Saturday, 11 October 2014

In love with love

There's a sort of accepted story about there being a point in any monogamous relationship where either or both partners realise this is getting pretty committed and have a moment of panic because they'll never again have a first kiss or that ridiculous feeling where you are actually falling for someone. It's not without truth. Disney chemicals do all sorts of fun things to your brain. When you meet someone new and have a crush or fall in love, you spend days or weeks feeling like you're starring in your very own high school musical. It's truly annoying for those around you, but it's a fantastic high. And those are actual real chemicals whooshing around your body, and they don't tend to be triggered by that same partner five years down the line, when nothing about each other is new any more.

Of course, if you're poly, no problem. You get to kiss new people, nurture crushes and fall in love whenever the right opportunity arises. And I'm sure that for some people this is the main attraction. Addicted to love.

The thing you learn, if you pay attention, is that there is no greener grass. Because there's also a sort of accepted story about how couples who have been together for some time inevitably reach a point of considering what might have happened if they'd phoned that beautiful woman, or accepted that dinner invitation, or left the party with Bob instead of Jack. A sort of nebulous discontent. I really don't think this happens to everyone. But I also think anyone who says they are never ever bored of their partner, or just slightly regretful they didn't travel more or take that job in the other city because it would have harmed the relationship, are lying. We all have moments. It's human nature. And you can feel that way about a partner, or perhaps more about your life, whether you're poly or mono or your partner is your great-aunt's aspidistra. If you're poly, though, you do know that another partner, a different pair of lips kissing yours, isn't going to change that relationship. In fact, delightfully, it doesn't have to. You don't have to let go of someone you love and have built a life with to bring something new into that life. If you're lucky, it'll be something that is good and exciting for both of you. At the least, you'll grow and learn new things, and you get to bring that back to your partner and of course that invigorates things. Or it can.

Last night I had a date with boyfriend #2. We went to dinner. While we were there I heard from boyfriend #1, who was clearly not having a great night. We went over to hang out with him. Had a couple of drinks. Chatted. Laughed. Then we left, because I was tired and it was late. When we got home, there was a message from boyfriend #1 saying thanks for the visit, he felt so much better. I can't tell you how happy it makes me that I got a date night and got to take care of my other partner, and we were all comfortable and had a good time. I feel very lucky. And I have a bunch of disney chemicals going on (even though technically I'm over that phase in both relationships) because it just felt so good to be in this space with them both. My grass is freaking green, folks.

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