#042: I’m poly. They’re mono. WTF do I do?
October 1, 2018
One of you is polyamorous. The other is monogamous. Everyone is telling you that you’re incompatible, and selfish to boot.
Even though NO ONE talks about it, there are plenty of other folks in the same boat.
This week’s episode features audio from a recent Facebook Live where we told you why what you’ve been told is dead wrong, and how BOTH partners in a poly/mono couple can be empowered and fulfilled.
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[2:32] Through working with folks in person, through emails, and online, we see that the topic of poly/mono relationships is an issue that comes up quite a bit.
[4:22] Something that has surprised us is how many poly/mono couples we see on a pretty much daily basis.
[4:35] There are a couple reasons you might find yourself in a poly/mono relationship:
- The fact that you’re non-monogamous is a new discovery that hits you like a freight train and opens your eyes to the fact that you can no longer be in a monogamous relationship.
- You’ve always known you’re non-monogamous but you’ve never acted on it. Now you are recognizing a big part of your life and identity is missing.
- You knew you were poly and maybe even have been poly prior to being in the relationship, but you thought that you could be monogamous for your partner. Then you discovered you weren’t happy in a monogamous relationship. This can cause your partner to feel hurt and betrayed.
[7:34] Not many folks are talking about this issue, so there is little guidance to navigate when situations arise. Common problems we that we see when working with folks are:
- Constant fighting and unresolved arguments about the future and their relationship.
- Both partners feel resentful and unfulfilled. The poly partner can’t be their true self, and the mono partner feels lied to, uncared for, and like they’re “not enough” for their partner.
[10:35] Touch of Flavor has tons of breakthrough calls each week, and this seems to be the #1 reason for couples getting close to calling it quits. It comes down to two things:
- They don’t know if this is something that is even workable, or if the differences in perspectives are too much to continue.
- When seeking help they are told its impossible, leading them to believe the myth that there’s no way for couples to have a relationship with such a dividing view.
[12:38] The myth of this type of dynamic being unworkable comes from both the vanilla and the poly world. There is a tendency for the partner to view the opposite perspective as selfish, and “too different” for the relationship to function.
[13:59] One of the things that has surprised us in our coaching program is that a quarter of the people that come through our program are poly/mono couples.
[14:53] The idea that relationships have to be completely equal and look exactly the same will always lead people to disappointment and unmet expectations.
[19:04] The fact is: poly people do get jealous, it’s just something they have to overcome and figure out how to deal with in a healthy manner. Jealousy is a symptom of why a non-monogamous relationship isn’t working, not the reason. More to come on that in future episodes.
[20:59] If both partners are getting what they need and having their desires fulfilled, this is a relationship that can work. You can then start negotiating these conversations rather than arguing.
[23:37] Folks in a poly/mono relationship may not have the same things they want to do with their time, but both can get love, communication and trust out of the relationship.
[25:67] Cassie gives a real-life example of a client with different relationship styles, where having the right mindset led them to start working and navigating a poly/mono relationship.