Challenging the notion that a successful marriage can only involve two partners.
Tuesday, August 14, 2012
A Poly House
There are so many different flavors of polyamory. My favorite particular flavor involves lots of family time, whether it's with the Libertine taking a day off with me, or just spending an afternoon with him and the Princess and my kids. Our children are surrounded by adults that love each other, that support each other. I love that my kids get to see their mother be loved by multiple partners. I love that we are raising them in an atmosphere of honesty and consent and trust. They trust the Libertine, and ask after him when he isn't around. The Monkey is constantly asking if we get to see the Princess this weekend. They love the extended pieces of our family.
In the beginning, there was a lot of fear regarding the kids. The first time the Libertine stayed the night, I made him get up well before the kids and be gone before they were awake. I didn't want to confuse them. Slowly, and sort of by accident (alarm clocks can be cruel), the boys became used to the Libertine being home in the morning. That first morning, we got up and made waffles, and spent a morning being a family. The Mister came home from work (he works 3rd shift) and the five of us played, watched TV, and relaxed. And it was awesome.
We're coming up on six months together, and the Libertine, the Mister, and I are discussing cohabitation. The Monkey and the Mongoose are so used to seeing the Libertine almost every day, going grocery shopping as a family, just being together, that I doubt it will even register to them that this isn't a nuclear family dynamic until they get to the age where they compare against their peers. The Monkey goes to preschool, but at his age he doesn't yet understand what a "normal" family is.
Cohabitation sounds like such a big deal, but for us it's just the next thing. Everyone is on board. The Mister and I are not struggling anymore. We're figuring out how to give everyone alone time, how to give each end of the V a chance to connect on a daily basis. There's a lot of negotiation, and communication. I know that "communicate!" is something you hear over and over in the poly community, but it is so critical that it can't be stressed enough.
Without communicating, I wouldn't know that the Mister just wants to hear "I love you" a little more. Or that the Libertine wanted a space to keep his laptop so that he could work on side projects while at home with us. Neither of them would know that I need at least 30 minutes to myself when I get home, without interruption from kids or dogs or partners, just to recenter.
Right now it looks like we'll be changing things and making a second adult bedroom space within the next 6-8 weeks. The Libertine is keeping his apartment, but at this point he really only stays there 1 or 2 nights a week. We eat dinner together just about every night.
It's truly becoming a poly household, and I couldn't be happier.