Creating Two New Novels. Writing One Chapter Weekly. Podcasting As I Go. Welcome to The Experiment.
Girl: “Look at what I got!”
Boy: “Can I have some?”
Girl: “Hm, you can’t have any of that, but you can have some of those.”
Kamala: “Meet Roxanne!”
Michael: “Can I sleep with her, too?”
Kamala: “No, but you can sleep with Jen & Tahl.”
Michael: “I’ll sleep with them, but I still want to sleep with Roxanne, too.”
It appears to me that the Michael and Kamala are trying to establish a slightly skewed version of a specific type of polyamory called polyfidelity. In polyfidelity, everyone in a group dates each other and no one dates anyone outside of that group. Think of it as marriage with more than one spouse. Truly, that’s what polyfidelity is. Everyone is “monogamous” to those in the group and does not search for outside partners unless the partner is involved with everyone to whatever degree established. (Think, Sister Wives, the women don’t date each other, but they do all have to get along and Kody doesn’t bring on another wife unless all are in agreement.) Likewise, to be dating within a group, not all partners have to necessarily be intimate, but the possibility for a friendship to turn into a relationship is encouraged.
Hence, Michael’s problem with Kamala’s girlfriend Roxanne. Kamala refuses to allow them to develop anything for each other. aka, He can’t “have” her. I’ll assume that the two of them have actually had a conversation with Roxanne about whether she is interested in him and the answer was yes, but Kamala said, “not yet.” For my own sanity, I have to believe this was discussed because the way it aired it sounded as if they were deciding whether or not to share candy, not a human being who may or may not want to be involved with the other people.
And for Kamala to say, “Not yet,” especially if the interest is mutual for Roxanne and Michael, sounds like pimping to me: “I’ll let you know which of my partners you can have sex with and those you can’t. Have fun with those to, but this one is mine.” Okay…we are talking about people with feelings who can make their own decisions, right?
Polyfidelity, from what I’ve seen, can be so beautiful when love is allowed to develop naturally between all partners. We all know how hard it is to find one right person for us. To find two or more is that much more of a challenge. To make it into a real mountain to climb, add the desire for those two people who love you, to love each other as well. When it happens it can be such a lovely thing to experience. What irritates me about Kamala and Michael’s approach with Roxanne is that they don’t seem to be concerned with being able to love each others partners, but the worry is whether they are able to have sex with them. That’s not polyamory, (multiple loves), it’s swinging. And, for me to say, “Partner B, you can have sex with Partner A and C. But Partner D, you’re all mine,” sounds a bit like selective pimping to me.
Commentary for Showetime’s Married and Dating, Episode 2.