Guest Post: The Way I Do Poly ~ by Shay

Posted: July 22, 2014 by Isaac Cross in Guest Posts, Learn Something, Philosophy
The following was originally posted at and has been re-posted with permission. Please consider visiting their educational project at to support safe BDSM practices. 
I’ve thought a lot about the way I want to practice poly in my relationships. Stefanos and I have always been lucky enough to have a relationship that just worked with very minimal need for processing or “rules”, but it’s come to my attention that I can’t expect all my relationships to flow that way…
Note that I’m not in ANY WAY putting this forward as the one true way to do poly. Your mileage may vary. Particularly, I tend to practice a very autonomous brand of poly that is not for everyone, and I’m of the belief that if it’s not working for *someone* in a poly group, it’s not working for *anyone* in a poly group. Some things that are important to me:
-I need to feel secure, and that I am as much a priority to my partner as they are to me.
-Once things go beyond a casual level, I need to know my partner’s other partners (POPs). We don’t need to be besties, or even friends, but we do need to be able to be friendly on some minimal social level.
-I need to know/feel that my POPs respect me and the relationship I have with their partner, and their partner’s autonomy with regard to our relationship. I strongly prefer that they actually be happy (have compursion [sic]) with regards to my time with their partner, but I’ll settle for them respecting it without drama.
-I need to be able to be affectionate with my partner around their other partners without drama/hurt feelings. I’m not clingy, and I’m not talking about taking over if my partner is on a date with someone else, but I won’t hide my affection or change my relationship interactions based on who’s watching. Avoiding being all together at the same time is not an acceptable solution to this issue.
-I need to feel that my relationship with my partner is between us, private on at least some level, and not dictated by/entirely at mercy of my POPs.
-I need to know/feel that my partner’s relationships with their other partners makes them happy. Not all the time, no relationship is perfect of course, but on balance.
The above was originally posted at and has been re-posted with permission. Please consider visiting their educational project at to support safe BDSM practices. 

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