Negotiation

 Posted by on February 4, 2011
Feb 042011
 

By Katie Diamond

Let’s face it–not everything is peachy keen and sunshine sparkles when it comes to negotiating a relationship, regardless of whether that relationship is open or poly or mono. Communication is a sticky thing, and sometimes, that stickiness can cause the wheels of a relationship to grind to a halt.

We’ve already discussed how to really deal with jealousy… But what happens when it’s not about jealousy? Sometimes, the logistics of living an open, honest, polyamorous relationship can simply shut down a conversation or cause distress for one or both parties. Taking into consideration that the mantra is to “always be in touch with how you’re feeling,” consider these tools and scenarios when figuring out your poly-magic-life.

1. Your partner has plans with their sweetie, and you find yourself without plans of your own. You find yourself feeling sorta crunchy and strangely lonely, and find yourself getting snippy when they try to figure out the weekend logistics with you. What do you do?

– Okay, for one, breathe. This isn’t about what your partner is or is not doing right now–it’s about you. Take a moment before you respond, or, if you need to, come back to the conversation tomorrow.

– Next, let your partner express what they want for their weekend, and how they want it to play out. Don’t interrupt.

– After hearing their piece, let the information settle, and consider your options. Do you have enough time to make plans of your own? Have you taken time for yourself at all this week? Once you decide what your own best plan of action is, lay it out to your partner in a respectful manner.

– Still feeling a little funky? No worries–your feelings are valid! The rule here is to make sure you take care of yourself without making your crunchy feelings your partner’s responsibility.

2. You go to an rock concert, and run into your partner’s other sweetie. You haven’t met yet, and you aren’t ready, but you have tickets to the show. What do you do?

– Again–breathe. Take a second. Are you uncomfortable? Nervous? Give yourself a moment to figure out your own feelings.

– Most likely, you both know who the other one is. It would be strange to pretend you didn’t, or that you didn’t see them. You don’t need to hang out with them–but perhaps this is the time for an introduction. Nothing fancy, a “Hi, nice to meet you” is grand.

– Now go about your business! Unless by some trick of fate you’re both seated next to each other, no need to hang about.

– Still have a funny feeling in your tummy? If you have a second, call a good friend–tell them what’s going on. That’s why we have friends, so we can avoid imploding.

What are our take-aways, people? Breathe. Take a moment. Think about your feelings. Consider your next plan of action. Take care of yourself without making other people alter their own needs. More poly-magic-living scenarios coming your way soon!

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