Oct 102013
 

Once upon a time there was a Q without an A. With the help of a beautiful and talented domme, a suitable A was found for Q… and they lived happily ever after. ~The End.


Okay I saw your tweet about not being into monogamy. However, I never saw you identify anywhere as poly either. Did I see you correctly that you don’t agree with monogamy? Also why do you think you are not into monogamy? Do you think that is just because of your current life being hectic and it will change one day or no?
…not being into monogamy. However, I never saw you identify anywhere as poly either.

 Right. :) I don’t identify as either.

The idea that a person must be either monogamous or polyamorous is a false dichotomy. Monogamy and polyamory aren’t the only two options from which to choose.

monogamy-4

“Monogamy” © 2011 by alirjd, Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license
[CC BY 2.0]

Did I see you correctly that you don’t agree with monogamy?

The existence of monogamy as a sociocultural practice isn’t something that can be agreed with or disagreed with. It exists. That’s a fact. I understand it’s the right choice for lots of people, and I think that’s great. But at this point in my life, I don’t identify as monogamous. It’s not the right identifier for me.

While monogamy is a widely-accepted sociocultural practice, I don’t believe we’re biologically programmed to be monogamous. I believe monogamy is a cultural institution, not a biological imperative.

Also why do you think you are not into monogamy?

I don’t think I’m not into monogamy. I know I’m not into it.

I’m not into monogamy because I have no desire to commit myself to one sexual partner at a time or be with the same sexual partner until the day I die.

Do you think that is just because of your current life being hectic and it will change one day or no?

My not identifying as monogamous has nothing to do with being busy. Implicitly, the question seems to suggest that monogamy is some sort of goal, that I might want it when I’m older, more settled in my career, and/or when I live a more ‘normal’ life. While I’m open to the possibility of change (I welcome it — I hope to always grow and evolve as a person), at this point in my life, monogamy isn’t a goal. It’s not something I want out of life.

When I was younger, I dreamed of having a dazzling career, fantastic friends, and a great partner. I never dreamed of making a commitment I might not want to keep, nor did I dream of fucking just one person for the rest of my life. I’m not looking for a forever partner.

 


Mongamous? Polyamorous? Monogamish?

Of course, the meanings of ‘monogamy’ and ‘polyamory’ are up for some debate. I won’t engage in that discussion here, but I will tell you how I define them in the context of my life and my relationships.

To me, monogamy is an exclusive intimate sexual/romantic relationship between two people, both of whom have agreed to forgo romantic love, sex, and affection with anyone other than their partner. Further, the way I understand it, monogamy is only monogamy if it’s practiced by both partners. As soon as one partner has a sexual/romantic with someone else, the relationship is no longer monogamous.

I’m not monogamous because I have sexual relationships with people other than my primary partner.

Polyamory is a bit more complex, but in my mind, it’s having intimate, sexual/romantic relationships with more than one person (with the awareness and consent of all parties involved).

I’m not polyamorous because I don’t form intimate romantic or emotional relationships with other sex partners.

Instead, I embrace Dan Savage’s concept of ‘monogamish,’ wherein a couple retains emotional intimacy, but leaves their relationship open to sexual intimacy with other partners. For me, it’s all about the emotional intimacy. I may be sexually intimate with other partners, but I’m only emotionally intimate with my primary partner. In short, I’m with J, but sometimes I have sex with other people.

At this particular moment, however, I’m not involved with other sex partners. That’s not because I’ve committed to being monogamous with J, but because any other sex partner would take away from the time I have to spend with J before he leaves.

 

  12 Responses to “a) monogamy b) polyamory c) neither”

  1. Really interesting answer and very revealing thank you for answering my question.

    Respectfully,
    mysticlez

    • Oh… it’s not as revealing as it seems. :) (I almost wish it was!). I’m not sure when you picked up our story, but this phrase was a part of my “about” page for more than a year:

      “Besides that, I consider myself monogamish and I’m not interested in getting married or finding a forever partner. While I realize it’s a nasty double standard, J isn’t permitted to be monogamish (nor has he expressed any interest in seeing or playing with anyone else, thankfully).”

      It’s just not an important part of the narrative (to me, anyway).

      All the same, thanks for the question. :)

  2. The concept of “Monogamish” is one that I had not even considered until lately. I was for years, stoically (and ultimately unsuccessfully) married to the same person and was committed to being completely monogamous… But then, in the environment I came up in, that was the only accepted way to be.

    As we separated however, I met someone who invited me into what she called an “open” relationship. She already had a primary but wanted to explore her dominant side with me. It was my introduction to the world of D/s and I really enjoyed it. We kept it as as an LDR for a while and we got along famously, until we set up a meeting. The problem that eventually arose was that it was causing emotional turmoil in her primary relationship, so we mutually agreed to end things.

    I did learn a lot from that, but it too didn’t work as I thought it would. So, I’ll admit that I am not really sure about it at the moment. I suppose that if anything, I would consider myself to be serially monogamous… I guess I like to disappoint my women one at a time. *laugh*

    I am no longer sure that a long term partner is in the cards, or even what I want right now, but at the same time, I DO like the security of having that one “special someone”

    Thank you for a post that gave me some more food for thought.

    • But then, in the environment I came up in, that was the only accepted way to be.

      I think you’re being generous with your language. It wasn’t the only accepted way to be, it was the only way to be. Monogamy was the only option — being open or poly (or whatever) wasn’t an available choice for lots of people to make. If someone doesn’t know a thing exists, how can they even consider it?

      I did learn a lot from that, but it too didn’t work as I thought it would. So, I’ll admit that I am not really sure about it at the moment.

      I know what you mean. :) Most relationships don’t work out, so it’s difficult to think about whether it was the person/people involved or the way the relationship worked or any number of other factors that cause things to disintegrate.

      I am no longer sure that a long term partner is in the cards, or even what I want right now, but at the same time, I DO like the security of having that one “special someone”

      Me too. :) I like having someone, I just don’t expect that someone to be my special someone forever. I’m pretty resolute in my expectation that my relationships won’t last forever. The older I get, the more I’m okay with that. :)

  3. It sounds like your “monogamish” is what I’ve always called monoamorous, being with one romantic partner but not being committed to just them for sex.

  4. Wonderful post.

    I am decidedly polyamorous, I can’t imagine being happy in the long term having only one intimate relationship. But I still really tired of the dichotomy that’s developed monogamy/polyamory and no other options discussed. It’s step forward from ‘monogamy is the only option, but… not much of one, IMO

    Also:

    “Implicitly, the question seems to suggest that monogamy is some sort of goal, that I might want it when I’m older, more settled in my career, and/or when I live a more ‘normal’ life.”

    Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

    • It’s step forward from ‘monogamy is the only option, but… not much of one, IMO

      Agreed. Baby steps are better than no steps, but it’s still frustrating. And it’s frustrating to see so many people limit themselves to such a narrow set of choices.

      Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

      You’re welcome. :) Not that the questioner meant it that way, but I see this sort of slant to discussions of poly/non-monogamy all the time, even from the “sex positive” folks. The language betrays the underlying assumptions, which are, unfortunately, still biased towards heteronormativity and monogamy. Baby steps, right? :)

  5. *The idea that a person must be either monogamous or polyamorous is a false dichotomy. Monogamy and polyamory aren’t the only two options from which to choose.*

    So love this line. I figured out long ago that the whole monogamous marriage till death do we part thing just isn’t who I am. While I guess I could describe what I have as your monogamish, I generally just say I’m open. I’d just rather stay open towards the possibilities that may come, then were some title.

    Love this entry

    • Thanks for the kind words, Maggie. :)

      I generally just say I’m open. I’d just rather stay open towards the possibilities that may come, then were some title.

      I’d say that’s a great way to live your life… open. :)

      I try to be the same — I’m open to the possibility that someday I might want to be monogamous, or polyamorous, or vanilla, or any of the other fantastic varieties of people and relationships out there. I don’t ever want to limit my life or my love. :)

  6. Wonderful discussion on the topic (both the post and the comments section.) I, too, have been “questioned” in this way about my own relationship structure, the questions masking (erroneous) assumptions about who and what I am and why I do what I do. To try to explain seems a herculean task at times, but I do it anyway, because maybe it will make a difference in one person’s perspective. “Baby steps,” indeed.

    • Thank you, Jade.

      I, too, have been “questioned” in this way about my own relationship structure, the questions masking (erroneous) assumptions about who and what I am and why I do what I do

      I imagine it is maddening, the assumption that a non-traditional life choice is the result of not having grown up yet, or being selfish, or any of the many other incorrect assumptions people make based on the way most of us were enculturated to believe in traditional cultural narratives about love, sex, and family.

      It’s a shame, really, because it’s so limiting. Why put limits on happiness?

      To try to explain seems a herculean task at times, but I do it anyway, because maybe it will make a difference in one person’s perspective.

      I’m glad there are people like you out there, Jade. You are making a difference in lots of people’s perspectives and I’m thankful for it!

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