The transition to poly after twenty years of monogamy feels like a galactic sigh of relief. It feels like a roller coaster with ups and downs, intense excitement, and moments of fear. I've been exploring poly lifestyle for six months now. To me poly feels like that smell after a long overdue rain in the forest. It feels like a cleansing rebirth. Poly living has given me a community and liberates my natural expansion of love. Poly wasn't anything I set out to be or do; it was a way of being, a natural expression waiting to come out.
I was raised Jehovah's Witness following rules and avoiding the cardinal sin of masturbation. The only way to think about having sex was to marry as a heterosexual couple. I never touched myself until age 25, when I experienced a vibrator for the first time. I don't recall my first orgasm until age 34, and never experienced orgasm through oral clitoral stimulation until this year. I felt my G spot for the first time this year. Monogamy and a religious upbringing was a safe shell to hide my sexuality.
I heard the terms polyamory and polysexual after taking a series of love, intimacy, and sexuality workshops earlier this year. The foundation for being open to polyamory emerged as soon as I found a safe space to exist without labels. For the first time I didn't have to be gay, straight, monogamous, poly, or bisexual. I was just me - loving. I sat with just me and my heart. I sat with observing how I could begin to love when judgement, fear, or labels weren't in the room.
This is how I jet packed my way into poly just over a duration of three months. All of a sudden I went from being a strictly monogamous person for 20 years to seeing 5 men within my first month of exploration!
Looking back, I realized there were some signs for me to consider that I might be poly. Signs like:
I rarely or never got jealous of my partner(s).
I love deeply, communicating with partner(s) frequently.
I have overwhelming "loving" feelings towards people in general.
I appreciate beauty in many different types of people.
I easily engage in conversation with many different types of people.
I love trying new things with new people.
I feel immense compassion for people and their situations.
I rarely feel threatened if someone has a crush on my partner(s).
I get turned on when my partner attracts attention from others.
I enjoy sharing my friends with my partners.
The first month I rode the glitter and glamour explorations into polyland. I was dripping in what I now know as new relationship energy, times five! I felt on fire in all areas of my life because I was unleashing a true part of my sensuality, sexuality, and was expressing a part of myself I never allowed.
Almost overnight I was toggling up to five lovers. Running from the shower of one lover to a threesome at 8pm down the street, then slipping into bed with my sister's roommate. I wasted no time soaking in overdue intimacy. I was on fire, felt like the sexiest woman on the planet, and finally felt awakened. I was thunderously alive!
Then my sexplorations came to an abrupt stop.
The seriousness of STI's threatened a relationship I had established with a primary lover. I was fluid bonded with a primary and broke an agreement. I had unprotected sex outside of that agreement and my roller coaster came to a dead stop in midair. I was devastated and angry for the first time since my journey began.
I had been so deprived of male intimacy and touch in a truly deep intimate way that honoring agreements to keep myself and a partner safe was lost in the heat of a moment. This was the first time I realized the benefits of being monogamous and thought about going back. I never had to deal with STI testing and having safe sex conversations with so many people. I retracted from sexual activity. I felt like my pace of loving wasn't sustainable at this speed.
I had begun identifying as poly when I broke the fluid bonding agreement with my primary partner. The thought of losing him made me sick and made my heart constricted. We called each other primary partners for safe sex reasons. However, between communicating deeply about each other's dates and being an everyday part of each other's lives in communication, it became apparent I had developed deep loving feelings for him. I was in love and did not want to admit it. I didn't know how being in love fit with this sort of lifestyle.
Learning to love my primary partner, deeply and vulnerably, while in different explorations with other people, made me receptive to hearing the term polyamory and polysexual. I wasn't sure which one I was, but I began learning more about the term poly and all its lingo. I read books and listened to podcasts. I discovered some of my natural behavior--like compersion--has an actual term! It was such a sigh of relief to have terms for the way I'd been feeling since high school.
It was through loving and being loved by my primary, and experiencing compersion with him, that I accepted more about myself. I allowed myself to be comfortable accepting the term poly as a way that fit my love language naturally.
I've re-opened the gates of my sexuality in a more empowering way. I've created sacredness with sexual activity so that I am still deeply connected with my primary lover and feel safe exploring other lovers.
However, poly is not without its bumps in the road. I recently lost a business partner and had to retire a business because she discovered my affiliation with the polyamorous community. That was the first time I was judged for being poly in such a way that deeply and financially affected my life. I am grateful for this, for it unleashed within me a desire to be even more of who I am and create a life where I can be totally open and out-loud poly.
My latest sexy adventure is admitting I wish to explore a deeper relationship with my primary partner and another woman to experience a triad for the first time. I realized my connection with women runs deeper than just one-night threesomes. I have no doubt the ride for this exploration will be quite fun and empowering.
So this is my journey. How about yours? Do you think you may be poly?
If you think you want to give poly a go, but are not sure how to go about it, try these:
6 Ways To Explore Polyland:
- Find supportive peeps. Your people. If you're too timid to attend a poly meetup, at least seek out those friends and family that you know support you no matter what. If you don't have these people in your life already, attend a workshop around love, intimacy, and sexuality.
- Listen to podcasts! Yes! Podcasts like this one are the best way to have an instant community and answer all of your curious questions, even the ones you didn't know you had.
- Take a risk and start dropping the "P" bomb in certain safe places with safe people, so the term polyamory doesn't feel like a foreign space ship just landed on your tongue. The more you're willing to put yourself out there, the better your chances of someone saying, "Me too!"
- Jump right in, baby! When you think about it, the concept of dating is poly, so why not just start dating and notice your feelings and behaviors while toggling different dates? Check in to see if dating multiple people exhilarates your life, or does it feel draining?
- Tell a partner what's really on your mind. Reaching into that deep authentic place in your heart knowing there are risks is the scariest thing you can ever do. However, finding out that your partner is willing to listen or even feels the same way can be the most freeing thing you ever do. Take a risk and tell your partner(s) you are curious about poly!
- Write it out! Write out all your deepest darkest desires and unleash it all on paper first. I did! Just giving what you're thinking and feeling an outlet can help in being honest with yourself first.
Transitions to poly can feel like a roller coaster with ups downs and all arounds, but if it's a natural way of progression for you, it will make you feel alive, awakened, inspired, and loved beyond what you thought was possible.
Be you. Be so you.
Blessings and much poly love,