Michelle does a prelude to this week’s episode because it is a little (a lot) different than our usual fare. “Polyamory” is defined in Urban Dictionary as The practice, state or ability to have more than one sexual loving relationship at the same time, with the full knowledge and consent of all partners involved. Michelle describes it as opening up your heart enough to have this kind of arrangement. We know it’s a bit taboo, we know listeners will react in different ways to this episode, but we have a podcast about love and marriage and this is an episode that tells one story in this realm. And you can learn something valuable...
Cassandra emailed Michelle a wedding planning question and mentioned she was having a poly-wedding. Michelle answered her question and then asked many of her own. This episode is about the journey planning a non-traditional wedding, and it’s a personal education about what a polyamorous relationship looks like.
Tony and Cass are together and monogamous. They decide to have an open relationship and Cass meets Lara and falls in love. Then what? They have to figure out what the ‘rules’ are...how does this work in the long term?
It’s not an ‘open relationship’ (although Tony and Cass had an open relationship when they met Lara), polyamory is not a free for all. It’s ‘consensual by agreement’ - as Dr. Fosse explains. There is a difference in each relationship, they aren’t all always equal. Typically, there is a primary couple and then one or both partners have secondary partners. The primary couple agrees on the rules/decisions and is very open and honest through the entire process. Another type of arrangement in a polyamorous family is that all partners are equal in the relationship. It’s possible to switch between the type of arrangement as long as all partners are on the same page. It’s not just ‘cheating’ on each other. It’s not just sex. For our family, Cass, Tony and Lara, it’s love. They want to live a life together, all three of them.
Cass and Tony are getting married and Lara is a bridesmaid. How does that work?! Lara is involved in wedding planning. She was involved in the planning of Tony’s proposal. She is a part of their marriage. She’s genuinely happy for Tony and Cass. It’s just working for them.
The three subjects in this interview talk to us about their marriage plans, their families, who knows and doesn’t know about their arrangement, future kids, and why this is the right relationship for all of them right now. It’s enlightening and normalizing. And we’re all about that!
Links we referenced
Dr. Magdalena Fosse https://www.drfosse.com “Queen of Polyamory” (dubbed by her colleagues)
“He said to me, if anyone knew what I was like when I was falling in love, it was him. And he wanted me to go for it. To see where it would go.” - Cass, on how Tony knew she loved Lara
“Poly meaning multiple. Amory meaning love, referring to love. It’s an idea that embraces the possibility that it’s do-able and not abnormal to love more than one person.” - Dr. Fosse
“Some couples have a ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ mentality and that’s kind of the opposite of how we decided to do this.” - Cass on how she and Tony ‘opened up their relationship’
“We’re in a pivot, or a ‘v relationship’, not a tri-relationship. I’m dating Cass. And Tony is dating Cass. But we aren’t romantic with each other.” - Lara
“Now the two questions. Why are you getting married? And how did you decide that it would be Cass and Tony?” - Michelle
“I’ve always pictured marrying Tony. It’s always been there. So to have it be so real, feels so good. And I’m excited to celebrate. To me, it’s about the connection to be made with everyone who has loved and supported us. Especially as we go to this new chapter together. It’s not a new book. It’s a new chapter.” - Cass, on marrying Tony, and have Lara by her side
“The one thing that I worry about is legal things...and that’s something to be determined. Just making sure that we can all be a part of that child’s life, for their benefit.” - Lara, on the idea of having children as a poly family
“It can work, absolutely. And the word WORK is key. And that applies to monogamous and polyamorous relationships. There is no relationship that actually thrives when there is no attention given to it.” - Dr. Fosse, dropping a reminder about all relationships
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