When was the last time you thanked your primary partner for sharing you with others?
No really. When was the last time you said "Thanks for being so open and sharing me with others"?
You do thank your primary partner, don't you?
I got to thinking about this the other day and while I appreciate the sentiment, I'm not sure I agree with it. I've seen thanking your partner recommended in some poly related books, and heard it from other poly people I know. I've even said it, paraphrased in one form or another, to more than one of the partners I've had in my life.
When I got to thinking about it though I wondered. . . doesn't thanking your primary for sharing imply that they have rights over you? That maybe they don't have to share you with others and it is a choice they have made? That's when I began to think maybe I don't agree with the concept.
At first this sounded like a very Poly thing to do. My partner is being open. They are sharing me with others. It is a beautiful thing that we can enjoy this type of relationship. Many people wouldn't be open to living this way so yes, I probably should thank my partner. Maybe even get some flowers.
Wait, hold on a second, we have a belief violation here.
See, I believe that being poly is inherent in my being. It isn't so much that I'm poly as Poly is what I am. Not being open to the relationship possibilities I can have with anyone just doesn't compute well for me. But that is a part of me, not my partner. I should thank them for letting me be who I am?
After pondering the idea a bit I have come to think that the concept comes from a monogamous mindset of ownership in a committed relationship. It sounds as if it is based in the tradition of believing there is some form of physical ownership in a romantic relationship. Sorry, but it really isn't something I believe in.
At this point I tried flipping things around a bit. How do I feel if my partner thanks me for letting them go on a date? In the past my response has been that they are welcome but don't need to thank me. I'm not the boss of them, they didn't need my permission, nor my approval. I respect them as a person, with all of their particular and peculiar needs, wants, and desires.
Where does this leave me? Honestly, with the same mixed feelings I had when I first started writing this article. I've had no epiphanies or change of heart. Although I don't think it necessary to thank your partner for allowing you to date someone else, I also don't think it is a bad idea. The next time I thank my partner, instead of simply saying "Thanks for letting me go on a date" maybe I'll say something like, "Thank you for letting me be who I am without trying to change me". In that way I can show appreciation without implying control or ownership. And I do think it is important to let your partner know that their participation in your lifestyle is recognized and appreciated.
Where are you at with this one? Do you thank your partner for letting you date others? And if so, do you feel there is implied permission with the gratitude?
-Anything I write here is my opinion and meant as informational and not meant to malign, defame, or otherwise harm anyone or anything. (Unless I'm on a soapbox and ticked-off!) My writings also are not meant as advice or counsel , not necessarily factual or absolute, and the author will not be held responsible for the results of their use.
-Comments are NOT the opinion of this author, nor is the author responsible or liable for the comments or their results. I will try to moderate them in a reasonable (to me) manner.
-Translation of any portion of this blog may result in other than desirable language for which the author is not responsible. Furthermore, I’m not an English major so there will be bad grammar and punctuation found here. There may also be language that is intentionally objectionable to support my opinions. Tough.
-My profile picture and other pictures found here are credited if I know the source. If I don't, they aren't. If you know the source, let me know and I will give credit as due!
-Posts found here may be paid posts. If so, the post will clearly indicate it has a sponsor.
-Content may change over time resulting in inaccuracies. I also make mistakes, some will be here.
-I have no control over what is at the other end of any links you may find here.
-Any files, programs or downloadables are provided only for convenience and fun. I in no way warrant, represent, or otherwise imply they won’t cause you problems. Use at your own risk! If your computer blows up I don’t want to even hear about it.
-Copyright: All opinions expressed here by the author are owned by the author. Please enjoy reposting and/or linking, I ask only that you give proper credit and inform me you have used my content for your own pleasure and devious purposes.
-Legal limit on damages: .02 cents, U.S. Yes, I will give you my 2 cents worth if you sue me for it.