: Negotiating from a “no”

lolcatnoHow to respond when you own your shit, ask for what you want and your partner says “no”

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Download the mp3 directly

1:00 Introduction Under 18? Stop listening now and visit http://www.scarleteen.com

Still deleted from iTunes. You can still find us through www.polyweekly.com, the Poly Weekly app or just copy the RSS and paste it into any podcatcher that isn’t iTunes

2:30 Topic: Negotiating from a “no”

When listener S identified awkwardness with her partner when she came home from a date, she did everything right: did some self-analysis, named her insecurity and requested a physical reconnection with her partner after a date. An excellent case of owning her own shit and asking for what she wanted!

And the partner said “no.” Where do you go from here?

Keep in mind that just because you ask for what you want doesn’t mean you’re going to get it! This is the beginning of a discussion:

  • Ask your partner for a counter offer. If not a planned physical reconnection, then what might he be able to do?
  • If necessary, evaluate and counter his counter-offer. Show that you are making efforts to accommodate his feelings, as you are asking him to accommodate yours.
  • Ask your partner about his feelings. Encourage him to explore and do any necessary shit-owning.

13:10 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 405: Testing the poly waters with a monogamist

What do you do when your first step into polyamory is with a married monogamist?

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Download the mp3 directly

waterlolcatIntroduction Under 18? Stop listening now and visit http://www.scarleteen.com

1:00 Announcements and Host Chat

2:35 Topic: Testing the poly waters with a monogamist

Our listener has a dear friend she met about the same time she met her husband. He is monogamously married as well. They have fallen in love. She and her husband have been talking about swinging/sexual polyamory but with falling in love as a strict taboo. How do she and her new beau come out to their current partners about their new relationship and polyamory?

  • Challenges:
    • you’re already a couple with your new beau and have been for quite a while now
    • you’re both in monogamous relationships
    • Neither of your partners is aware of your relationship, so huge trust issues will undoubtedly arise when you do come out (the “how long has this been going on” issue)
    • You have to introduce the idea of polyamory at the same time you’re introducing a real person that you already love, which puts your current partners in a very uncomfortable position; it’s hard not to take the coming out as an ultimatum
  • Prescription: time. You must give your current partners weeks, months and years to digest not only the idea of polyamory but also a relatively well-developed poly relationship—that’s a tall order. Your current partners need time to overreact, get hurt, call names, make rules, freak out, etc. over the next few months or years.

15:30 Feedback

OKCupid story

16:25 Happy Poly Moment

  • Krista shares a happy poly moment about good metamour relations in advance of her moving to town
  • Stacy used the idea of relationship land mines to cope with the challenging situation of experience shock and should be proud of her ability to identify her emotion of being excluded rather than jealousy

20:10 Thank you!

Thanks to Michele for her donation this week!

20:44 iTunes deletion update

21:10 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 404: Is he poly or just chicken?

89-Lolcats-FUNNY-EASTER-cat-WITH-CHICKEN-hat-DISGUISEDWhat do you do when the point of your vee isn’t communicating with your metamour?

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Download the mp3 directly

Introduction Under 18? Stop listening now and visit http://www.scarleteen.com

1:00 Announcements and Host Chat

5:35 Topic: Is he poly or just chicken?

S writes in to ask what to do. She’s been dating a guy for five months who has another girlfriend of 10 months. But S has found that she wants to move in with the guy and be his primary, and he purports to secretly agree with her plans but hasn’t disclosed anything to the 10-month girlfriend. What to do? Does he really want to move forward with his polyamory with S or is he just using the 10-month girlfriend as an excuse to keep things on hold or secret until he sees how things shake out?

Minx recommends:

  • Insist on honestly for all parties involved It’s the rare relationship that can build a foundation on a lack of honesty. Currently she is the target, but what if there is something he’s afraid to discuss with you later on? There is no excuse for a lack of honesty.
  • Insist he own his shit The point of a vee has an additional duty to be aware of the needs of the two other parties, and he is failing at that. He really needs to own his shit, face it, and get honest with both you and her about what he is afraid of and what he really wants. Even if he doesn’t know what he wants, this conversation simply must happen with you, him and her.
  • You can be honest If he won’t talk to her, you can be the brave one. You can talk to her honestly about what you want, even if it seems confrontational. You can step up and have the integrity that he doesn’t have and tell her what you want for yourself, with the understanding that just because you want it doesn’t mean you’ll get it (and the same is true for her desires, but isn’t it better that you hear them directly from her?).

15:30 Happy Poly Moment

  • Rowan shares a happy poly moment about having the bravery to hear about a metamour she didn’t she she was brave enough to hear about
  • Kris shares a happy poly moment about a sectional couch!
  • Benny shares a happy poly moment about meeting his boyfriend’s wife

23:30 Thanks

Thanks to John for the fun $69 donation!

24:30 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 401: Fuzzy landmines

The fuzzy landmines and invisible fences that new partners run across

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Download the mp3 directly

funny-pictures-cats-jumping-fenceIntroduction Under 18? Stop listening now and visit http://www.scarleteen.com

1:00 Announcements and Host Chat

4:15 Topic: Fuzzy landmines and invisible fences

This topic is based on a blog post on the Solo Poly blog by Aggie Sez: Invisible fences and fuzzy landmines. Something that the solo polyamorist or the poly person entering a poly relationship has to deal with, the ramifications of which couples often are unaware: fuzzy landmines and invisible fences. A few highlights:

  • There is no alternative to being self-aware and owning your own shit. No emotional outsourcing.
  • Invisible fences: unstated boundaries or rules in relationships that a new partner only discovers when tripping over them.
  • Fuzzy landmines: rules and boundaries that are only stated in deliberately vague terms that serve as an excuse to end the relationship when someone in the original couple freaks out.

And one more question: how can you tell the difference between a couple making a genuine effort to be open and own their own shit and a couple that is not devoted to working on their own issues and relationship mechanics?

  • Does everyone involved self-identify as poly? How secure is each person in that identity?
  • Do the people in the couple talk to each other honestly?
    • Do they own their own shit?
    • Does their behavior match the walk they talk about each other?
  • Are their dialogue and behavior towards you aligned? Do they do what they say they will do?
  • How willing is the couple to hear your concerns as valid (rather than as a threat or unreasonable request)?

20:15 Feedback

23:30 Happy Poly Moment

S wrote in with a HPM of the week!

8 things cover fingers27:15 8 Things ebook

The Eight Things I Wish I’d Known About Polyamory ebook is available here! And print copies here!

28:30 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!

Poly mythbusters!

mythbuster lolcatThe top five poly myths you wanted to see busted!

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Download the mp3 directly

Introduction Under 18? Stop listening now and visit http://www.scarleteen.com

  • 1:00 Announcements and Host Chat

    5:30  Topic: Poly mythbusters

    • The original article that inspired this episode
    • My original list:
      • It’s all about the love
      • Only men want it
      • No one ever gets jealous
      • It’s more evolved than monogamy
      • But when I put it to you, the listeners, you voted in these top five myths:
    1. Poly = fear of commitment (aka “you’re just afraid to settle down” or “when you meet the Right One you’ll change”)
    2. 10:16 Poly = orgies (also general promiscuity and sex)
    3. Poly is bad and confusing for the children
    4. 16:04 Poly = cheating
    5. Poly doesn’t work or doesn’t last

    22:20 Feedback

    • Derek wrote in to share how he and his sweetie avoided a relationship land mind
    • Michael invites anyone interested in HSV and HPV groups on Facebook to send him a friend requests

    24:50 Thanks

    Welcom Savanni to the PW Playmates and to Doug for his $69 donation!

    25:30 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 397: Relationship land mines

land mine lolcat1LustyGuy and Minx pre-ponder common relationship land mines

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Download the mp3 directly

Introduction Under 18? Stop listening now and visit http://www.scarleteen.com

1:00 Announcements and Host Chat

3:20 Topic: How to prethink relationship land mines

Relationship land mines sound effect by harpoyume via Freesound

Minx and LustyGuy came up with a series of questions to think about to give some pre-thought to what kind of best person you want to be in a relationship. Even if you have rules against some of these behaviors, know that many or most of them will happen, anyway. And what will you do when that happens? (Please don’t make another rule against it or clamp down harder on the rule!)

So with the understanding that experience shock happens and you react in an unanticipated way, give some thought about some of these classic relationship land mines.

  • How will you respond when your partner falls in love with another woman? What about another man?
  • How will you respond when your partner is enjoying NRE with a new partner?
  • How will you respond when your partner dates someone who seems smarter or prettier than you? Richer? Better job?
  • How will you feel when you fall in love with someone other than your partner?
  • How will you see your existing relationship when you have a shiny new one?
  • How will you respond to seeing your partner hold hands or snuggle with someone new?
  • How will you respond to a request for privacy?
  • How will you respond if the new person wants to move in? What if your partner wants him to move in?
  • How will you respond if your new partner turns out to be more into your husband/wife than you? Will you be able to support them?
  • How will you respond when your fears are triggered?
  • How will you respond when you feel insecure?
  • How will you maintain intimacy and excitement with your current partner?
  • How will you keep up communication with your partner(s) to address issues early?
  • How will you support your partner’s new romances? How will you support their loss/ with your partner being hurt?
  • How will you support your partner’s choices, even if they don’t match yours?
  • How will you respond when you aren’t getting what you want?
  • How will you respond when your new lover isn’t getting what he/she wants?
  • How will you respond when your partner isn’t getting what he/she wants?
  • How will you respond when your metamour isn’t getting what he/she wants?
  • How will you support your metamour?
  • How will you maintain communication with your metamour?
  • How will you respond when there are issues with your metamour?

19:15 Happy Poly Moment

Erika writes in with a great story about being herself on OKC and getting great results!

22:15 Thank you

Thank you to ChasingJoy for being our newest PW Playmate!

22:50 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 396: Minx gets bawdy!

LustyGuy and Minx review a poly play, discuss a sexy article, and Minx gets bawdy!minx bawdy

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Download the mp3 directly

Introduction Under 18? Stop listening now and visit http://www.scarleteen.com

1:00 Announcements and Host Chat

7:45 Topic: When women pursue sex, even men don’t get it

This interesting article citing a number of studies about both rat and human behavior has been making the rounds. What do you think? When women pursue sex, even men don’t get it

19:45 Special: Minx gets bawdy

This time, Minx remembered to hit record! This bawdy story by Minx was performed live at the Bawdy Slam in Seattle on June 12, 2014.

29:30 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!

Lust & Marriage: a new play in Seattle

by Ron Richardson

Screen Shot 2014-06-08 at 8.03.20 PM“How many actors does it take to change a light bulb? Two. One to change the bulb and another to say, ‘I could have done it better.’”

It’s an old joke and one you’ve likely heard. But, in the off chance you haven’t, I thought I’d share it for context and to help you understand that when this actor says a show it good, it’s good. And that is just the case for Lust & Marriage, A solo show about monogamy, polyamory, and finding your soul (mates) by Eleanor O’Brien and running at Theatre Off Jackson through June 14th.

O’Brien tells the story of her developing sexuality starting with herself as a young child experimenting with sensations all the way through her as an experienced woman visiting Burning Man and finding a life partner among the one night stands. It just turns out that said life partner isn’t “wired for monogamy,” and so O’Brien’s development continues. She uses hypothetical letters written to, and answers from, Seattle’s own Dan Savage to frame the events of her sexual life and to serve both as her guiding light and mentor that she grows beyond as she finds herself among the dust, orgasms, and jealousy of her sexual/life journey.

The stories do involve adult situations and the very rare F-bomb is dropped but it is all done through the filter of honest exploration and character and is never bothersome to anyone who can talk about birth control without being embarrassed. And O’Brien manages to switch characters with skill and grace. Her vocal work impressively identifies exactly who is talking at any given moment. She takes on the persona of various boyfriends and lovers and the audience is never confused and always right there with her.

eleanorTechnically she uses music as a bridge between scenes, an effort that was slightly undermined by the overly high volume levels, in some cases. Aware of the issue as she performed O’Brien managed to project over the sound when she needed to but the effort was noticeable to folk with stage experience, even if I’d think most audience members didn’t mark those moments.

As the subtitle says O’Brien discussed non-monogamy with the knowledge of someone who has lived it and the humor of someone who hasn’t take it so seriously as to learn nothing while doing so. Poly folk in the audience will find any number of humorous lines just for them and wince at the common stories of mistakes most all of us have made. As O’Brien discovers, supports, and undermines her own limitations we are all taken along for the journey and it’s a very enjoyable ride.

Well written, well acted, and well meaning Lust & Marriage is a fine way to spend an evening with a very fine actress who’s willing to share the wisdom her life journey has given her. Get yourself down to Theatre Off Jackson and take advantage of it while you can. Monogamous, poly, or something in between there is something for everyone in this night of thoughtful, fun, sexy, theatre.

Ron Richardson is an actor, writer and director based in Seattle, Washington. His new web series pilot is Norm Owensen, Medieval Mercenary, tales of a modern-day SCA fighter who’s down on his luck.

PW 394: Minx comes out!

4-lolcats-of-the-apocalypseMinx came out to her family in Texas. How did THAT go?

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Download the mp3 directly

Introduction Under 18? Stop listening now and visit http://www.scarleteen.com

1:00 Announcements and Host Chat

6:15 Topic: Minx comes out to her family It turns out that other people’s interest in my dating life was greatly exaggerated. Quite anticlimactic! Funniest part was when my mom asked, “Why isn’t it too boys and one girl?”

15:00 Feedback

  • Christina writes in to ask if she can self-identify as polyamorous.
  • FiscalDom wrote in to criticize episode 387 Is Monogamy Natural?

23:00 Thank you! Thanks to John and welcome Erich to the PW Playmates! You make for a very happy Minx! Wrap upQuestions? 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 393: How to treat your metamour

lolcatnotrealmomHow do you deal with your metamour when things aren’t going well?

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Download the mp3 directly

Introduction Under 18? Stop listening now and visit http://www.scarleteen.com

1:00 Announcements and Host Chat

3:30 From the Front

SisyphusUp gives the report from the front from Boston Metro Area Poly (read by LustyGuy) 

6:00 Topic: How to Treat Your Metamour

A listener wrote in to ask how to treat your metamour in a series of very specific questions covering several areas of interpersonal communications. Fortunately, LustyGuy and I got answers!

  1. Amount of interaction with your metamour. The only people who can answer how much metamour interaction is appropriate are you, your hubbie and your metamour. Some people like more interaction; some prefer none; some like minimal. Each one of you should state your needs and wants, why those needs/wants are important to you, and then just talk it through. (I tell a story in the ebook about how I really fucked this up one time!) Seriously, if your metamour wants more interaction with you and you’re willing to give it, do it. If you want more interaction with him/her for your own health and happiness and she/he is willing to give it, do that.
  2. How to manage conflict. Conflict management is best done with the person with whom you are having the conflict. If your partner isn’t that person, it’s best to go directly to the source. Be brave, bring up the issue, state how you feel and ask for help negotiating a solution.
  3. Coping with increasing demands. I recommend weekly relationship check-ins (mentioned in the ebook) for y’all. Every week, meet with your sweetie and/or his lover and talk about how you feel about the relationship, bring up any new issues and catch up on old ones. The great thing about check-ins is that when things are fine, you get good positive reinforcement, and the check-in takes like 30 seconds. But it’s also there for when someone is starting to get a twinge of unhappiness, so you can deal with it before it becomes a big deal.
  4. The best way to foster respect is to give it. The more you appreciate and respect your partners, the easier it is for them to respect and appreciate you and your relationships. We are fond of giving verbal reinforcement on a daily basis. I often tell LustyGuy and L what I like and respect about their relationship, and they do the same for me. I know it sounds all hippie dippy, but I’ve had great success with telling a metamour what I like and respect about her and how I value her relationship with my partner.
  5. Embracing give and take. It’s very important to know what YOU need in order to be happy and healthy in the relationship, and you should tell your partner and your metamour that. What do you need to be happy and healthy? If you have that, great. If not, it’s time to sit down and talk with your partner(s) about how to get it. And remember, it’s always OK to say “no.”
  6. Dealing with a nasty metamour. I think this is covered in #1, 2 and 4, but it’s really important that you talk with your metamour about how you respect her and that you want the same type of respect. Remember that entering an existing couple can be terrifying, knowing that you can be dumped at the drop of a hat if your metamour suddenly decides you’re a threat. If there is nastiness, set up a time and a safe space to talk about how you want to interact and treat each other, and how you two can help support each other’s relationships.
  7. Responsibilities. Everyone is responsible for owning his/her own shit. You get to own your joys and your failings, and it’s everyone else’s job to own theirs. If there is conflict, everyone involved needs to own their part of it, listen to what the others have to say, and say what he/she can do differently next time. It’s no one’s job to moderate a conflict between any two others; the people in conflict are the ones who work that out and report back. Just as you shouldn’t be moderating conflicts between your partner and metamour, he shouldn’t be moderating conflicts between you and your metamour.

31:20 Feedback on “they”

A big thank you to everyone who wrote in and asked why I didn’t want to use “they” to refer to a single person. LustyGuy and I chat about changing grammatical rules, but Minx still refuses to use “they” to refer to a single person until it’s recommended by an accepted style guide. Of course, the exception would be when a specific person requests the use of “they,” in which case Minx gladly submits.

43:00 Happy Poly Moment H shares a happy poly dating moment.

44:15 More feedback

  • Gina writes in to appreciate episode 390 How to Date a Girl
  • Another listener writes in to suggest swing clubs if the woman in 390 isn’t necessarily interested in a romantic relationship with a woman but instead simply on sexual exploration

Thank you!

Thanks to Annalisa, Alan, Benjamin, Alan, Doug and James for their generous donations this week! You make for a very happy Minx!

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!

Make a Donation

Poly Weekly Playmates!

Wanna play?
CatalystCon West '14

Poly Weekly on Facebook

Poly Weekly on Twitter