With the rise of polyamorous relationships amongst young people comes many misconceptions which serve to demonize polyamory as a life style choice. While many of these misconceptions stem from ignorance or fear of deviation from the norm, it is important for us to recognize and debunk them whenever possible. Here are the main few myths about polyamory that need to go.
- People who practice Polyamory are just cheaters looking for an excuse. While yes, there are some people who do use polyamory as an excuse to cheat on their partners, a majority of us don’t and frown on those who do. In fact in many polyamorous relationship there are a set of rules between partners dictating what is and isn’t fair in a relationship. For example some couples have primary partners with all other relationships being secondary pursuits with clear boundaries while some couples practice relationship anarchy: feelings and relationships are not controlled.
- Polyamory leads to more STIs. In many cases when multiple people are involved in a relationship, all partners involved become very aware of their sexual health and are vigilant about using proper protection and contraception.
- Polyamory is all about sex: people who are polyamorous lack the capacity to love. Polyamorous relationships can be all about sex, but just as many are solely about love. The idea that polyamory is all about sex is detrimental to asexuals who practice polyamory. On the flip side, saying that polyamorous people are incapable of love is extremely demonizing of polyamorous aromantics, who just don’t feel romantic attraction.
- People who practice polyamory are just afraid of commitment. Contrary to popular belief, polyamory does allow for commitment, just a different type. In many cases, partner’s are not tied down to a single person and do not have to give up or compromise their individuality for their partner. Most of the time, in polyamorous relationships, partners are allowed to grow and flourish as individuals. Commitment here means supporting your partners as distinct people with thoughts and feelings different than yours and allowing them to evolve without the pressure of breaking up or being tied down and having to compromise themselves for one person for the rest of their lives.