Helo and I had a (very) belated conversation about our preferred types of polyamory. Helo trends towards the dopamine side of things – that is, he pursues novelty. In general, he would prefer to explore things of a sexual or erotic nature, or even emotional, with his “bedrock partner” first, and, if it wasn’t possible to explore those things, to seek them outside of the relationship.
I’m not really attracted to novelty. At least, that’s not why I poly. I come at this from a completely different place. I form strong emotional bonds with people in my life… the line between platonic friend/erotic companion/lover/partner gets blurry for me. Why shouldn’t I touch the people I love, show them how I feel? It feels confusing to arbitrarily halt that. Though I suppose it’s more about expression and touch than anything else. I like to touch, hug, snuggle, kiss the people I feel close to.
After a few months of living with Mercury and Romo (Hannah is hardly home), I asked them if they minded if I touched them more, casually, around the house. i just like to touch the people i care about as i walk around. i am here, it says, i see you here, too. i feel you. my head in Romo’s lap as we take a car back home from happy hour, he gently pets me. my face pressed into the warm skin of mercury’s neck as he frowns and works at his computer, one of his hands unconsciously tapping on my shin. camille’s sharpened fingernails combing through my hair, tilting her head against mine and i smell the rich, sweet smell of her. helo tucking my hand in his pocket, fingers stroking mine, as we walk in the frigid cold. the blush on ananke’s cheeks, her eyes closed as i gently apply red glitter to her eyelids, the sweep of her cheekbones. she shivers as i breathe against her collarbone, opens her eyes and stares into me, the din of happy hour fading out for a few moments. comfort, and warmth, and love.
Going to bed with someone is another matter. I know myself and if I’m going to bed with someone, I likely already have a strong emotional bond with them, and I’m likely going to fall (more) in love with them. Knowing this makes it a bit easier to not take all my friends to bed, as i don’t have the time/energy to give that much love to so many people… and it’s also more likely that my feelings won’t be returned, which might hurt. If I don’t have sex with someone, it feels okay or less vulnerable to love them, because I don’t yearn for the same level of feelings in response.
When I think of polyamory or sexual exploration, I think of expanding or deepening relationships that already exist. I think that Helo thinks more of the things that he’d like to do. I have sexual things I’m curious about exploring, but they don’t feel that important… I’m curious rather than drawn to them (I’ll expand on one of them in another post).
In the past, I’ve described myself as polyfidelitous . Now I’m wondering if demisexual isn’t a better fit. Some things sound right, some don’t. My sex drive and interest in sex have been a persistent and driving force my whole life. But I very rarely have one night stands, and usually have to feel connected to the other person to not feel dissociated from my body during our first few sexual encounters.
the erotically-tinged relationships i have with some of the kitty pack are… really important to me. they’re part of how I show my love. to try to sharply define these relationships or to bleach them of their erotic complexities would be painful and, i think, damaging for me. this feels fundamental for me, and I’ve always had such a hard time explaining it to people. i don’t fully understand it myself, which makes it even harder to explain.