"Why Polyamory Cured My Jealousy and What I Learned"
The huge poly literature on jealousy (for example) generally agrees that you should find the root of your jealous reaction, figure out what it's telling you, and use it. Ideally with the help of your partner(s). Don't imagine that you should, or can, just make it go away.
But there's no rule of psychology that some people don't successfully break. Here's the story, published Friday, of a very high-jealousy guy who joined a poly relationship and watched the green monster just turn into a puddle and disappear.
Why Polyamory Cured My Jealousy and What I Learned
These 4 factors could transform any relationship.
By Zachary Zane [not him in that generic photo]
I was that jealous boyfriend. Not the angry type. Not the one who would shove a stranger for casually glancing at his girlfriend. I’m way too passive for that type of alpha nonsense. No, I was more the cross my arms, look down, and quietly sulk jealous type.
...It was toxic. It was all-consuming. It was like a virus that swept through my body. My jealousy would strike with no warning, and nothing I did could ever calm the beast.
My girlfriend told me to relax; she said I have nothing to worry about. She told me over and over again that she loves me. She told me I need to trust her. But no matter what she said, I was still a jealous mess. And at least once a week, we had some talk, which ended with her reassuring me that my jealousy was irrational and unnecessary.
I felt like a child – constantly needing reassurance. I felt inadequate. I was annoyed with myself. I desperately wanted to be the secure boyfriend my girlfriend deserved.
We ended up breaking up. For this reason among a dozen others.
Three months later, I met my current boyfriend at a gay, underground, leather bar. My friend who I went with joyously proclaimed that he had met another bisexual man.
“You must meet!” he said, while dragging me over to the other side of the room.
It was slightly awkward because we had nothing in common to discuss, besides, “Oh you’re bi? Me too! Cool.”
After getting over the awkward greeting, he introduced me to his boyfriend, but told me he lives with his wife and girlfriend. My eyebrows rose.
“Oh really?” I said.
I had never met someone who was openly polyamorous. Sure, I had met plenty of people in open relationships. But to love three people at once, and to live with two of them?...
...I figured there was no way in hell this could turn into something serious.... But one date led to two. And two led to a dozen more. Before I knew it, we were seeing each other daily....
We’ve now been dating nearly eight months, and next month, I’ll be moving in with him and his wife.
Ironically, now that I date someone who dates (and is married to) other people, my jealousy has vanished. It wasn’t even something I had to purposefully work on. Polyamory naturally alleviated my jealousy issues. Here’s how.
#1 — There’s no fear of betrayal
When I grew jealous over my ex, my fear wasn’t, “Oh God, if she sleeps with someone else, how would I ever be able to sleep with her again?” It was, “What would I do if she lied to me?”... But when you’re polyamorous, that’s not something you have to worry about – because... no trust is broken.
#2 — I never fully trusted myself
I was never able to fully trust my ex because I never fully trusted myself. I was afraid I might get drunk and cheat on her. Or even worse, I’d develop an emotional connection with another person....
#3 — If he wants to spend time with me, it’s because he wants to spend time with me
...He could be boning, cuddling, or eating dinner with someone else – but he chose to do it with me....
#4 — We communicate openly about everything
In order for polyamory to work, you need to be honest about what you’re doing and who you’re seeing. Otherwise, your relationship(s) are doomed to fail. So we tell each other everything, and I trust him fully....
In the end, I realize it wasn’t polyamory that helped me get rid of my nasty jealousy issues. It was honesty and communication – things that you can have in a monogamous relationship.... We often tell white lies to our partner because we want to spare their feelings, or because we don’t want to make a “big deal” of something we deem inconsequential. But in hiding our feelings, we plant seeds of doubt, which eventually grow to be full trees of mistrust. ...
Read the whole article (July 29, 2016). Zachary Zane, of Boston and Provincetown, wrote about his MMF poly relationship last month for Cosmopolitan and about the couple-centeredness of OkCupid's unicorn-hunting feature for Pride.com in January. He regularly writes on bi issues for the Huffington Post and elsewhere.
A couple more jealousy items while we're at it:
● Beyond Jealousy: A Spiritual Approach to Polyamory (Oct. 2, 2015), adapted by Dr. Anya from her book Opening Love (2015).
...I awoke from the dream, heart pounding. I had to reflect for only a few moments, because the meaning of the dream was obvious: There was, and is, still fear in my heart. I fear for human beings. I still sometimes doubt whether humanity is ready to be reborn to a new paradigm of love and relationship....
To begin to view our friends, family, and even our lovers and partners as free beings can be difficult.... The fear of abandonment is strong within most human beings. [But] the mental illusion that a person “belongs” to us is simply that: an illusion....
When enlightened teachers say they have gone beyond jealousy, what is it that they mean? Do they really mean that they never feel jealous? Does it mean they are somehow blocking or lacking very basic human emotions?... Is it possible? To answer these questions and to begin to understand the phenomenon of going beyond jealousy, one must first realize what jealousy truly is....
● Thoughts from KK about when jealousy is your internal problem, rather than your gut reacting to a real outside problem that your brain hasn't seen yet: Where Jealousy Comes From (Jan. 18, 2015):
There have probably been thousands of articles written on jealousy in polyamorous relationships. And I’m sure I’ve read every single one. But most leave me feeling like something is missing. So here’s my detailed analysis based on my own research, education and experience in the matter. ...
And to close,
|Soliloquy and Baxter, at KimchiCuddles.com, are based on|
real-life former partners of the artist. (Used by permission.)