Someone recently asked me for readings on polyamory. I am by no means an expert, and this list is nothing like comprehensive; it's more like a collection of what I have on hand, and/or read before I decided I'd reached the point of diminishing returns and could just live my life instead of reading and thinking about my life. I welcome suggestions for things to add to the list.
There are two books that are sort of de rigueur. Neither is perfect, but they both have their uses.
The Ethical Slut by Dossie Easton and Janet Hardy is the one I most often hear recommended. I've read it, and thought it was fine without being mind-blowing. I'm sure I had more to say about it when I first read it, but I don't seem to have written it down at the time. This surprises me.
Another recent book is Opening Up by Tristan Taormino. I read this awhile ago and had very mixed feelings about it; my blog post about it is I Have Read a Book About Open Relationships.
I really like the blog Solo Polyamory. The author has chosen not to have a primary partner, and her discussions of navigating relationships, working out challenges, negotiating boundaries and expectations, and more, are insightful, and have been useful to me even though my relationships are quite different from hers. I particularly like the concept of the relationship escalator, which I'm pretty sure I learned at this blog.
And look! She recently favorably reviewed a new book: More Than Two: A Practical Guide to Ethical Polyamory. I will read it. Perhaps you should, too.
I also very much like The Pervocracy. This blog also covers kink and BDSM, so I have very helpfully searched for all the posts about polyamory for you. This blog is a bit of a mixed bag; I find the recent read-through of 50 Shades of Grey pretty tedious, for instance. But it contains some brilliant thinking and writing as well, and is worth exploring.
I thought I'd have more in blogs, but it turns out I don't follow many poly blogs. I'll update this post if I come across something worthwhile.
I was looking for my review of Opening Up, and discovered that I have also blogged about polyamory! Imagine that. I also observe that I suck at writing SEO-optimizing titles.
Loving Your Slutty Friend: A Guide For the Vanilla and Monogamous
I should consider picking this series up again. I like these three posts and never wrote some of the ones I thought I would.
It takes courage to be open to the new things coming into your life, whether that's a new love or a new religion or a new hobby that takes you away from home every Saturday, because the changes that come with these things are unpredictable. It takes courage, too, to turn away from the new for a time because the relationship matters more.
Every relationship incorporates change over its lifetime. Sometimes the changes are challenging, the process of adapting to them requires a tremendous amound of hard work, and a successful outcome--if by "successful" we mean "the relationship continues"--is by no means assured. Other times, they're relatively easy to accommodate.3. Loving Your Slutty Friend: What I Like About Non-Monogamy
Thirdly, I like sex. I like it with Raider. I love it with Raider. Whenever I have reason to honor a new relationship, say at a wedding, I write in the card, "I wish you every happiness." And one of the things I mean by this is, "I wish you good sex." And what I really mean by that is, "I hope your sex is as good as mine and Raider's." I wish this sincerely for the whole world.
But I like sex, once in awhile--not really that often, in the grand scheme of things, but once in awhile--with someone else, too. Because sex is one of the ways I relate to people. I enjoy the kind of connection you have with someone when you are physically intimate. Back when I was a young free agent, sex was one of the ways I got to know people.Standalone Posts
What's Hecuba To Him, or He to Hecuba?
What is Toots to us? What are we to Toots? The kids call him Uncle, but we could just as easily have decided to call him Papa Toots; he is the closest thing they have to a third parent. I sometimes tell people that they might think of Toots as the third adult in our nuclear family, even though he lives with the Crafty Elf these days. Toots sometimes tries to convey his relationship with the children by telling people he is their godfather; that works pretty well. Sometimes he takes flack from his family for spending more time with our kids than with his biological nephew; would it help people understand the relationship and accept it if we had decided to call him their stepfather?The Things You Find Out About Yourself
I was surprised by how much meeting with these folks meant to me, because I hadn't thought of polyamory as a central part of who I am.You Put Your Whole Self In
I am a moral person. I am a deeply ethical person. I am religious in a non-trivial way. I think and ponder and reflect and think some more about everything. The decisions I make about my life are shaped by these things. I don't think I've ever made a decision lightly. So, you know, at least, that if I make a decision that seems dangerous, reckless, immoral, wrong-headed, deeply mistaken, risky, or even just head-scratchingly incomprehensible to you, well, it's probably the best-thought-out, most-thoroughly-processed bone-headed move in history.Won't Someone Think of the Children?
We make decisions ourselves about who to trust with our hearts. Sometimes we get it right; sometimes we get it wrong. Sometimes we get it right and it still goes wrong. Sometimes somebody you thought would be there forever, isn't, and there's nothing you can do about it.A Crusade, but Without the Oppression and Death
I say it's love, particularly love in the form of sexual desire, that wants the walls down. And I will make the claim that is not been a lack of morality or an unhealthy promiscuity or a recklessness toward my own feelings or my partners' that has led me to squeeze through the narrow gaps in so many walls in search of the light I can see shining through from the other side.
It has been love, which in all its forms is ultimately the same form. And this is one of the ways I have been called to be in service to love in my life.Epistle from the Poly and/or Kinky Friends Retreat
We long to have our relationships recognized and respected, but we also hope to share our gifts, talents, and ministry. We are abundantly blessed with gifts for open-hearted loving, and experienced with the radical honesty that our relationships call us to.