About this blog13
This blog is about what I’ve learned, and what I’m learning, about being in relationships that don’t follow the standard social script. In particular, I write about solo polyamory (being poly without having, or necessarily wanting, a primary/nesting-style relationship).
I’ve been actively polyamorous for the better part of two decades.
I’m not interested in being monogamous, nor in riding the relationship escalator inexorably from dating toward the goal of getting-married-till-death-do-us-part. (I always thought there was something weird about the notion that a “successful” relationship means someone has to die to get out.)
I am interested in pondering questions, challenging assumptions, trying things out, finding solutions and options, and sharing what I learn about how people can love and connect (or not). Hopefully I’ll pull this off without getting too heavy, preachy, idealistic or cynical.
I read a lot about how to have ethical nonmonogamous relationships…
…Especially polyamory. Most of this advice seems to be written by or for people in established couples (primary partners) who are opening their relationship, or who did so awhile ago. Typically the emphasis is on how to open a relationship “safely” — but safe for whom?
While it’s admirable to consider how to keep an existing couple strong and healthy, the point of having an open relationship is that other people are involved.
Who are those other people? Often they’re folks like me — the lovers, sweeties and partners who aren’t primary — and who generally aren’t seeking to usurp anyone’s primary status or edge anyone out of an existing relationship.
So far you probably haven’t heard much from the perspective of non-primary partners. Personally, I think our lack of visibility is a big problem for everyone involved in nonmonogamous relationships.
It’s especially problematic, I’ve found, in the community of people who consider themselves polyamorous — since it leads to a lot of blind spots and hidden double standards. It’s not uncommon to hear poly folk resort to astounding feats of verbal gymnastics, doublethink, or occasional tantrums to justify this conduct.
It’s ironic: Polyamory is grounded in the values of consent and communication. But in real-world poly relationships, these values can get applied inconsistently — often at the expense of non-primary partners.
My goals for this blog:
1. Give voice to the non-primary partner perspective on ethical open relationships, especially polyamory. Mostly I’ll be sharing my own views, as well as those of other non-primary partners in interviews and perhaps occasional guest posts.
2. Suggest ways that non-primary partners can be treated more fairly, even in open relationships with a clear, mutually agreed-upon hierarchy. “Fair” doesn’t always have to mean “equal” — but in a network of overlapping relationships, it does mean that everyone involved should have a voice in how things work, and agree to the terms. Or at least, everyone involved should get enough information to decide whether this relationship is right for them.
3. Suggest ways that non-primary partners can stand up for their own interests in relationships — both through communication and collaboration with their partners and metamours, and by recognizing and refusing to tolerate unfair treatment. (And yes, I loathe the neologism “metamour” too, but I find it just slightly less grating than saying “my partner’s partners.” So deal with it it.)
4. Encourage the broader poly/nonmonogamous community to be more aware, respectful and supportive of non-primary partners. Really — without us, it would be almost impossible for anyone to be more than theoretically poly or open. Who would you have relationships with?
5. Share my ongoing learning curve. Right now I’m learning how to do “dating,” as such. Yeah, I know: late bloomer. Go figure. Also, I never stop learning how to do relationships — often by faceplanting in one way or another. Hopefully others will learn from my successes and missteps. Or at least find them amusing.
…I don’t know how much or how long I’ll be posting to this blog. Right now I’ve got a bunch of things I need to say, but I’m a pretty busy person and I don’t want to overcommit. We’ll see how it goes. But feedback and encouragement are always helpful! And the haters can bite my ass 🙂
I’m loving the blog and am SO glad to have found it. Have you considered posting a link to archived posts? I’ve been browsing chronologically in reverse and wondering how far back this blog goes.
nice all around Aggie.
Well done on a very intelligent, heart felt blog. Keep up the good work.
Thank you so much for sharing your experience and insight, it confirms mine as well and reading the “grownup test” put things into perspective in a big way. Thanks again beauty!!!
[…] shares her experiences as a female solo polyamorist at SOLOPOLY, a blog dedicated to offer a counter-vision to the balance of information that addresses polyamory […]
So glad to find you!
I’m so glad I found your blog!! There is so little as far as information groups go, here in rural Australia
This is all new to me.
I’m riding solo in a LDR with a poly couple. Whilst I’m not referred to as secondary, there are moments when I feel the pain of isolation.
So in everyone’s eyes I’m “single” yet I can’t start a relationship because essentially, I am poly.
I have had a hard time understanding exactly what solopoly is since a dear family member told me about it. You have helped me with that understanding, so thank you. I think your goals are great, I very much enjoyed your ethics post. I am going to mention that post and your site on polyamorynetwork.net, but I also think you should seriously consider posting a link there whenever you post something new. I know I will be more likely to read what you have to say, if you do.
Wow! I found this blog and am excited to start reading through all the info posted.. although I’ve known I’m non-monogamous, and love more than one, I’ve recently connected with a man who’s poly, and I’ll be the ‘single’ poly.. I have so many thoughts, questions.. and yes, a few concerns.. so it’s lovely to see that there’s a resource and space to read and think and connect.
I just found this blog from a link on the poly land blog. Really enjoying your blog so far. Thank you 🙂
Lovely – honestly, it’s only fair and how I want to be treated by my partners.
Ad to see this blog getting active again. Due to agreements i have with my wife, it is highly unlikely that any girlfriend will ever be be on equal footing with her, but I think all my relationships are fair, and very loving.
That should read Glad to see…