Comics, love and life
NON MONOGAMOUSLY

Dear Balancing Relationships…

Hi Blue, I’m involved in an intimate (non-romantic) relationship with about ten different people and I’m having serious trouble balancing my commitments without building resentment, causing hurt feelings, or being negligent. How can I work harder to be a more committed and reliable friend?

Dear Balancing Relationships,

While love may not be finite, time certainly seems to be.  I struggle with this myself, being a person that is passionate about many people and projects in my life. This is maybe a cliche poly-people thing, but Google Calendar can really help… or you know, just any calendar that you actively use.

If you’re feeling anxiety about close relationships and how you’re nurturing them, first, check in with yourself.  How often do you ideally want to spend time with this person?  Are you always wanting face-to-face time or will a 30-minute phone chat give you meaningful opportunity to connect for that relationship?  Do you want to spend more one-on-one time with this person or would they get along with another person that you are close with?  Can you schedule a hangout where you would be able to spend time with two of your favorite people at once to help you balance socializing time with other commitments?

Second, check in with your close friend, you may be worried about the amount of time your committing in the friendship but they may be feeling perfectly satisfied with the quantity and quality of time they are spending with you.  Communicate your thoughts and desires, hear theirs, find the intersections. This can also help manage both of your expectations and deepen the bond you already share by verbalizing the relationship’s importance to you and working out how you will navigate that together.

It’s so awesome for you to be thinking about your relationships more deeply, I hope that these thoughts might help!

Take care,

Blue

The Critical Polyamorist: Couple-centricity, Polyamory and Colonialism

Today, for our later-than-average Sharing Is Caring update, I’m sharing with you a write-up near-and-dear to my heart, The Critical Polyamorist on Couple-centricity, Polyamory and Colonialism. A mixture of personal stories, historical context and critical thinking, I hope you get as much out of reading The Critical Polyamorist as I have. <3

 

Dear Meeting My Metamour…

I will be meeting my metamour for the first time in a few weeks and I’m so nervous! I have been in a relationship with T for about a year, T has been in a long distance relationship with M for about nine months. I know they’re in love and M is moving to our city in a few months, so I really want this meeting to go well. Any advice for calming my nerves and starting this relationship between M and I off on the right foot?

Dear Meeting My Metamour,

I think that you want it to go well is a sign that you’re on track! As for calming your nerves, here are my ideas… Talk to T, get vulnerable. It may likely calm your nerves to talk about it with T. Tell T you are nervous, ask them to tell you more about M and for their advice on what you and M might share in interests. Maybe ask T if they think M is nervous too, you may find that you’re not the only one! Also, if M is moving to your area, think about what kind of friendship you want to have with M and ask T what kind of friendship M ight want to have with you. You can also ask M directly when you meet. Talk to other non monogamous friends that you know, ask to hear about their experiences with meeting metamours. Depending on the severity of your nerves, it may help to do breathing exercises when you start to feel anxious thinking about meeting M, or do something active, or  Do T and M Skype or google chat? Maybe it would help to have a brief digital introduction (something even as simple as just popping into their chat to say “Hello!” for just a moment) before the big meeting day. Remember that you and T care about each other and T and M care about each other, so the odds are that M is probably awesome too. Remember that you are awesome, T cares about you because of the great qualities you have. Feel free to invite T to remind you of those if you’re feeling super nervous or insecure about yourself. When you do meet M, ask them questions about themselves and listen, I find listening is usually a great way to make a good first impression. It may also help to do something active earlier in the day to also get positive chemicals floating around in your brain before the meeting. Maybe you can also bring a crafty, homemade gift for M to the meeting, something that M might enjoy. You can also break the ice when you meet M by telling them that you  have been feeling nervous and excited to meet them, again, you may find you were not the only one!

Good Luck,
Blue

BGD: 9 Strategies For Non-Oppressive Polyamory

Today, for our Sharing Is Caring Thursday update, I am super stoked to point you to one of my favorite write-ups about polyamory (on one of my favorite sites, Black Girl Dangerous), one that details a more critical analysis as to how one practices polyamory with a non oppressive approach… BGD: 9 Strategies For Non-Oppressive Polyamory.

The author, Janani Balasubramanian, bluntly lays out ideas around not creating hierarchic views of your partners, not viewing yourself as radical simply because you are non monogamous, questioning the privilege you may have in relation to your partners, and beyond. Click here to read the frank and powerful list, 9 Strategies For Non-Oppressive Polyamory: http://www.blackgirldangerous.org/2013/10/9-strategies-for-oppressive-polyamory/

 

Celebrating Holidays With Multiple Partners…

How do you celebrate Valentine’s Day with more than one partner?

Well, frankly, I am not that into Valentine’s Day exactly (partly due to the origin, partly due to the commercialization of love), but I do love any excuse to celebrate. Since the two major partners I have are close to each other, we often elect to do something special all together that day (which I rename, Love Day). In the past, however, I have celebrated over a few days with different partners. It all depends on who is important in my life and communicating how we want to honor that together. We usually agree that having a special night together is wonderful, regardless as to whether or not it falls on a specific date that is popularized. I am also the romantic type that tends to love giving homemade gifts whenever I finish them… Sometimes not on a holiday and just for fun, sometimes a few days after the holiday it’s meant for because I get busy and often obsess on making sure my gift is “just right.” Ultimately, I think that a celebration of any holiday should be one you and your partner(s) design together in ways that are meaningful to you all!