Being in a polyamorous relationship, or ‘poly’ as known by the society, means having multiple committed relationships with the knowledge, support, and trust of the other partners involved. Think of it as you living together with your girlfriend who you kiss and nuzzle and fuck, just like in a normal relationship, only that your girlfriend is seeing another guy and you have two other girls you see with a varying degree of frequency. More than two people in a relationship used to be considered a crowd, but that is no longer the case as more people jump into the love bus.
Polyamorous relationships are on the rise and although tracking the exact number of individuals in such relationships is an unenviable task, statistics from relationship therapists and dating websites suggest that these kinds of relationships are on the rise. As a matter of fact, a Canadian court recently granted three adults in a relationship equal parenting rights to a child in an unprecedented move that is unlikely to be the last.
The hook-up culture
We are currently living in a generation of ‘not being in love.’ While it feels like people are together, it is more of being scared to see each other with somebody else and getting heartbroken in the process than being truly in love. Polyamorous relationships may actually have been borne out of a compulsion to fuck many people. Some people even swear by it, claiming it is a return to ‘the human nature’ before the Western definition of marriage came into existence and suckered everyone into believing in the romantic love ideals.
Others think it is just an excuse to cheat, borne out of the current generation’s gung-ho approach to jumping between the sheets on the first date. The truth may lie somewhere in between as far as The Porn Dude is concerned. Some argue that being open about your other attractions could make people less inclined to cheat. The fact that the majority of humanity is not a monogamous sort of adds credence to such an argument. In theory, about half of people in monogamous relationships have cheated at least once which should be enough to question the number of polyamorists in the planet. Maybe they have been there all along, only hiding in a closet?
While the ‘millenial’ generation is being blasted, the popularity of dating apps like Tinder and Grindr is hard to argue against. If you have not been using dating apps, then you will be amazed by the number of people that have listed “poly” or “non-monog” in their profiles. The only worry is; how do people in such relationships deal with the inevitable jealousy that crop from having multiple sexual partners? This kind of relationship is apparently not for the whippersnappers who are not ready or willing to take the plunge into open relationships.
Polyamorous relationships are nothing new, having existed throughout history. As a matter of fact, monogamy came about due to the need for financial security and ownership of property, especially private land. It made sense for two parties to settle and ensure the property ownership was inherited by their offspring. What’s new, according to Diane Cameron, a relationship coach specializing in polyamorous relationships is that people are now more open to talking about it as opposed to say, a decade ago. “I think what’s new, is the fact we can talk about it a bit more and the fact that the glorious internet gives us the ability to meet like-minded people,” she says.
Why are these kinds of relationships on the rise?
To start with, people are now asking more questions about what they want from their relationships. Part of polyamorous relationships is all about dismantling the idea that one can have all their needs fulfilled by one person. According to Psychotherapist Esther Perel, who runs a TED talk show, monogamous relationships place undue pressure on one party.
“We have a romantic ideal in which we turn to one person to fulfill an endless list of needs: to be my greatest lover, my best friend, the best parent, my trusted confidant, my emotional companion, my intellectual equal,” she says.
According to her, given an opportunity, every human being would like to have more than one person caring and profoundly thinking about them. Hard to argue against such sentiments.
Another reason for the rise of polyamorous relationships could be people are more educated about their choices with more research being conducted on the topic. With research and education comes the decrease in stigma against the practice with more people embracing a far more fluid understanding of sex, relationships, and sexuality.
The rise of the internet has revolutionized communication, making more poly people to not only be recognized but also connect with each other. They no longer have to hide as the practice is now more widely accepted by the society. With the number of religious people declining by the day, more people are willing to accept the idea that there is more to sexuality and relationships than just having one partner.
Whether you think polyamorous relationships are ethical or not, they are certainly more visible now than ever before. What’s The Porn Dude’s position on the matter? People are free to date, love and fuck whomever they please. Whether I’m willing to commit myself to such an arrangement is an entirely different matter.