How does polyamory work

Polyamory: Can you love several people at the same time?

Most of us strive for a monogamous relationship. One partner, loyalty and commitment. No other relationship will be tolerated - this is the current relationship model in our society. But what about other models? Even if other forms of relationships than monogamous are viewed with suspicion, one really has to ask oneself honestly: Are we made for monogamy or don't the countless affairs and infidelities speak a different language? And if so: Wouldn't an open model based on honesty without secrecy be more appropriate?

That is exactly what people live who have chosen polyamory. You have several relationships at the same time. That means: If you fall in love with someone other than your current partner, then allow yourself to follow your feelings. Anyone who is in a monogamous partnership comes to the point that they have to break up in order to pursue their feelings, or that they secretly start an affair or that they forbid their feelings.

Polyamory vs. open relationship

It is different with polyamorous people: They deal with it openly and allow feelings for the third person in the group. But don't confuse polyamory with an open relationship. In an open relationship, there is a steady partnership, but both are allowed to pursue their lust with others. But that only means that they have sex with others, the feelings stay with their main partner. Both tell each other honestly about their infidelities, but the infidelities remain exactly that: side scenes.

In polyamory, both partners allow each other to find other people interesting, but not only sexually, but completely and completely. You love two people, so to speak, or three or more, if you fall in love several times. Because it's not just about three people involved, there can also be far more partners and thus relationships.

At this point it is surely clear that this type of relationship is even more fragile and complicated than an open one. Because with the latter you can clearly separate sex and feelings. Polygamy is really about multiple equal relationships that coexist.

Polyamory = emotional chaos?

Sounds like emotional chaos and that's exactly what can happen quickly. Because what if one of the two partners falls in love with someone else and starts a relationship, but the other doesn't? If both partners have someone else they still love, it will certainly be easier.

It also gets complicated when both fall in love with one and the same person, in other words: one of them lives out his bisexual feelings (in the case of heterosexual couples) and from now on there are three. Nevertheless, this kind of love triangle is more of a special case. Normally the relationships are managed individually, i.e. only one partner is with the third in the league, the other is only friends with him, but no longer. Regardless of the constellation: What is important in any case is the knowledge and consent of all partners.

The basic idea of ​​polyamory

Even the term polyamory shows that it is primarily about the emotional component. "Polys" is Greek and means "many" and the Latin "amor" is self-explanatory. This form of relationship emerged more and more in the 1990s and wanted to deliberately differentiate itself from the sexual freedom of free love of the 1968s. For her followers, to love polyamorous means above all to have feelings for more than one person. It's not primarily about sex.

The basic idea of ​​polyamory is on the one hand not to allow just one love, but to love several people. Normally - if there is one normal - in our society, thanks to the longer life expectancy, you rarely have a single life partner in your life, but rather several life partners whom you love. However, socially accepted only as monogamous relationships one after the other and not at the same time.

The fact that our society perceives this model as normal does not have to be seen as god-given. Finally, there are also societies in which, for example, plural marriage is viewed socially and perceived as normal. So it is really allowed to critically question the common forms of relationships from time to time.

The second basic idea of ​​polyamory - and it is very beautiful - is to be able to be happy for your partner. If he's happy, then so am I - that's the idea. So if the partner enjoys the feeling of being in love with another person, then I am happy for him, precisely because I love him. Without being jealous.

Possible problems of polyamory

If there are several partners, this of course also means that you are working on relationships on several fronts. Everything that is discussed and worked out in a monogamous relationship at the beginning of the relationship is therefore done twice and three times. And the subject of jealousy can certainly not always be avoided, because how do you feel when you know that the person you love is currently in the arms of someone else? Not everyone can cope with that. And it takes a lot of strength and discipline to divide your time fairly between the two or more partners without one being neglected.

In addition, it will always be the case that you love one person more than the other. So do you classify your partnerships as one, two and three? Which of your partners do you go on vacation with and who takes care of you when you are sick? All questions that will arise.

Conclusion: polyamory means work

The fact is that most polyamorous people are over 30 and live alone. Because if you have two or more relationships at the same time, which partner should you live with? And if you share your everyday life and your four walls with a partner, how should you integrate the third or fourth person?

Because of all these problems, a polyamorous relationship requires significantly more communication and rules to function. So simple is really different. But there are certainly people for whom this relationship model is exactly right.

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