Different folks, different needs

Amy Shiner is a researcher, presenter, organizer for the Transcending Boundaries Conference, and community member in alternative sexual lifestyle choices. She writes about poly relationships, communication within relationships, spirituality, and kink. One of her latest pieces for the Huffington Post is called "Juggling Poly Needs: Different Folks, Strokes, and Needs." It's about recognizing and honoring the differing needs that people have.

I have relationships with people who have different needs and different wants. That will happen. Unless you're attracted to people born under a specific zodiac sign or have a strict rule that every partner needs a certain level of kink, there will always be a few bumps in the road. I still have a partner who, after almost three years, swears up and down that I don't like being "bossed" around all the time. I attempt to explain to him that when I'm with partners like him who aren't into control, I get some time to relax and take a short break. One thing I keep in mind is that everyone has his or her own perspective. I could try to sell someone on my perspective, but if someone really isn't open to it, then I'm wasting my breath and my time.

. . . What I am going to suggest are some concepts (some of which might be foreign) to remember when trying to understand different folks with different strokes and different needs.

Read the whole article on the Huffington Post.

Shiner has previously written many poly-focused articles for the Huffington Post that are also worth a read: "Taking 'Fair Breaks' from Non-Monogamy," "Not Getting Lost in the Poly Shuffle," "Enlightening Polyamory," "Communication: Struggles Between Poly Star-Crossed Lovers," "Are There Benefits to Being Poly?," and "But If Eric Is with... Then Why Can't I...."

Advice columnist supports and commends polyamory

It's clear the tides are turning when an advice columnist openly discusses the concept of polyamory in response to a reader's question. In her column for the Canadian Huffington Post, columnist Colette Kenney fields a question from a woman who has been married for 22 years but has become interested in exploring non-monogamy. Kenney first responds:

Thanks for your question. I will admit that because my readership is not necessarily the polyamorous type I was torn about whether or not I should answer your question. But when I reflected on how I would answer it, I realized there are actually some really great points that are good for all kinds of relationships -- poly or otherwise.

She goes on to explain how vital communication, honesty, and forgiveness are -- in both poly and monogamous relationships. In equating the two, she is effectively normalizing polyamory, which is very refreshing. Plus, she finishes her column with some very kind words.

I will openly and happily admit that I am not polyamorous myself, nor do I ever think I could handle the head-and-heart ache of entering into such a relationship. But I will say this: I commend anyone who successfully navigates these kinds of relationships. For to do so, I believe, requires saint-like patience, forgiveness, acceptance, trust, and non-attachment.

Read the whole column at the Huffington Post.