Friday, 23 April 2010

Research

One thing I've done quite a lot of this last week is to ask friends, and just about anyone I think will talk to me, about their experience of open relationships. Me and Virgil are talking it over still and probably will be for some time. We keep taking breaks because it gets too loaded and sad. I start to talk about bottom lines and breaking up. He brings us back from the brink of saying too much. Meanwhile, I am canvassing opinion.

The first person I ask is Dee. There's been a little distance between us recently. I think it's because I put a veto on Virgil's sexual interest in her as a solo project but I might have been being a little paranoid there. We meet for coffee one sunny morning to talk about a joint project we're working on. She asks how I am and I say I'm shit actually. Then she says that she's been having a hard time too, and it turns out that (among other things of course, like jobs) we have both been having issues about our open relationships.

So we have a fascinating and thought-provoking conversation. It turns out that Dee finds her open relationship really hard and is going along with it more for the sake of Kevin than herself. Kevin lives in New York, and Dee's biggest beef seems to be that she can't be more involved. She wants to meet the other girls and vet them for sanity, poly accountability and so on. She even wrote to a hot mutual friend asking her to have Kevin over for dinner and boy rape. The idea was that as she made her move she would say: "And this is a present from Dee!" But the friend was having a complicated time and not available for this kind of favour. She also said that she prefers to know in advance when Kevin is off on a date so that she can prepare herself for it.

I wish I were as evolved. My own base instinct is that I wouldn't want to know the women Virgil chooses for lovers, unless it was so that I could say to myself: "Hah, well she's not all that and I don't feel threatened at all..." And as for preparing myself, wouldn't it just be best not to know? (I imagine a scene in which Virgil irons his best shirt and I scowl and skulk around in the background, hating him and waiting for him to leave so that I can throw myself on the bed, howl, call a friend for sympathy, blog my vitriol and pain.) Couldn't it just be done comfortably behind my back so that I wouldn't be wondering what he was up to on any given minute that he is with someone else? Somehow I doubt the ethical sluts would advocate this peevish and basically monogamist approach.

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