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Old 02-04-2011, 02:55 PM
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MMMark MMMark is offline
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Default In a V, are relationships entirely independent, or not?

Fri. 11/02/04 09:55 EST
. post #4

During a recent discussion with a friend of mine about V geometries, I stated that I thought it was possible for the hinge's relationship with one arm to affect (her) relationship with the other arm, because people naturally perform comparisons and (re)evaluations. My friend asserted that this would never happen with HER, and any change in her feelings toward a lover would be dependent ONLY on that lover.

As an example of what I was talking about, let's suppose that a second man joins an existing man/woman couple, thereby forming a V. Let's suppose further that the woman finds sex with the second man CONSIDERABLY more exciting and satisfying than sex with the first man.

Isn't it at least POSSIBLE that this new knowledge might affect the woman's relationship with the first man? For example, isn't it at least possible that she might prefer to spend more sexual time with the second man, and less sexual time with the first?

Now, the above is only one crude example out of many, and it is somewhat fictitious.

What I'm trying to get an idea of is this:

"In theory," or "ideally," polyamory might suggest that relationships are independent.

In practice, I suspect this is somewhat utopian, and that polyamorous relationships involve varying degrees of INTERdependence, depending on the individuals involved, since people naturally perform comparisons and (re)evaluations.

So, I'm interested to hear the thoughts and experiences of people who have been practicing polyamory. Don't be shy about asking me to clarify.

Last edited by MMMark; 02-04-2011 at 03:15 PM.
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Old 02-04-2011, 05:56 PM
AutumnalTone AutumnalTone is offline
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Meh. I doubt there's much effect, personally. As with any part of the human experience, there's going to be a range of behavior exhibited. I suspect the number of folks who would do that sort of comparison shopping are in a minority.

To continue with your example, I've not ever thought "This one is much better at fucking than that one" and then spend less time naked with the latter. Srsly, if I'm pleased and happy with the relationship, then I engage in it fully and won't cut any part of it down because I could conceivably get better with a different partner.

And that's real world experience talking.
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Old 02-04-2011, 06:05 PM
Fidelia Fidelia is offline
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There is a wealth of information on this topic already on this forum. Try a search for V relationships.
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Old 02-04-2011, 08:27 PM
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I don't compare my partners in terms of this one I do this with and this one I do that, but I do notice differences. Its hard not to. I enjoy somethings with some partners more than others at different times and for different reasons.

Really though, for me its kind of one of those things where I am interested in the differences as I would be about the differences in greeting cards. Its definitely not worth contemplating all that much. I note it, smile about it and get about being with who I am with for who they are. I hope that makes sense.
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Old 02-04-2011, 09:26 PM
Ariakas Ariakas is offline
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I actually love the difference in my lovers...I always have. I celebrate them...

I like the same back to me. I like knowing why I am different...not better not worse...different.

As for relatinshionships being independent...that totally depends on the people. Some v's resemble emotional triads...some resemble two absolutely distinct mono relationships...its too varied to count.
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Old 02-04-2011, 10:07 PM
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Just another thought; the similarities between my partners make me smile also. Both differences and similarities make me feel all glowy inside. I find it really useful when having issues in one relationship my other partner reminds me that they are similar in a way and that this is what would work for them.
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Old 02-05-2011, 07:28 PM
Tonberry Tonberry is offline
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I think they can affect each other, but I don't think it has to be competition. To take your example again, the woman who realises her new lover does things she likes could tell the first man about that thing she realised she liked, and as a result her relationship with the second man improved her sex life with the first one.
I think you can learn to appreciate people better too, when they're different you can see how they are unique better and love them for how unique they are.

I think anything can influence your relationships, because things that influence you will do so in more than one area. So I do believe one relationship can affect another, but I also believe that a friendship can affect a romantic relationship and vice-versa, and I absolutely don't mean it in a bad way.

I don't think it would work quite the way you say, though. The hinge wouldn't do something that isn't enjoyable, whether there is another man or not. And if the thing is enjoyable, then she'll want to keep doing it with both. It's like... I don't know, say you love pasta, but you also like rice, you're not going to eat pasta all the time and stop having rice.
You might say "yes, but before there was only rice..." but that's not true, because the time you're spending with a lover, you could be spending it with a friend, or alone, etc.

I'm not sure if I'm making much sense here.
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Old 02-05-2011, 09:23 PM
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I fully agree with everything that's been said already. Most relationship adds something to your life so how can a loving one not affect you, which in turn will affect the way you are in your other relationship?

What interests me though is what is really underlying your question? I don't know your back ground but I have noticed that some men get very hung up on their sexual performance when they are in a position to have it compared to someone else's. I think this is behind the "one penis" policy some men like to have in place.

I once spent ages communicating with a guy in the armed forces about his marriage and his wife who wanted to open it up. After days of support and communication his primary concern came down to "But what if she does things with him that she won't do with me; what if he's better than me?"

If your questions have already been answered, great, but if your real concern is this let's talk about it.

For me the quality of the sex is an extension of the quality of the relationship, end of story.

Last edited by sage; 02-05-2011 at 09:26 PM.
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Old 02-07-2011, 12:27 AM
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Sunday, February 06, 2011 19:27 EST
. post #5

Quote:
Originally Posted by AutumnalTone View Post
To continue with your example, I've not ever thought "This one is much better at fucking than that one" and then spend less time naked with the latter.
Admittedly, my example wasn't very good. I think what I was getting at was something more like this:

Harriet loves Arthur, but finds that he tends to interrupt her during conversations. She allows him to do this, preferring not to be confrontational. Harriet meets Andrew one day and these two also form a relationship. Andrew is a superb conversationalist and listener, and he never interrupts Harriet. She finally sees what good conversation really is, and the next time Arthur interrupts her, she admonishes him. She is no longer willing to put up with Arthur's rude interruptions. So, Harriet's relationship with Andrew has affected her relationship with Arthur.

Again, this is fictitious, and I could invent lots of different examples. The examples are meant to show that a person can't (in my opinion) avoid having one relationship affected by the other, if for no other reason than it affects (HER), and she is part of BOTH relationships.

Here's another example:

Let's suppose that only one person addressed the issue I raised. Isn't it at least possible that, as additional responses from different people are posted, my assessment of the original response is potentially affected? What I'm suggesting, in general, is that as additional possibilities become available to us, the values we attach to the existing possibilities, and the order in which we arrange these values, can potentially be affected.

Quote:
Originally Posted by redpepper View Post
...I do notice differences. Its hard not to.
Right, I agree. How could we not notice differences (and, for that matter, similarities)? And is it reasonable to expect that such knowledge would have no effect whatsoever on us?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ariakas View Post
As for relatinshionships being independent...that totally depends on the people. Some v's resemble emotional triads...some resemble two absolutely distinct mono relationships...its too varied to count.
I understand. I only chose the "Vee" relationship as the simplest example of "polyamory in practice" I can imagine. My thinking was that if the principle applies in the simplest case, it will also apply in more complex arrangements.


Quote:
Originally Posted by redpepper View Post
I find it really useful when having issues in one relationship my other partner reminds me that they are similar in a way and that this is what would work for them.
Read this several times, but I don't follow. Could you please rephrase it for me?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tonberry View Post
I'm not sure if I'm making much sense here.
Not only did your entire post make sense to me, it is quite close to what my beliefs are.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sage View Post
Most relationship adds something to your life so how can a loving one not affect you, which in turn will affect the way you are in your other relationship?
Yes. For me at least, this is the essence of it, the crucial concept. Because YOU are affected, anything connected with you is ALSO affected. This seems logical and inescapable to me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sage View Post
What interests me though is what is really underlying your question?
Underlying the question were some insecurities I was experiencing (not sexual ones, necessarily). My friend, who until recently has been mono, told me that her relationship with me would not in any way be affected by her relationship with her other lover (who provides her with a much greater number of "connections"* than I think I ever could). Prior to her "opening up," however, she had told me that when in a happy mono relationship, she never had thoughts about or attractions to any other man, because the fact she was happy prevented her from considering any other lovers, even potentially.

This worries me, because she seems to avow two diametrically opposite claims:
1. One relationship ISN'T affected by another one.
2. One relationship IS affected by another one.

* I'm using the word "connections" in the sense presented on pp 23-24 of the book Love Unlimited:
Interpersonal connections

1. Emotional
2. Physical
3. Recreational
4. Economic
5. Family
6. Spiritual
7. Intellectual
8. Passionate
9. Cultural
10. Esthetic

Last edited by MMMark; 02-07-2011 at 12:47 AM. Reason: corrected typographical error, reworded a passage for greater clarity
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  #10  
Old 02-07-2011, 12:55 AM
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LovingRadiance LovingRadiance is offline
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I'm in a V.

I've always had more than "one love" in my life. Even as a little girl-there were always at least two.

What I get from each relationship is TOTALLY different.

AND

the fact that I have both of them doesn't inhibit me being able to fall in love with someone else.

Happy or no-doesn't impact if I fall in love again-that's impacted by the person with whom I am potentially falling in love with having something about them that I fall in love with.....

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