So for my close friends who already know. I am sure you are thinking about time you FINALLY speaking up about this. For my family & friends who kinda knew. It’s not that I didn’t want to tell you… it just hasn’t been easy. It’s taken Ian & I, quite a long time to fully be ok with whatever people have to dish out at us. So if your feelings are hurt that I am using my blog as a way to vent.. I truly am sorry. To my friends have NO CLUE at all, well don’t feel left out, I assure you we kept this pretty close. Know, that it hasn’t been easy for us, we have been together 12 yrs, and open for at least 8 of those years. We knew from the very beginning that we were both bisexual, and that monogamy wasn’t ideal for us. It took years before we were comfortable to explore an open relationship and years more to really know what we wanted from each other and from anybody else who enter our lives. At 20, I had no idea what polyamory was.. but I knew I was. Nor did I believe we were part of any social revolution. Looking back, I know now that we are. I’m writing now, because I believe our voices need to be heard to ease path for other couples like us, non-monogamous people, and anyone who maybe involved with poly person. It isn’t easy living a life against the norm of society, it can be rather lonely when you fallow your heart.
My Journey into Polyamory.
I have been having this conversation about living honestly. Mostly with myself and how I relate with others.
I know it’s easy for me to love people even in the briefest of moments. What I mean by that; is that I can meet someone and love them for who they are in THAT particular moment. Then the moments gone. I walk away feeling, “I hope they were as happy to meet me, as I was them. I hope they knew that I loved them.”
I know people feel at ease with me quickly. However, I definitely do not feel that connection with many people. Only a handful have ever struck me, in a way that I felt like I’ve known them my whole life and I had loved the entirety of my life. That some how, we crossed paths many times before. Our souls have shared many lives together. And it is these people whom I love so deeply.
I truly believe that love is infinite and it transcends all space and time. Horribly cheesy, statement, but I do. The Love my parents had for each other. The Love I received as a child. The Love from my father. The Love from my mother. The Love from my brothers. The Love my sisters. The Love from my community. Had made it easier to love myself’ love their deaths, in that I was lucky enough to have wonderful people in my life; which made it easier have a great first love; my husband;my children; my girlfriends;and pretty much anybody that comes into my life.. even the homeless man on the corner. Every person I have allowed myself to love unconditionally…the next person in gets a better version of me. Someone more capable and more committed to being genuine.
The modern human condition seems that of loneliness. And I can’t help but believe it is because our very core us, we miss our tribal selves. We miss each others time, embrace, sincerity…deep connection. Really what prevents that? We do. There is no reason why we should not have those connections.
I am the the youngest of 8. While my family isn’t perfect. Growing up with a large family has taught me a lot. Not just my capacity for love and that respect is often more important. I’ve learned that I relate differently to different siblings. My relationship with my parents is very different then their relationship with our parents. And my overall capacity for caring for others is more then most. Not just that, but I love different people differently.
I don’t think I am some great person that has this great capacity for love. I believe it’s a choice. Much like happiness…honesty… and respect.
Unfortunately, when people hear that I am polyamorous they assume that I am having wild and crazy sex with whomever, whenever or worst… that I am a polygamist who is akin to child-molester and part of a cult. Reality. It is neither. My life is probably just as mundane as yours if not more mundane.
Difference is, I don’t deny my friends, family, lovers or even strangers my unconditional love. I know the three dirty words “I love you” sends a lot of people running. But when I say “I love you;” it isn’t to have you at my side or even to have sex with you. It is just that. I love you simply. I love who you are, what you do, and all that is YOU.
So while, my husband and I are open and have been for the the better part of our marriage. We have only been open physically with a select few. Yes, some relationships are sexual in nature, but that isn’t why we have sex out side of each other. I have sex with you because I want to share myself with you. It is one more extension of how I want to show my affection. Other relationships our far closer then that of a regular friendship and verge on something more of a marriage but are not sexual at all but there is genuine deep love for each other and immensely intimate. Polyamory is for me an all encompassing term for I-love-you-let-me count-the ways-colors-shades-flaw-in-between-that-we-can-not-define-and-refuse-to-let-ourselves-feel-for-one-another.
Aside from a larger family and the loss of many. My love for my first, never died. It was this epiphany that would change me and my husband forever.
My first love, In a nutshell, we met online in a IRC chat room, before online dating was cool. I really believe he saved my life. I had just lost my brother to a drowning, my grandparents to a car accident, a few family friends, and my mom was in and out of unwellness, not to mention my surgeries for pacemakers. I was getting into fights, drinking, I was a fucking mess, suicide was a daily thought for me. But talking to that wonderful boy on IRC, even though he lived in Canada, everyday was enough to keep my grounded. After 3yrs of online dating, we decide to see each other. So my senior year of HS he decided to come to see me. He didn’t fly, nope he hiked. Granted, he didn’t make it very far,was and was taken back to Winnipeg. It was huge sacrifice on his part.(probably the single most romantic thing anybody had ever done for me)He did make it down.
He A-D-O-R-E-D my father and my dad adored him. Long story short. Dad told him to join the army. The fallowing summer he did. That winter after he left, I was drinking with my with a friend and some guys I didn’t know. And sure enough I slept with one them. I don’t have much memory of the night, but I remember being repulsed and needing a shower, and joking about it with my friend so not to show that I was upset. (because this is what I do… I laugh to keep from crying) Instead of telling him that I had been drinking. I just told him I had cheated on him. (in the moment, that was far easier then to tell him how horribly irresponsible..stupid.. and naive I really was) Probably the only time in my life I’ve actually felt guilt and shame. He was heart broken, and we were off and on until the fallowing summer. I flew to Canada. I knew that if we could make it through that, we would spend the rest of lives together. That weekend was wonderful. I came home planning to move to Canada. By mid-summer we had broken up. Obviously I was heart broken. I spent that summer drinking as much and as often as I could. By Aug, I had a miscarriage. I didn’t tell him or anyone else until I met my now husband. (At the time I felt that we had broken up and I didn’t want to make him feel guilty..I eventually told him years later)
He had joined the Canadian army and was off to Afganistan. We spoke briefly when I had any life changing events. But when I lost my dad, I knew I had to tell him. I found him online and shot him my new number. It was hard.. so very hard. Sense then, we’ve made a point to check in with each other. I never stopped loving him and the same goes for him. What has been hardest, was not having his friendship. Honestly I still feel that way at times. I still want to call him up and tell him how wonderful my day was or how much I really need his shoulder to cry on. I know he needs to live his life, so I don’t. But there are days when we just say I love you.. for no other reason, and there is something very special..sad.. simple.. nostalgic..and infinite all at the same time. He is still one of the very few people that can make me tear up in an instant. Oh no, not because he is cruel but because he is absolutely one of the most genuine souls you will ever meet.
When I met, Ian, we were together about a year and still I felt like I had been cheating on my Canadian Boy. Because I was still very much in love with him. It was hard to admit that not only did I still loved him, and I always will. But when I confessed, I found out that, Ian, felt the same way about his first love too. He got it. He got me. It hit me like a ton of bricks. THIS BOY GETS ME! HE REALLY GETS ME! That’s when I stopped shaming myself. I knew in that moment that I will never have to hide who I was again from my husband. I didn’t know what polyamory was at 20, but I knew that we would never have a stereotypical marriage.
I know that what drives me being polyamory is loss. Either because: Life didn’t work out the way I had planned it. The loss of loved ones. The many close calls I’ve come to seeing that white light. Almost loosing my children.
I never want to run and hide. The idea of not ever being able to love again; well it’s enough to bring tears to my eyes. I know I am sensitive, probably more so then most. I have always been that way, but as I get older, I feel that life is so very fragile, and we shouldn’t take it for granted. Though we do it all the time. We should do our best not to. It has to be a conscious effort for us, not only being capable of more, but receiving it as well.