A controversial topic: Polyamory

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    Johnny Karp

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        Johnny Karp

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        First, let me explain the terms, with a bit of help from Wikipedia:

        Polyamory = the practice, desire, or acceptance of having more than one intimate relationship at a time with the knowledge and consent of everyone involved. It is not to be confused with polysexuality, which is attraction towards multiple genders and/or sexes.

        In brief, I'd say it's consensual, ethical, or responsible non-monogamy.

        Why am I bringing this up? Let me explain:

        I'm married and have been so for quite a few years. And I love my wife. But once or twice I have met women that I felt I was beginning to fall in love with. And that was not taking anything from the love I had and still have for my wife, I wasn't having those feelings because I was being unhappy at home. 

        My choice was to block those feelings and stay faithful, mostly because I didn't want to hurt my wife. But what if monogamy is just a stupid social convention?

        Can one love two people at the same time? And can such multiple relationships really work without causing pain to one or all people involved?

        Do share your thoughts.
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        blueday

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          A very delicate subject Johnny.  Delicate in that there is a fine line between loving someone and acting upon those feelings or not acting upon them.  In your case, you did not but it must have been a hard thing for you to do.  On the other hand, you love your wife dearly and would never want to hurt her...but does it leave you wondering what could have been?  Probably not, because of the fact that you truly love your wife.

          Anyway - I digress.  Your question....I'll be honest and say that I really don't know.  I guess it must be possible; I have seen such relationships on TV programmes (real relationships not to be confused with a made up programme).  I think it could work and I think it is possible to love [in your case] two women at the same time without one of the loves affecting your feelings for the other love in your life.

          Did I reply or have I gone round the houses here?

          blue
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          Johnny Karp

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          blueday wrote:

          Did I reply or have I gone round the houses here?


          I guess you did both
        • Christopher lambert

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          I do think we can love more than one person at a time, it is just not socially accepted.
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          kattboots

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          I absolutely think you can love more than one person at the same time. Not acting on it is a social convention in this particular day and age, but that does not mean it has never been acceptable, nor that it never will be acceptable to society in another time and in other circumstances.

          I think that all parties involved have to care for each other deeply and be completely honest about their feelings about such an arrangement. Acting on it without the knowledge of one of the parties would not work at all. It would require lying, sneaking, and cheating, which is going to hurt the one(s) who are lied to and the one(s) doing the lying.

          Back in the early days of Mormonism polygamy was practiced and acceptable because there was good reason for it. Men died much more often and younger than women and families were large. Bringing a second, third, fourth, or more wives into the marriage was beneficial to all. The children were cared for a raised by the larger family, women were protected and provided for rather than being left alone in a world where men were the providers. And it worked because all parties consented and cared for each other. Life spans, dangers, the ability of women to make their own way in a very differnt society these days makes it unnecessary and thus no longer acceptable.

          katt

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          Johnny Karp

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          kattboots wrote:

          I think that all parties involved have to care for each other deeply and be completely honest about their feelings about such an arrangement. Acting on it without the knowledge of one of the parties would not work at all.


          I think you have captured the essence here, I totally agree.
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          drtheolen

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          "Think for Yourself - Question Authority" - Timothy Leary
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          I may say that in the world we live in, most peaople consider a luxury to be able to spend enough time with just one person. Except selected minority, who has enough time for two persons? Love and desire are irrelevant if you dont have a time to enjoy them.

          Also, what about dedication? Can you be dedicated enough to satisfy both parties equally? If you cant, what about possibility for jealousy?

          Im gonna admit, Im unable to love two women at the same time and call it both love the way I percieve it.
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          Feelin froggy

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          This is such an interesting topic. I know that we can love people for different reasons. If we hurt someone, does that mean we don't love them? Not really. If we love a quality about another, does that mean we don't love our partner? Not really. I just think that some crave that "newness" in a relationship. We have been conditioned by society to make commitments but do our animal instincts allow it?

          I totally agree that both individuals have to be honest in this type of situation. I don't think I could do it nor be ok with my husband doing it.
        • Flapjack

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          Interesting subject and I've thought about it for a while. I gotta agree with Froggy that "some crave that "newness" in a relationship." I don't think I could love two persons at the same time. We should do what we feel it's right but I know that I would ask myself if I am staying with my partner because of love or because I don't want anyone to get hurt.
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          Lipstick

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          Absolutely explosive discussion and food for thought that is for sure. Reading all replies and different takes on this subject is really interesting.

          I think that the most powerful make-up is our emotional and physical attraction. Our deep animal instincts is what modern man has been taught to suppress through monogamy. Without a doubt i think we all pretty much agree that being loyal and faithful is of utmost importance and goes without saying.

          But the truth of the matter is we all find someone now again where there is a chemistry that can't be denied. If not, then it's like you have wilted inside. Emotional attachments i think absolutely are possible where there is just an unexplainable click and connection between two people.

          Is it possible to love two people at the same time? Yes, i think it is very possible. Does it ultimately work to pursue the urges and have an open relationship with multiple partners? Our society says no. We have to remember our emotional responses when talking about love. There is going to be jealous, insecurities and trust issues that are going to tear down that relationship.

          If it is purely lust with no emotional attachments and both partners agree and are open with each other then yes it does and has worked.

          It's definitely a ying yang situation. While modern man teaches us that one partner is socially acceptable and any other feeling outside of that relationship should be stifled. On the other hand we are only human and someone can come along and trigger those "taboo" desires.

          We all know what is wrong and right in a relationship and we abide by it but that doesn't mean the desire doesn't strike us every now and again nor does it mean there is something "lacking" in your relationship.

          Lips
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          Lipstick

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          I just thought of another question about this topic...........

          If you are in a relationship and its a totally honest one are you and your partner open minded enough to discuss that there was someone that triggered some type of desire? I am not saying that we ask if its ok to pursue it because i think loyalty is the most important component in a relationship.

          But is there enough confidence and trust in one another that it can be openly discussed or should it remain swept under the carpet?

          Lips
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          blueday

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            Good question Lips.

            I think it would depend somewhat on the volatility of your partner and the type of relationship you have with them.  If your partner is the type to blow up if you so much as look at another person in a way that portrays that you might fancy them, discussing something like this would certainly not be an option. 

            So in answer to your question: Swept under the carpet!

            blue
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            My husband would flip. There's no way I could discuss anything like this with him but I am so honest that I might talk it out with him whether he wants to listen or not.
          • Flapjack

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            Your question, Lips,  is as interesting as Johnny's. We should be able to discuss different taboos with our partners, I really don't like when things are swept under the carpet.  I just make a big distinction between love and desire. If my partner tells me that someone else is very attractive, I wouldn't be offended or jealous, and I would like to sit and talk about it.
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            Johnny Karp

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            The ideal situation would be when these things are discussed openly between partners. But, as Blue said, if one of the partners is the jealous type, then it's better to never bring up such a topic. Even though that might cause some frustration with possible nasty consequences in the future. 

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