"What's Up With Nonmonogamy?"


Well-known member
Cute - and sums up very well what we hash and rehash here every day!

"It's important to think about what you actually want from your relationships because it might not be the same as what you think you're supposed to want."


Well-known member
It's a tumblr blog by a cute girl called Laci Green.

"About me: OHAI! I'm Laci, sex ed activist & YouTuber from Oakland, CA. I make videos to help people learn about sexuality & bodies so they can enjoy them! I like to make people laugh and think, preferably at the same time. You can read more about me & my work here! "


"...and we'll call it a WHEEL!!"

Yah, certainly pleasant, & decently crafted. That's part of the problem.:D

Back in the mid-1990s, there was a poly discussion group that met every few weeks, mostly somewhere in Saint Paul (MN). Mostly good people with a fertile range of experience, & some alternating between public spaces (library, coffee shop) & homes meant we'd see a mix of comfort levels.

(Remember, back then the Internet/WWW was primitive & clunky, if you could access it at all. We relied upon newsletters sent via the Postal Service, & (recently) BBSes on dialup & maybe Usenet, or AOL for the moneyed few.:rolleyes:)

I attended like four sequentially, then pulled a few of the organizers aside. "Two things. First, please stop spending an hour or more at every get-together defining terms & explaining core concepts. Most of us were there before our first time, "

"But... but... what about the new people who show up???"

Now, this is not a good sign. If you've ever trid to organize a group, you may be all too familiar: the mostly imaginary Some People who will do nothing but cause problems, & need to be catered to preemptively, even if this obeisance undermines the entire purpose of the group.

"Type up a one-page handout, or a little brochure. Ensure you put one in their hand the instant you spot them. Secondly, what's up with the topic?"

"What do you mean? We have a new one every meeting."

"Yet each time it was a matter of minutes before it all turned into JEALOUSY: Threat, or Menace??"

"But it's important!!"

"Of course it is, like air, which maybe we should also discuss, right?
"Half the people who showed up tonight know a LOT about dealing with jealousy in ourselves & others, but that's NOT why we go to a get-together like this. Schedule regular meetings that focus on jealousy issues, & nothing else, but ban the topic from general meetings.
"The experienced people are getting bored; that's why some of us sneak off to the kitchen after a few minutes, & you wind up moderating a bunch of noobs & clueless theorists by yourself.
"But most of all, we need to not fall into the trap of constantly re-inventing the wheel."

"Are you saying there's something WRONG with that??"

Oh, sigh. "No. But YES: if you keep trudging around the same safe little plot of turf, & encourage new arrivals to do the same, you are NOT exploring new territory. You begin with an abject fear of making honest mistakes, & enshrining that avoidance turns it into dogma.
"People NEED to blurt stuff out at random or ask questions that make others squirm or find interesting concepts that don't even have names yet. Any of that might be a dead end, but so what? Back up the wagon & try another path. Don't fear error."

A few years earlier, the term polyamory had come into vogue. Someone writing to Deb Anapol's newsletter clarified a problem, saying (I paraphrase, accurately) "I'm polyfidelitous, & polyamory is pretty much just polyfidelity, so that means I'm polyamorous," & then went on to say that open-ended relationships were immoral & NOT poly-anything, & she should know, being polyamorous & all.


I signed up for the Loving More forums in 1998. Still on dialup, but my roommates were usually asleep by 10:00, & I was mostly up to midnight, so plenty of time to figure out this damned Internet thing.

And at one point we got to discussing that very thing. I strongly suggested some sort of central on-line repository for basic poly-centric information, which could be pushed into shape & properly maintained for the edification of all, so that we as a community (& thus also those who'd eventually join us) wouldn't have to get constantly sucked into spitting matches over basic terms & concepts.

"That's the danger of this Internet," I wrote. "As it catches on, people need to keep turning each other back toward a" -- gods help me, I actually used this term -- "common core of knowledge. Otherwise, the so-called poly community is just going to wind up a fragmented bunch of little cliques sharing a language that's only common in a really superficial sense.
"We need to start making maps of the known territory, & sharing them amongst ourselves, so that we have a better chance of doing well when we get lost, intentionally or otherwise."

Hence, the subtitle of Polyamory: Roadmaps for the Clueless & Hopeful.


I've seen dozens of people try to put themselves up as THE authority on polyamory. One guy with a fresh-printed MA Psych set himself up as The Polyologist -- his intent to help steer other polys was likely noble, but (IME) creating a brand mark is usually not a sign of deep thought.

Melita Noel got her thesis (Progressive Polyamory: Considering Issues of Diversity) published twice by Sage, first as an article then a small book. Therein, apparently on the basis of reading four books (including mine & Kaldera's), she damned polyamory for being dominated by caucasians. (Her idea of diveristy mostly consists of running a multi-cultural thrift shop, & no I'm not making that up.)

Anyone else remember Kerista? Then there's Ryam Nearing...:confused: And Deb Anapol, Mystic Life, Kaldera, the UU -- a whole slough have tried to define poly <=> mysticism/religion, which might turn out to be true in the end (I consider myself a sincere "believer, fwiw) but it's a poor stance to begin from, & seems to turn into a never-ending series of books, workshops, newsletters, counseling sessions, retreats, conferences, seminars... with a Guru or two at the center.

That's maybe okey-dokey for a static, well-defined community. Which polyamory ain't. Not to be a knee-jerk iconoclast, but I automatically question ANY atempt to centralize a (thought-)leadership

Heck, I've been accused of Authority as well.:p But my response is always thus: We should ALL be wise authorities on our chosen lifestyle. Some of us are simply better at talking &/or writing, so save yourself some effort & use the good stuff as footnotes & hyperlinks.

So, I guess (IMNSHO) I'd say that Laci Green is cute & smart & well-spoken... but doesn't quite seem to grasp that the little plot of turf she's fascinated with has been well-trod for years or decades or maybe even centuries, & she's practically standing in the middle of Main Street, waving happily back as the drivers honk at her.

To return to the theme (& at risk of mixing metaphors), Green not only needs a map, but really needs (as a self-described educator) to spread the word that MAPS EXIST. Instead, she gives short shrift to the likely sources of her "original" ideas, briefly naming all of SIX precursors (none hotlinked to anything) as "just a few of them!"


Official Greeter
Staff member
In my experience, there's a lot of people out there who don't know the first thing about polyamory/ethical nonmonogamy, and there's plenty of need for the "tired old basics" to be put out there. Relatively advanced and varied poly topics can be found easily enough, you just have to explore this forum.

So no, I don't mind Laci Green publishing an "ABC's" piece, and as such I think it is well done.


New member
I think that the wonderful thing about Laci Green is that she's a voice for her generation. Many young people are still raised in a conservative, sex-negative environment and she is able to present "the kids" with a well-rounded educational view on this stuff. For example, if my 14-year-old sister wants to learn about healthy sexuality, Laci Green is a great resource!


"No. But YES."

there's a lot of people out there who don't know the first thing about polyamory/ethical nonmonogamy, and there's plenty of need for the "tired old basics" to be put out there.
Umm... okay, yeah, but that would kinda be the
we need to not fall into the trap of constantly re-inventing the wheel
part, right...?

All that time, all that energy, all that bandwidth, never to be used productively because those darned imaginary Some People might never have heard of -- hm Wikipedia.:confused:
Relatively advanced and varied poly topics can be found easily enough, you just have to explore this forum.
Yah, sure, if you know what you're looking for before you begin digging. Or, alternately, there's the "panning for gold" strategy, where you read EVERYTHING in hope that some random little nugget will catch your eye.

Problem there is that you'd have to keep up with HUNDREDS of sites. Not so long ago, there were only a scattered few where the term "polyamory" even appeared. Now, it pops up in pretty much EVERY post-magazine site & TV chat & so on. Practically no effort is being made to track these as has been done in the sciences for centuries :eek: with published summary abstracts.

Does Green deserve an attaboy? Certainement!! And I betcha she'd be a LOT more beneficial to this community if someone would direct her toward something beyond the throughly burned-over kindergarten topics. That would be the
Green ... needs (as a self-described educator) to spread the word that MAPS EXIST. Instead, she gives short shrift to the likely sources of her "original" ideas
part. She could've perhaps mentioned THIS site...?

She's half-decent as a sex-ed teacher, well-known & an excellent series of media platforms; if "the kids" listen to her, & she gives good advice, then all is hunky-dory. But I can't see where that qualifies her as any sort of significant authority on polyamory, not dissimilar to Penn Jillette. She might have nice, informative things to say about lesbianism, but perhaps a lesbian voice would be even more authoritative...? So too for poly.

IMNSHO, her Tumblr site is just a bunch of strung-together snippets spotted online, so I'll actualy do something to help out here & fill in blanks:




Surely, Green's a voice for her generation -- her & a few million others. Yet she's saying nothing new about nonmonogamy, & largely parroting stuff that has been said for decades & even centuries.


Official Greeter
Staff member
Wikipedia should be the first place people go to for general info, but not everyone does.