Hello! My name is Polly (okay, not really), and I’m a 30-something woman in a happy, healthy and openly non-monogamous marriage. I started this blog to offset our society’s inexplicable default assumption that men are always the ones who want, initiate, or insist on open relationships. This idea is as false as it is a) hilarious and b) tacitly misogynistic, for reasons I will explain. I also want to offer a counterpoint to some of the prevailing notions of what non-monogamy “looks like.”
First, a preemptive “apology,” in the Socratic sense.
I have nothing against monogamy. For people who have made monogamous commitments, I’m not advocating cheating, lying or “forgetting to mention” that She-Male prostitute who gave you a blow job. And, like most people who choose to live in open relationships, I have NO DESIRE to “get with” your lying, cheating husband or boyfriend. This is for several reasons. First and foremost, it would be unethical. Even if I could get past your douche bag of a man’s douche-baggery for behaving in such a way (which I couldn’t), it would be a logistical nightmare. Really, who has the time or emotional bandwidth to go sneaking around with some jerk who’s invariably going to get caught? Finally, my dance card is already quite full, and I’m not currently accepting applications for new lovers.
My personal breed of non-monogamy is to have a husband and two (okay, two and a half) long-term “secondary” partners, who double as … valued friends (kinky, I know!). These men are all in “primary” relationships themselves, and their partners are, of course, entirely in the know. Nobody is deceiving anybody.
At the risk of disappointing you, gentle reader, I should warn you that my life is not exactly Debbie Does Dallas. Most nights, you’ll find me sitting on the couch with my husband and our two morbidly obese cats (we try to make them diet, really!), watching Futurama or Star Trek or something similarly nerdy (not that I’m complaining) as we eat dinner and enjoy one another’s company. We’ve been together for eight years, and opened up our marriage about three years ago. It’s brought us closer together, and our relationship has never been better. You hear this cliché pretty often in the polyamory community—because it’s usually true.
One of my “lovahs” I see naked about once every other month, but more often socially (he and his girlfriend are both valued friends of my husband and myself). The other, about once a week. My third (tertiary?) partner lives in another state/country (long story), but we meet up a few times a year, as lives and schedules allow.
I couldn’t be happier with this arrangement. My husband, “Phil,” also has the occasional lady-friend. Contrary to the paradigm of “mean, nasty men are the ones who strong-arm women-folk into those icky open relationships!” Phil could take or leave the whole non-monogamy thing. He knows it’s something I need, but it took some work to get to this point (which I will elaborate on at some point). He’ll be the first to tell you that he wants to sleep with other women, but as a practical matter, it’s a bit of a hassle (he’s very busy with work and playing in a Promising Local Band). And I’ll admit – it’s unfair that it’s inherently harder for men, no matter how charming or attractive they may be. Still, for someone who puts out very little effort, he does pretty darn well for himself on that front.
I’m not positioning myself as the voice for all the Polyamorous People of the World. That would be ridiculous. If you’ve seen one open relationship, you’ve seen one open relationship. They all involve rules and contracts, but they’re always different... [Cue sentimental "Learning A Valuable Lesson" music!] kind of like people. And snowflakes. And weird sexual kinks.