Poly rules are bullshit!

The comfort blanket ideal of the poly rule set infuriates me sometimes. It’s the primary reason I don’t date poly noobs. I don’t want to burn my time and energy jumping through the hoops and trials by fire that so many of these married-but-expanding poly couples set out. I understand that we can all feel insecure about our positions and making sure we are number one to our spouses. But most of these rules enforce a lack of trust in your partners’ judgment that makes me very uncomfortable.

For instance, I had been courting a particular married lady. During the text messaging phase, she was complaining about being home alone while her husband was out on a date. She was bored and wistful and, well, bored. I offered to come over and hang out for a while, no sex in the equation at all. The answer was no. I was not allowed to see her because I had not met her husband. I was not allowed in their house because I had not met her husband.

I have noticed that if there is a meet the spouse policy before you can have sex, or a meet the spouse policy before you can come to the residence even if you are not going to have sex, that is a drama-filled primary relationship. Without exception, in _EVERY_ couple/unit I have met that has that rule, it is a lack of trust between partners. All it says is, “I don’t trust your judgement when you pick a partner you want to have sex with.”

I had a relationship with another great lady for a while, and they had a rule that stated no partners could be brought to their home. This is a red flag for me because then polyamory takes on a shameful aspect. I don’t like being an outdoor pet, kept separate from family, friends, life.

When you think that every rule can potentially become a broken rule, what’s the big deal with who your partner sleeps with? Don’t these people trust their partners to make mature and responsible decisions about sex and their constellations? If not, I doubt they are ready to open their marriage at all.

We poly folk, we talk a lot about communication and honesty and openness. I don’t think we talk nearly enough about courtesy and trust. Most of these rules are complete horse shit. Trust your partners.

And don’t be a dick.

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5 thoughts on “Poly rules are bullshit!

  1. stealthp says:

    I don’t know if things are as black and white as “rules rule” or “don’t be a dick”, We’re all human, and that means that *each and every one of us* is capable of being a dick from time to time and also (maybe especially!) when it comes to decisionmaking when sexual lust is part of the equation. So I think there’s a grayness in the continuum, and I – like you – prefer to live on the trusting and less-rule-bound end of it. But the reality is that sometimes our primary partner – our “other self” to use a sad romantic poetic that was one of the sweet things that still lies there shining amid the wreckage of my broken marriage – provides another, diferent point of view that can sometimes be in our best interest. And while I really want for this reason to include my primary partner in decisions about who I love and/or fuck, I’m alsdo feeling you and would rather not have it be a “rule” but more like an agreement borne from mutual respect AND recognition that we all make really dumb decisions sometimes. And as for the “outdoor pet” kind of rule, yeah I totally agree that’s BS.

  2. Robert919 says:

    Well, I agree these rules that you’re running into with these potential partners all sound like red flags to me, too! I don’t think I’d be too keen on that at all.

    But *some* type of agreed-upon directives are usually necessary to some logical degree. My bf and I have three basic things we agree on: 1- Safe sex always (a given). 2- Sex only after having an actual proper Date first. 3- Transparency. That’s it.
    That’s our main thing, and frankly they are basic things that any poly people, in my view, would benefit from.

    But yeah, I agree that these things that you are describing seem suspiciously based on insecurities on the part of these folks’ relationships. Not good.

  3. RedDragonfly says:

    PMW-
    While I understand your point of view, I can understand how someone might be hesitant to let you in their home, or their wife, without having met you first. It isn’t that he doesn’t trust her, he may just want a chance to get some personal comfort that you aren’t a threat to their home or well-being. It’s standard practice in the dating world to meet someone for the first time in a public place, as a safety precaution. It seems reasonable that being married wouldn’t lessen the desire for safety of one’s home, it would make it so much more important.

    But, that’s just my two cents…

  4. Eli says:

    Even outside of dating, my wife wouldn’t want someone in our home that she hadn’t met. It’s not an issue of trust in me, but feeling unconformable with the idea of someone she doesn’t know wandering through her home. Once that hurdle is cleared and she’s familiar with/trusts them, being in the house is a non-issue, even if they do end up in our bed.

    If the situation you described were to happen for us, I or my wife (whoever is wanting to hang out with the new person while the other is off on a date) would meet the new person at a nearby cafe and hang out there. We generally prefer hanging out at cafe’s anyhow.

  5. My husband just asked me about having one of his playmates to our house. I’m still uncomfortable with it. It has nothing to do with whether I trust him or not. I don’t like the idea of another woman thinking that “my” house is “her” house. Maybe I have social anxiety, but I imagine her looking around and making particular assumptions about me, my husband, our family, or our home life. I also can’t help but worry that she might start deciding she’d be a better fit there than me. And although I trust as close to 100% as possible, that my husband wouldn’t be swayed, the whole idea brings on a ton of drama that I neither need nor want.

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