Have you always known if you are mono or poly?

I really dont know one way or another. I dont have a gut feeling that tells me im poly or that I am mono for that matter. Likewise I am attracted to both males and females (I have never had any sexual relations with females but am open to doing so) what does this make me? Does it matter?
Have any of you ever wondered these same things or did you just know? I am also only 20, and have only had 2 relationships before so I am new to allll of this stuff in general! :eek:
 

GroundedSpirit

New member
I really dont know one way or another. I dont have a gut feeling that tells me im poly or that I am mono for that matter. Likewise I am attracted to both males and females (I have never had any sexual relations with females but am open to doing so) what does this make me? Does it matter?
Have any of you ever wondered these same things or did you just know? I am also only 20, and have only had 2 relationships before so I am new to allll of this stuff in general! :eek:

I think you hit ! It DOESN'T matter. Avoid labels whenever possible :) Labels can put boxes around things that shouldn't be confined.
What matters is that you learn to love & be loved (including by yourself). Numbers don't matter, gender doesn't matter. It just needs to be real & from the heart.
The "wondering" is a natural part of exposure to something new. Try to never lose that ! When we lose our sense of wonder we are dead husks.

GS
 

MonoVCPHG

New member
I've always been mono and have celebrated realizations in this of late but Grounded Spirit is right..it doesn't matter :):)
 

Bowvine

New member
There has not been a moment when I knew either way. I was raised and learned from a ripe early age to be mono. I attended a Catholic school from k-8 grade. I always crushed hard as youngin and beyond. But I was mostly faithful to whoever I was seeing through misery and bliss.

As I am new to all of this, I am not fully comfortable calling myself poly. I think of it as an exploration. I am exploring connections with people and getting to know myself and my partner in a much closer, open way.

I have often questioned am I just one way, is it all black and white? Are my beliefs important enough to me not to change them? Am I willing to shift? What will it mean for my future for my partner? What will my family say?

What I am learning is it does not matter the label I put on it or what others think. All that matters is what does and doesn't work for me and my partner.

I often think about what I would be like without societal influences at every turn, how would I view beauty? How would I view myself? What would be truly important to me?

Anyhow, I'm rambling, but I have never "just known". I'm still figuring it out. But I do like what I am finding :)
 

rosevett

New member
... "wondering" is a natural part of exposure to something new. Try to never lose that ! When we lose our sense of wonder we are dead husks.

GS

Isn't there a pearl thread - not sure how to move this quote but I SO THINK it fits..and I am in agreement with everyone so far - it doesn't matter. I'm one of those label hating people - but then I always KNEW I could love more then one person wholey it wasn't till recently that I found loves that could live that way with me..I'm over 40, it took a while. best wishes on your journey.
 
you guys are totally right, I figured it doesn't really matter but in a way it would be nice to be able to identify as either mono or poly.

It must seem like I am very big on labeling by the sound of my posts,
I'm not really...I'm just struggling to understand something new and where I fit within it, in the scheme of things.

Grounded Spirit you are 100% right, I should have enough confidence in the fact that I am capable of loving and being loved and that I am open-minded individual.... to throw away these labels.
 
C

Ceoli

Guest
Well, in some ways it matters in that you're asking questions that encourage you to look within. That's great. Whatever label get's put on what you find has little to do with the reality of your experience.

I simply identify as someone who is open to relationships in whatever form they present themselves to me. At this point, those relationships are poly in nature and they're what works best for me, but doesn't change who I am. If at some point in life the relationship that works best for me is monogamous in nature, it still wouldn't change who I am and how I identify.
 

AutumnalTone

New member
It must seem like I am very big on labeling by the sound of my posts,
I'm not really...I'm just struggling to understand something new and where I fit within it, in the scheme of things.

Grounded Spirit you are 100% right, I should have enough confidence in the fact that I am capable of loving and being loved and that I am open-minded individual.... to throw away these labels.

There's absolutely nothing wrong with labels. Labels are nothing more than descriptions of what what's happening or what something is. Labels are not evil, little boxes that trap people--they provide important information.

Indeed, without having terms to describe things, we can't really discuss anything. And if folks try to stretch terms to cover more territory than those terms should cover, then we can't truly discuss anything because we'll have no damn clue what it is we should be discussing.

The question as to whether you do poly or not is simple: do you engage in multiple, loving, romantic relationships? If you do, then you are doing poly.

I know I'm cut out to do poly because I wondered why I was expected to have only one girlfriend from the moment I figured out girls were suddenly really attractive. For me, there was never any question of whether or not I wanted more than one relationship at a time. There was only a question of whether I would find partners who were also up for it.

I also do hetero romantic relationships. I self-describe as straight not because there's an evil, little, label box that I fell into and I have to conform to it, but because it describes accurately the fact that I don't find men attractive for romantic relationships. There are folks who self-describe as bisexual because they do both hetero- and homosexual relationships. There are folks who self-describe as gay/lesbian because they do homosexual relationships exclusively.
 
There's absolutely nothing wrong with labels. Labels are nothing more than descriptions of what what's happening or what something is. Labels are not evil, little boxes that trap people--they provide important information.

Indeed, without having terms to describe things, we can't really discuss anything. And if folks try to stretch terms to cover more territory than those terms should cover, then we can't truly discuss anything because we'll have no damn clue what it is we should be discussing.

The question as to whether you do poly or not is simple: do you engage in multiple, loving, romantic relationships? If you do, then you are doing poly.

I know I'm cut out to do poly because I wondered why I was expected to have only one girlfriend from the moment I figured out girls were suddenly really attractive. For me, there was never any question of whether or not I wanted more than one relationship at a time. There was only a question of whether I would find partners who were also up for it.

I also do hetero romantic relationships. I self-describe as straight not because there's an evil, little, label box that I fell into and I have to conform to it, but because it describes accurately the fact that I don't find men attractive for romantic relationships. There are folks who self-describe as bisexual because they do both hetero- and homosexual relationships. There are folks who self-describe as gay/lesbian because they do homosexual relationships exclusively.
you have some really nice points.

I think maybe labeling just isnt for me as I can clearly put myself in any label. I'd like to one day to experience a romantic relationship with a woman, and a romantic relationship with more than one person, but I am not certain that either of those two things would work out successfully for me. I am okay with this though.

I read somewhere online, never to "try out" being poly for someoneone if your not poly. This really through me for a loop. Here I am 100% new to the idea of polyamory, how am I expected to know what I "am"? Is it unfair that I shouldnt be able to pursue a relationship with a poly man i adore, simply because I dont know exactly how to define myself? I think so.
 

redsirenn

New member
glowinthedarkstars;16168/ said:
I read somewhere online, never to "try out" being poly for someoneone if your not poly. This really through me for a loop. Here I am 100% new to the idea of polyamory, how am I expected to know what I "am"? Is it unfair that I shouldnt be able to pursue a relationship with a poly man i adore, simply because I dont know exactly how to define myself? I think so.

- Yes, I remember reading this too. Thankfully, I talked to my bf (I call him my manfriend for fun) and told him that I don't think the shape of the relationship matters... only that my core needs are met and i am satisfied.

Anyhow - the judgment didn't seem "fair" to me either.

Anyways - I'm going to go, feeling sick and faint.
 
- Yes, I remember reading this too. Thankfully, I talked to my bf (I call him my manfriend for fun) and told him that I don't think the shape of the relationship matters... only that my core needs are met and i am satisfied.

Anyhow - the judgment didn't seem "fair" to me either.

Anyways - I'm going to go, feeling sick and faint.

agreed!
awh you poor thing, get some rest and feel better!!
 

crisare

New member
I read somewhere online, never to "try out" being poly for someoneone if your not poly. This really through me for a loop. Here I am 100% new to the idea of polyamory, how am I expected to know what I "am"? Is it unfair that I shouldnt be able to pursue a relationship with a poly man i adore, simply because I dont know exactly how to define myself? I think so.
That doesn't play for me. That's like telling someone they can't try a new food unless they know they're going to like it and eat it. IN that case, it pretty much encourages people to NOT try it.

Now, from the standpoint that people aren't food :), you don't want to enter into a poly relationship with someone and wind up hurting them badly because you discover that poly isn't for you (or getting hurt yourself, which is also a possibility). I'd say a better guideline is that if you're not sure and wanting to explore poly, then be HONEST and up front with potential partners. (Which is always a good idea anyway.) I certainly wouldn't have a problem with a man who said to me "I think I want to do this - I think I want to be involved in this type of relationship with you, but honestly I'm scared and nervous and I'm not sure how it will work out or if I'm able to do this." I'd be willing to explore it more with him and take it slow ... and we could agree that if it wasn't for him, we could end the romantic bf/gf part of the relationship w/out anger and w/out destroying our friendship.

And really, isn't that how all relationships work? Even if you're a mono girl meeting a mono guy, you don't go into a relationship already knowing what's going to happen. There are no guarantees ... you just have to do the best you can being as honest as you can with everyone involved.
 
That doesn't play for me. That's like telling someone they can't try a new food unless they know they're going to like it and eat it. IN that case, it pretty much encourages people to NOT try it.

Now, from the standpoint that people aren't food :), you don't want to enter into a poly relationship with someone and wind up hurting them badly because you discover that poly isn't for you (or getting hurt yourself, which is also a possibility). I'd say a better guideline is that if you're not sure and wanting to explore poly, then be HONEST and up front with potential partners. (Which is always a good idea anyway.) I certainly wouldn't have a problem with a man who said to me "I think I want to do this - I think I want to be involved in this type of relationship with you, but honestly I'm scared and nervous and I'm not sure how it will work out or if I'm able to do this." I'd be willing to explore it more with him and take it slow ... and we could agree that if it wasn't for him, we could end the romantic bf/gf part of the relationship w/out anger and w/out destroying our friendship.

And really, isn't that how all relationships work? Even if you're a mono girl meeting a mono guy, you don't go into a relationship already knowing what's going to happen. There are no guarantees ... you just have to do the best you can being as honest as you can with everyone involved.

Very true. That is exactly what I told P....Im not sure this is for me but id like to give it a shot because I like you and i'm willing to learn about this lifestyle...that i'm open to it.

After P met me he started hooking up / sort of dating, two other girls.. .since then hes come to the conclusion that he no longer wants to date younger girls who arent sure of what they want. because most girls say "im open to poly" when they really arent.

on the one hand I can understand his frustration, but on the other hand, I I was in that same place, and still am in a way. I like being with him, and would hate to think he wouldnt want to be with me because I am not 100% certain I am poly!

Not to sound concieted, but i think ive put a lot into our relationship simply by even accepting, learning and being open to polyamory, learning to deal with the challenges of jealousy, the other girls ect. having only been in one romantic relationship before this one (so practically no experience!) its a big deal!

I like what I've got going for me, but if im honest with myself I can say I don't really know what else is out there, what I could or should get from a relationship, what I want ect. I am happy. Its all super confusing. Labels and life style changes, but P is worth it to me, and I have already learned so much about myself, and I am continuing to do so. :eek:
 

rolypoly

New member
You've all said a lot of what I was thinking, (I hate reading the first post and getting excited to give an answer and then seeing such intelligent answers already posted.) I wanna be smart too. ;)

Anyway, here's my two bits.

glowinthedarkstars said:
It must seem like I am very big on labeling by the sound of my posts, I'm not really...I'm just struggling to understand something new and where I fit within it, in the scheme of things.

This makes me think of when I was studying music. You need to learn the rules to know how to break them. I think labels are similar. When you're first coming out and exploring all the different options there are, (gay, straight, queer, poly, trans, a-sexual, pan-sexual, mono).... Oh my goodness! It helps to have a label to have something to identify with and to find similar people. Once it all becomes old hat, the label starts to matter less and you're just comfortable being YOU.

glowinthedarkstars said:
I read somewhere online, never to "try out" being poly for someone if you're not poly.

So, to answer your original question, I never even considered the notion of poly before I knew what it was. I was strictly monogamous until I was 30. I associated anything other than that with cheating and bad. And I wasn't a bad person, I strove to be everything good that was ever expected of me.

*barf*

I hooked up with a guy who explained what poly was and I stuck my heels in the ground saying, "I could NEVER cheat on anyone. I could NEVER be with more than one person".

As soon as I saw it in a different light, it suddenly felt like I'd slipped into a glove that was made for me! I started to see the potential for more love, communication, exploration, and respect.

I didn't "try out" poly for him, but I did try it out because of him.

My best advice is if you have a gut feeling that what you're doing is to please your man, keep him, not rock the boat, be something you think you should be, etc.... then it's worth taking a closer look at.

If you were introduced to it and just really aren't sure and need to explore more, then here's your opportunity. You may discover you prefer monogamy, and heck, you may discover 10 years from now that poly really works for you. It's all ok. Just be true to yourself.

It's hard to do that at 20. I remember knowing quite a bit about myself then, I just didn't have the life experience for some of it....

roly
 

crisare

New member
After P met me he started hooking up / sort of dating, two other girls.. .since then hes come to the conclusion that he no longer wants to date younger girls who arent sure of what they want. because most girls say "im open to poly" when they really arent.
Hum. I could be way off base here, because all I have to go on is what you've written and it's really hard to get the full story in a couple of posts on the 'net. :)

First of all, I'm guessing that P is as young as you are - or in that range. :)

It sounds to me like P has latched on to the concept of poly as an excuse to ... well .. fuck around. You said in your other thread that:
Ps poly but flirts and makes out (or hooks up sometimes) with loads of girls
So it seems to me that he is acting like he can "hook up" with other girls and he can send you off to have drunken sex with a friend and no one can say anything about it because .. hey man, I'm poly. And if the girls are upset that he's flirting around with yet other girls, they're being unreasonable because ... hey dudes, I'm poly and if you're not, then I don't want to be with you.

So he's giving himself a bye to be promiscuous by simply saying "I told you from the start I was poly" and thinking that's ok because he's being open about it.

The thing is though, just being open with someone about "hooking up" with other people isn't what makes you poly. You seem have come to that awareness in yourself - you said in your other thread that you didn't think what you did was poly. But I think based on what you've written that P is bastardizing the whole concept and using it as an excuse to be ... well ... kind of a jerk, based on what you've written.

It doesn't sound to me like P is actually seeking out mature, connected relationships. It sounds to me like he's fucking around. And that's where SeventhCrow's signature really hits home: It ain't poly if you're just fucking around.
 
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crisare

New member
Oh, and fwiw, I didn't come into the realization that I could be poly until I was almost 40. The concept that I could love two men in the same way at the same time and not be "unfaithful" to either of them ... that blew my mind. It changed everything I thought about myself and my life and how I saw relationships.

But I don't know if I'd have been ready to accept that at 20 or even at 30. :)
 

rubyfish

New member
For me, polyamory was like the key to a lock I didn't know I had. It was the acceptance that it's okay for my life partner to not fill all of me needs. It was the acceptance that I wasn't a bad person for still crushing on people. And strangely, it has allowed me to open to make new friends and tell old friends how I really feel. When I as trying my damnedest to be the best mono person I could be (I don't do anything by half measures), I was afraid to make new friends because I was afraid I might want something more than friendship and I thought that part of my life was over when I got married. I didn't realize that was what I was doing, but now I see it.

It's only been a few months since I've come to this realization and have been on a grand total of one date, but I feel like I came alive when I accepted who I was. I felt the same way when I accepted I was bisexual.
 

Lostkeysintro

New member
I have been a serial monogamist dater since I was 15. It hasn't really worked for me. Even though I have had a string of long term relationships I always felt like there was something messing. A part of me just figured one day I would meet the "One" and everything would fall into place. I am 25 and have never been satisfied with my love life. Even when I had a boyfriend for 5 years. The idea that I could be in love with multiple people at one time and it be acceptable seemed very intriguing to me. For me it's a struggle because when I am with someone I want them all to myself. I am trying to break away from this ideal and live a different type of lifestyle. For me being monogamist seemed like the only option. Your either monogamist or your single and sleeping around. That's the way I saw things. But now there is like this whole new world I didn't even know existed.
 
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