Are you polyamorous or monogamous? Watch Heather and Peter discuss their experiences & discuss how to know which relationship style is a better fit for you.
Are you polyamorous or monogamous? Watch Heather and Peter discuss their experiences & discuss how to know which relationship style is a better fit for you.
Are you Monogamous or Polyamorous Pt. 1.mp4
Speaker 1 [00:00:01] OK. Hi, everybody, welcome to our video today. You’ll notice I have a guest speaker. Hello, this is my friend Peter, and he is someone who has experience both with monogamy and a 15-year marriage and then also with polyamory for the last seven years. And he’s also experienced in the BDM community and even helps educate others about media dynamics. So thank you for joining us.
Speaker 2 [00:00:28] My pleasure.
Speaker 1 [00:00:30] So our goal here of the video today is to help you guys discern what’s the right path for you with relationships. You know, we are so programmed in our society to kind of be on this relationship escalator where it’s like you meet someone, you date, you become exclusive, you keep dating, you meet each other’s families, get engaged, get married, et cetera. And that this is just the progression. That’s just what it is. And so part of my goal in bringing up this topic to you guys today is to help it become more of a conscious process. So instead of, you know, this is just the path and it just is and we don’t question it to question it and really start thinking like what makes sense for me? What’s the right path? So I identify as monogamous. Peter identifies as poly. We’re going to try and help you guys figure it out. And we can start by telling you a little bit about our stories and how we figure out what really felt like an alignment in the right path for us. So I’ll let you take it away from there and share a little bit about your story.
Speaker 2 [00:01:37] Well, like you said, I was married for about 15 years. When that ended, I found myself kind of looking to reinvent what my relationships were looking like, but I honestly didn’t know the path I was going to take. What I didn’t want is to be like the Playboy dog that I used to be in my teens and 20s. I really thought that would be going backward. So rather than just guessing, I took almost a year of deciding how it would go forward. And I joined a poly support group where you just talked about the benefits and the trials and tribulations of being in a poly relationship. And it helped me realize that I was naturally interested in becoming polyamorous.
Speaker 1 [00:02:31] Yeah, and part of why I wanted to do this video appear as much as we like to give each other shit, and that’s like half of our friendship. I will acknowledge Peter is one of the few people, in my opinion, who does probably well and is really willing to put in the work and the effort and really enjoys the benefits and gets the value out of it.
Speaker 2 [00:02:49] I will accept that we agree. But it’s an ongoing process. Exactly.
Speaker 1 [00:02:55] You know, in those relationships. Perfect. I feel like we’re all just doing the best we can. But can you tell us a little bit about how did you know monogamy wasn’t for you or at what point did you realize that?
Speaker 2 [00:03:07] Well, I was very happy to get married. I was in my late 30s and I really thought that I found the right person for me, the right situation. And we built a really fantastic life. There are a lot of positive children, but at some point, I felt like, is this it? And it was a really tiny thought. It wasn’t a major revelation. I just remember walking down the stairs one day and going, is this is and it probably took three to five years before it became a situation where I had to do something. Now the marriages end because of infidelity, didn’t even end because I wanted to be poly ended for other reasons. But I had to believe that on some level I was unhappy with the situation and it probably was a contributing factor when I came single and was out on the prowl. So I decided that rather than just diving in, like I mentioned before, this, to take a real purposeful journey on what my relationship looked like. So I didn’t have to be hurt. I have to feel unfulfilled because now I had the opportunity to write my own script.
Speaker 1 [00:04:24] I like that is a good way to look at it and I’ll share a little bit about my path. So I was also somebody that was just curious about exploring relationships. And we’re like we’re always having good chats about relationship dynamics just in general. And so I was kind of like, I don’t know, this whole relationship escalator thing. Maybe I need to try it an open relationship or, you know, the swinger community or something. And so I was curious about it. I tried a few different kind of open arrangements. And the first one I, you know, somebody I was dating told me that. Just slept with someone else, I burst into tears. I had an open relationship. There’s more tears.
Speaker 2 [00:05:09] which is OK.
Speaker 1 [00:05:12] It’s not like monogamy prevents tears. Let’s be honest about that. But for me, it was just sort of like I do have this curiosity to explore. But when it really comes down to it for me, I’m like, I just want to be all in with one person. And I think the other part for me was just that I don’t feel like I have the bandwidth, you know, like when I see, like, the work that you do to, like, manage different relationships and put the effort in and the communication and making different people feel special and have unique roles in your life. I don’t I don’t have that. You know, it’s like, OK, between work and attempting to keep my house clean, which is not very clean right now. And family and you platonic friendships like for me. And then one relationship I was like, that is more than enough for me to handle. So I’m kind of curious. Like water. Yeah. How do you feel differently about that?
Speaker 2 [00:06:09] I’m in a drawer and equivalent to being an introvert versus an extrovert and I’m not saying they’re exactly the same or one poly and once not, I am saying that what you do is kind of the driving force. It helps you determine what your natural relationship dynamic is. You know, for me, I currently have three partners and it’s very special to me. And it’s a lot of time energy, you know, spending time with them. If it’s true that you feel the appreciation that I feel for them, making sure that I am doing everything I can to make sure those relationships are successful by how we define it. But that work feeds me. It energizes me. It actually makes me a better person.
Speaker 1 [00:07:00] That’s a great distinction because it drains me
Speaker 2 [00:07:04] and I’m not one to speak for you. But I would imagine the monogamists fulfilling relationship energizes you. Yes.
Speaker 1 [00:07:10] Oh, yeah. And for me, it’s also I think it might also I’m curious what you say is what makes you feel secure. So for me, I feel most secure when, like, I am with someone and we are just all with each other and that’s it. And one of the misconceptions I had at the beginning about open and poly relationships is that, oh, maybe those people are more like avoidant attachment and they’re not really going to be as secure. And that is actually false, is supported by research that has followed. So so I think it maybe just different things that make us feel secure.
Speaker 2 [00:07:44] To be honest, in the very early days when I was recently divorced, I absolutely found that I did not want attachment. And I thought poly was an opportunity to still build relationships and not get fully attached. Little did I know that, you know, seven years later, almost eight years is that I feel more attached to my partners, mainly because we have a purposeful journey. And what I mean by that is that it’s a self-guiding. We determine what it looks like so we don’t follow the normal quinella, monogamous script where you meet the high school sweethearts you date, get engaged, get married, have the white picket fence. You have your children, you children leave the home, you retired and that’s your entire life. Nothing wrong with that. But there is the element of a script. When you’re in a monogamous relationship, you know, there’s no roadmap which is a positive and a potential negative.
Speaker 1 [00:08:51] When you’re a poly relationship, there’s no romance.
Speaker 2 [00:08:53] I’m sorry for poly, OK?
Speaker 1 [00:08:55] Yeah, although I would. Yeah, I don’t feel like I have much of a romance, but I mean I think that’s a good point too. Is that like part of the point of this video is like, let’s just throw out the romance. You know, it’s like they’re not really that helpful anyway. And it’s certainly not one size fits all for relationships. So even within monogamy, maybe you want to live together, maybe you don’t maybe want to get married, maybe you don’t. Maybe you want to share a bedroom, maybe you don’t. You know, we talked about the need for space and like, how do you navigate all of that? So the point is, like, be conscious, figure out what works for you. You might have to try some things, you know, oh, you are monogamous for a while. I try to open it briefly. It’s like you kind of got to try. Yeah.
Speaker 2 [00:09:37] Yeah. Well, even within being poly or monogamous, you still have to try. It’s definitely an element of trial and error. I messed up big time a lot being in a positive relationship, but quite frankly, I messed up even more being in a monogamous relationship. It’s it’s a learning self. Discovery is part of your personal growth.
Speaker 1 [00:09:58] And when I was doing the open relationship, I felt like we. Communicated amazingly. And it’s like that is no guarantee that it’s going to work for you. Absolutely. So I think just like being aware that it’s like what feels right inside. And also I want to remind you guys, you might be able to do either style, like there is definitely a segment of people out there that can do monogamy and can do polyamory. And you know, you have one more flexibility that you can choose what works for you.
Speaker 2 [00:10:27] It seems that it is kind of disagree to some extent, I’m thinking more of your natural tendencies. I think there are people who are naturally poly, and I’m not talking about people that are just going out there to be with as many sexual partners at all. That’s absolutely what I’m not talking about, even though having multiple sexual partners is a benefit. But it’s a matter of you. I lost my train of thought, but it’s a matter of you going out there and being who you are and feeling it. And maybe one partner you feel totally good with being with forever and maybe you feel good about being with that one partner. But having additional partners is kind of an additional. They might you know, if you have a partner that absolutely hates going to the movies, for example, you will not watch a movie with you. Maybe your other partner happens to be a big time movie buff. Well, there there’s a commonality there, and you’re still feeding your interest with someone else. And I think there’s some benefit to that.
Speaker 1 [00:11:40] Yeah, and I would agree with that. I think that’s one of the points that Holly advocates kind of like bring up. That makes a lot of sense to me. It’s like no one person can meet all of your needs. And so whether you’re monogamous or polyamorous, that’s true. Like, no one person is going to be all your needs. And so I think and even if you have multiple partners, I don’t I don’t know if you feel like all your needs are being met, but maybe more of them are me or maybe even monogamous person. Maybe some of those needs are met by your platonic friendships and your family relationships. It’s like we’re always going to have more than one person in our life. It’s just in what ways?
Speaker 2 [00:12:15] And keep in mind, your needs evolve over time. You’re not the same person you were five years ago because of life experience. Some good things happen. Some bad things happen. So something that works for you. Five years ago, ten years ago, I mean, absolutely. Absolutely. Being put off today and vice versa, you never know. And it’s good to be involved with your partner when you’re anonymous or poly, but it’s easier for you, in my opinion, easier for you to explore different aspects of your personality needs if you are now with multiple partners. I would disagree with.
Speaker 1 [00:12:59] I mean, I get that, but I feel like I probably just explore different parts of my personality in different ways, you know, so maybe it’s like, OK, I like music. I want to take drum lessons. Cool. I haven’t explored that part of my personality in that way. Or and I was talking to someone recently who is like really into fitness and stuff like, cool, if you want to go have like a across a gym and have a separate community there, your partner’s not into that. That’s great. So I think it does bring up a good point. It’s like whether it’s through polyamorous relationships or whether it’s through a more monogamous lifestyle, like finding ways to get our needs met and which was really working for you.
Speaker 2 [00:13:41] You know what happens? And again, I disagree.
Speaker 1 [00:13:47] What happens if we just
Speaker 2 [00:13:48] lost a lot of this? Amazing. We’re friends. Yeah. What happens if you have a need to do Crosthwaite, for example? Yeah. And you want to explore that and you want to do it with your partner, with your partners, like, no thanks. Not exist at all. Right. Now, if you are fortunate enough to have a partner that supports your activities outside of the relationship. Right. Fantastic. In my experience in this could be just a function of the partners I picked in the past and now I know better. But if that partner now views Crossfade as a competition for your time, then it becomes a problem because you are either going to have conflict over how you’re spending your time or you’re going to run into resentment. Your partner, who’s now preventing you to grow as a human being, is one of the things that’s a good point. It’s one of the contributing factors that I found stifling with being monogamous. Now, is that fixed when you’re poly? Absolutely not. You are absolutely running into the same type of issues. However, if you are a quote unquote good poly and I know I’m going to get beat up for saying that if you are in fact creating your own relationship and what that looks like, you are using good communication skills, you’re using good negotiating skills, and you’re applying that to not only things that could happen in the future, but you’re now applying it for conflicts currently. Now you have the tools necessary to resolve a problem and the problem may look over, that resolution may look too bad in doing this. It could be we’re doing it together or something you guys have never thought of before. Right. So I think with poly, you are forced to communicate and negotiate more than you typically would in a monogamous relationship. At least that’s been my experience.
Speaker 1 [00:15:45] I would agree. I think with like poly or open relationships, you’re kind of forced to do more communicating about the relationship on. And there’s also just more relationships to communicate within. But I feel like what you’re saying is, you know, we need one. We need to have the tools. So whether you’re monogamous or polyamorous or open. Work on yourself, you know, do the work to develop the communication skills, to be able to face difficult, challenging situations head on. And also I think the point you’re bringing up is I’m kind of like being possessive of your partner. Like even if you’re monogamous, like you still let your partner do other things, like the idea of having spaciousness in the relationship. I’m a big Eckhart Tolle fan, and so he talks a lot about the importance of space in our relationship. So that’s something I would encourage you to work on anyways.
Speaker 2 [00:16:42] So what I’m hearing is what and I think would be beneficial is the how specifically what for you
Speaker 1 [00:16:49] when your partner has sex and relationship coach?