The evolution of poly communication
I was going through my desk drawers and found Merkanas business card (I’ll be using fet names for this writing) and had to laugh.
Merkanas and I are both IT guys, we fix computers for a living. Once upon a yester-year attnwhor and I were out for a walk, this was pre-divorce being final, pre-her just saying what she wanted and our current poly relationship. Her computer was having issues and Merkanas hadn’t had time to fix it and at the end of our walk she asked me “So, can you fix my computer?”
I was like “OH NO, no, no, no. Computer guys are terribly possessive of their computers. I’d more likely be forgiven making a pass at his wife than fixing his computer.”
…(queue laughter and horrid pre-successful-poly-communication awkwardness)…
We gave each other a hug and went our ways.
A few nights later attnwhor and I back from another walk and she hands me Merkanas business card. I turn it over and read it.
Yes, you have permission to ‘Fix attnwhor’s computer’
…(queue more laughter and horrid pre-successful-poly-communication awkwardness)…
I told my attnwhor I’d be happy to come by and fix her computer. She said “No, that’s OK, Merkanas already fixed the computer.”
…(queue awkward silence and confusion)…
“Wait, am I supposed to take this as more than I can fix your computer?”
“No, no, no”
I’ve never been sure if it was the tone I asked the question in, nerves, social expectations, horrid awkwardness but man, I am so glad we’re past euphemisms and business cards and got around to just talking like grownups and saying what we want. It’s so much easier that way.
It took a pretty big argument on another walk to get there, but hey, we got there.
I sometimes wonder if it’s really possible to “just decide to be poly” or if it has to happen like it did with me, with my attnwhor, awkwardly, ugly, euphemistically, almost accidentally but not. Like only after a steady evolution of thought and being weathered by time and connection can the societal barricades of the monogamous think trap be truly escaped.
Merkanas has been to some poly groups and they’re often surprised at the lack of friction in our poly relationship, I wonder if that is due to the fact we never forced it, didn’t grate it, just kind of let it happen, awkwardly. It wasn’t easy, it wasn’t pretty, but damn the results are nice.