Before I get into choosing polyamory, I want to say that for many in the Polyamorous community, it is not a choice. It is simply who they are. Much like being gay or straight, tall or short, introverted or extroverted is who they are. There was no choice for them. They simply are polyamorous.
Polyamory Is A Choice For Me
I will say “I am polyamorous” but I do not think of it in the same context as “I am bisexual.” It is simply easier to say it that way when describing my preferred relationship style. It also implies more of the little behind the scenes details that go into practicing polyamory. I choose, everyday, to live my life and love my relationships in this context.
Alright, onto the meat of it: Why am I choosing polyamory?
The Short Answer?
It just makes sense. Why should I have to choose between person A and person B when they both have the potential to make my life happier?
The Long Answer is messier.
What Monogamy Has Shown Me
Monogamy was built, and is focused, on keeping ahold of your person. In my monogamous life, I remember there were all these things telling me how many temptations were out there just lying in wait to “steal” my person. And how I could change who I was and what I did in order to keep my man. Open any women’s magazine and you will see them. So many stories exist about how the man cheated because the woman didn’t do XYZ. Or because she “allowed” him to have female friends or go out on the town without her at his side.All of this breeds distrust and possessiveness. And how is that healthy in any relationship?
“One True Love”
Monogamy touts the idea of “one true love.” And that there is only one person in the whole world for you. One person to meet all of your needs 100% of the time. How exhausting! And if that one magical person turns out to be human and imperfect, and just not able to be all of the things you need them to be? Well then, monogamy says they weren’t your “one true love” to begin with. Back to the dating pool for you!
It Takes a Village…
What’s more, there is no village. Unless you build your own. This is especially true in American culture. We like to say “It takes a village to raise a child.” So where is it? And why do we look down on those that have that village in place? Why is it more acceptable to hire nannies and daycares than build a small village to help bring up our tiny humans?
I have had three children. And not once did a village show up to help me raise them. I have family and close friends. But we are spread out and not in each other’s day to day life as much. Not to mention, some of them have their own kids and partners and lives to juggle. But wouldn’t it be nice to have that small group of people in your daily life, always there, ready to help and support you when you just need to pee in peace?
So, Why Am I Choosing Polyamory?
Polyamory has shown me that, for people to love and accept me, I don’t have to be anyone I’m not. Nor do I have to do anything other than what I am already doing.
Obviously, people are not for trapping or keeping. They are individuals; fully autonomous, and capable of deciding who they wish to share their life with. For example, my partners are not mine. They choose to be with me. And I them. And that choice is freeing. Temptations are there for everyone, all of the time. And, of course, they look different for everyone. It is up to each individual how they are handled. Despite my best efforts, I cannot create a temptation free space for my partners. No matter how hard I try. So I must trust my partners and our relationships.
“My partners are not mine. They choose to be with me. And I them. And that choice is freeing.”
Soulmates. Love triangles. Cheating. Divorce rate.
In practice, monogamy doesn’t exactly work the way everyone seems to think it does. It places too much pressure to be everything, and meet every need, for your partner. So what happens if they don’t or can’t meet every one of your needs? Do you settle? Move on? What if you never find your “one”? Do you give up? Resign yourself to being single for the rest of your life? Absolutely none of those options sound appealing to me.
Lastly, let’s go back to that village. There are a lot of cultures that have multi-generational families living under one roof. Helping to raise children and supporting each other. “Mom tribes” are sought out for those same reasons nowadays. Likewise, community groups are sought out for various hobbies and lifestyles and shared experiences. We are social animals! Polyamory – kitchen table poly maybe especially – allows for all of that; with the extra bonus of loving relationships. Plus, you get metamours to help support and love you. And who understand deeply the feelings you have for your shared partner. Even when you occasionally want to wring their necks. There is nothing in the monogamous world quite like a close metamour bond.
One More Thing…
I keep saying that I am choosing polyamory, implying that it happens a lot. The reason is: it does! I choose everyday to be polyamorous in my relationships. Just like I choose everyday to love my family, be a good mom, have a good day doing whatever it is that needs doing.
I am intentional in those things. And I am owning those choices.
Why are you polyamorous? Did you choose it, or is it a part of who you are?
If you are monogamous, what are your thoughts on this? Share this with your partner and let me know what they think too.