Episode 110: Live Q&A #1

I hosted my first Live Q&A on Instagram and got a lot of interesting questions. If you missed it, check it out here and be sure to follow @NonMonogamyHelp.

I hosted my first Live Q&A on Instagram and got a lot of interesting questions. If you missed it, check it out here and be sure to follow @NonMonogamyHelp.

That’s what’s on this week’s episode of Non-Monogamy Help.

Listen here on or on Anchor. Visit the Anchor website to find where else the podcast is distributed or use this handy RSS link.

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Thank you to Chris Albery-Jones at albery-jones.com for the theme music and a big thanks for the podcast art to Dom Duong at domduong.com.


Do you think anyone can adapt to a polyam lifestyle? Not sure if for me, met someone who is.

What do you do if desires are opposite (swinging with partner vs only want solo)?

When does non hierarchy become problematic

My ex metamour is a threat to me emotionally and physically . What do i do?

Sharing a "new partner/broken condom situation" w long-term partner at any price?

Rebuilding trust.ok to ask for NP to see partner a lil less for a bit while focusing on nesting?

What are the biggest issues in the beginning of an open relationship?

What is the best advice you’ve received for an anxious attachment style?

How to handle fomo when two of your partners hang out without you

How would you explore the causes of insecurity in a relationship (own issues, unmet needs, or dynamic)?


Welcome to the first live q&a. Thanks so much for being here. We have let's see, you're welcome to ask questions in the comment section. But I'm a little bit unfamiliar. This is like the first live I've ever done.

And I've done some lives on Instagram before, but not so much. So I don't know how much of the history of the chat I'm going to be able to see. So feel free to like, hold on to a question if you would like. But yeah, so I don't think the Patreon has had any questions. So we won't worry about that.

If you want to be a Patreon and go to patreon.com/lolaphoenix. And do you know the deal? If you've listened to the podcast before you can become a patron, you get the podcasts and the columns, four days before they go live? So yeah, we will then move on to the questions we had from the stories.

So the first question I have from the stories was, Do you think anyone can adapt to a Polyam lifestyle? Not sure if it's for me met someone who is? So I feel like the answer is, I mean, yes, sort of. It's sort of like do you think that anyone can be monogamous? Do you think that anyone can live in a city?

Do you think that anyone can be apparent? Like it's, it's, it's difficult to say, some people, it will work for them, some people it won't. As I've said before, in my book, I kind of talk a little bit about this in my book, The Anxious Person's Guide to Non-monogamy, I should have like, had my book here. So I could be like my book. But the point is, like, I think the first thing that you have to ask yourself is, can you deal with a relationship where your partner doesn't spend 100% of their time with you.

And this isn't necessarily just true for polyamorous relationships. There are monogamous relationships that are like this. Sometimes people have really intensive careers, really intensive hobbies or interests, or they're in the military, things like that, where your partner is not going to spend 100% of their time with you. And that's not to say that every monogamous relationship has people spending 100% of their time together. But generally speaking, that is a thing that happens, most likely in a lot of monogamous relationships.

So that's kind of the first thing because I think that a lot of people aren't necessarily bothered by the idea that their partner might be interested in someone else, either sexually or romantically. But they actually don't want their partner to spend that much time in other relationships, or they want the majority of their partner's time, or it doesn't work with their lifestyle in the exact same way that two people can want monogamy. But one person may want to, you know, travel more, or they have, you know, they're a lawyer or a doctor, and they have a really big career that keeps them away from home a lot. Some people don't want to date somebody who has that intensive of a career because they want to spend more time with their partner. So I think that's like the first question.

If you're kind of an independent person, and you kind of feel like, oh, I can spend time away from my partner, it's not that big of a deal. That's kind of like the first hurdle. I think then the second hurdle is kind of thinking about what it means for you as an individual, and whether or not it has any value for you as an individual. So there are people who want to date other people, they want to be free to flirt with other people they want to, there's all sorts of things they want to do. And non monogamy gives them that.

But for other people, they can be monogamous and be with a polyamorous person, and for them their anchor, which is what I call an anchor. That's what an anchor is, their anchor is like they get a lot of alone time they get more, you know, freedom to do their own thing. And that is the benefit and they get to stay in the relationship with the person that they care about. And that for them is a big benefit. So I think there are two kinds of aspects and beginning to see if you are interested in being polyamorous, it's possible to be monogamous to Pollyanna person, you don't have to be polyamorous yourself.

But I think those two things like whether or not you can be with someone who won't be around you 100% of the time. And if there is something within polyamory even if you're not polyamorous that you feel you can also benefit from that's like the two starting points. And then I think it comes down to like, You got to try it. See if it's for you. If it's not for you, that's okay.

It doesn't mean that you're jealous, it doesn't mean that you're bad, doesn't mean anything personally about you and may just not be for you. And the exact same way that, you know, if you're thinking about if I'm a city person, can I live in the country? That might be a few questions you can ask yourself to think about, oh, would it bother you if you couldn't like get to a store right away? Would it bother you if there weren't like a lot of parties, blah, blah, like there are things you can ask yourself to sort of see if it's for you before you actually try it? Right.

So those are things I would think about. So that was the first question asked for my stories is Do you think that anyone can adapt to a Polycom lifestyle? Second question is, what do you do if your desires are opposite, swinging with my partner versus only wanting so low? So I think this is like a larger question. It really depends on what your desires are, and how much those desires matter to you and how much you're willing to sacrifice on those desires.

Right? Because like you can be a person for example, who really likes swinging but doesn't you know, that's kind of what you want to do it In non monogamy like you've mostly want to swing with a partner, not really interested in solo dating, you're not really interested in developing romantic relationships. But your partner is, and I've been with, I've had partnerships where like, I was more interested in having multiple relationships with my partner was more interested in having like hookups. And that was fine.

Like I just had to kind of learn myself that their interest in hooking up was just different than mine. And I had to kind of learn how to not take that personally. And I did kind of take it I think I took it a little personally at first like it was it because we live in a society. We live in a society where, you know, when people are interested in hookups, there's like, people don't take that politely in society, right? Like in a lot of societies, they're sort of like, oh, there's something with you if you just want hookups, especially depending on how you're read in terms of gender.

But like, I just had to learn how to not take it personally. So I think it really depends. Whoever wrote this, I'm gonna send this to the answers the people who wrote this, you're more than welcome to like, write into the column ask at NonMonogamyhelp.com or Non-Monogamy help@gmail. com.

You're more than welcome to ask and give me like more details about this situation. Because I think it really depends on what those desires are. And like how important they are like for some people, they have a super big interest in like threesomes, for example, but they're willing to give it up forever to be monogamous forever. So for some people, they're not willing to give up on that. And they don't want to be in a type of monogamous relationship where that can never happen.

So I had that actually, like when I was even before I was polyamorous. So as a guy, I was like, interested in some form of non monogamy. And I met this guy who was really interested in that I was like, well, I might be interested in like, you know, experiment later on. And he was like, No, I'm never interested in that. I was like, well, there's no point in us dating, because I'm not willing to give up on that.

So, you know, it's things like that. So as a second question, what do you do if desires are opposite? Third question is, when does nine non hierarchy become problematic? And I think this is like, when does anything become problematic, right? Like lots of things work for some people that work for not work for no other people.

Lots of things are problematic for some people that are not problematic for other people, for some people, a marriage where they don't meet the person before they get married works for them. And I'm not going to be like the person that's going to be the judge on all high and be like, This is bad, you shouldn't do this, like, different people live different ways, different things work for different people. So I think that it's it's not a matter of when something is problematic, right? Because I kind of feel like, if it works for you, and it works for your partner, and everyone involved in the situation is aware and consenting, then that's your situation. And other people might judge it as problematic.

Like, for example, good example of this is 24/7, BDSM, lifestyles, some people would very much judge those lifestyles is problematic, and they could be problematic, anyone can be problematic in terms of like how their relationship is. But at the end of the day, it's those people in those relationships who consent to that as long as they're consenting to it. And that's what they want to do. It's their life, it's not up for someone else to kind of come in and say, Oh, this is problematic. Now, if you mean, when does non hierarchy become problematic?

For me? I think it depends on is it the hierarchy? Or the non hierarchy? That's the problem? Or is it the way people are behaving?

Because I do sometimes think especially within polyamorous communities, that a lot of people are using the word in the same way that people use the word monogamy to mean like jealousy, and all of the kinds of tropes that come with mattagami. I do think sometimes people use the word hierarchy to mean like tropes, like people basically not caring about their other partners, except the person that they're married to, which is an inherent within hierarchy, which isn't necessarily inherent within two people deciding, okay, we're a couple, and we are going to live together and we're going to, you know, it's sort of like, being a parent does mean that you should prioritize your child and you do prioritize your child, that doesn't necessarily mean that you don't care about anybody else. And being a jerk to somebody else. Doesn't isn't inherent to being a beat. You see what I mean?

Like, it really depends. It depends on what you're talking about. If you want to write to me a little bit more to explain to me the situation and what's going on, more than happy to do that. But I think that, for me, it becomes problematic and things become problematic. When you you know, the relationship isn't serving you when you don't feel like it's working for you.

When you don't feel seen or heard when you've tried multiple times to resolve the issue and nothing's happening. Because at the end of the day, right. There are only so many things you can control. Only so many things you can control and when it comes to other adults and how they behave You know, I think there's like a thing called the three C's.

And I think it was Mathias Barker, who I may have heard this from, there's three C's, right, there's confront, so you can confront the behavior and ask it to change, there is condone sort of like or consent, where it's like you accept that this behavior is, you know, sort of like the price of admission, as Dan Savage says, or you just accept that like, this is part of the relationship, this is what it is, this is kind of like I'm willing to deal with this behavior in order to stay in the relationship, or you agree that oh, crap, now I've forgotten the third one, it's not crap. Or you cut you walk away, right. So that's the three options that you kind of have when you're dealing with a situation which is problematic, which is either you confront the behavior, ask it to change, talk through it, maybe with a therapist, see if you can get it to change, you accept that this is part of the relationship condone, or you cut or you walk away. And those are really the only things you can do. You know, and it's more about, like how you feel about the relationship than how other people feel about the relationship.

Because if you walk around, like, only caring about how other people feel about your relationship, then like, you're gonna meet someone who doesn't agree with Non-Monogamy. And then what are you gonna do? So? That's the answer that question What does not hire? When does men hire hierarchy?

Lord, I can't speak today. When does non hierarchy hierarchy become problematic? All right, the next question is my ex Metamora is a threat to me emotionally and physically, what do I do? So first of all, if someone's a threat to you physically, I feel like there are things that I can't help you with, that you need to handle as a grown person, which is if it's calling the police, then you do that whatever you need to do to secure yourself physically. That is that is you need to handle that.

I can't I can't help you with that. And it depends on what you mean by threat. But you know what, if you're saying someone's a threat to you, physically, I feel like the police can work that out, or whatever kind of authority or help that you can get, then you need to do that. Just as you would have any other person in the world was a threat to you? Do you know what I'm saying?

Like that being an ex metaphor, doesn't have anything to do doesn't make the situation in different from what you would do. Otherwise, do you know I'm sayin? In terms of a threat to you emotionally. I mean, again, the three C's, like I've just said, like someone is not working with you, you're not getting along, they're hurting you. You confront, condone, or you cut, either confront the situation, ask them to stop, make a request, say something so that they're aware, if they're not aware, they're hurting you that is a possibility.

In some cases, although because you've said they're a threat to you physically, I'm gonna guess they know. You condone which I, you know, I would probably encourage you not to condone people who are threats to you, but I don't know what you mean by threat. So probably not, or you cut, you walk away from the situation. And there are things you can do legally, I don't know where you live. And I'm not a legal person who can give you legal advice.

So I would, I would advise you to speak to the authorities in that case. So that's that question. Next question is sharing a new partner slash broken condom situation with long term partner at any price. So I have no idea what this person is asking me specifically, I am going to encourage them to write me in a letter in the column so that I understand the entire situation because this doesn't sound like a question that's easily answerable in this format. I'm going to assume that you have a long term partner, they have a new partner, and there is a broken condom situation going on with that new partner.

And you're kind of expected to deal with that because the condoms broke. So oh, well, I guess I guess it's what's happening in this situation? I don't know. Like, this is again, a question about your own personal boundaries and what you're willing to put up with, and again, with the three C's, like hate to repeat it, but it's kind of like the assimilation, the the situation here. I think that when it comes to sexual health, like there are a lot of things about sexual health, depending on where you were raised, I could be wrong, but at least within my context, like North American US context, which is where my listeners tend to be mostly from, we grow up with a lot of shame around sex, we grew up with a lot a lack of knowledge around sex, generally speaking.

And we also grew up with this environment that like, you know, everything in life has risks, right? Everything in life is risky, to a certain extent, like driving is risky. Going out of your house is risky. Staying in your house is risky, like life comes with risk. In certain situations, our culture will convey these risks to us either not convey them at all because actually taking aspirin has risks.

But we don't really think of that because we're sort of like, oh, yeah, it's fine. It's aspirin, whatever, but everything has risk. And there are certain things that we do that society kind of doesn't really tell us about the risk or downplays the risk. And we sort of go in, okay, whatever, it doesn't matter.

And then there are certain things that society takes that risk and sort of amplifies it. And sexual health is one of those things where like the fear of STIs. And it's not to say you shouldn't take it seriously. You know, I'm immunocompromised myself, I totally get it like there is a seriousness to protecting yourself, I totally understand. But the risk that we're sort of encouraged to feel emotionally

doesn't match with, necessarily with the sort of risk that you actually take, in a lot of ways, like, we're encouraged to feel all this worse, as the same kind of thing actually goes for, you know, who's likely who's more likely to be attacked when walking on the street alone at night is actually men, men are more likely to be attacked by a stranger walking home alone at night. And yet, women are kind of encouraged to feel this intense risk in this situation, because that's sort of what society is pushed. It's not to say that women won't get attacked. But, you know, the risk is sort of heightened by culture. So I think like, it's always worth thinking about when it comes to like, these boundaries around sexual health and things always worth remembering that the risks that you've been brought up with about sexual health and sex in general, might be kind of overhyped, in a way.

And it's not to say, again, like you that you're not valid and being afraid, you're not valid and like wanting to protect yourself, totally understand. But at some point, there is risk in having a sex life. And that's just part of being an adult and part of life in some ways, and part of being an adult from one subjects. So, you know, you're going to have to kind of learn how to assess that risk, maybe as outside of the kinds of influences that you've had, which is really difficult. But yeah, this question is a little confusing.

So I would encourage the person who wrote it to write me a letter in the column at ask at NonMonogamyhelp.com, or actually, if you're listening to this recently, I would say do NonMonogamyhelp@gmail.com, because I'm like, transferring my website over, and I'm worried that some of my emails might get lost. So please do that. The next question we have is rebuilding trust, is it okay to ask for a nesting partner to see a partner a little less for a while and focus on nesting? So I'm going to say that?

I mean, is it okay, you can ask for whatever you want? Will it fix the problem? No, I don't think so. I think that people have a tendency within non monogamy, when they have an open relationship, to want to control who like not really like control, like this sounds like really manipulative, but it's not intended to be manipulative, but I think people want, you know, they want a sign of their partner's commitment, they're really worried about losing their partner.

And sometimes that manifests in wanting the partner to see others less, or what you know, wanting the partner to break up with others. Like, I feel like this is just a light touch veto, like I'm going to be, I'm going to be honest with you, it feels like a light touch veto. And really, if you want to learn to rebuild trust with your partner, trying to sort of make your non monogamy less non monogamous, or put training wheels on it, I just don't think that's going to work. Because what you want is to learn how to rebuild trust with your partner in situ, right? Like you want to learn, if you're trying to learn how to like, this is like, I'm not sure this is like a good example, because I'm not like an Olympic swimmer or whatever.

But if you wanted to learn how to swim in the ocean, yes, you can practice in a pool. But that's not going to be swimming in the ocean. Do you know what I mean? Like, I don't think it's a good idea. Because you're asking you're, you're basically affecting someone else's life, who has nothing to do with this situation.

For the purposes of your partner, you know, if your partner decides on their own, that they want to kind of spend more time with you, that's one thing, but you trying to make your partner or asking your partner to spend less time with others so that they can rebuild trust with you. Like, that's not achieving what you think it's going to achieve. Because ideally, you would like your partner to demonstrate to you the function of this request, right? It's so that your partner demonstrates that they trust you demonstrates that they care about your relationship demonstrates that they're, you know, it's sort of like asking your partner to to give you a Valentine's Day present when what you really want is for your partner to think of a present themselves and to care enough about you to give you a present. Not that I care about presents.

But that's that's the point of the request. Right? So you've tried to facilitate this show of of wanting to build your relationship by essentially asking your partner to do it is not is not it's, it's addressing the symptom but not the disease, right. That's not what you actually want, you want your partner to rebuild trust with you, you're wanting your partner to show you that they care about you.

And the way to do that, they should be able to find ways to do that without having to basically shun their other partners. And they're going to have to learn how to balance time between people at some point anyway, so it may as well be now. So yeah, I would say, is it okay, like, yeah, you can ask for it. If you want, will it fix the problem? I don't think so.

I don't personally think so. Because if you want to build trust with each other, assuming that something happened, right, you're trying to rebuild trust with each other. I think that they need to learn how to rebuild trust with you while they're seeing other people, because that's the whole point. That's the whole point. So yeah, the question was rebuilding trust?

Is it okay to ask for a nesting partner to see another partner a little less for a bit while focusing on nesting? Okay, and then the next question is, what are the biggest issues in the beginning of an open relationship? Again, this really depends on the person really depends, I think, yeah, it's hard for me to say that, what the biggest issues will be for any given person. I'm like, I think everyone kind of assumes that jealousy is the biggest issue. And I think that the bad thing that I don't like about that is that I feel like people call things, any kind of emotions that they feel around non monogamy jealousy, when they're not jealousy, when they're just kind of like fear or something else.

I mean, we can get really granular and like, specific about the definition of jealousy versus envy and all that. And I like I don't, I see the point and being that granular in some instances, but I really try not to, like, be really specific in that way. Because I don't think it helps. But I think it just depends on the person. And I think that the best I can advise when it comes to like starting out, is again, like I said before, like, can you spend, can you be in a relationship where someone doesn't spend 100% of their time with you?

Is there something about this, that you personally feel benefits you because I think that that matters, and I think those are the things to start with. But I think the best thing you can do is just expect expect yourself to feel like all sorts of things. Don't expect it to be like this wondrous amazing thing that just is perfect and wonderful. It just just like having, you know, in a way, like having a child like, if you go into having a child and you expect yourself to be happy all the time, and have all these super happy parenting nurturing feelings all the time, you're probably going to feel like, that's probably going to be worse for you. So I think just, I feel like culturally, we have a little bit of an expectation that, you know, Parenting is hard.

And that doesn't mean it's not worth it. But we kind of have this narrative around open relationships, that open relationships don't work, and therefore it's not worth it to be difficult. So when it is difficult, people kind of freak out. So the best I can say is like expect it, you know, you're changing how you normally do relationships, you're doing it without any cultural scripts of success. So in your brain is hardwired for social connection, it's hardwired to help you prevent pain as much as it can.

So you're gonna have lots of fields, so expect to have lots of fields, and I do my like, I'm not trying to plug my book constantly. But the anxious Person's Guide to Non-Monogamy is kind of like, supposed to be something for people who are just starting out. So that's what I would advise. So the next question I have is, what is the best advice you've received for an anxious anxious attachment style? So if you haven't listened to the most recent episode of my podcast, no worries, but I am not a fan of attachment styles. Not a fan. Not saying they're not useful for people. They are useful for many people. The problem that I have with attachment styles and how they're used is that to me, I feel like first of all, adult attachment is inherently insecure.

As Todd Baratz says-- Todd is really great. If you're not following Him you should be has a lot of really great things to say. Adult attachment is inherently insecure because adults are able to walk away from situations that don't serve them. Children are not able children rely on their parents children must be securely attached to an adult in order for their best survival. When children don't get that it does have an impact on you as an adult but as an adult, you are no longer a child you are able to walk away from situations that don't serve you.

I feel like putting yourself in a box of being an anxiously attached or avoidant attached person is putting yourself in a box and may actually encourage you to see yourself in a way that encourages a learned helplessness. I feel like yes, your attachments in your childhood will have affected you. Of course everything in your childhood will have affected you. However, seeing yourself as needing secure attachment in the same way that a child does. I don't think is helpful.

So I encourage people like attachment styles, if you like them if they if they speak to you, and they are helpful to you, and eventually getting to a point where you feel confident and assured in yourself, brilliant, but really, really ask yourself if calling yourself anxiously attached, like, for me personally, and this may be a stark comparison for a lot of people. I have been through sexual assault, however, I don't walk around calling myself an assaulted person. I don't walk around calling myself a raped person, because I'm not going to define my entire personhood by something that happened to me. So I feel like and like there's a point in time and recovery from that situation where it very much helps me to see myself as having experienced something to see myself as a victim to see myself as Yes, I have experienced this because for so long, I was in denial. And for so and that didn't help me very much.

So like it did at some point helped me to say yes, I have been victimized, this has happened to me. But I over time, instead of continuing to identify as that was like, Okay, I have no longer experience that I'm not, you know, it's not to say again, it's not like this is doesn't affect me anymore. It's not saying blah, blah, blah, it doesn't affect me. It's not denial, but I'm not defining my entire personhood by it. So that's how I feel kind of about attachment styles.

I feel like you're identifying your entire self by something that happened to you. And it I don't think it helps people move on always depends on the person. So yeah, I don't have an attachment style. I don't feel connected to those things. And so I haven't received advice about having an anxious attachment style, because I don't really see myself as having an attachment style, personally.

So yeah, that's how I feel about that. Again, the question was, what is the best advice you've received? For an anxious anxious attachment style? I can speak today. Next question is how to handle FOMO when two of your partners hang out without you?

How do you handle FOMO? When two of your friends hang out with you? Or don't hang? Can I speak? How do you handle FOMO?

When two of your friends are hanging out without you? How do you handle FOMO? When any one that you love is hanging out without you? How do you handle FOMO? If you can't go home for Christmas, and everyone else is home, assuming that you have a family and a bla bla bla.

Yeah, how do you handle those situations? I think that those are good places to start from, because that helps you, you know, understandably, their romantic relationships are a bit different to friendships. And for some people, for many people. You know, family relationships are different. For some people, that's absolutely fine.

However, how you handle those situations, will give you kind of insight if this is about, okay, I just feel kind of bummed because peep to people that I like are hanging out, and I can't hang out with them. Or if there's something deeper going on, because maybe there's something deeper, maybe you're not feeling FOMO, you're you know, maybe one of your partners isn't really showing an effort to hang out with you, or they're not really either one of them or not really showing an effort to kind of hang out with you. And when they hang out together, that's like extra painful. Maybe I'm not saying this is the case. But you can differentiate this between because sometimes I find this is the case with jealousy as well, like a lot of feelings is like, there's an initial feeling of like, Oh, I'm missing out.

That's sad. But there may also be another layer beneath that of, not only am I sad that I'm missing out, but also, this has made me realize that I want this from my partner, but I'm not getting that. And that also makes me sad. And so the advice that I give a person who is like, just kind of sad and bummed that you know, they're missing out, which is fine, like treat yourself, do something for yourself, like the same thing you would do in any other situation. That advice is very different from the advice I would give someone who is not only sad that they're missing out, but they're also sad because like, oh my god, like and I'll tell you, there's nothing like more painful in my experience, than having a partner or wanting to do something with them.

And then witnessing them doing that thing with someone else when they won't do it with you. And that doesn't even have to be a sexual thing. It's like literally, I had a partner who I really I like sitting and watching films together. Very basic thing. But I've had many partners who don't like doing that.

Which sucks. I don't know, what's the deal with that. But one time after we had after we weren't together I think it was maybe I can't remember. But one time I witnessed them, you know, sitting and watching a film with someone else and I felt so awful like I felt terrible. It really broke my heart because and I thought at the time it was just jealousy.

I was and I was like plugging merciless. You should You're just jealous. You're just jealous. You just need to get over it. You think over it's not that big of a deal.

But actually I wasn't just jealous, like, yeah, it was jealous. But I was also extremely sad because I really wanted this for my partner and I wasn't getting it. So yeah, I think there's two layers to that FOMO question. It's like, yeah, you're gonna feel a little bit bummed if to, like you would if you had two friends, and they were like, able to, like, let's say you had like a test or something.

And you had to, you know, everyone's experience something like this, like, you have to stay inside, you're sick, you have COVID. Lots of people had this situation, like, you have COVID Your friends are hanging out with it, and you got to stay home? Like, how would you handle that situation? Take care of yourself. Right.

Exactly. All right. And last question that we have that people have sent in is how would you explore the causes of insecurity in a relationship, such as your own issues, an unmet needs, or a dynamic? So this is a little bit of a complicated question, I'm going to encourage the person who wrote it to write in, because I don't know it depends, it very much depends. Because insecurity I don't think is like caused always by one thing.

I think it can be very multifaceted. I think that there is also a big difference. And I differentiate this a little bit, I think, in my one on one or one or two articles, I can't really remember, there is a difference between insecurity, like a type of insecurity that you that you normally would feel in any given situation, sort of, it's exactly the same as anxiety, right? There's a difference between anxiety that you normally feel you're going to normally feel anxiety in a lot of situations, and a generalized anxiety disorder. And I do think there's a difference between like, when you're starting off in a new relationship, you're going to feel insecure with that person, because you don't know them as well, you're still building foundations of trust with one another.

When you're going, you know, a lot of people when they do a big presentation, they feel insecure, because it's a big presentation, there's low on the line, they feel anxious, they feel insecure. Like, if you're using kind of insecurity as a, which a lot of people do as a kind of another form of anxiety. There are lots of situations where you're going to feel insecure, and that is understandable, especially when you're trying Non-Monogamy, you've never tried it before. And you have no cultural script for Non-Monogamy. There, as far as I know.

And please correct me if I'm wrong. There is no society that has polyamory or non monogamy in the exact same way there are societies where there are multiple marriages and things like that. But in this exact same way, there isn't really a society that has, you know, lots of stories told about polyamory. It's not a well known cultural thing. And so you don't have cultural scripts for this.

So your brain is a primarily socially driven thing, because humans are socially driven creatures, we have survived because we are socially driven. And we have made connections with each other, we are designed and built for connection with each other. So your brain is primarily, you know, has years and years of basically evolution designed to help it stay connected with other people, and encourage and seek connection. That is a reason why when we go into solitary confinement, we go insane, because we're designed for social connection. So there is an aspect of your brain within trying something new that has had no cultural script that has no if you've never met anyone who's non monogamous, like there's an asset there, that is naturally going to make you afraid and insecure.

And I feel like sometimes people expect themselves, especially because of the way that I feel like polyamory is communicated, like the way that the intro materials and just the way people communicate about polyamory is part of them. Or a lot of people are communicating about polyamory in a way that's supposed to like, sort of reaffirm their choice. And so I feel like for a lot of people when they're new to it, it's like they expect themselves to go into this with no anxiety, and for it to be like this wonderful, masterful thing and every problem is solved, and they have no issues. And if they have an issue, it means they're jealous. And it means that they're not they can't do it.

Nobody has that fear about polyamory, right. Like when people are about about monogamy, and people start off their first relationships and monogamy. And a lot of times people don't remember this, but a lot of your first relationships when you have them when you're like, you know, very young, you're super frickin nervous. You're super freakin scared, but you don't remember that. And I don't think you really think of that.

And you certainly don't think that you're you being nervous and one of your first relationships in life is a sign that you're not monogamous. So there's so much pressure and expectation not only is it like a new thing that you're trying, but there's so much pressure and expectation to get it right to prove that you're B that you're really polyamorous. So that you're really non monogamous that that in of itself causes insecurity and fear. So there's a lot going on with insecurity in relationships, especially in open relationships, where you don't have a cultural script where you're not, this isn't the norm in your society. So you're going against the norm, doing something new that you've never done.

And before of course, you're fucking scared like, Of course you are. So that is a biggest cause of insecurity and a lot of non monogamous relationships. And I don't think the community necessarily helps, which is why I write what I write because I feel like the community is encouraging people and just sort of saying like, yeah, polyamorous gray blame is awesome. I'm so happy. And I think that's because outside people are like, Non-Monogamy doesn't work.

Open relationships don't work blue. But Aren't you jealous? Aren't you jealous? So I feel like people feel like they have to respond to that by being like, no, it's very similar. And I've compared this before, my column in my podcast, is very similar to like how I felt when I was fighting for equal marriage as a teenager, that for people for queer, lesbian and gay people to get equal marriage, I felt like a lot of people had to be like, Look at this, look at this beautiful lesbian couple and they're at and they've been together for 30 years, don't they deserve to get married?

And the idea is like, okay, yeah, we have to show you this example. We have to show you this example of like, gay people that have been together for so long, because we want to prove to you that we're worthy, we're worthy of this marriage thing. And we should instead of just deserving it because we're gonna consenting adults, so why the fuck not, you know? So I think a lot of people feel like they have to prove they have to prove the polyamory works, they have to prove that they can do it, they have to prove it, prove it, prove it. And that causes so much fucking anxiety in and of itself, man.

Like, I That in and of itself, without even all of the other shit that goes with it. Like you're not only having to start this new relationship with new relationships are already anxiety provoking, starting a new relationship starting a new thing that you've never done before. And in a society, which is telling you Oh, blue chips don't work or don't work, they don't work like. And then like a society to be honest, like, in my experience, at least, that's a little bit like weirdly, in a kind of exploitative and gross way, like weirdly fascinated with your relationship style.

Like, understandably, I feel like we need to be a little bit like less, like, reactive against people who just are like, Oh, that's interesting, like people are gonna find it interesting. Okay, and that's okay. But some people are a little bit creepy about it, somebody a little a little creepy, a little bit like, Oh, my God, like, I don't know, if there's a difference there. It's hard for me to like place. But anyway, my point is, like, there's so much there that already causes you to feel anxious and scared and insecure in a way that's totally normal.

And my problem with a lot of the advice that's given to people who are starting out, is this idea that all of this insecurity that you feel in relationships is totally you, it's just you, it's just you with monogamous baggage that you need to unpack. And if you feel this and it's because you haven't unpacked your monogamous baggage, and because there's something wrong with you, and bla bla, bla, bla bla, and like, yeah, there are a lot of people who have a lot of self hate, that is different. You know, that is very different. There are a lot of people have a lot of personal issues that they need to work through. That's true in monogamy.

That's true of a lot of people because we don't live in a society that teachers will still love ourselves. But that's another that's a whole nother rant anyway. So you have all of this stuff on top of your feelings and your emotions and your brain. And then the answer in like I feel in the wider culture is like, just tell yourself that you are a special angel, and you are a snowflake and your individual the perfect and no one can ever replace you and that I feel like it's just the worst. It's just the worst advice ever.

It's just the worst. I think it works for some people and that's great. Because some people for some people this kind of insecurity, like they have this insecurity from like being in a in a different type of relationship and that sort of societal like feeling and then maybe they have a little bit of the like, you know, everyone experiences some sort of anxiety for what it's like like I said the difference between having anxiety before like a big presentation which a lot of people would have and then having an anxiety disorder the advice that you give to somebody who's having a little bit of anxiety before something that they would probably everyone would feel a little bit of anxiety before and the advice you give to a person with generalized anxiety disorder is not the same. And so I just feel like the advice that's often given to a lot of people and in the beginning and and and non monogamous communities and polyamory communities is just like, just love yourself, and just just feel better and you're gonna you're gonna be alright and it's just like blowing up like this. It's like this top up life sick Lifesaver jacket.

That's and there's so many like, there's the societal thing there could actually be problems in your relationship. And I there's so many things like I've had so many experiences where I've just my relationship was the problem like there was something going on in the relationship that was the problem but I was so convinced that it was jealousy and it was me and my my monogamous baggage and he just get through it. It wasn't. So this is a really complicated question.

This is a really complicated thing. And I think that if you have if you feel like you have unmet needs, because you said unmet needs, there's a lot there to negotiate. There's a lot there to talk about. Because I think on the one hand, there is this kind of expectation with some people, that adult relationships should meet all of their needs. In a way that's unrealistic, but at the same time, you know, there are, like I said, situations that you have to you as an adult have to go okay, this is not actually doing it for me, I've confronted I've said, I've stated my needs, some people just expect our partners to read their mind.

And if they can't read their mind, they think they're not compatible. You know, there's lots of stuff here. So I would encourage this person who said, the original question, if you remember, it was how would you explore the causes of insecurity in a relationship, on issues, unmet needs or dynamic? I think it just really depends on what specifically mean, because there's so many things about insecurity, and so many complications there that are really, really difficult to to pin down. So yeah, those are the questions.

I think I have a question here. I'm gonna like, select it. I've never done this Instagram q&a Live. Okay. Yeah.

So I have a question here, which I will go ahead and answer. If you have any more questions. I'm gonna go ahead and do this. For at least like five to 10 more minutes. So I'm more than happy to answer any questions.

So this question says, Is it okay to focus on dating one partner when new to volley and folks tell me I should date others. So I feel like the reason people tell you you should date others is because what happens sometimes, especially if you were in a monogamous relationship, and you decided to open up, what happens sometimes is like, we sort of go, Okay, I'm non monogamous. We're non monogamous. But the behavior is exactly the same.

It's kind of like to be honest with you. It's like a similar situation in my life, where I broke up with a partner. But I didn't change my behavior at all. We sort of we broke up, but we didn't change. I didn't change my behavior.

He changed his behavior, but I kind of was like, Okay, we've broken up, Leila. It's cool, whatever. I think the fear there is that if you don't try to start dating others, then mentally you might be like, mentally, you may still be operating in a monogamous way. And when the Fit hits the Shan for lack of a better term, or your partner find somebody else, you might really struggle because and struggle more because your brain has actually even though you've said you're non monogamous, even though you've said you've opened the relationship, your brain is still very much in like, Oh, we're, nothing's changed. So and I think people also get super anxious sometimes when their partner has somebody or has a date, and they don't have a date.

Sometimes, even though people know it's not a competition, sometimes they feel a little bit competitive, they feel a pressure, like oh, God, you know, simply so they even so they have something to do, while their partner is and they don't have to sit there. And because it you know, for a lot of people, the first time your partner goes out and date somebody else is out on a date with somebody else. It's not a fun experience. You're sitting there, and sometimes it's a great, it's a great, great, super great thing for your brain, if you overthink, and you can like, if you have the anxiety, like a snowball that starts really small and goes really, really big. I used to have that, thankfully no more.

But that is an awesome situation for that thing to develop it for you to just spiral and so it can be like a not fun experience. There's ways to like take care of yourself, you know, make a plan with friends, like, you know, try and distract yourself. But for a lot of people, it's not a fun experience. It's a time for your brain to go straight up kooky Dukes, you know, like, you know, so I think people are encouraging you to see other people one because of that whole kind of idea that you may be mentally still kind of operating monogamously Even though you're not and they're worried that maybe you're going to have a realization it's going to smack you in the face it's really going to hurt if you don't start now. And to it's that whole thing of like having someone else so like whilst your partner is with someone else.

Although I think that that's not always a guaranteed case. You know, not everybody's schedule was always line up perfectly. So sometimes you might be home alone, and you got to deal with it then. So I think that's probably why people are encouraging you to date other people but I think like, I spent i i hate dating. I don't like dating.

I don't find it fun. I'm not I was never interested in non monogamy so that I could go out on more dates like it's fucking hate dating, hate it, don't like it at all find it really annoying. So I was for a long swathes of time in many of the relationships where I had like a partner that I lived with or like a main partner. I didn't really seek out that much dating because I found it exhausting, and it's not always fun. And then you got the whole aspect of the fact that like when you're dating as a polyamorous person

Unlike either you date within the community, in which case sometimes you know, everybody and you've already, like dated them or there are, there's no one you're interested in, but then you try to branch out in monogamy and then it's like a whole thing, depending on how you're read, like, I'm sure there's lots of people who are read as men who struggle with people just thinking you're a cheater. I mean, in that way, you just struggle with people just think, like, especially for me personally, like, I'm not that interested in hookups either. So I had that whole like aspect of like, really struggling to find anyone who just like, it was mostly just people wanting to hook up and I was like, there's you know, so I think that I didn't enjoy it so I didn't do it a lot. So it didn't seek out and you know, I struggled and it is what it is so I think it just depends like if you just don't enjoy dating. That's fine.

Like you can still be polyamorous you can still be like, my whole thing was like, my whole thing was like, I want to be polyamorous because if the stars and the planets happened to align perfectly, because I'm not, I'm not even attracted to that many people. Like I'm I'm just it's no judgment on anyone who's like this. There's some people just like I just, I flirt with everyone, and I love everyone and the guy that kind of really jealous of those people. Like I, I would genuine like there's so many genuinely nice, lovely people who I know who I would love to date. I know that would make amazing partners, but I just feel nothing.

I just feel nothing. And it's nobody's fault. It's not my fault. It's not their fault. Yeah, it's if you've I find dating exhausting.

I don't like it. And it's okay. If you don't like it. It's okay. If it's not your jam sometimes, like for me, like I said, I wanted to do polyamory because if I managed to find someone who I was attracted to who was attracted to me also, then I didn't want to lose that chance like it was because it was so rare that I didn't want to lose that chance.

So if you don't personally find dating to be interesting, or something you want to do, that's absolutely fine. You don't have to be constantly dating to be polyamorous. I understand why people are advising you that because they are probably worried about those those things. But you know, and you could you could admit to yourself like, Hey, maybe I am, you know, I had to kind of accept that part as well of like, you know, when I had a partner and they were living with me, or we were together, we consider sub primaries or nursing or however, I had to accept the fact that like, okay, like, at some point, he's not going to be spending every night with me, it's, you know, I had to kind of deal with that. And I had to accept that, like, I might not feel great about that, like, it may feel a little bit new.

But you'll survive. It's not it's not the worst situation. And like, sometimes it's just, you know, I think they're also wanting to avoid if you're new to polyamory, and you've never been in a polyamorous relationship. I think what they're also afraid of is that you may, it may not be for you. And sometimes you may not know until somebody's you know, you're actually your partner is actually with someone else.

Sometimes you may not know if, until that situation happens. And so they think that maybe you'll figure it out if you date somebody else. But yeah, I would say it's fine. If you if you just like aren't feeling out for dating, maybe you've got a lot going on, like I would even you don't even have to be polyamorous like I, I don't have a partner and I'm single, I've been single for a while. And that's fine.

I'm, but like, I lost my job in January. And I was on Bumble and I was talking to somebody and I had to be like, Look, I need to focus on finding a job. I don't have the mental capacity for all this right now. And sometimes that's how it is.

So yeah, that's, I'm glad it's helpful. But like, yeah, if you don't want to date, you don't have to, it's okay. It's okay. Just accept the fact that like, there may be an aspect about this, you may not figure out until later.

And whether or not that's something you know, it's also different, like you dating other people is different to when your partner finds someone else to date and is out with somebody else.

Like those aren't the same experiences. In my experience. You know, it's a lot easier. When you're out with someone and you're having fun and your partner is the one that's gotta be sitting home alone. So it's a little different. But it comes with its own anxieties. So you know, but yeah, don't don't Don't be freaking out if you're not dating.

All right. Is there anyone else who has a question you can feel free to ask in the comments, or there's some sort of question. I'm a little bit of a newbie when it comes to the the Instagrams.

But please, if you would like to ask a question, you can ask a specific question, although obviously, you're limited in terms of your ability to type very much so if it is a complicated question, or like a super long question, then feel free to ask it on the podcast or the column, you can email NonMonogamyhelp@gmail.com.

And that'll get you to me and I will answer it in a longer format because obviously, this isn't the longest format for everything, but yeah, awesome.

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