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“If you want to be happy, date evolved people!”

May 17, 2018

“If you want to be happy, date evolved people!”
That's not meant to be a judgement or derogatory statement against anyone, nor a tricky mind game used to filter out the 'bad' people. It's a simple acknowledgement of the fact that the people we fuck/play with/enter into relationship with are the most common potential energy leaks in our experiences.
Getting into a relationship with someone that doesn’t have the capacity for the kind of relationship you truly desire is an energy suck - because either they will grin and bear it until they can't and break, or you, being the kind-hearted soul that you are will eventually feel the need to overcompensate and anticipate their needs, and then you are likely to end up projecting all over THEM! What a mess!  
Not only is it a bit painful and dramatic to try and date someone who isn't wanting what we are wanting, but it's also preventing us from connecting with the person/persons out there who ARE a great match! 
If we wish to have a life with little to no drama, who we chose to date is one of the biggest factors - so it's worth putting some thought into setting your standards at a level that is going to really work for you in the long term. 
It’s very helpful when wanting to date freely and openly to only date people that are capable of the kind of free and open relationship that you wish to have. 
And trust me, once you have a delicious partnership where they can see you for who you are, and you can see them for who THEY are, and you both just love and adore each other completely, you'll think twice about going back to the old way again. 
The barrier of entry into my polycule* is that I must trust them to talk to me about stuff when they need to say something or ask for a boundary, and I feel I can trust them to take care of their own mental garbage and beliefs. This way, we can be happy together without them projecting stuff all over me and vice versa.
* Polycule is used to describe any system of connected non-monogamous relationships.
If they can’t talk to me when they have something come up, then they likely don’t yet have the emotional capacity for a solid, delicious relationship.
Of course, the flip side of that barrier to entry is that I TOO must be willing to be an adult and approach whatever comes up for me in a mature manner. I too must be willing to communicate what is important to me and to decide on my own boundaries - not after the fact, but ahead of time whenever possible and let them know what those are. 
As we grow ourselves, we start to recognize others who have significant self growth in the relationships arena. The more we learn to identify the energy suck and learn how to deal with our own suckage (and be a grown up about the whole thing), the more other "grown ups" will see you, spot you and make a beeline for you to say hello and introduce themselves. :)
Isn’t that lovely? You won’t have to go looking, they will spot you a mile away! 
Isn't there a lot of churn as a poly person?
Actually, that’s not necessary true. Maybe at the beginning as you are sifting and learning how to identify evolved, conscious people to date. 
But once you get that skill (and become that kind of person so that they can see you as well), because “adults" spot each other from miles away, we aren’t usually going out and dating just anyone hoping to run into a good one.
And once we find each other, we are pretty likely to come together when the timing is right, come apart when we need to, come together again maybe it that works out later, etc. It’s much more flexible and flux-ible than your average monogamous daters who feel like once you stop dating that person, now you are done with them.
Many of my partners I have dated for years, changing the parameters of how we date to fit our lives as they grow and change.
In fact, none of my new partners in the last year (Will, Fedora Guy, Michael, Chris & Doc) came from traditional dates. They were people who I just happened to click with and they clicked with me.
One of the best things about Polyamory/ManyLoves for me is the idea that you can’t control Juicy, so if you come across something juicy, grab it! Enjoy it! And we do.
Very little churn the longer you live like this.
Sexual Agreements with evolved people tend to be pretty darn simple...
Here are some examples from my own life, and the kind of responses I am looking from them in order to make sure we are a good match:
Around about the first date/first contact online… 
“So, you are poly too? Tell me about your poly experience?” [they sound like a grownup when they talk about their partners and their ex’s… good sign]
“Neat! So, what are your safety standards?” [Commence STI talk, which usually takes 10-20 minutes the first time]
The STI talk for me, aka; here is how I know if someone is a good match.
-It’s clear that they have a good knowledge of STI’s, how people get them, how to stay safe, etc.
-They use condoms with all partners until they decide to be fluid bonded with someone.
-They can talk about sex and STI’s before we fuck. Often even before we kiss.
-When I tell them what I do, they are interested and curious (not lascivious or greedy for details), and ask smart questions about safety.
-They don’t have anything deadly and anything they do have, they are clear about how to prevent giving it to me.
-They respect that I’m an Uber-safety girl and that catching something would have a major negative effect on my life, moreso than most, and they understand that.
If all that is a "go", and we actually LIKE each other, we are good. We will occasionally check in again and we will share STI results with each other every few months, but it’s not a big talk - usually a quick text or two or three sentences at our next date after their results come back.
Back to the first date/contact (assuming we have both enjoyed each other’s company and want to see what happens next, then:)
“It sounds like we could be a good match! Let’s play!” [commence checking schedules, see what feels good in getting together.
Since we’ve talked enough to see what we have in common and what we might want to do together, we start with that. If it’s obvious that we both want to connect for Saturday night each week for a few weeks and see how that feels, cool.
Assume nothing, always ask/invite… openly ask if they are game for ____ (be specific) and see where it goes. 
EXAMPLE : The second time we ever met, 15 minutes into our conversation, Will looked at me and said “Would you like to get snuggly?” I was surprised, but checked in with my body and yes, I did indeed want to get snuggly! And that is how he invited me to be a part of his juicy life.) 
At some point, when feelings have started to grow (could be on the first date, could be a month later), one of us will turn to the other and say “So, how much would you like to know about my other partners?”
My side of the conversation usually goes like this: "I default to talking about them whenever it is natural, since they are a big part of my life too. And I don’t like feeling as if I’m hiding from anyone. I am willing to dial back the detail, and I run a podcast where I talk about my sex life pretty openly, so chances are you will end up hearing me talk explicitly about a partner here and there. What works for you? ”
Usually they say oh, thats totally fine. Ill let you know if it gets too much, but I tend to like hearing about what is going on in your life, so go right ahead.
“Great! I am happy to hear details too, so feel free to share as much or as little with me as you are inspired." (I hardly know any of Will’s partners’ names, except for the girl I introduced him to, and I know intimate details about Derek and his girlfriend - in fact, spent Thanksgiving with them in the hospital while he was having cancer surgery. The nurses didn’t quite know what to think about that!!)
Then we tend to address the potential New Partner question separately, like this:
“So, when I have a new partner come into my life, when would you prefer to know? Does it matter?”
And my answer to that question is: 
“I like to be one of the first people to know, especially because I will pick up on the change in your energy. If you let me know why your energy has changed, then it will take all kinds of pressure off of me to figure out ‘what I’m doing wrong all of a sudden’ and I will be able to relax and find some other way to spend my extra time and energy. Usually I’ll dive into my work projects deeper, so letting me know that it’s time to do that will help immensely with any jealousy emotions that might show up. And if you feel like sharing the details with me, I would love that. I’m very compersive and would celebrate your new relationship energy with you. And if you prefer to keep that new energy separate from us, thats ok too, as long as I know your changes aren’t because I’m doing something wrong.”
And then I usually add “And if the new person is someone I happen to know, I really would love to be the first to know. It will help me tame the jealous cave woman inside if I have a heads up from your rather than hearing about it from someone else or stumbling across the information later. If it works out differently, I’ll be ok, I just may need a day or two to cool off. But I’ll work through it. Thanks for asking!”
And that, dear friends, is just about as much negotiation and management as is needed with a new, evolved poly partner the way I do it.
Maybe there will be a “what if we get pregnant, what do we do” talk at some point down the line if we decide we want to become fluid bonded.
And if they have other partners involved, there will be a bit of discussion about what their other partners need to be comfortable too. Do they need to meet me? If so, when? etc.
I tend NOT to date the lowest common denominator. That’s a lot of hard, hard work and I’m rarely willing to go there. I will make exceptions for someone who I really connect with, if they are partway there already and willing to talk about it. Maybe then these agreement conversations will take 2-3 days each, but that’s about as hard as I’m willing to work to date someone juicy.
Hopefully that helps and gives you something to chew on! 
Radiant Rebecca