Now that I’m on meds, and feeling and functioning much better, I think I’ll try to do a new blog post weekly. Probably on Thursdays because I have an odd work schedule and Thursdays and Fridays are my weekend.
My wife and I have been discussing our relationship and being poly lately and I wanted to share some of that. We both identify as relationship anarchists because we don’t care much for rules and we like to be able to have all of our relationships evolve into whatever they want to be naturally. For me that’s a real big part of being poly, not just having multiple loves but being able to have any other relationship be what it is without trying to force it into a certain shape.
Rules are not always bad and they work really well for some people, but I always bristle at the restriction. But that isn’t to say that my partner has no say. Instead of discussing what rules we have and what we are and are not allowed to do we discuss our needs, desires, and considerations. Are these different than rules? Yes, because they are not set in stone or a red line that is not to be crossed. People use rules to protect themselves and their relationships and we achieve the same with being considerate.
So what we do is talk about what needs we have, such as “I need x amount of time with you” “I need reassured often that I am loved” “I show my love physically and need time when I am held and we cuddle non sexually to feel loved”. These are things we need from our relationships. Ideally these are things that we need from any relationship that we are potentially in, but sometimes special cases sneak in too that may be needs or may just be desires. Someone may say that they need their partner there every night, but do they really need a partner with them every night to feel loved and have a successful relationship or are they afraid of losing their partner or feeling alone and vulnerable?
We also talk about our desires. These are things we want out of our relationship or from our partner but we try to avoid making demands. This may be things like “I want to hear about the people you are seeing, because I like to know what’s going on in your life” “I want a heads up if someone is coming over because I’m an introvert and don’t like surprise visitors”. These are things we want and it can sometimes help to recognize them as desires and not needs. I may be inclined to say that I need to know when someone is coming over but really sometimes I like surprises and if I get along with the person then it’s never that hard to adjust once they’re there.
And so with our partner’s needs and desires in mind we practice being considerate of each other. Just like you are considerate to friends or loved ones who you don’t do something around because they dislike it. Your friend never said “Don’t put a horror movie on when I come over” and it definitely wouldn’t end your friendship, but you don’t do it because you know that they hate horror movies. Anyone I love is going to be on my mind and so I practice being considerate of what they need and want because I care about them.
This is how we take care of each other and keep each other in mind while practicing relationship anarchy. One vital part is, as always, communication. Without talking about your needs and desires, sometimes for your own benefit as much as your partner’s, you cannot be considerate about them.
Feel free to comment about how you poly or any other thoughts, I love to hear from people who are reading my blog.