Why and how did you get into poly?

What type of poly origin did you have?

  • I've always had poly tendencies and never really took to monogamy

    Votes: 43 12.6%
  • I've always had poly tendencies and tried to be monogamous before

    Votes: 123 36.1%
  • I fell in love with a poly person and have adapted to the lifestyle

    Votes: 51 15.0%
  • I read or heard about someone else's poly experiences and thought it could work for me

    Votes: 42 12.3%
  • Other

    Votes: 82 24.0%

  • Total voters
When I met Fly, he was coming off a bad, shit-hit-the-fan breakup, and told me that because he felt he was incapable of monogamy, he could never offer me exclusivity. Being a virgin and having had very limited experience with relationships, I decided to try it out with him and see how it went. Turns out, it went pretty well! :D

So after establishing our open relationship, I started to notice that where Fly had fuck buddies, I ended up with true FWB who never really went away. Even when we weren't physically intimate anymore, we kept in touch, went to movies, etc. I was recently invited to the baby shower of a couple I slept with about 5 years ago. Apparently, I'm not great at letting go. :rolleyes:

I'm a nerd and took a lot of workshops about sex once I started having it, and ended up taking one at the Center for Sex Positive Culture (http://thecspc.org/ - if you're in the Seattle area this place is an awesome resource for a variety of sexuality-related stuff). Looking at their class calendar, they had one called "Poly 101," and the description really captured my attention.

In the workshop, it was a huge a-ha! moment. THIS is who I am! I so identified with the stories the presenters told, and began to understand that I wasn't completely bizarre for building all these long-lasting relationships with the people I slept with. It helped my boyfriend understand me better, also. He used to - and still does - shake his head at how complicated my love life looks next to his. :) But now he gets that it's my nature to bond, and he supports my sometimes rocky journeys loving other people.

I grew up watching disney princess movies and believing the happily-ever-after of monogamy. Now, I'm still a goo-ball romantic, but I believe in the happily-here-and-now-for-as-long-as-it-lasts instead.
I learned about poly via a colleague on a film shoot. She was producing the project and came across as a very interesting person, so I googled her and found her blog, in which she wrote about being both polyamorous and a swinger. She's a published writer and very talented, so it was a good read. About a year later, my marriage fell apart, and as I contemplated being single again, I remembered her blog and started reading up on poly (I knew the swinging she wrote about was not for me), and then chose to embrace poly for myself.
Last edited:
I had been in a relationship for four years, and for the first time found myself attracted to someone other than my boyfriend to the point of worrying I would cheat on him. I was still wildly in love with my boyfriend and had no desire to break up with him or lie to him, and I wasn't sure what to do, so I turned to the internet.

I did some reading of advice columns about cheating, and one of the things that came up was the possibility that someone experiencing what I was feeling could be polyamorous. More Googling, and boom, polyamory discovered.
Even though monogamy had never really made a lot of sense to me, I'd allowed myself to be assumed* into a series of monogamous relationships from my mid-teens to my mid 30s. Finally I'd had enough and had managed to scrape together the intestinal fortitude to tell my now-BF that I wasn't looking for a happily-ever-after one true love deal when he asked on our 2nd or 3rd date where I saw the relationship going. He said "Oh, ok. You're Poly?"

*Exclusivity tends to be assumed over here from the first date on. I gather it's different elsewhere, particularly in the US.
"Why Poly?" - What would you answer?

So, I'm pretty open about my life. Lately I've found myself among inquisitive and sceptical people a lot, and the question that keeps popping up is


Why do I want to live my life this way?

With my friends I have long and thoughtful discussions about how it all came to this point and what I feel about the pros and cons etc. To annoying guys in bars I simply say " because I can" and start a conversation with someone else. But I guess I'm looking for a simple one-or-two sentence answer that is not too flippant and yet not too complicated ... and I haven't come up with it yet.

What would you say if you had to answer the 'poly? why?' question?
"Because I have more love to give than one person can take."

"Because I'm hard to please, I need to two to try harder."
Because I fell in love :)

Not ensured that this solves the confusion (far from it mostly), but that usually is my answer.
I'd just toss it back to them -- why not?

But, if you want something a little different, perhaps "Because it suits my personality and desires, and has been a good fit for me and my partners. I know it's not for everyone, but I appreciate the honesty and freedom."
"Because it works for me."


"Because we worked it out that way so I didn't have to choose between two incredible people who love me."
Last edited:
You asking me "Why" is like me asking you "Why NOT?" Different people are after different experiences.

I think you could mean "What do I get out of it?"

I get intensity in loving and relating. I also get a shot at having that concurrently with several partners if all are willing to share that.

Last edited:
"Because love is a rare enough thing in this world that I don't think we should let ANY of it slip away without consideration."

Jane("More-Love-is More-Better")Q
Last edited:
I had read Heinlein too, but just assumed that like most concepts in sci fi that it was just made up stuff. My life is filled with sci fi's empty promises of future worlds where people live incredibly long lives, visit beautiful worlds, and of course, as equally untrue, have open relationships.

So I chalked the whole lot into the imagination bin of my mind, and didn't revisit it until 30 yrs later.

It was the Internet that made me realise that some beliefs that I thought were fantasy can or true, right now, in this world. Thats how i rediscovered my poly nature. If not for that, I would still be miserable and not really know why. It's been life changing to finally be comfortable with who I am. And it is my wife Aquarius who's given me the support to be myself.

I like the subversiveness of "Why not?"

It neatly and succinctly shifts the burden of proof back on the person asking: I don't need to justify being polyamorous nearly as much as they need to justify the normalization of monogamy.
I've been wondering, though, if "Why not?" opens the door too easily to the endless list of anti-poly sentiment. I can already hear in my head some possible responses like jealousy, lack of commitment and faithfulness, insecurity, damaging to children and families, immoral...

I could address each and every one, of course, but it would take time and patience and why put myself through all that for the average individual? I think I prefer the "Because it works for me" response if I'm looking for a short and sweet end to the conversation because it's not really something they can argue against.
It's a good question. Not sure I have a good answer for it... but I'll throw this out there:
"I prefer autonomy-based relationship rather than possessive-style relationships"

And to the jealousy argument, which is usually the pinnacle for monogamists, I like to remind people that jealousy is just another emotion to be managed, like anger. We don't tell people not to drive because they might get angry at the other drivers, we tell them to manage their anger better.
This has never actually come up in real life for me. I am kinda looking forward to when it does!

I would say 'It works for me.' If they asked more questions and seemed open to hearing my response, I would answer. If they seemed to be argumentative about it, I would just move on.