There are a lot of terms out there to try to describe people’s relational orientations or styles. Polygamous, polyamorous, monogamous, monoromantic, polysexual, asexual, and I’m sure a few I’ve forgotten or never heard of. As I’ve made my own explorations around how I believe I am relationally inclined, I found that none of these really fit, for multiple reasons. It’s really a very nuanced thing, these labels not feeling “right” for me. I’m not really into casual sex. I’m definitely not into one night stands. I’ve found that every friend I’ve wanted to have benefits with are ones I also have and do develop romantic feelings around. I’ve tried poly in different forms, and am involved in a polyamorous relationship currently, though I myself do not identify as polyamorous. I just don’t know that it’s in me at every turn to have the ability to love more than one person… or that I’ll even want to.
Neither monogamous or polyamorous as a label really seem to find a way to settle as a good way of explaining how I view my relationships. I have known for a while that I am not a person made for strict monogamy. I like to flirt and flounce, and don’t want any person I care for to be offended or hurt by that action. I can honestly say that many times I enjoy flirting without it going any further into a relationship of any nature- be that sexual, romantic, or any combination of the two. I do enjoy the ability, though, of knowing that if I wanted to develop another relationship with another person, I have that ability- including it being a sexual relationship. I’ll be the first person to tell you that I have, more often than not, a tremendous sex drive and doubt that one person can fill that drive under most circumstances (and if they can, then I’m good with that too!). I don’t want to put that type of pressure on a single person, either. “Hi. I know you love me, and want you to know that I have an amazingly high need for sex and expect you to be the only person who ever fucks me in a way that fills that need for sex, whether or not you have the ability to meet that need.” I recognize that my sex drive is higher than a lot of other people’s, and no matter how much they may *want* to fill it, they may not have a sex drive that is as ample as mine to be able to fill it. I like knowing that I can, with the blessing of my partner, find someone else to have a friendship with that can help decrease the pressure I may put on the one partner.
So where do I fit on the big mono-poly scale? Well… I do think that… given the right people, at the right time, in the right situation… I could be content loving and having relationships with two people. I don’t think I could do more than two. Calling myself “biamorous” would just make people think of bisexual, and it would be a pain in my ass to explain the difference between my sexual orientation and my relational one. So the term I’ve been using for myself has been monoflexible. As it stands right now, I am a mono component of a mono-poly-mono “v” family.
Now, does this mean that I really just want to be polysexual? Well, no, not really. I recognize that little factual statement I gave earlier: The people I am interested in sexually often move into romantic interest as well. So I recognize that any relationship I may enter into sexually has the potential to turn into a romantic encounter for me, and that must be treated carefully on all sides to ensure it is something that would work for all involved. I would rather *not* get involved in a sexual relationship that cannot progressively evolve into more for the other person, because that ends with *me* getting hurt. I know it takes a lot to get me to the romantic relationship point of being, and I carefully guard that so as to not hurt myself beyond repair getting into a situation that is truly a dead-end of heartbreak for me.
Actually, if we get down to it… since shortly before Gabe and I decided to move into “dating” territory, I have been monogamous to Gabe. We have had sex together as a trio (Gabe, Eliz, and I), but I have not had sex with anyone outside of that in over a year, almost 2 now. Do I still have the amazingly high sex drive? Yes. And Gabe and I do everything we can to fulfill those needs and desires. But I don’t have a desire to bring anyone else in right now, either. There are a few people in my life who I fawn over and have *amazingly* large crushes on. Given the chance with those specific people, I would probably take it into consideration and open up the discussions towards having another sexual partner, knowing it could lead to more. I cannot and will not say that monogamy doesn’t fulfill me, because it does. Not “on it’s own merits”, not “while waiting for a second person”, or any other qualifier. I am content in my current situation. But I can see myself getting into, functionally and happily, at least 2 romantic relationships. I want a label that shows that I am content and fulfilled with where I am and that I recognize the potential scope of what could happen in the future with my relationships. I didn’t find anything in most media that I could happily identify with, so I chose my own and created a space for me to feel comfortable in that label.
3 Responses to “What it means for me to be monoflexible.”
July 1st, 2011 at 10:47 am
Once again you lay shit out in a way that makes diggable sense.
Now, we need to see if we can promulgate the hell out of this sucker!
July 1st, 2011 at 11:07 am
Such a great post! Thanks you so much for putting this out here. I really relate. I feel the exact same way.
July 1st, 2011 at 4:07 pm
@Mollena- Promulgate away! Glad I could be of service. It’s taken me a while to get all of this out, and I’m all up for discussions on any questions people may have about it. It’s…. special to me. To say the least!
@Airial- Thank you! I’m glad you enjoyed it. While the goal isn’t necessarily for monoflexible to become the new tag phrase or anything of the nature, if people find it’s something that fits them better and it becomes more widespread, I’m all for it!