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Wednesday, July 10, 2013

A Healthy Attitude About Jealousy and Security

I like finding various introductory explanations of polyamory, because the general public is just starting to understand that poly people are everywhere and nothing is wrong with being polyamorous. has only embraced polyamory for about a year, and answers some basic questions in this article at xojane.com. The form their polyamory takes is that they are couple, and each one of them as individuals sees others (some might think of it simply as an open relationship.)
Q: Don’t you get jealous?
A: YES! ALL THE TIME! Jealousy is something I’ve always struggled with. 

Honestly, part of the appeal of polyamory for me is that it forces me to confront, and then get over, my feelings of jealousy. In the dark days, when I felt my partner was spending too much time with a woman I perceived as a threat, I’d feel scared and angry and ask/demand that they stop spending time with her. But doing that sucked! My partners felt controlled, and embarrassed to have to back away from friends. It must have lowered my esteem in their eyes; it certainly embarrassed me. But worst of all, because I refused to confront my own feelings of insecurity and inadequacy, I didn’t leave myself any opportunity to grow. 

Keep in mind, I didn’t start down the polyamory path in order to get over my feelings of jealousy. But the progress I’ve made and the promise of a life mostly unburdened by it has helped motivate me to continue on, even when it’s been hard. 
People in monogamous relationships also experience jealousy, by the way.
Q: Are you afraid someone will steal him away?
A: Igor is a catch. I have no doubt that if he’s not very selective in who he dates, someone will try. Who knows, this person may be better than me in every way. At that point it will be up to him to decide whether everything we built is less valuable to him than the promise of a future with someone better. 

Him choosing to leave me is not my preference. I have no desire to trade him in. I highly value what we have. 

But if he doesn’t, tying him down so he can never figure out that he could do better isn’t a win. It’s sad. If he decides to leave, the way I try to see it, we’ve really both won. I don’t want to be with someone who wants to trade up more than they want to continue our growth as a couple

Again, this is just one form of polyamory. There are closed and open triangles and triads, and various forms of quads, and so on. What works for some doesn't work for all. Nobody should be denied their rights to live out their relationships and, if they want, marry, whether that involves a closed monogamous relationship or an open polyamorous relationship, or something else.
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