As I entered the world of non-standard relationships, one of the first things that I noticed was that I had a LOT of thinking to do. So many of the things that I just sort of accepted and went along with in life needed to be looked at. This is one of the topics that we'll be looking at during the next discussion group, so I'm very interested to see what types of de/re-programming people feel they've needed to accomplish to make the shift into poly work for them.
For me, questions like: Does it matter what gender the person my partner is interested in is? Does sexual exclusivity equate to love? What about the whole "my other half", "The One", my "soul mate" concept? What is kinky? What is too kinky? Where does personal responsibility start and end in a relationship? Can I really love more than one person at a time? Do my partner's feelings for another person diminish our relationship? Do children need a two parent family to have an optimum childhood? Is seeking pleasure selfish? all came into play.
Examining the vast majority of the positions I was brought up with took some significant bandwidth. Even with being a pretty open-minded sort of person, there is/was plenty of self-examination to do.
Going through this process has been one of the most valuable things I've ever done. Lifetime. It isn't something that will ever be completed, but is a constant re-evaluation. Many of the hard and fast rules have gone to the wayside. There is situational context to be considered in determining the relative morality of a given action or belief. This is squarely at odds with the majority position of right and wrong, yes and no, black and white. Many of the questions that have come up wouldn't have been put in my way outside of polyamory, so I am thankful for this opportunity to learn more about myself and the world around me.
Shoot me a note! What have been your most interesting discoveries in deprogramming your worldview? How has poly shifted your perspectives on life, love, relationships and who you can become?