The Jane Doe Novel Experiment

Creating Two New Novels. Writing One Chapter Weekly. Podcasting As I Go. Welcome to The Experiment.

Pimping Parnters: #Polyamory Married & Dating

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.”

Boy: “I’ll take those, but I still want some of that.”

Girl: “No.”

OR

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.”

Kamala: “No.”

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.

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3 comments on “Pimping Parnters: #Polyamory Married & Dating

  1. MTT
    July 29, 2012

    Thanks for putting your finger on that issue. It was bugging me too. Even though (like Kamala in this case) we’re ALL entitled to our feelings about things… regardless what arrangements we may have made in advance. Which is what can make ANY relationship a royal pain in the ass if you approach it with honesty and intention firmly in mind. It’s forever a work in progress, if you want to bring your partner/s along with you as you progress through life.

    Given that the main characters in the show are hardly newbies at all this, I’m going to presume that the seeming lack of autonomy ascribed to Roxanne was simply a plot point given short shrift by lack of footage or due to editing decisions. It is a HALF-HOUR show after all…!! I’m amazed by how much material they do manage to stuff into 30 minutes. Especially when I’m sure that the network requires their pound of flesh, drama, and conflict in order for any show to remain viable in their eyes. So I figure you get less than 10 minutes out of 30 to try to put across any subtleties or provoke some deeper reflections from the audience.

    All in all, I’m impressed by how much they succeeded, however many complaints I could tick off about what I’d like to see done more/less/better/etc.

    What I find interesting is that after the two episodes I’ve seen, I still have little idea exactly what the relationship constructs ARE like for each of the couples involved, let alone the whole group. And that goes for both the quad and triad. Hope they’ll flesh that aspect out before long, seeing as it’s sorta THE WHOLE CRUX of what makes ANY relationship work (agreements/expectations/commitments, etc). Otherwise it’s all a bunch of drama without the context needed to make much sense of it all.

    • Jane Doe
      July 29, 2012

      You’re welcome. And thank you for your well thought out reply, MTT.

      “Given that the main characters in the show are hardly newbies at all this, I’m going to presume that the seeming lack of autonomy ascribed to Roxanne was simply a plot point given short shrift by lack of footage or due to editing decisions.”

      I am hoping that is the case. Although, it struck me as odd that these “old poly pros” decided to discuss agreements/boundaries AFTER they all moved in together. So, it seems I give them the benefit of the doubt on one thing and they still cause me to shake my head on two more.

      And why is it only 30 minutes?!?!? It’s not like there isn’t enough people on the show! lol.

  2. Pingback: Pimping wife | Jameseldermusi

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