When I started writing this it was going to be about all the things OpenCon taught me, but I’ve decided put that in a separate post. I started writing some of the things out, and it got quite personal! So I felt like it belonged in a different post, as it had a very different tone to it. So this shall just be about my observations of my experience.
This is a question that I have been pondering on today after discussion on facebook. We’ve all heard that argument on non-heterosexuality about it not being a choice and it being something we can’t help. Sometimes people do the same for non-monogamy and talk about it being a choice. There does seem to be this tendency to compare polyamory to sexuality, after all you could technically label it under the parachute term “sexuality” if you really wanted to… but I don’t think it’s quite as simple to compare being poly to being gay. At first glance you can see the similarities – gay people are in the minority against straight people, poly people are similarly outnumbered by the norm. However, if you boil it down to simple desires things seem a little different.
I’m afraid it’s become a bit of a thing now, bashing monogamy. But I just can’t shake the opinion that it’s doing nothing good for society right now. Maybe it was a good change once upon a time when we lived in an alpha-male-rules kind of structure. Monogamy is clearly a more equal opportunities kind of arrangement when you compare it to the apes (though maybe not the bonobos! They’re a whole other thing). The other males have a chance to mate and eventually the women even have control. But I think it’s about time things changed again, it’s kind of surprising that they haven’t already. You can probably blame religion for playing it’s role in that.
I’ve been thinking about polyamory a lot recently … and in turn thinking about my opinions about monogamy. And I realised something about my ‘poly evangelist‘ post. Whenever I’ve heard it come up they always seem to say that these poly evangelists think they’re special just because they’re poly, and I realised that this doesn’t really have anything to do with them thinking poly is better than mono… but more like thinking poly people are better than mono people. Whereas I’m very much a “don’t hate the player, hate the game” kind of person. I can genuinely understand why more people don’t decide to go off the tracks like we do and make our own rules. And for some people, I think, being different is much harder.
I was just watching a clip of some daytime TV show where they were arguing monogamy vs non-monogamy, and as usual – our team was vastly outnumbered, and as always – constantly talked over. But the host did bring up an idea that made me think about my approach to relationships – that you can have it all. I like polyamory for many reasons, but for me it’s just always seemed like less of a compromise than any other way of doing things. I’m sure many of us can agree that there are great things about being single and great things about being in a relationship, so why not combine them?
Lately I’ve been hearing complaints (or more an expression of annoyance I suppose) from fellow polyamorists, about a certain type of poly person, who I have heard named an “poly-evangelists” in this article on polytical. They tend to describe this kind of person by their belief that polyamory is “enlightened” or that it is a better option than monogamy.
So there’s this guy, one of Night’s lovers (though I used to be involved too), who every time he’s brought up always seems to spark an unresolved argument between us. I don’t really talk to this guy anymore, lets call him Jez, because I got so fed up of not being able to say whatever I wanted to him. It just seemed to make the most sense for me not to try at all.