Our Poly Life

Our life as a Polyamorous Quad, with 10 kids.

Patterns

on June 21, 2006

Dictionary.com defines a pattern as “a model or original used as an archetype” or otherwise as “a consistent, characteristic form, style, or method, as in a composite of traits or features characteristic of an individual or group.”  Of course, there are other entries found, but the two above more accurately demonstrate my point.  And my point is this:  We teach others how to treat us and we learn from others how to behave. 

In any important relationship, most expressly our life mates, we come together as individuals and meld into a new entity.  When done correctly two become three, three become five, four become seven… it’s not mathematically precise, but what I’m trying to say is when you form a new association, you have yourself, the other (or others) involved, and the new relationships as they relate to each other. 

Before you accuse me of talking in circles, understand I’m simply giving life to the extra bond of the individuals making new establishment.  In biblical marital terms it’s called “one flesh.”  But that same ideology can be applied to all new relationships.  It’s who you were before, and who you become together. 

Now, consider a union of two young and idealistic souls both fervently committed to overcoming the odds and “making it” for the long haul.  We didn’t have appropriate role models while growing up for what we wanted to see in our marriage, but we talked it out.  We discovered together what we wanted our marriage to look like, to feel like, and to be. 

Big likes to joke that we raised each other.  The fact in that humor is that we struggled and searched for patterns of behavior that worked for us.  We tried on many attitudes and approaches and over time came to an arrangement that worked for us.  What being involved in Polyamory has taught me so far is that those arrangements, those behaviors – what worked for us in that time – was within the parameters of a closed monogamous Christian marriage.   So here we are years later, finding ourselves nine months into our “first year” of Polyamory and knee deep in transitionary issues and challenges.  Go figure. 

Do I want any less for my marriage?  No.  Certainly under our new conditions I see more for our relationship(s).  I feel more love, I perceive more strength, and I expect greater potential than ever before.  And I sense many of our old patterns of relating are getting in the way.  Who I am as an individual has changed, what I want has changed, and what I need has changed, so why wouldn’t the dynamics of our relationship together also undergo the forging of new patterns? 

For one to expect an area of life to change in such a drastic manner (in our case, from faith based monogamy to polyamory) and not also expect everything else in your life to feel the effects of that, is, in my never to be humble opinion, ridiculously foolish.  So if we fail to understand the rise and fall of each new crisis for what it is – evolution, progress, growth – have we set ourselves up for hurt when all we needed to do was realize it’s all a process? 

This is when the commitment part becomes super important.  Without commitment, it’s easy to wonder which partner is going to give up first.  Which one will buckle under the stress refining the relationship can create?  No one will.  You see, my loves and I all have another wonderfully compatible pattern that we brought with us from our marriages… stick.  We have each proven it time and time again in dealing with our primaries.  It’s not that one relationship is easier than another.  They are all difficult in different ways and at different times.  But my mind never waivers when the heart begins to doubt.  I’ve heard them all commit to me, to each other, and that is a pattern in which I can put my trust. 

~Goddess, 6-21-06 

 

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