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How Do You Determine What Polysaturated Means for You?

conversation hearts read "I love you" "and you" "and you"So, readers, I’ve gone through a lot of relationship changes in 2015, and thus a lot of personal introspection. My local partner (I’ll call her the QA, as I do on Twitter) joked just the other day when I was trying to figure out some things about my own sexuality, “you should probably take your own Workshopping Your Sexual Orientation class.” And it’s true—do as I say, not as I do. But of course, deciding what one wants out of romantic (or any other kind) of relationship takes time in practice, and also changes over time. Personally, I’ve realized that what I want in a relationship has fundamentally changed, particularly in the last 6-9 years or so, and I thought a little post about how I’ve been thinking about these things might be helpful for others, particularly other poly folks. (And if you think your community group, conference, etc. could benefit on a class that helps participants clarify their thinking around this topics, just shoot me a line.)

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Polyamory, Open Relationships, and Paradigm Shifts

In the most recent episode of the Polyamory Weekly podcast, Minx answered a question from a listener about the difference between polyamory and open relationships.  She basically defined open relationships as those with a couple already at the base, and polyamory as more of an orientation.  So Minx is single and poly, but she couldn’t be single and in an open relationship.  This is a little different from how I’m used to thinking of polyamory vs. open, which is basically that poly is multiple relationships and open means sex outside one or more relationships, but it did get me thinking about how these structures function in my life and generally, and how being polyamorous affects the way one looks at the world.

When I started out with polyamory, I didn’t really feel comfortable with the idea of “open.”  Part of that was that it seemed rather chaotic and haphazard.  I didn’t think that there was any reason to limit romantic relationships to just one, but the word “open” gave me a mental picture of extreme promiscuity and I think especially, a lack of control.

Without really thinking about it, though, I’ve ended up in an open, poly situation and I’m happy with that.  It was mostly accidental, because I had no interest in setting rules about sex and dating, outside of the important safer sex questions, of course.  I still think of myself primarily as a “polyamorous person,” even though I’m only with one person right now, because polyamory has become a lens through which I view the world, rather than a simple way of describing what’s going on in my love life.
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