Leaving somebody you love for somebody you love, and doing it all over again the next day.
My partner, C, and I had planned our first overnight for Friday.
In our practice of polyamory, we believe in open, transparent, and trusting relationships. In a general sense, the night had been pre-negotiated. In fact, both Polyfulcrum and C had been corresponding with each other directly during the day over text messages - where my wife wished my partner to have a great night with me, and C thanked my wife for being in her life. Myself, I found that lovely and heartwarming.
Before leaving for the overnight, I spent fifteen minutes with my wife (Polyfulcrum). I spent that time talking with her, I reassured her that I love her, and that I'd be back when I promised to be back. And then I left.
Then on the following Saturday morning, I spent another fifteen minutes with C - talking with her, reassuring her that I loved her, and that I'd see her again soon. And then I left.
At first glance, polyamory may sound glamorous and exotic.
Yet if I were to account for my own feelings, it's really hard to step away from somebody who loves me as much as my wife, and to think about her remaining at home, lonely, missing me, and quietly attempting to contain her emotions surrounding my sexy/fun time with another partner.
And still it's really hard to step away from somebody who loves me as much as C, so abruptly after our first all-night time together, to think about her missing me - probably lonely - and attempting to reconcile her own feelings with my absence.
Glamorous and exotic? No.
Poly is hard.
The polyamorous lifestyle creates an inherent contention:
- leaving somebody you love for somebody you love is hard - it's a gut-wrenching journey of self-doubt and compromise and it'll force you to reconsider your values and sense of loyalty to all of your partners;
- letting your husband go on an overnight to nurture a growing, important relationship with another woman is hard;
- bravely seeing your partner off so that he can return to his wife and family - and patiently waiting for him on the sideline - is hard.
Poly is hard. Not everyone can do this. How fortunate I am to have loving, transparent, and compassionate connections in my life who work just as hard at transforming that inherent contention into opportunity for everyone.