Polyamor-Me

Back in 2015 The Federalist ran an article by a Sara Burrows on her new-found polyamorous lifestyle. Titled Polyamory Is Next, And I’m One Reason Why, we learned:

Four years into our relationship, we found ourselves in the typical rut of co-dependence, resentment, boredom, and fighting over the grocery bill. We’d had an unplanned baby, I’d quit my job to do attachment parenting full-time, and Brad was working long hours in a dungeon of a warehouse. I was stuck at home washing dishes, folding laundry and talking to a two-year-old, bored out of my mind. If we didn’t have anything to fight about, we’d find something, just to make life a little more interesting.

People who complain of a dull life rarely consider that they, not their circumstances, are the problem.

I had freed myself from the grips of government, religion, and parents.

As everyone knows, self-fulfillment is dependent on external forces and cannot be derived from within.

Enter polyamory. Polyamory means “many loves.” It is the practice of engaging in several emotionally and possibly sexually intimate relationships simultaneously, with the full knowledge and consent of everyone involved.

If polyamory is the answer, you’ve not understood the question.

We’re both nervous and don’t know what to expect. I’ve pushed Brad to “go first” in dating and sexually exploring other women. He’s been on two dates so far, and we even arranged a crazy one-night stand to sort of break the ice and test our feelings.

Nothing screams maturity and responsibility like arranging a crazy one-night stand.

Since we’ve discovered polyamory, we don’t care about new houses or new cars or vacations.

As we’ve learned, polyamorists consider themselves on a higher spiritual plane to the rest of us.

We’re actually looking forward to the rest of our lives together now. When we were monogamous, our future seemed pretty mapped out: have a baby, get a better job, buy a house, get a promotion, buy a better car, start our own business, buy a better house, make more money, go on vacation, make more money, buy an even better house… grow old in it together.

All because of being able to shag around? Who knew something so simple could deliver such wide-reaching benefits?

We’ve gotten a lot of warnings and admonitions from well-intentioned friends and family members that we’re going to destroy our relationship and hurt our daughter, but we feel exactly the opposite.

Pah! What do they know?

For us, this is the perfect opportunity to save our relationship, spare our daughter from the heartbreak of a broken family, and give her the blessing of happy parents and extended family.

Quite. There is absolutely no reason to believe psychological issues such as loneliness, boredom, and detachment can’t be addressed through meaningless sex with strangers.

In her spare time, she blogs about their new journey into polyamory at polyamorydiaries.com.

So let’s have a look at the entry for the 11th January 2019, shall we?

It’s time to set the record straight. Most of this blog is bullshit.

Oh.

I was no longer in love with the father of my child/partner of 4 years, and he was clearly not in love with me.

The newfangled concept of “polyamory” was just a trendy excuse to play the field and see if I could find any better offers.

As many have observed, polyamory is often used as cover for people who lack the courage to get divorced.

Either I’d find someone who’d love me better… or Brad, out of fear of losing me, would shape up and start meeting my needs for emotional and sexual intimacy. Either way, I win, I thought.

But my subconscious plan backfired.

The only thing missing from a plan this bad is an appearance by Roadrunner at the end.

I didn’t find a man who loved me more than Brad did, I just found a man who was more excited to put his penis in my vagina because I was novel and he’d gone without sex a lot longer than Brad had.

This is someone who, in a fit of childish pique, bragged of throwing off the shackles of family and religion. She’s now learned the hard way what her granny could have told her aged 16.

I was “in love” in a way, but it was the kind of love you fall into, like a trap, not the kind of love that you rise into, that has the potential to last and grow.

Is she a grown woman, or a high-schooler lamenting a one-night stand with the captain of the football team?

Because I couldn’t empathize with Brad’s pain over this betrayal, because I couldn’t even fathom it, he subconsciously set out to teach me a lesson.

Subconsciously?

He had to make me feel the pain he’d felt firsthand, so I could know it. So I could have sympathy and compassion for what I put him through.

So he went out and fell just as hard in love as I had, and rubbed it right in my face, until my soul was bloody and bruised and begging him to stop.

This doesn’t sound very subconscious.

Someway, somehow, we made it through the  two most awful experiences of our lives, and came out a million times stronger on the other side.

Maybe you’ll want to hold off on the grand pronouncements for a while, eh?

I think society should encourage and celebrate sexual freedom and exploration among teenagers.

I think because society does not do this, and instead represses our sexuality, we wander around still starving for that kind of passion as adults.

Someone whose life is an utter trainwreck thinks society should encourage teenagers to be more promiscuous? Should we ask the drunk sleeping under the railway bridge what he thinks of trade tariffs while we’re at it?

Now you’re caught between a rock and a hard place.

You’re in love with two people.

By now, they are both jealous of your affection and wanting you to choose.

Apparently this is a drawback of polyamory. Who would have guessed?

But you have more history, trust and deeper friendship with the old partner, not to mention a child or two.

Ah yes, the children. Let’s include them in a flippant afterthought.

As Osho says, it is the one we develop a spiritual friendship with who becomes our lasting soulmate.

As I’ve noted before, there’s a peculiar habit of modern, western women to loudly declare they’re rejecting Christianity before plunging headlong into the nearest weirdo cult.

The good news is there can be healing and deeper intimacy on the other side. Brad and I have been more in love in the last 6 months of monogamy than in our entire 8 years before that,

There’s nothing like 8 years of meaningless sex with a succession of insincere strangers to shore up a failing marriage.

and I KNOW it’s only going to get better from here.

Presumably on the grounds things can’t get a whole lot worse.

I don’t know if he’s 100% there yet, but I dream of the day Osho talks about, when we rise so high in love with each other that everyone else disappears.

She’s mentioned Osho 3 times, whereas all she says about her child is:

The sad part about option B is that children’s hearts are often needlessly torn apart along with their parents.

Which is why mature, responsible, functioning adults don’t engage in polyamory. From start to finish, this entire story can be condensed to “me me me”. Everyone else’s concerns are just a side-issue, to be ignored or reclaimed as necessary at her own convenience. And in case anyone thinks such selfishness is limited to female practitioners of polyamory, here’s a post on Reddit:

I’m a 34 year old man who is married to a 33 year old woman and we have a 13 year old boy. I recently went poly with an 18 year old girl, primarily for sex, but we have become increasingly close and she will be moving in soon. My son is very close to his mom, my wife, and I’m not sure how he will react to this. How can I introduce my girlfriend to my son?

What’s the betting this 18 year old has severe mental problems, possibly caused by an absent father and/or sexual abuse at the hands of an adult? Remember people, polyamorists are perfectly normal, just like you and me.

(Burrows story via Michael Story and several readers on Twitter. Reddit post via Robert Mariani.)

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30 thoughts on “Polyamor-Me

  1. Rajneesh:
    “The Australian critic Clive James scornfully referred to him as “Bagwash”, likening the experience of listening to one of his discourses to sitting in a laundrette and watching “your tattered underwear revolve soggily for hours while exuding grey suds. The Bagwash talks the way that looks.”

  2. No danger of Stockholm Syndrome with our Tim, eh?

    This lovely tale has set me up for the day!

  3. There’s something I don’t understand about these polyamorists. Look, having a bit of nookie on the side is neither new nor unusual. Lots of people dabble without ruining their lives. Grown-ups know there’s actually three modes of relationships between people. Friendship, love & sexual attraction. A couple can coast along quite happily on two out of three. Friendship & love without the sex. Friendship & sex without the love. Love & sexual attraction without the friendship is what nightmares are made of. But they are separate things. You can even put them in an order of importance. Friendship. Love. Sex. You can’t have a working relationship without friendship. Love makes it better. Sex is the icing on the cake. But it is the least important.You can have good sex with someone you don’t even like, let alone are friends with.
    So you can screw outside of a relationship without damaging it. And there are a lot of couples who have the confidence in their own relationship, either or both partners screw around with their partners knowledge & consent. Or they do it together, which can be enormous fun.
    But why do these people take it so bloody seriously? Proselytise about it? It works for some people. It doesn’t work for others. If it doesn’t work for you or your significant other, no amount of trying is going to make it work.
    And that I think maybe the clue. The people you bring our attention to want to do this stuff, but aren’t really cut out for it. To do it successfully, you have to have both a lot of confidence in your partner & confidence in yourself. And you just get on & do it, not share it with all & sundry. You don’t go looking to other people for their reassurance.

  4. Love & sexual attraction without the friendship is what nightmares are made of.

    Splendidly put.

    And you just get on & do it, not share it with all & sundry. You don’t go looking to other people for their reassurance.

    Exactly. It’s a certainty there are people out there who make this work, but you’d never know. As Damian Counsell put it:

    It’s the boring narcissistic fakes who want to bore everyone stupid about it. And boring narcissistic fakes make for poor life partners.

  5. “It’s the boring narcissistic fakes who want to bore everyone stupid about it.”
    Yeah. I do get the impression these people would probably be best left alone with a large supply of pr0n, the sex toy of their choice & big box of batteries. I don’t get the impression they have friends, are a friend or even have much idea what friendship is. But they’re intensely jealous of those who have, are & do.

  6. I don’t get the impression they have friends, are a friend or even have much idea what friendship is.

    Back when I stumbled into this scene I was gobsmacked at how these supposed friends behaved with one another. You’d have thought if a woman was going through a difficult and traumatic period with her husband her friend would refrain from posting pictures of herself on holiday with said husband, but apparently not. What unites them is activism, not compassion or empathy.

  7. >Since we’ve discovered polyamory, we don’t care about new houses or new cars or vacations.

    When I was that age I didn’t care about new houses, new cars or vacations.

    In fact, I still don’t care about them.

  8. “You’d have thought if a woman was going through a difficult and traumatic period with her husband her friend would refrain from posting pictures of herself on holiday with said husband, but apparently not.”
    Look, we’ve had this conversation before. It’s my personal belief that the default mode for most women is to be the centre of their own personal universe. They really do have enormous problems seeing anything from another’s point of view. if it’s important to them, it must be important to everyone else. No doubt your woman thought the photo showed what a wonderful person she was. Why wouldn’t anyone else come to the same conclusion?
    It’s why I don’t think a lot of women have what men would call mates. They have circles of acquaintances & are included in other’s circles of acquaintances. Which are regarded as closest depends on how she feels about them at the time, not how they feel about her. A woman sharing her marital problems with a “friend” is because she needs to share & requires validation. What she’ll get back depends on how the “friend” feels about herself.

  9. I couldn’t empathize with Brad’s pain over this betrayal, because I couldn’t even fathom it

    Total lack of empathy is something of a theme with these Tuesdays.

    See also: My son is very close to his mom, my wife, and I’m not sure how he will react to this.

    These people are pathological vermin. Their poor children…

  10. It’s my personal belief that the default mode for most women is to be the centre of their own personal universe.

    That’s the default mode for most people, surely?

  11. “That’s the default mode for most people, surely?”
    Interesting question. Are you posing it as S=male or S=female?
    Let’s presume S=male.
    If one of your mates asks you for advice, you probably try & look at the situation from his point of view & try & give him advice that’s good for him.
    If S=female you likely haven’t the vaguest what I’m talking about.

  12. Incidentally, I think the second example is a sign of the increasing feminisation of men. Let’s be honest. If you were a proper bloke who was porking a teen with the consent & aid of your wife you’d be counting your blessings, not posting on Reddit. Nor posting your fantasies, either.

  13. BiS, nailed it. Though it does extend to their children. Which is also why it is important for a child, male or female, to have a man/father in the house. The narcissism of women is so often glossed over. There’s a reason women spend so much time in front of vanity mirrors.

    Evolution didn’t happen overnight.

  14. Pingback: Pink bits no. 2 – Hector Drummond

  15. “The narcissism of women is so often glossed over. There’s a reason women spend so much time in front of vanity mirrors.”
    I do think the smart phone has been a revelation in this area. It amazes me how much effort women expend in sending selfies to each other. Usually with them looking glamorous & doing something interesting. You’d have to be completely thick not to appreciate that you’re going to generate teeth grinding, jealousy, envy & hate. Or is that the point? The weaponisation of the smart phone. The selfie arms race. Mutually Assured Destruction.

  16. @Hector Drummond

    “I was stuck at home washing dishes, folding laundry and talking to a two-year-old, bored out of my mind.”

    How does having someone else to shag magically make these chores and responsibilities disappear?

    Ah, but the shagging comes with an ideology which puts your needs before everyone else’s.

    And besides, I’m betting new-live-in-boyfriend is going to find himself saddled with some of these chores after a few months, and when he absconds it’s going to be his fault that they’re not getting done, because he’s selfish.

    Since we’ve discovered polyamory, we don’t care about new houses or new cars or vacations.

    Translation: Since we’ve pretty much admitted this family is going to fall apart at some point, we’re not making any long-term plans (cars/houses), and since we can’t speak to each other any more without trying to hurt each other, we’re not capable of doing the planning necessary for vacations.

  17. “It’s my personal belief that the default mode for most women is to be the centre of their own personal universe. ”

    I’ve always said the same, particularly with respect to how they treat other people. If you are within their bubble (and its not big) then they can be very empathetic and kind. If you are VERY close (this would mainly be a woman’s children) then she will kill to protect you. But if you are outside the bubble entirely then you are nothing to a lot of women. There’s little concept of fellow humanity at emotional distance I think. Women are capable of very cold hearted behaviour, and its down to the victim being outside the immediate bubble zone.

    Whereas men have the ability to see things from anothers perspective, even when those people are complete strangers – one reads of soldiers in wartime allowing their enemy to escape because they empathised with their plight for example. I don’t think a female solder would ever show unwarranted mercy on an enemy.

  18. ” I don’t think a female solder would ever show unwarranted mercy on an enemy.”

    But they would be the first to complain were it the other way around.

    “The only thing missing from a plan this bad is an appearance by Roadrunner at the end.”

    Brilliant Tim.

  19. “When we were monogamous, our future seemed pretty mapped out: have a baby, get a better job, buy a house, get a promotion, buy a better car, start our own business, buy a better house, make more money, go on vacation, make more money, buy an even better house… grow old in it together.”

    And what’s so wrong with that? Building a family, career and home, and enjoying the fruits of your labours, while investing for a secure retirement, is the basis for many a fulfilled and quietly worthy life.

  20. @Bloke in Spain:

    I do think the smart phone has been a revelation in this area.

    Neil Armstrong went to the moon and took 5 photographs. A woman goes to the toilet in a nightclub and takes 29 selfies.

    Compare and contrast …

  21. What it really sounds like here is that she thought she’d get some free shags and Brad wouldn’t – so he’d have to come crawling back to her, cave into her demands, and boost her self-esteem.

    But then Brad was pulling trim with no problems.

    And then all of a sudden, the guy she didn’t think was worth keeping was being coveted by other women and she got all ‘this is mine!’ on him. She didn’t think he was worth keeping until someone else wanted him.

    All these educated and supposedly smart people still can’t understand how evolution has shaped our reproductive strategies, how that affects our relationship structures, and how it directly influences our behavior.

  22. Excellent post Tim.

    I would like to dispute some of the comments here about women. Obviously, I can only speak for myself and my female compatriots. I (and them) are not enthralled with selfies. I frickin hate selfies and go out of my way to not be included in them. I have been supported and mentored by some incredible women in my career and have tried to pay that back.

    Of course, I am as old as Methuselah, so that may have a lot to do with it.

  23. The whole thing seems to come down to unrealistic expectations. Marriage and parenthood can be a grind sometimes, and not very glamorous; this was common knowledge at one point, and to be expected. Now people seem to feel like their every waking hour ought to be amazing and if it’s not, some kind of radical solution is needed, whether it’s polyamory or running off to a freaky-deaky yoga camp in Indonesia.

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