My partner and I just returned from the airport. We picked up my partner’s lover who just arrived on a red-eye from California. We had a lovely breakfast and walk on the beach. They have not seen each other in 5 months. When we arrived home they quickly made their way to the bedroom. They are making love in our bed as I write my blog. Sounds of pleasure emanate throughout the house. I am happy they are enjoying each other.
David and I were just at a 6 day naturist gathering in West Palm Beach. People from all over the country attended. We did several presentations on the subject of polyamory. For many, it was really the first time they’d been exposed to concepts like “ethical non-monogamy” and “compersion.” They could understand the benefits of honesty in relationship as compared to “cheating.” Generally cheating is much more acceptable to the masses than open relationship since it’s a familiar and known dynamic within the “monogamy paradigm.” When I happened to mention that my partner’s lover was arriving soon to stay with us, they were all speechless for a moment and then flooded us with questions. “Where are you going to sleep?” “What are you going to do while they’re together?” “Are you really okay with this?” And finally the drawn conclusion of these people that choose to be naked wherever and whenever they can be was ”that’s just plain weird!”
Then there’s our circle of friends most of whom have traveled the world, lived various alternative lifestyles, and searched the guru circuit and the depths of their souls to find enlightenment. They are accepting enough when we talk of our poly lifestyle with their “live and let live” philosophy. But when I told them I’d like them to meet David’s lover while she’s here, they looked at each other, rolled their multiple pairs of eyes and mumbled, “that’s just plain weird.”
My friend Miriam has been married and divorced 5 times. She is still sure she is going to meet “Mr. Right.” She is the most shocked by our multiple lovers. She is a “serial monogamist.” She has multiple lovers, just not all at the same time.
One friend insisted that I was mentioning our upcoming guest “a little too much.” I was really worried, sad, angry and/or confused in his eyes. All I was aware of was excitement. I really like my lover’s lover. I consider her my friend. She is intelligent, witty, interesting, considerate and communicative. Of course I’m excited! We all get to spend some quality time together.
It seems that everybody has ideas of what’s normal and acceptable. Polyamorists believe loving more than one person is normal. Some believe it is our very nature and that is why there are so many problems in monogamous relationships. To me, it’s one of many valid forms of relating that works well for me. I love my freedom. I respect my partner’s freedom. In the words of the Zen master Osho, “love is authentic only when it gives freedom.” (The Hidden Splendor #23)
How do you feel about freedom in relationship? Jealousy? Compersion? Love?