Today’s blog post is brought to you by Just Tegan’s very own Micah Pearson, web designer and artist extraordinaire. While this had been originally planned for a close-to-Valentine’s-Day arrival date, it was understandably delayed. I thought you all might want a break from hearing about my life, so here’s Micah talking about some new developments in his. I’ll let him explain it as only he can.
And here’s Micah.
At the ripe old age of 38, I’m starting to experience a bit of the generation gap. Among other things, I’m noticing that “pop” culture is no longer necessarily “my” culture. There are popstars and celebrities that are hot amongst the millennials, and I have no idea who the hell they are, and nor do I really care. As a solid Gen-X’er born in 1976, I’m finally getting comfortable with my settling into middle age. Besides, some of the cultural changes to which I have born witness have actually been pretty damn cool.
When I was a kid, there were certain basic truths that were so entrenched that it didn’t even cross my mind to question them: Marriage was between a man and a woman. Men were Men. Women were Women. Boys would be boys, which basically meant that we could do whatever the hell we wanted with few repercussions. Girls? They were other, had their dolls and frilly things that weren’t nearly as cool as my microscopes, chemistry sets, construction kits, magic books, and fiber optic wiring kits. As I got a touch older and “more worldly” (read: I got access to my mom’s People magazines), I learned that people who had multiple relationships at once were cads and sluts, and it was generally frowned upon.
The basic civil right of marriage is finally opening up to include differing sexual orientations. Gender is finally becoming recognized as existing on a continuum rather than with binary definitions. Sociological gender roles are finally getting the righteous kibosh they deserve, everywhere from toys and marketing, to the job market and military. Also, the fraternity-level garbage that encouraged men to act on their baser impulses is finally being called out for what it is, with people in all levels of society recognizing how much it enabled the systemic victimization of more than half our population. Are we done making progress? Hell no. We probably never will be. But progress is indeed being made, and this world is a very different one than the one in which I was raised. And that, my friends, is pretty groovy.
Ah, but I left off one of the changes, didn’t I?
As stated earlier, people who had multiple simultaneous relationships were judged rather harshly. Now? Well, they’re still judged rather harshly, but more and more we are hearing and becoming accustomed to discussing the concept of Polyamory and polyamorous relationships, which is what I’ve actually sat down to write about today. But first:
- the philosophy or state of being in love or romantically involved with more than one person at the same time.
And because it would take far too long to get into that conversation here: http://www.morethantwo.com/polyamory.html
If we’re all on the same page, let’s move on.
I have to admit something to you: As much as I’ve always prided myself on being open-minded and having a full-blown acceptance of a wide array of lifestyles that were different than my own, I had the hardest time digesting and understanding the concept of polyamory. It wasn’t that hard to see the difference between a poly relationship and cheating. I mean, that was pretty clear. What I had the most difficult time understanding was how one resolved having full-blown romantic feelings for more than one person without losing their minds, and how people managed to not be jealous well…pretty much all of the time.
I also have to admit to being pretty judgey about their chance of success. However, after going through more than a dozen failed monogamous relationships on my own, I learned to put that bit to bed. Because seriously, with a roughly 45% divorce rate in America, who are we to judge?
That said, whenever I was asked about stepping into a poly situation, my answer was always the same: “I was absent the day they taught sharing in school. Thanks but no thanks.” The idea just didn’t work for me; and so I continued going through failed monogamous relationship after failed monogamous relationship looking for, well, not “the one,” really. I got over that notion a long time ago as well. But I was looking for the next, and hopefully last, “one” that I could spend my life with.
During all of this, I met several very cool people with whom I loved spending time and had expressed a distinct interest in spending even more intimate time with me, but as it would be a poly situation, I said “no thanks.” I was even spending a lot of time with someone for whom I started developing seriously strong feelings. Though married, she had mentioned on numerous occasions that her relationship was poly, and was thankfully willing to discuss with me the particulars and intricacies of how it functioned, solely so I could satisfy my curiosity. As time went on, she mentioned how odd it was that I was so closed to the idea considering my life’s philosophy has always been “life’s short, we only get one, so why not say ‘yes’ to things and see what happens?”
As time went on, I started to look at the rainbow of fascinating people with whom I was interested in spending more time getting to know better, and see what this whole thing was about. As such, I mentioned it to my friend…Who promptly let me know she felt the same way about me as I did her, and she was hoping I would one day express said curiosity. So the week before Valentine’s 2015, Micah Pearson entered into his first polyamorous relationship. Where will it go? How will it end? I have no idea. There’s still some weirdness to it, of course. Dating a woman who’s married is jarring to the lessons of my upbringing. However, as has been pointed out, at least this time (as opposed to the last) the husband is actually aware of it. But right now? I’m ridiculously happy, and we’re doing a better job of making it work than I ever imagined possible.
So the times? They are a-changin’, and I can’t wait to see what the future will bring.