When we are young it is rare to feel fully accepted. Parents and other authority figures are seen as all-powerful, and often correct our behavior so that we remain safe.
Sometimes their correction is helpful, such as when we are wandering out into the street. Sometimes it is not very helpful at all, such as when we are told that we shouldn’t pursue our passion because it is irresponsible, or if we are forced to take lessons that don’t interest us at all.
I perceive that this parent-child control-based dynamic often continues into our relationships as adults. Many people feel that they can’t be fully accepted, that love is conditional, and that they must be controlled to be loved.
Polyamory involves the risk of being fully known. I observe that many people take the risk of being fully known by their friends, but not by the person or persons with whom they are intimately involved. Threats to security arise because people often do not accept each other’s sexuality unless it is a lie, unless it is a watered-down version of reality.
If you “only have eyes” for one person then you are less likely to be a threat to that person. Realistically, it is common to feel attracted to many people and to have the desire to be intimate with more than one person. How you handle this reality is up to you. In the realm of monogamy it is commonplace to keep truth hidden so as to not threaten our lover. Therefore we end up being fully known by friends but are strangers to our lovers.
This creates an imbalance.
Friends become more close to you than they are to your lover because they know your secrets. You may want friends to stay away from your lover and this would be one way to accomplish that goal…create a secretive world. Ideally, we can be transparent with each other so these artificial barriers need not exist.
We all deeply desire to be loved for who we are. However, one of the greatest challenges to that goal is risking being known. If you don’t risk telling your lover who you are, you won’t feel accepted. If you feel guilty, you may tell yourself that you’re not okay the way you are. Nevertheless, you are fine the way you are…and you are capable of finding others who accept you, including your sexual thoughts and behaviors. The first step, however, is up to you. You will not find acceptance without the risk of being known.
Perhaps it would be useful to become conscious of your guilt. If you understand your guilt you may be less likely to perpetuate it by creating secretive situations. The Internet has increased the ease with which people can have secret relationships.
It is my hope that we may all risk being known so we don’t perpetuate a world of relationships which are incomplete, conditional, and limited by fear. We deserve better. We deserve to accept acceptance.