Is it right for a poly person to try to convert a monogamous person to polyamory?


New member
I tried doing a search on this forum to find threads discussing this topic but found surprisingly little. I suppose I also want advice on a specific situation between two of my friends.

One is polyamorous and is very extreme about it. I get the sense that most poly people accept that many people are monogamous and are ok with this. My friend thinks that EVERYONE should be "poly" and that it is unnatural for humans to be monogamous. He thinks this is part of what is wrong with society.

My other friend is in a loveless marriage and has been starved for sex and intimacy for years. She is relatively trapped by circumstances and doesn't really have the option to find a good outlet.

The issue is that even though she has no love for her husband left (they are talking divorce) she is very monogamous by nature (she did explore poly a bit before being married and knows it is not for her). Via the relationship to my other friend, she has been very hurt by his sleeping with other women. He often sees other women and doesn't tell her about them right away but slips up later.

I'm asking this because I often have to field her breakdowns over his actions. He knows he is hurting her as she tells him (and me) all of the time.

Is this how this is supposed to work? He is adamant that he is acting out of "pure love" and that hurt leads to growth. I think that he is hurting her because he is blinded by how much he wants her and is not thinking of her emotional safety. This has been going on for half a year. She breaks up with him every two weeks. I can't tell you how often I have taken calls where she is crying over some new hiccup in the relationship.

What do you think? Is this how this is supposed to be?


Active member
Sounds like heartless dysfunctional bs to me.

No person can or should try to alter another person. Give them info, let them decide whats best for them.

But-no person should he so codependent that they allow someone to treat them like their own personal carpet either.
They are both being dysfunctional.

My reaction doesnt answer your question directly-but I think it answers the underlying question more fully-
My reaction is "don't fuck fragile".
Going through divorce=fragile.
Emotionally unstable =fragile.
Too young=fragile.
Major life catastrophe going on=fragile.

You get the picture?
She is fragile right now. She doesnt need to be pressed to a relationship mono or poly. She needs supportive friends so she can stabilize.

He's being an ass.
She's being a doormat.


New member
IMO, educating people about alternatives is good. Being enthusiastic about your beliefs is good. Thinking your way is the right way for everyone leads to the dark side of proselytizing.


Active member
Hurt leads to growth...therefore no problem if I hurt someone else? Yes, I can see where this could be a very useful philosophy. Moreso for me than for the people I hurt. Does it apply to bank tellers in the banks I rob, too?

Call me cynical but I don't really buy that he's sleeping with all these women and it's all about Twue Wuv. And I certainly don't buy that withholding that information from her when he knows it's going to hurt her is true love. I call it Cover Your Derriere.

Is this woman already having an affair with this man? If so, does her husband know about it? Does she have children?

I can only speak for myself on these matters, but I was in a very similar position to your friend, in a marriage completely broken down as a result of XH's continued lies and infidelity and quite a bit more that doesn't matter for this conversation. I can only say that I personally am VERY glad that I was 100% faithful to my marriage vows--meaning, in part, my children can never find fault with my behavior.

That means something to me, as I watch them deal with the fallout of divorce, to know my nose was completely clean and I did everything to SAVE the marriage, not break it down further. That's has nothing to do with poly/mono. And as worlds-apart as BF and I are on just about every belief, the fact that he respected my marriage rather than push/tempt me to be in a relationship with him gives me increased respect for him; that he had respect for how it would affect my children or my relationship with them. Regardless of what I now know he wanted very badly, he never gave any hint of any interest in me until months after the divorce was final, rather than tempt me at a vulnerable time.

Maybe these things don't matter to your friend, but the point is that this issue is not strictly about poly or mono or converting.

As to trying to convert someone, based on what you say, this is not for her, it's causing her a lot of grief already, and I think she needs to tell him no and he needs to leave her alone. Especially now when she has other emotional upheaval. She doesn't need this.

CUE VIOLIN IN ANOTHER TAB BEFORE PROCEEDING. But read fast, because the clip is short.

Again, from my own experience, I will say that BF feels a LOT of guilt for getting me involved in a relationship that will never lead to marriage, buying houses together, going to family events together, etc., yet it seems very difficult for either of us to cut it off. He's stated often enough that it was selfish on his part, he saw, he wanted, he grabbed, without a thought to how this relationship would affect me. Or my children.

He has personally decided he will never again invite someone into the poly world from the mono world, because he doesn't want to hurt them. From things he's said, I get the impression some of his former girlfriends, from the mono world, felt MUCH more hurt in the end by getting too attached, falling in love, and being devastated that he was married. I simply refuse to get that attached to someone who's not available, and I do not think that's entirely healthy, either. I think routinely about breaking up with him.

I only know what little you've said, but it sure sounds like in this specific case, this guy doesn't really care much about your friend's feelings and how this is affecting her.

I'm sure there are cases where monos have been invited into the poly world, 'converted,' and love being mono in a poly world. I have mixed feelings, because I certainly enjoy his company and feel we've been good for one another and have helped each other grow into better people. So, a blanket statement...I'd hesitate to make one for those reasons. And yet...I'd never do it again. I'd never recommend it to anyone, ever.


Well-known member
He sounds polysexual, not polyamorous. He also sounds unethical/self-centered. It is NOT loving-kindness type behavior to be hurting the person you are dating by breaking agreements. It's not esp "friendly" either. When "love" is used like a weapon, it really isn't love.

She sounds less than self-respecting at this time and not apply loving-kindness behavior toward herself. She sounds fragile and not strong.

She is not done with the marriage, yet she herself is participating in outside relationships. That's not good for her spiritual health if at her core she is monogamous AND monoamorous.

She dates this guy when she could dump him and STAY broken up with him. Thus spare herself the chronic upheaval and disrespect from his shenanigans. That would be better for her emotional and mental health.

You could ask her how you can support her so she can STAY broken up and give herself the time/space to heal and grow strong in her healths.

You could examine why YOU are friends with this ruthless person.

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New member
i view a distinct difference between just playing the field, getting laid by all kinds of people, and actually caring about the people your with, wanting to be with them but also caring how they're doing and knowingly behaving in a manner so as to NOT upset those other people in your life.


New member
I think the answer is obvious for the friend that thinks everyone should be poly. Some people just aren't. I'd never try and force anyone to accept any life style, only respect it.


New member

The "poly" friend sounds like he doesn't really respect consensual non-monogamy if the mono woman in question is cheating. Further, the poly friend appears to be cheating as well.

As for converting a mono... I think that owning a perspective and trying to help others sort out the garbage bestowed by culture and societal norms is important, profound, and healing... but I also think that emotionally abusing others (which is what it sounds like he's doing) is a terrible way to demonstrate the beneficence of having multiple committed relationships.

In a word... yikes. I can only see trouble for those two.


New member
as for those who insist "this is what is wrong with society", ... i think the problem that is so absolutly wrong with society is people telling others how to live.

we're told to be monogamous, ... and that's not working
we're told to be straight, ... and that's not working
we're told we have to work, ... and that's not working
we're told we have to learn, ... and that's not working.

we're not asked "could you just be yourself?, if you are yourself i'll accept you as you are."

some are poly, some are so poly that being stuck mono will break their heart, ... and others are asexual.
some are gay and bi.
some are happiest being stay-at-home parents, or career students (not providing an income, but doing what they love)
some don't want to learn only because they're told they have to, they're told what to learn, and they don't want that, ... if left to their own they'd learn and keep learning, but not because they're told they have to, but because they want to.

what is wrong with society is that it's based on people being told what to do, how to live, who to love, ... who's letting us just be ourselves ? and encouraging us to encourage others to be themselves ?

every dictator has had this problem, telling others what to do, and every time the people are repressed and not given the freedom to excel.

countries that people are let excel, those countries in turn benefit.


Why do you feel you need society's endorsement to "be yourself"? Just fuck 'em. Go "be yourself" instead of navel-gazing about how "society won't let you". Otherwise you are part of the problem. Take control of your own life. If you wait for society to "let you", you will never get to live.


New member
i think that's the attitude of most of us here, telling society to screw off because us being happy is more important to us than denying who we are so society can continue to coddle it's insecurities.


Active member
People can try to convert others to their beliefs or practices until the cows come home. No biggie. Lots of people have only lived monogamously because they didn't know or weren't aware there was any other way to be, so I see no problem with introducing them to the concept of polyamory or other forms of non-monogamy and being quite enthusiastic about it. I don't think there is some big moral quandary produced if a poly person tries to tell someone they should be poly, too. If a person doesn't want it, they are not very likely to adopt whatever is being proselytized to them. If the argument meant to convince them is unwelcome and the person is being pushy and obnoxious about it, they can just tell them to STFU.

What do you think? Is this how this is supposed to be?

I found your post very confusing. What, exactly is the "this" in your sentence?
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