Categories
Polyamory

The Good Stuff We Should Talk About More

Perks are not talked about often in the polyam community. We spend more of our time talking about the pitfalls or struggles that pop up. We talk about red flags, stress the importance of open and honest communication, and poke a little fun at the stereotypes that are foisted upon us. I think we need to spend more time talking about the highlights, without letting them get overshadowed by the hard parts. I can be guilty of it too. Have you read my last two posts? (You can find them here and here, if you haven’t.) This is my attempt to highlight some of the good stuff.

All about the perks!

This month started out on a sad note for us. Bats found a new place and moved out of our little overcrowded house. And it instantly felt emptier. But then life threw all sorts of events and plans at us and we were just too busy to think about it. We all took a breath and took advantage of the time apart. Before we knew it, a whole week had passed and it was time to get back together for the weekend. A new routine was forged without us realizing it.

That first weekend was spent supporting the girls at their last concert of the year, and celebrating Munchkin’s birthday. It was full of laughter and love and so many balloons! Which brings us to one of the perks the polyam community doesn’t talk about enough.

More people to celebrate with

Because of Covid, and our already busy schedule, we decided to forgo a friends birthday party for Munchkin. I made a cake (thank you Pillsbury!) and the girls decorated it. The night before, Lovey, Bats, and I wrapped the mountain of gifts (I swear they tripled while they were hiding in the closet) and blew up all the balloons we could find. Red came over later that day, bringing her own gift for Munchkin. Boyfriend had his hands full with his kiddos that weren’t feeling the best, so he wasn’t able to come. But he did send plenty of birthday wishes.

Between the balloons and his favorite people, Munchkin was over the moon that day. And my momma heart was overflowing for him.

Support is everything.

Another perk that doesn’t get enough air time, in my opinion, is the support. And I’m not just talking about the supportive partner that cheers you on from the sidelines while you try your hand at flirting after so many years. You know, like Hiccup giving Toothless an enthusiastic thumbs up from the bushes when they meet Light Fury. (You can watch the adorable scene from How To Train Your Dragon 3 here if you’re not familiar with it.) I’m talking about the support you get from your village when you reach a goal, cross something off your bucket list, score a new job, or struggle with just staying afloat.

This past year has given a lot of us a lot of struggle. But our family has also been blessed with the space and time to accomplish some amazing things. This blog, for one. And the support I have gotten from Lovey, from Bats, from Boyfriend, and from Red has been what has helped. Could I have done this new scary thing without them? Possibly. But it has been infinitely easier and less scary with their support.

Conquering mountains

I was also able to finally finish a first draft because of my little polycule’s support. I have been a writer what feels like all of my life. Growing up, I had 2 passions: singing and writing. And since no music producers ever showed up to sign me the record deal of a lifetime, my focus turned to writing, either with friends or on my own. I never finished the stories I started by myself. Until this year. Because I finally had the support I needed, and the time and space to do it. I had cheerleaders in my corner urging me to finish this story. They were there to listen to ideas or complaints. And they were there to push me to sit in that chair and actually do it.

This past weekend we all crossed an item off our bucket list as well, even if we didn’t know it was on the list in the first place. Lovey signed us up for a fundraiser run for our local zoo. Our zoo that happens to be situated on the side of a mountain. 2 miles up the mountain, and then another 2 back down. A good mile of that was in the rain. It was hard. And I wanted to quit so many times. But I didn’t because I had my support with me. Crumbs even joined us. And I could not be prouder of her for tackling this huge thing with us. Supporting her and cheering her on kept me going as well. Nothing like a hike up a dang mountain to bring people closer together.

The best of all the perks!

Lastly, at least for this post, is petamours. Why do we not talk about these more? I think they are the best perk of polyamory.

What is a petamour? It’s your partner’s pet. Or, in my case, it’s my metamour’s pet. Barkley is Bats’ dog. And he is the sweetest fluffiest little pooch I have met in a very long time. He would come over to visit every once in a while, much to the annoyance of our resident kitties. Everybody loves him. And we are all bummed that he can’t be with us right now. But he is a big part of our plans to find that perfect house for all of us.

Petamours are great. Who doesn’t want more animals to love?  They let you experience the joy of having a pet if you aren’t able to have one where you live. You have the opportunity to meet new critters you maybe wouldn’t otherwise have. Dating someone who is into Bearded Dragons? Congratulations, you’re a lizard person now. Always wanted a bird, but your landlord doesn’t allow pets of any kind? You’re next partner or metamour may have one that you can love. Going out of town and don’t want to board your poor anxious doggo? Polycules are there for you!

Polyamory has so many perks. And we should share them a lot more than we do. What are your favorite perks?

Categories
LGBTQ+ Polyamory

Why Polyamorous People Don’t Belong in LGBTQ+ Spaces

I recently came across several conversations and articles about polyamorous people being excluded from LGBTQ+ spaces. Feelings were had all around. But no conclusions were found.

This blog, as you can see from our content so far, is very LGBTQ+ friendly. And addresses some big LGBTQ+ topics. Marriage equality and employment discrimination being a couple of those. This is because I am the B in LGBTQ+. My metamour falls under the +. My boyfriend is another B. Even my daughter has come out as a part of the LGBTQ+ community. Not to mention the number of friends and extended family who identify with so many of the letters in it.

When one group rises, we all can

The LGBTQ+ community means a lot to me, and is one that I want to advocate for. Because it is a community that is marginalized and attacked a lot. In healthcare, in employment, in basic rights. I can’t help but want to be a voice to help them rise up.

Also, larger acceptance of LGBTQ+ people could lead to a larger acceptance of polyamorous people. There is a lot of overlap between the two, in my experience. Many polycules have at least one person who identifies with at least one of the LGBTQ+ letters.

So why all the hubbub?

When I came across the conversations I did, I was a little surprised. I assumed the polyamorous community was welcomed into those spaces. I realize that was pretty naïve. The struggles the LGBTQ+ community faces (and faced in the past) are vastly different from those in the polyamorous community. But still, my little rainbow bubble was popped.

So what exactly were they all saying? Here are some of the biggest points of contention.

Cis-heteronormativity

What about the cishet people in polyamorous relationships? They can be allies, certainly. Many are, I would imagine. But do they belong in the safe spaces created by and for LGBTQ+ people? My opinion is no. People under the umbrella of LGBTQ+ deserve to have a space that is only theirs. A space that is safe for them to rant or vent about the world of cis-heteronormativity. A space without the chance of a cishet person potentially getting butt hurt, or trying to explain it all away. No matter how big an ally a person is, they will never be able to understand the struggles of being LGBTQ+. Just like a white person will never be able to understand the struggles of a person of color.

Style vs Orientation

Polyamory is a relationship style, a choice, for myself and a lot of others. It has nothing to do with gender identity or sexual orientation. And because it is seen as a style or a choice, it is not seen as deserving to be included in those LGBTQ+ spaces. I could argue that for some people, polyamory is not a choice. It is very much a core part of who they are as a person, just like their gender or sexuality. It cannot be changed. But that doesn’t change the idea that both groups deserve to have their own space. At least in my opinion.

Being a part of both

I am a part of both communities. Would I love to see the two come together? A little bit, yes. But I understand and appreciate them more for being separate. They need different things. They experience different things. And they give different things in terms of support and community and resources.

Do I think polyamory belongs under the LGBTQ+ umbrella? No. Not even a little bit. Because not every polyamorous person is queer. And not every polyamorous person views their relationship style as an intrinsic part of who they are.

This blog will continue to support that community, in the best way I know how. By using a voice to talk about some of the big issues that affect that part of me as well as the polyamorous part of me. Because there is a lot of overlap. But my struggles as a polyamorous person are nothing compared to the struggles the LGBTQ+ community faces.

Sound off!

How do you feel about it all? Do you identify with one or both communities? Would you like to see them merge and accept each other more? Or do they deserve their own unique spaces?