Is she poly?

fun_canuck

New member
I (35M) have recent been getting to know a fellow graduate student (32W) and things have been going really well. I haven't really been getting to talk about ENM with her yet as things only just started warming up a bit, but I have previously mentioned my partner in conversation (by saying things like "we live at Button St. and Wiggle Ave." or mentioning in a group meeting that "my partner also experienced that"). Recently, she's been insinuating that she wants me to come by/hang out with her when her son is with his dad, and so it's getting to the point where I feel like I need to share that I practice ENM. I'm getting nervous because I really like her and we're hitting it off, but understand that's the name-of-the-game when meeting someone outside of ENM circles. That said, I'm hoping that she might still be happy with a platonic relationship if something romantic isn't an option for her.

I know there's no steadfast way to predict if someone you've met through non-ENM circles is into ENM or not, but there's some more green flags that make me hopeful. She recently went broke up with her bf (about 6 months ago), and has made the decision to move into a townhouse with the father of her child/her previous ex. They have concluded that this is best for co-parenting their son and they will each have their own rooms/space in the house to themselves. When she was first contemplating it she noted she was worried about how it would impact her dating life, at which point I shared that anyone who might be uncomfortable with that arrangement/scenario (which ultimately benefits their son) wouldn't be worth her while. We also work adjacently in a very liberal, progressive, and intersectional feminist space (where some others are already outwardly polyamorous), which also make me hopeful that she may amenable to trying ENM.

Anyways, I was just wondering what you all think my odds are and if you have any words of advice on how to proceed with the conversation. She usually brings her dog to school, so I was going to ask her to go for a stroll and come out to her then, but any advice you might have is so greatly appreciated!
 
Walking the dog sounds good. No pressure activity.

You could say what you wrote in your post.

" I think you are neat. I'd be up for dating but need to make you aware that I practice ethical non-monogamy and I already have one partner. I'm also open to leaving it at friends only. I know not everyone is into ENM. So no pressure, and no rush if you need more time to think about it. Or you can say "No, thanks" and I won't take it badly. I hope you take all this as a compliment. I do enjoy your company."

Or similar. You've given her the "outs " for a complete no, and for a "need time to think."

Be ok with it if she declines.
 
Hi fun_canuck,

Perhaps the first thing to do, is to ask the fellow graduate student if she has heard of ENM, and what she thinks of it. Have that conversation before disclosing that you yourself are ENM. Or have that be the beginning of the conversation, leading up to the admission that you are ENM, perhaps asking if that would be a problem for her?

That's my initial thought.
Kevin T.
 
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