5 comments on “Why does it have to end badly?

  1. I don’t have experience in transitioning poly relationships yet, and my ex still doesn’t talk to me, but your post is exactly how I imagine things should work. Thanks for sharing that.

  2. Pingback: The end of things | Swell Flowering Cultivation

  3. I believe it depends on what happened, why you got together in the first place and why you break up… (if they disrespected you I cannot think about having a healthy friendship with them afterwards, but then again I am no friend of any of my exes… I don’t hate them either, thing is just: all the emotional bagage often makes things awkward + the fact that someone new probably might feel jealous or something?
    (no experience in poly relationships either)

  4. I think there’s a vestige of not just monogamy, but the expectation of *permanent* monogamy at play here. Mainstreamers think that if a monogamous relationship becomes non-monogamous (through a traditional divorce or break-up) it has failed. The relationship is only successful if it results in permanent monogamy. Of course, out here in real life, that’s not the way relationships actually work. Some aspects might be permanent, but many aspects aren’t. And that lack of permanency doesn’t mean those relationships aren’t “successful” unless you insist on defining success in terms of permanency, which might sound good in a Harlequin romance kind of way, but is hardly the reality.

    So that’s, I think where part of “throwing the baby out with the bathwater” comes from. If a divorce happens, that means the marriage was impermanent, therefore not successful, and therefore no aspect of it should be preserved. You can’t be friends, you can’t still have romantic or sexual feelings for that person. You can’t even have the same friends because now you are actually enemies. No marriage = no relationship or enemy relationship. Hogwash.

    Poly’s language of “transitioning” vs. breaking-up is completely appropriate. Because that’s closer to how real life does work, can work, and should work.

  5. I am an anomaly in most of my worlds… I was in 2 separate, heterosexual marriages, both of which I assumed were monogamous until I found out otherwise. I had been working through things with my 2nd husband when I realized I am lesbian. I am now working on a friendship with him…
    I met my girlfriend looking only for a new friend with benefits, but we have a connection that was completely unexpected. She has been a part of poly relationships previously so she brought it up to her husband and myself and we’ve decided to make an attempt. I had at least some knowledge of poly before from another situation that I dealt with while my ex and I were exploring what my sexuality meant.
    With all that I hope to remain friends with my ex and if ever this relationship doesn’t work out, I know my girlfriend and I will stay friends because of that connection. I like having that knowledge – it makes it easier to deal with relationship discussions because we go into them knowing what the worst outcome could possibly be. And I think that is largely what many monogamous relationships are missing – a secure knowledge of “worst case scenario.” I know I didn’t have one in my previous relationships…

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