Can't knock it 'till you try it.
Polyamory is a hot topic right now — and a polarizing one. Many people wonder if polyamory is a choice or an identity. While understanding the facts about any subject can help us make an informed and empowered choice, they don’t help us get to the root of our fears.
The real reason polyamory scares us is very simple: We are afraid we won’t be loved.
Hang on, don’t deny it yet.
Here are some common concerns, let’s see how it all breaks down to the same basic problem:
1. We're jealous and afraid we're missing out on something.
This taps into our fundamental feelings of fear and anger when we think someone has something better than we do, or something we deserve. We allow our minds to envy a person, place, position, or possession. Our minds can get paranoid and we end up feeling all alone or foolish.
2. We're possessive over potential mates.
We feel possessive because we think we own or have rights to something or someone. Granted, if you are in an agreed upon monogamous relationship, you may have "rights to" or a "claim" on someone, but that's because you are in an agreement. We all know that agreements can be open to negotiation.
To think that your partner cannot approach you for negotiation is simply entitlement.
3. We believe polyamory is a sin.
Some of us are raised in religions or dogmas that hold monogamy as the only or most cherished form of romantic and sexual love. You may believe that you are violating a sacred contract to consider or participate in polyamory.
If that belief structure conflicts with your desires to love more than one person at a time, be kind to yourself as you wrestle with it. Just a word as devil's advocate: many of these belief structures also condemn divorce and serial monogamy.
4. We're worried about everyone else's reaction.
We want to please the people we love, so choosing a path in life that disappoints our loved ones is tough. We really want to avoid being judged. Sometimes if we stray too far from family and friends' expectations, they may avoid you or topics in conversation — we even run the chance of them disowning us.
Feeling afraid of losing our love is a huge motivator to avoid challenging our beliefs, social circles and ourselves — of course we want to be loved. The reason we are scared of polyamory is because we want to maintain our structure of love.
The reason we should not be afraid of loving more than one person is because love is not limited in and of itself.
Many, many people love more than one of their children at the same time, so why should this be different than loving more than one partner at a time? The best way to begin expanding our ability to tolerate the fears of polyamory is to begin to love ourselves.
As we become more accepting of our desires, it will become easier for us to decide what is best for ourselves.
You may decide that polyamory isn’t your thing — it is an extremely vulnerable and open way to live — and that’s OK. But don’t decide that out of fear. If you are really questioning if polyamory is for you then practice good self care and investigate.