Category Archives: Origin Story

Origin Story: How we became polyamorous (Part 1)

Everyone comes at polyamory from their own background and series of choices. For some, it’s their “cure” to cheating. For others, it’s a slow slide away from swinging and into more romantic partnerships with others. Others start it out as an experiment with fantasies until suddenly you can’t imagine what your life would look like without sharing it openly with others. And whether I’m talking about my personal origin — how I, personally, knew I was poly–or how my Husband and I came to open up our marriage, these are the fundamentals of what led us to where we are now.

While ultimately the decision was made on a Wednesday in July 2004, right before a Sarah McLaughlan concert, there were a series of events and conditions that led us to that decision. Here’s a look back at the major components that led to our polyamory story.

We are individuals who choose to share our lives together

I’ve known Husband-Writer since 1996 when we went on a musical tour of Europe together. He was a musician and writer with a generous soul and a sharp wit. We got to know each other very well on that tour and he quickly endeared himself to me by being in my life. Our love is based on the friendship we developed at the time, the rapport that was built on a shared sense of humor and a passionate love of expression.

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Intro: Origin Story Series

Part of a series of posts in which I revisit my past, look on my origin story with new eyes. Draw lessons, revisit fond memories. Could be any of the people, places or choices that have influenced me over the years and shaped me into who I am now. 

Nostalgia is fun. 

For the years that I’ve been attending conferences and giving presentations, I’ve been asked the same types of questions: How did you know you were poly? How did you become kinky? What made you realize you were bisexual?  Maybe it’s the geek in me, but I think we’re acculturated to crave origin stories. Adam & Eve. Batman Begins. We want to know where our heroes come from. We want to know their backstory. We’re dissatisfied as audiences if we lack context for the image in front of us. Sometimes, the more unattainable, the better.

It’s a way for us to keep ourselves detached from our dreams and ideals. A ready excuse for why we’re not exceptional. Why we’re never going to attain our dreams.  When I go back to my hometown, for example, I’m told “of course, you’re polyamorous. The rules don’t apply to you.” They don’t because I chose for them not to. The rules don’t apply to me because I took a chance on being authentic and making hard decisions for myself and defining my own rules. It didn’t happen overnight and it wasn’t without its consequences, but I am not fundamentally special in this ability. If i can, you can. 

And so in this series, I’ll be talking about my own origin stories. Maybe it will be my Catholic upbringing. My calling. My bisexuality. My awareness of polyamory.  Maybe some of them will be short little statements or photos. Maybe some will be entire chapters of insight and story. Most of them biased by hindsight. All of them a true reflection of who I am. 

I look forward to sharing my stories with you. 

Suggestions for future topics?

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