Tag Archives: desires

What do I want from my romantic life? Am I open to multiple sexual relationships, romantic relationships, or both? If I want more than one lover, what degree of closeness and intimacy do I expect, and what do I offer?

I want to find a person that wants to go through life by my side as a unit, who wants to grow and develop over time with me, who wants to build a life around our partnership. I want to be with a person that supports and encourages me in my individual endeavors, who enjoys spending time with me, who makes me laugh, with whom I have great and frequent sex, who has similar visions of the future. I want to come home to a partner at the end of the day every day, or as frequently as possible if one of us has to travel or be away from home for other reasons. I want my romantic life to be one of security and longevity and passion.

I feel somewhat open to multiple sexual partners, if not necessarily multiple sexual relationships. I don’t feel like I need a regular sexual partner outside of my romantic relationship, though sometimes it seems like it could be nice to have someone I could booty call when JJ isn’t in the mood. I think I feel fairly closed to the idea of multiple romantic relationships, not on an ideological level, but because to me existing in one romantic relationship precludes the desire for more. That switch is turned off for me. It isn’t super turned on even when I’m single. I hate dating so much. I want to find the person that means I never have to again. And aside from that, being in a romantic relationship to me, or at least being in my relationship with JJ, inspires a desire for levels of closeness and intimacy that feel exclusionary of all others. I want as much of those things with him as I can possibly have, and even then it might not feel like “enough,” but there is certainly no other vaguely romantic dalliance that is worth taking time away from us. Outside of the seemingly remote possibility that I were to fall in love with someone else while I am already in a relationship, being in multiple romantic relationships does not feel ideal in any way or like a thing that it would be preferable to attempt.

I don’t feel like I have anything substantial to offer to a potential new partner when it feels most natural to me that my life, energy, and resources flow primarily to/around my relationship with JJ. It is incredibly difficult for me to imagine a person coming along who is worthy of such diversion, of branching off and growing in a different separate direction. I also struggle to see how, if such a person were to come into my life, splitting myself between them would feel more satisfactory in the long run than choosing one or the other to settle in with for the long haul. I don’t want to feel like a child of divorce bouncing back and forth between homes, like my life is split in two or divided.

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On Managing Our Differences

I said something to JJ yesterday and he saw truth in it and I want to preserve it here to come back to in future times of “aljadlfjadl;jfa;sdf this shit is haaaaard.” I think that this is what commitment looks like to me.

Each of us has things we want and things we need from like, life, and from relationships generally, and from our relationship specifically. There is a good amount of overlap between us, but there is also a decent amount of things that are in one of our sides of the Venn diagram(s) but not in the middle. That is like, a normal part of being distinct human beings coming together to form an Us. Sometimes stretching ourselves in x or y way to accommodate a want or a need the other person has is scary or not the most comfortable thing in the world. But we consistently find ways to prioritize the things each of us want/need and prioritize Us and figure out how to make Us work around the wants and the needs, and I think that is a healthier and more functional version of relationshipping than necessarily trying to always have everything be the exact way that each of us wants them to be.

On why it’s worth it.

Boo often refers to reading my blog as “watching me work things out.” That seems highly accurate to me. Most of my personal writing, generally, be it here or in emails, is designed largely around working things out in my head.

The problem with that is that good things don’t have to be worked out, and gushing for the sake of gushing is a thing I try to avoid. So this blog gets posts like the one from last week about the parts of being a non-polyamorous person in a polyamorous relationship that are hard for me, and doesn’t get as much of the parts that are easy and amazing (which is the overwhelming majority of the parts).

To that end, I am posting here a comment I left this evening on a post I read on another poly blog that upset me. It touched a nerve that had been raw last week around the time of the aforementioned post, and made me doubt for a split second that the resolution(s) and decision(s) we’d come to were the right ones. But then I remembered that some random internet person who is polyamorous and older than me who was talking to another random internet person in a vaguely similar situation to that in which I’ve chosen to root myself does not know my life, my relationship, or my emotions better than I do. Fact.

After I recognized that, though, I was still upset at the way she responded to the vaguely-similar-situation person, and I thought that that person could use a hug and a few more encouraging words than the blogger and the other commenters had left. So I decided to write a comment myself.

This is the post, a letter written to a poly blogger by a person whose long-term partner has expressed curiosity around polyamory and the poly blogger’s response.

And this is what I said in response to the response(s):

 

I would like to offer a different opinion to the asker than has really been presented here. I am a person who does not identify as poly who is in a loving committed relationship with a poly person who has other partners, and personally I think that it is possible to find happiness, joy, satisfaction, and contentment inside of a relationship type that on its surface doesn’t hold intrinsic appeal to you. I began dating my partner in the summer of 2013, when he already had a girlfriend. He approached me looking for something casual, and had I known then that we would fall into a deeper love than either of us had ever previously known, I probably would have said something similar to what the letter writer thinks she would have told TP if he’d come out to her as poly when they were initially showing romantic interest in one another. But I didn’t, and I found myself in love with someone whose entire view of love and relationships differ dramatically from my own.

And at times, that can be terrifying. It is often challenging. But the challenging aspects, the moments of fear and doubt, they cannot compare to the overwhelming joy, positivity, security, warmth, support, and sense of rootedness being with my partner brings to my life. Being in his arms feels like home, and I want to share and build my life with him, and he feels the same way about me. So we commit ourselves to being ourselves, as different as we may be, and dedicate ourselves to relationship practices that honor and respect our different needs. I think the answer to whether you can learn to find happiness, or at the very least peace, in something that initially seems painful lies in figuring out what your needs in a relationship are, and then working with TP to figure out if those needs can be met with him having other partners. I’ve learned that feeling that I am a priority in my partner’s life matters more to me than being his only love, and that not feeling that our growth is limited by his other relationships is more important to me than that I get to spend every night with him. I’ve learned that I can respect his relationships with his other partners even if I don’t fully understand his desire to have other relationships. Every day I see the truth of the statement that loving others does not detract from his love for me. I couldn’t have known those things in the beginning; in entering the world of polyamory, I have learned and continue to learn what I need and what I am capable of.

I don’t think the letter writer is wrong for wanting to try to make things work with the person she loves. I think there is a subtle framing shift between “finding ways to cope” and “finding ways to make the relationship they both want to be in work,” and while neither of them is an easy path, the rewards can easily outweigh the costs. No two people are perfectly aligned in their visions of the ideal future, but where there is enough overlap, there can be a happy way through.

Men want what they want.

So much of our culture caters to giving men what they want. A high school student invites model Kate Upton to attend his prom, and he’s congratulated for his audacity. A male fan at a Beyoncé concert reaches up to the stage to slap her ass because her ass is there, her ass is magnificent, and he wants to feel it. The science fiction fandom community is once again having a heated discussion, across the Internet, about the ongoing problem of sexual harassment at conventions — countless women are telling all manner of stories about how, without their consent, they are groped, ogled, lured into hotel rooms under false pretenses, physically lifted off the ground, and more.

But men want what they want. We should all lighten up.

It’s hard not to feel humorless as a woman and a feminist, to recognize misogyny in so many forms, some great and some small, and know you’re not imagining things. It’s hard to be told to lighten up because if you lighten up any more, you’re going to float the fuck away. The problem is not that one of these things is happening, it’s that they are all happening, concurrently and constantly.

These are just songs. They are just jokes. They are just movies. It’s just a hug. They’re just breasts. Smile, you’re beautiful. Can’t a man pay you a compliment? In truth, this is all a symptom of a much more virulent cultural sickness — one where women exist to satisfy the whims of men, one where a woman’s worth is consistently diminished or entirely ignored.

Roxane GayWhat Men Want, America Delivers

(via QueerIntersectional)

speaking your truth is important.
honoring your feelings is important.
saying no is important.
asking for what you want is important.

especially if it means hurting feelings. especially that.

your safety, sanity, well-being, nourishment, & happiness is important.

don’t dumb it down, hold it back, or keep it unconsidered.

–Ev’Yan Whitney, of just the same, but brand new