Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Mono MInded Curiosity

I've been curious for a while about how monogamy is treated within the kink/sex pos world. Very often the impression I get (me, completely me...you may not get the same one and it's OK) is that monogamy is what happens when one is not so much "sex positive" as "positive about how they like sex". I'm not sure I agree with that feeling and I'm curious about how others view monogamy. Whether their definitions of that concept differ from mine, and whether or not monogamy is solely about the act of having sex.

So, if you're willing (and anonymous comments will be published for this one, so feel free), would you help me out by answering the following questions?

1) Do you consider yourself monogamous?

2) What does monogamy mean to you?

3) How do you define monogamy?

4) Have you ever felt that being monogamous didn’t “fit in” with stereotypical relationship modes found in BDSM relationships?

5) Have you ever broken up with someone who purported to be monogamous, but wasn’t?

6) Have you ever had to defend your monogamy to anyone?

7) Do you consider sexual activities, play activities (BDSM without penetration), and emotional connection differently when it comes to monogamy?

8) Have you ever been in a non-monogamous relationship?

Any other comments about monogamy?

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

1. Yes

2. To me, it means having one sexual partner at any period of time.

3. It's defined as either being married to one person or having one sexual partner.

4. When I first got interested in BDSM, BDSM was seen as potentially port of the "hot monogamy" movement. These days, having a harem is somewhat equated with being a dominant. But all relationships define themselves.

5. No, I once broke up with someone who I'd assume was monogamous but wasn't, newbie mistake on my part.

6. Yes, although I've also had to defend my straightness, switch, submisive, fetishist, parts of me too.

7. Yes and no. I definitely don't need a commitment to engage in them, and I could see doing them outside of a monogamous relationship, but that would really come down to relationship and personal dynamics of both partners involved. I doubt I'd insist that a sadist could only hurt me.

8. In the beginning stages, but it never worked out long enough to get the capital R Relationship.

Anonymous said...

1) I consider myself open with the ability to be moogomous.
2) Monogomy to me means you are totaly absolutely devoted to one person, to the exclusion of alll others.
3) See #2 above
4) Absolutely not
5) My exwife & I had an open marriage, but she chose to violate our concrete ground rules.
6) No, rather the opposite, I've had to eplain & defend the concept of an open relationship.
7) Not at all -- its all a part of the wonderous spectrum of human possibilities & behavior.
8) Yes, as mentioned above, I was in an open marriage with my exwife. We even had an mfm 3some. Unfortunately, he turned into a jerk & neither one of us got a trmondous amount of enjoyment from the event.
-- Rgards, @bigdanlovin

Anonymous said...

1) Do you consider yourself monogamous?

I'm happier in a monogamous situation. If I were to chose an ideal poly situation, it would be a closed family; I like the security and safety that implies. That said, I've never had one, and I'm only flirted with poly.

2) What does monogamy mean to you?

A long term emotional commitment to a single person. See #3 for why I go beyond just emotional.

3) How do you define monogamy?

First, emotional fidelity. Then sexual. I used to think play was independent, but I've grown far more aware of the emotional ramifications of play, so I'm not longer as sure I could do that without it infringing on my emotions.


4) Have you ever felt that being monogamous didn’t “fit in” with stereotypical relationship modes found in BDSM relationships?

I do feel that poly seems to be the default assumption (particularly poly-play). As I think you've mentioned or implied, age-segregation in the community is likely to result in few mono role models as well. I also see an assumption that when a relationship is over, there aren't any emotional entanglements left behind. That certainly can be true for some, but it isn't true for everyone.

5) Have you ever broken up with someone who purported to be monogamous, but wasn’t?

No.

6) Have you ever had to defend your monogamy to anyone?

Not explicitly.

7) Do you consider sexual activities, play activities (BDSM without penetration), and emotional connection differently when it comes to monogamy?

I think play and sex can entail different levels of emotional involvement, so I certainly understand how people can be monogamous in one area but not in another. I do think people need to be careful with that, as emotions about play and sex can shift over time and with different partners.

8) Have you ever been in a non-monogamous relationship?

I've had a few, relatively brief, open relationships where there was no primary partner. That doesn't feel quite the same to me. I've never been in a long-term situation like that.

Anonymous said...

1) Do you consider yourself monogamous?
- Yes.

2) What does monogamy mean to you?
- For me, there is monogamy in sex and monogamy in play. You can be sexually monogamous, and be polyamorous in your play. For Master and myself, we are monogamous in both respects, currently, but there's the possibility we could be poly with play. It depends on if there's someone whose play style fits either one of us well.

3) How do you define monogamy?
- Kinda like these nutty Christians define their idea of marriage. 1+1= monogamy

4) Have you ever felt that being monogamous didn’t “fit in” with stereotypical relationship modes found in BDSM relationships?
- Depends. I've met poly people, and I get the impression from them that most people in the Kink community and BDSM lifestyle see them as odd and unusual. I think it depends on the crowd and the location.

5) Have you ever broken up with someone who purported to be monogamous, but wasn’t?
- Yes.

6) Have you ever had to defend your monogamy to anyone?
- Yes. It sucks when people want others to respect their choices, but won't do the same.

7) Do you consider sexual activities, play activities (BDSM without penetration), and emotional connection differently when it comes to monogamy?
- If that's not evident, then yes. :)

8) Have you ever been in a non-monogamous relationship?
- Sexually speaking, I have, once. It sucked. Badly! I still have some scars from it, but I also learned a lot about myself, and about what I need to view as "red flags" in others' behaviors.

Anonymous said...

1) Yes.
2) That my partner and I engage in sexual intercourse only with each other.
3) An agreement that so long as the relationship, defined as 1:1 stands, sexual intercourse shall be limited to the 2 persons involved in it.
4) Kinksters, yes. Lifestylers, no.
5) Yes.
6) Not defend.. explain firmly.. but not defend.
7) No. BDSM is NOT sex-centric, not is sex a required aspect of "play"
8) Yes.

I do not view monogamy differently than any other boundary or limit.. Once agreed upon it becomes a term of the "contract" of the relationship and a matter of personal honor and integrity. To violate it, is to break the contract and abuse the trust of the person you entered into it with.

Cuttlefish said...

1) Yes.
2) It means that I have one long term partner whom I'm emotionally committed to.
3) Having one romantic and/or sexual partner on a long term basis.
4) Yes, there is a lot of pressure to be poly in the kink world.
5) No, it's never come up in any of my relationships.
6) Yes. Partly because my partner has a play partner he's very close to (she's his best friend in many ways) but their relationship is neither romantic nor sexual.
7) Yes. I see monogamy as primarily an emotional state and less about activities. My partner and I are emotionally and sexually monogamous (I'd be willing to consider compromise on the sexually but not the emotionally) but not when it comes to non-sexual BDSM play. I think it works well for us, I get to experience types of play (e.g. whips) that he isn't experienced with and sometimes top other people and he gets more people to make scream.

Cuttlefish said...

Ooops, missed #8.
8) Yes and no. I've done the casual dating multiple people at the same time thing but once it moves into the somewhat serious stage then I've always been in monogamous relationships.

Anonymous said...

1) Do you consider yourself monogamous?
I do.
2) What does monogamy mean to you?
It means a pairing of only two people in order to have a relationship, generally one of an intimate and sexual nature. It means I can trust and rely on, confide in, my partner.
3) How do you define monogamy?
Literally? A relationship, intimate, involving only two people.
4) Have you ever felt that being monogamous didn’t “fit in” with stereotypical relationship modes found in BDSM relationships?
There’s a perception, a stereotype, mostly from outside ‘the lifestyle’ that there’s all this orgy/poly whatever in it. I think some people buy into this even after they’ve done some kink themselves, buying the hype.
5) Have you ever broken up with someone who purported to be monogamous, but wasn’t?
Nope, but then I’ve had only a limited dip in the dating pool, and don’t expect to be there again.
6) Have you ever had to defend your monogamy to anyone?
No, but there’s been some awkwardness when people condescend a bit about it.
7) Do you consider sexual activities, play activities (BDSM without penetration), and emotional connection differently when it comes to monogamy?
No, I’m pretty generally monogamous, so it’s my personal ‘default’
8) Have you ever been in a non-monogamous relationship?
No. I don’t have an issue with it, but I prefer monogamy.