Like many, Angel stumbled into polyamory quite by accident. She and her husband have been happily married for four years, and recently opened their marriage and their hearts to the possibility of poly relationships. She shares the ups and downs of being new to the lifestyle and navigating the emotional and practical issues that come along with it.

Previous editions of this column can be found in the Monthly Columns Archives.

Painting With A Broader Brush

Poly can be painted with such a broad brush and recently I've been thinking a lot on what poly is and is not in my life. Much of this stems from the fact that recently I have taken to referring to my best friend and heterosexual life partner as my 'wife' simply because it's the only word strong enough to convey the sort of relationship we have. She is so much more than a best friend to me.

She and I have been very close for almost 10 years, she stood next to me at my wedding, has been there to love and support me through my marriage, and having two children. When I am in the deepest darkest hole imaginable she is able to scoop me up and carry me until I am strong again, and it's my deepest hope that I provide that for her as well. I love her, she is the only other person in my life that I can say is AS important to me as my husband is. They are equals in my heart, and both of them are quite pleased and content to share the top spot. I love her in the same way, and with the same depth and passion that I love him. She returns this love and adoration and also shares a very special bond with Jack. When the three of us are together, it's wonderful.

Just to be clear, neither Jack nor myself have an overt sexual relationship with her however.

She and I have been intimate in the past. We sleep together naked (actually all three of us are quite comfortable with that arrangement in a king sized bed). She and I cuddle, bathe together when the urge strikes us, and generally have absolutely no personal boundaries when it comes to each other. The three of us confide in each other, about everything, and there is much support and encouragement to go around. For all intended purposes we are a close triad, minus certain aspects of physical intimacy.

I am separated from her for the time being, due to moving across the country, and we miss each other so badly that she has decided to pick up and move across the country as well. She is going to move into our home and share space with us and will co-parent the two young ones as well. She will have her own room, although I imagine we will still have sleepovers and baths together upstairs in the Master bedroom because we have the comfy bed and the bigger tub.

What I feel sets us apart from more…conventional friendships, is the depth of our bond. I could easily live the rest of my life quite happily sharing a household with her. People are often curious and envious of my relationship with her. We joke that we share one brain between us, and we have the sort of connection that is built slowly over years of seeing each other through break ups, evictions, drug addiction, identity crisis, and everything in between. I can't imagine a life without her.

She does not identify personally as poly, so in order to better understand this lifestyle and to be more helpful to me she read The Ethical Slut and is currently living with a roommate who is poly. All three of us are quite comfortable referring to each other as 'spouse/husband/wife' because they don't seem to make the right words for what we have.

It certainly IS poly, of that I am sure. I know that someday she will meet a man and fall in love and get married and all the wonderful things she wants and deserves. However, it's quite clear to all past (and future) boyfriends that getting involved with her means accepting that she comes with two other 'life mates' in tow. Regardless of what the future holds for her relationship-wise, I know that our bond will not be bent or broken.

While some may disagree that this relationship falls under the scope of polyamory, since there is no regular sexual involvement, I will politely disagree due to the fact that sex does not always equal love, nor does love always equal sex.

Nobody's Angel is a contributing writer as well as a member of this online Community. She can be contacted here or through our message board Forums.

Nobody's Angel; September 28, 2007


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