Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Poly Dating

In my local community, Fetlife is a widely used social network. There are only a few people I talk to and consider friends who don't have a Fet account (and they're people I've known for years; they knew me when I was more vanilla), but don't think I won't talk them into getting one sooner or later. I distinctly remember coming across Fetlife for the first time. My reaction was something like, OH MY GOD, DOES THIS REALLY EXIST?! Yes, it does. It's Facebook, for kinky people. And poly people. And swingers and queers and supportive vanillas.

Fetlife seems to have a bad rap with some people, and that's okay. I know forum networks aren't for everybody (and gods know I hardly pay attention to it, most of the time) and as usual, there are assholes on the Internet. But for meeting people and attending informative events and exciting parties, Fet is where it's at (at least, for Richmond, Virginia).

Just in my area, there's a Pet & Animal Play group (“humanimals” as I've seen them called; this is not bestiality), Ageplay group (“littles,” “bigs,” “daddies,” etc), Polyamory groups, Gangbang groups, Personals, two separate BDSM groups (I'm a member of SHELTER, which is a more information-based, learning group), a Kinky Gamers group (I run that!), Kinky Book Club, Queer Kinksters, Artistic Kinksters, a group for pagan and the occult, educational groups, etc. I could go on and on. Basically anything you could want, there's a group, or you can make one yourself! It's a great way to meet like-minded individuals, especially if you're a touch antisocial, like me.

Right now, the Greater Richmond Polyamory group is really coming in handy. My husband's relationship with his sometimes-girlfriend Anita has never really come to fruition and though neither of us speak of it, I feel we both agree that there isn't really anything there. But for Ark, its been a trial to find people willing to date a married man, whether or not his wife is okay with it. In the past year, our sex life has diminished. Those of you who read my much earlier posts know that this was a difficult thing for us in the past, but we've grown over it now and it isn't a stress point anymore. I've learned things about myself that made me realize why I was coming to the same issues over and over (namely, I'm a lesbian), and we even discussed our bed death. It turns out we were both more worried that the other person was stressing more over not having sex than we were, so we agreed it was no longer an issue.

That doesn't mean I don't recognize that he wants, and needs, that kind of companionship and relationship with somebody. Since Ark is straight, this means he needs a girlfriend.

So there's a big poly mixer coming up, where several poly groups in the DC/MD/VA area will be getting together. I'm really hoping this is a good opportunity for Ark to meet someone closer who is more interested in him than his on-again-off-again girl. To be honest, we haven't been active in any poly group or community until about two weeks ago, and I'm really excited to meet other people who are non-monogamous. All of my partners thus far have been monogamous with me, and tolerant of my polyamorous ways. I went on one date with a guy who is non-monog but at this point, it hasn't gone much farther than that. I remember talking to him about monogamy and different kinds of relationships, and how relaxed it made me feel to know that, if we were to be in a relationship, I wouldn't be “the one,” but I would be “an important one,” which is how I want to feel.

This blog article requires some reader interaction. Are you a poly man (or of some sort of non-monogamous status) who is married or in a long-term committed relationship with a woman? Do you find it difficult to find women to date? Do you use any dating or social networks (OkCupid, Fetlife?) to find other poly groups to connect with, or to find dates? Do you think it's harder to find a date as a poly man, than if you were swinging with your wife or s/o (long term vs short term)?

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