Those Poly People
I’m currently in the midst of being interviewed about my polyamorous lifestyle, and it’s gotten me thinking about my relationship with polyamory itself. To be honest, I’ve never thought of myself as part of the poly community. Black? Yes. Queer? Yes. Leather? Yes. Kinky? Yes. However, I’ve never thought of myself as poly they way others seem to think of poly. To the best of my recollection, I can only think of one actual formal poly gathering that I’ve ever been to. Despite an article claiming it to be the next sexual revolution, I haven’t been that political about being poly. It’s just been a fact of life for me“until I had kids.
It started with the twins’ birth. I’m the biological father, but because Lori is married to her other partner, he’s the legal father, and the one listed on the birth certificate. It’s state law. It had nothing to do with our wishes. So far, it’s worked in our favor, but as the girls get ready for preschool, I’m sure the time is coming soon that I will run into problems not being the name of the birth certificate.
The other thing I’ve been noticing lately is the “funny vibe I get from other LGBTQ families. I see us getting labeled as “poly before “queer. As discrimination goes, it’s nothing. “Black is the first thing people see of me, and racism is the real problem I face. I have no illusions as to that fact. I kinda find the “ewww factor of being poly interesting if I step out of my skin to examine it. Do people think I’m hitting on them if I’m being nice? Is it their prejudices of what poly people do? Do they think I’m bringing over lovers daily to fuck in front of the kids? I really couldn’t tell you. I don’t have the time to examine their minds. I got toddlers“I have to make sure they’re not eating too much sand on the playground.
I will add in their defense that the hetero privilege that Lori and I have as a “couple might play a factor as well. In other words, I’m just not gay enough for them. I know of pictures and videos that say otherwise (cough), but it’s not my job to prove myself to them.
These incidents aren’t gonna make me run out to a bunch of poly-specific munches or events, but it has made me a little sharper about knowing what legal actions might help us in the future. It’s also made me a little pickier about who we hang out with, and who our children have play dates with.