An Personal look into Polyamory... An Intimate Discussion with Evita May 12 2015 6 Comments
Polyamory (poly many + amor love)
A quick Google definition of polyamory is, “the philosophy or state of being in love or romantically involved with more than one person at the same time.”
For many individuals the notion of being romantically involved with more than one person seems foreign, strange or immoral. Western society has conformed to the notions of monogamy to one person, in a heterosexual relationship.
Evita Sawyers does NOT conform to the Western ideology of being in a strictly heterosexual monogamous relationship. She is in a polyamorous relationship which is comprised of her husband Kevin and their partner Brit*. Evita and I met through Forbidden Luxury's Instagram page. From a quick glance through her profile I could tell that she was fun, open-minded and could possibly shed a personal perspective on polyamory and the life she leads in such a relationship.
Tell us about yourself!
My name is Evita Sawyers. I am a 33-year-old woman, a stay at home mother to three children and I am in a poly relationship. I have a husband, and have been in a triad (a union or group of three people) relationship for about a year.
What initially interested you in polyamory?
I wanted a girlfriend and to experience what that kind of relationship was like.
In your point of view, how would YOU define polyamory?
Polyamory is the ability to structure and cater your romantic life to suit your needs and desires.
A poly lifestyle allows me to have more control over my personal love life, as well as providing me the freedom to choose whom I love and how I connect to them.
I have personally had a few swinging encounters.. Can you tell me what the difference is between a swinger’s lifestyle and a polyamorous relationship?
Swinging is about recreational sex. The sex is for fun and is not meant for developing emotional connections. Little to no connection is formed with the person who you are having sex with while swinging.
Polyamory is an actual romantic relationship, not solely based on recreation. You are creating a relationship that lasts a lifetime, establishing a partnership with someone who will walk along side with you.
Do you still engage in swinging while in your polyamorous relationship?
Yes, we all swing occasionally. We met Brit at a swinger’s party..
Interesting! So tell me more about how you met your partners?
I met Kevin, my husband, at church 11 years ago. We started swinging about three years ago, and we met Brit about one year ago at a swinger’s party.
Did you and your husband actively pursue a poly relationship?
No. We never had a conversation that was like ‘hey let’s start doing this (poly)!’ It just naturally snowballed into what it is. We did not prepare ourselves for the emotions that would accompany starting a polyamorous relationship. We were swinging but weren’t ready to enter a relationship with anyone else for about 6 months. As we became more secure in our relationship (or me specifically) Brit came into our lives. We went in to this relationship knowing that we weren’t dragging each other in to it.. it was a choice we made together.
Is this your first polyamorous relationship? Yes.
How did you and your husband choose/decide/agree that Brit was the right fit or best addition to your relationship?
We all hung out and got along. It was very natural and simple.
Do you and your female partner Brit, have a physical and emotional relationship? Either/or?
We are in a physical and emotional relationship. She and I maintain the same relationship as I would with Kevin. Although, we are not legally allowed to get married we are going to have a poly ceremony. Our relationships are equal and we plan on allowing Brit to have as many legal rights and protections as provided in our existing marriage. Brit is 25 and wants to have children, so we plan on expanding our family in the future.
Do you, Brit and Kevin live together?
I live with my husband (Kevin) and Brit splits her time between our place and her own.
How do you decide who sleeps where and when?
Right now we do not have a big enough bed for the three of us, so we do a couch rotation. Brit and I will share the bed one night, Kevin and I will share the bed the next, and then Brit and Kevin will share the bed etc. Hopefully when we move, we will have a bed where we can all sleep together.
Do you believe that all polyamorous individuals are bisexual?
I have been bisexual since around age 15, but I do NOT believe that everyone is who is in a poly relationship is bisexual. There less common cases where a straight woman has multiple male partners. Their partner will typically have other female partners. This is difficult to come by, since patriarchy is still such a cultural norm. In poly relationships there are a lot of OPP’s
What is an OPP?
One Penis Policy. A lot of poly men only want their female partners to interact with other females. They do not want to deal with the insecurities of having another penis in the relationship. I fought hard to not have an OPP system in place. If Kevin wants to be with other women in our relationship, I should be given the same right.
Can you and Brit have relationships outside of the triad?
Yes. First we would need to talk about it. Starting an outside relationship would depend on our time and availability.
What is your approach in raising children in a poly relationship?
Our children do not understand all the implications involved in a poly relationship but we do not want to insult their intelligence by lying to them. They know that Brit is involved with both Kevin and I. Once it became apparent that they understood something was different in our relationship, we told them right away.
How do your children respond to Brit as an additional parental figure?
They love her. I am their biological mother, but they treat her with the same respect.
What about jealousy?
I get jealous!!
People who say that jealousy doesn’t exist or should not in poly relationships are being unrealistic. People treat jealousy like a it is monster, which is not realistic. You have to allow jealousy to have its space. We (humans) have spent so much time in a monogamous society. We aren’t accustomed or prepared for the feelings associated with a poly relationship.
I continuously struggle with jealousy. It is hard. In the beginning it was exceptionally difficult. But since then it has gotten easier. I realize that Brit is not trying to snatch my husband and I have become more secure in our dynamic.
What do you feel helps ease the jealousy?
It helps to talk to my partners about what is going on and to be completely honest. Even if it is something petty, I still can bring it up. It also helps if I try to modify my mentality concerning the relationship. I remind myself that anything I can do/feel or say to Kevin is afforded to Brit. It was difficult accepting this at first because I never had to share Kevin emotionally. It was scary to think that Brit was was trying to take what I had. But she is very good at telling me that she wants to be with me too, as I want to be with her. This motivates me to work on what I need to do to be with both of them.. But I won’t lie.. It’s a LOT of work!
What are the rules in your poly relationship?
Our only rules are to be open with each other. We talk before we do something, romantically or otherwise. Open communication is key. We have disagreements, but through communication we can get through them.
What do you think people should know about polyamory?
People should know that polyamory is not weird or perverted.. it is just different.
What do you think is the number one misconception associated with polyamory?
Probably that people in poly relationships don’t get jealous.. we do.
*Name has been changed