There are moments where I still catch myself thinking about the future. What will it bring? who will I love? Who will love me? Who will care for me? There are moment from the trauma of compulsory monogamy that pull me into insecurity and proving care through self-deprivation but I climb my way out. These lessons are some of the most beautiful gifts of polyamory.
I don't want you to think that I am the type of person who doesn't care about people. I care so much I have seen myself mold like a warm blanket around someone's needs even when they are directly opposed to mine. I have kept my hands out of pants when every part of me said please and every part of them didn't want it. I have kept my words out of arguments between two lovers who also loved each other. I have held hands that I felt needed it more than I needed my space. But even in all of those needs I deal with the feelings of disposability.
Monogamy says: They will leave you when they find someone better.
Polyamory says: I hope they find all of the types of love that fill their soul. I am safe with them because our love is valuable regardless.
How do you deal with a lifetime of a society that raised you to believe that the way people show you that they care is by giving up every single other person, regardless of how strong their bond was? And why do we even believe that? A person leaving their spouse for the new lover will never prove that they loved the lover more- it will only prove that they were not capable of a true commitment.
Read my words, no person is better than any other person. I am the best at being me that there has ever been. A different person can be funnier, wiser, richer, but they will never be more "Sara" than I am. And that is it's own type of amazing. When a person loves you, they love you for the exact intersectionality of your characteristics. Don't worry, there will always be people who are more in all sorts of ways. But they will never be better. And that's something that our monogamous culture has dammed us to believing.
There is so much money to be made playing on your insecurities. So much botox, make-up, hair product, plastic surgery, vaginal rejuvenation, spanx. There is so much keeping you from thinking someone may actually just want you right now, right as you are, and everything else can just fade.
Monogamy says: what's the next step?
Polyamory says: This is good for now. And that's perfect.
We actively preach that we need to be making sure we know what is coming next. How many times have you been asked when you are going to meet "a nice girl/boy and settle down"? When you are partnered, how many times has someone asked when you are getting married? Then when you are planning on having kids? Then the next kid? Then the next? When will you be done having kids? And it really never. fucking. ends. We learn to completely internalize that, we feel that it's the best experience. So much is this ingrained, that I see gorgeous, powerful, cancer-ass-kicking women posting about how their prince charming is "out there". That every time I meet a new partner, I find value in them "claiming" me to their friends and family. I want to be talked about. We make these steps our goals.
So what happens if you just let go of the expectation and accept that the now is just as valuable as knowing what comes next? Stephan says: there is no end game. There is no next step, and if there is, you will change and that will be the new now. That's it. You checked all the boxes and now you get to actually exist, enjoy people.
So it's days like these that I am hit by the realization that so much of what I find valuable is actually deeply toxic. I show myself kindness, and I question with curiosity. And I am hopeful that this awareness can make us better to ourselves and to our relationships.
What lessons were you taught growing up that you are struggling with?