Tag Archives: books

What About the Children? Cover of Loving More Magazine #37

Poly and Child Custody Nightmares: Links and Advice

A month or two ago, I was contacted by some folks who are actually going through a common poly nightmare, at least for parents: A contentious custody battle in which one parent is accused of being a bad parent “because they are polyamorous.” It’s a nightmare in part because there have been some notorious cases in which a family has lost custody of their kids due at least in part to their being polyamorous. This sort of thing varies a LOT by location, and at least as much by the particular judge/s hearing the case. Even when polyamory is brought up as an issue, it does not always (or even often) lead to a loss of custody. But when it’s you and your family undergoing the scrutiny, the situation can be frankly terrifying.

I know this from personal experience, because about a decade ago my own daughter was taken by Child Protective Services (aka CPS) — for a situation that was ultimately unrelated to polyamory, but we didn’t know that at the time. She was eventually returned to us after a harrowing week, once they’d determined that their abuse fears were groundless. It was, however, an experience I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy, and it has had lasting impacts on our daughter and our family. 🙁

Thus, I was very motivated to provide as much help as possible. I started by sending a couple of links, and then went on to write a detailed letter of some possible issues that might come up, and some possible responses to each one.  I asked for and received permission to post the letter (devoid of identifying information of course.)

It is with great sincerity that I hope that no one reading these words ever has need of the advice and links I’ve included below. And it is for those few of you who might ever need these links that I share this information now. If you are going through something like this, please remember:

No matter who or how many you love, Love is ALWAYS ok.

~♥ Dawn

telephone_bluePS: Would you like to talk to me privately about issues around polyamory and/or child custody? I’m happy to schedule a time to talk to you. I do 30 minutes for free, or 60 minutes for 1/2 price. Contact me, and we’ll find a good time to chat by phone or Skype!

 

Letter to Polyamorous Parents Facing a Child Custody Battle

Dear [poly parents]:

Let me start by saying that I am so sorry that you all are facing this sort of prejudice.  It’s terrible, and I know how very challenging it can be.  (((hugs)))

Continue reading

Myths of Monog. & Nuclear Family: Thurs 10/16/14, 7pm Mtn

Exploring the Myths of Monogamy & the Nuclear Family
(a Teleseminar 10/14/16)

Loving More Non-profit, the longest-running organization supporting polyamory and relationship choice, is running a series of teleseminars. Their next one is this Thursday 10/16/14, at 7pm Mountain time /6pm Pacific/ 9pm Eastern. Robyn Trask — host and head of Loving More — is thoughtful and experienced.  I recommend her highly!

Read the whole announcement on the Loving More Website

October 16, 2014. 7:00PM (Mountain Time)
Exploring the Myths of Monogamy & the Nuclear Family
Cost is $5, Free for Loving More Members
(see below for details)

 Register Now


Are monogamy and the nuclear family really based on inherent human nature? Is the common narrative of male paternity certainty and female security real? This presentation draws strongly from the works of Merlin Stone (When God Was A Woman), Riane Eisler (Sacred Pleasure: Sex, Myth, and the Politics of the Body) and the NY Times Bestselling book by Ryan and Jethá, Sex at Dawn. We will look at the flaws inherent in the study of ancient cultures and sexuality, as well as the possibility of mistakes in the common narrative of sexuality derived from mid-nineteenth century scientists and anthropologists. Sex, power, culture; how are these things linked? Patriarchal culture, religion and morality have greatly influenced the common narrative of sexuality and human relations, but are these narratives accurate? We will explore how these narratives have contributed to a disconnect for many with human sexual nature and contributed to many of the challenges inherent in modern relationships and “battle of the sexes,” as well as ways to see our species in a different light.

Presented by: Robyn Trask

Cost:  Live or recorded webinar is $5, Free for Loving More Donor/Members*

It is best to register ahead of time for the webinar. A recording will be available after the webinar (usually by the next day). We recommend people use the call-in by phone option, instead of using your computer, when joining the live meeting as you will get considerably better sound quality.  Space is limited – Click here to register now.

* All webinars are free to Loving More Donor/Members, contact Loving More directly for access code for the webinar.

Email Robyn@LoveMore.com, please include type of membership, annual or monthly, and specific webinar you wish to participate in or view. 

Miss the webinar? Listen later!

Webinars can be attended live and are also recorded to be viewed at your convenience. Live attendees will have the opportunity to ask questions at the end of the webinar.

Check out past webinars available on the Loving More website!

Past Titles include:

Polyamorous Families and Children
Loving More Survey Highlights
Jealousy: A Journey of Personal Growth
Polyamory Etiquette: The Do’s and Don’ts of Polyamory Dating and Relating
Negotiating Boundaries and Polyamorous Relationship Agreements
Beyond Monogamy? Introduction to Polyamory and other Open Relationship Choices
8 Keys to Successful Polyamorous Relating

Loving More Members contact Robyn@lovemore.com for access codes to past webinars with a fee. Please include webinar title and type of membership (monthly or annual).

Hope you can listen in, because…

No matter who or how many you love, Love is ALWAYS ok!

~♥ Dawn

PS:  Like Teleseminars?  Check out the Jealousy First Aid series that I did last fall with Kathy Labriola!  TIP: Don’t forget to sign up to get the Free Handouts. 🙂

Green First Aid KitJealousy First Aid (JFA #1)
MORE Jealousy First Aid (JFA #2)
More Options for More Jealousy (JFA #3)

 

 

Trust Fall Exercise -- Man falling backward into waiting arms of many people

Gratitude, Control, and Acceptance in Poly Community

Polyamory and Control

In polyamory (and open relationships), we’re often admonished for being “out of control,” or told that we should feel ashamed of who and what we are.  “Control” often shows up in polyamorous relationships in various other ways, too. For instance, people sometimes try to control their partner/s — or even more commonly, their partner’s partner/s) through inflexible rules. [Note: these are in contrast to Agreements, which require cooperation; read more here].  Poly people also often try to control their own feelings of jealousy or insecurity by suppressing or repressing them.  As Rocky the Squirrel says, “that trick never works!”

Fortunately, there are actually ways to moderate, work through, and get through such difficult situations and feelings. Thanks go to Veronica Monet for this clear, step by step guide to Getting What You Want by Giving Up Control:

How to Get What You Want by Giving Up Control of Self and Other

1) Breathe and Connect to Your Feelings
2) Feel Empathy and Compassion for Yourself
3) Replace Negative Thoughts with Hopeful Scenarios
4) Extend Empathy to Others
5) Let Go of Control and Practice Acceptance

Simple, powerful steps, with powerful results. (The rest of the article is great, too, and I recommend it.)

Letting Go of Shame to Find AcceptanceBy gnuckx [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

I myself am receiving powerful messages right now to “let go” in my life. It’s not been something I’ve been traditionally good at. This is part of why I’m reaching out more for help of all sorts.  I need some “hopeful scenarios” to replace the negative thoughts, you know?

In that article, Veronica also quotes Brené Brown, well known expert on shame and vulnerability:

“You cannot shame or belittle people into changing. This means we can’t use self-hate to lose weight, we can’t shame ourselves into becoming better parents and we can’t belittle ourselves or our families into becoming who we need them to be. . . Shame corrodes the very part of us that believes we are capable of change.” [Brene Brown’s I Thought It Was Just Me (but it isn’t): Making the Journey from “What Will People Think?” to “I Am Enough”, page 197]

This speaks directly to what I was talking about a couple of weeks back (in Facebook) when I said I disagreed with the notion that we can hate ourselves into health. It’s also relevant to other situations in my life which are requiring letting go. It is HARD to ask for and accept help, especially when one has always been accustomed to being the one to offer it.  It’s especially hard for men in our culture. But it can be hard for women (or people of any gender) as well, in part because it requires letting go of the popular USAian idea that we can be “rugged individuals” and should be able to do everything on our own. It also requires letting go of the shame, and the internal messages that to ask for help is to have failed, or that we’re unworthy, or will never be good enough. It also requires us to give up control over what other people think of us, and the fear that they’ll judge us negatively for who we are, or what we need.

Polyamory and CommunityPoly Living Puppy Pile

One of the greatest gifts in polyamory (and sometimes in open relationships), in my view, is that of community. As we honestly open ourselves to others, and create bonds and ties and networks, we naturally create a community of not only lovers, but of loving people of all sorts; people who can be there for us in times of loss and hardship, as well as times of joy and celebration. It’s hard (for me, at least)to trust in this net, because of the strong messages of nuclear family, and individual responsibility. But as I allow myself to be more open and more vulnerable, I am finding more and more support — mentally, emotionally, and physically — is available to me.

Of course, this requires that I be open to receive that support, and that can be a challenge for a perfectionist like me. But by following those steps Veronica outlines above, I can breathe through the confusing feelings, and eventually learn to accept what IS. Not always easy, but usually possible.

I find that for me, part of the process is to continually remind myself to stay in a state of gratitude, which allows me to be open to receiving the gifts that may come my way, as well as allowing me to remain relaxed and able to respond appropriately.  “Fear is the mindkiller,” after all, and when I’m in a state of contraction, resistance and fear, I often cannot move, quite literally.

So it is now that I end this post where I began my day, in gratitude for my community.  I am grateful for so many of you, both those whom I know, and those whom I’ve never met, and may never meet. I am grateful for those who can help me with my physical and financial needs, and for those who can help me with my emotional, mental or spiritual needs. It is an article of faith for me, that in giving to each other, we always give back to ourselves. And I am especially grateful to my friend Adam, at the moment, who is providing an example that yes, it IS possible — through gratitude, acceptance, and letting go — to change for the better.

I hope by sharing these thoughts I can inspire you, as I have been inspired today by my friends and community. And may you always, always remember, that

Love is always OK.

~♥ Dawn

FREEPS: Are you interested in talking with me about polyamory, or about any of the topics in this blog?  I’m happy to give back via a Free 30-minute session, or a 1/2 price 60-minute one. Past clients have reported increased happiness, decreased feelings of shame and jealousy, and have gained clarity and useful tools through working with me in a co-creative process. I’d love to help you understand and manifest your own best life and loves! Contact me and we’ll set up a time that works for you. 🙂

∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥

[© 2014 Dawn M. Davidson]

Morning Glory Zell

Remembering Morning Glory Zell, 1948 – 2014

I’d intended to continue my series of 5 Ways to Meet Poly/Open People today.  But life, as they say, is what happens when you’re busy making other plans.  Instead, today I’m taking the time to commemorate Tuesday’s passing of Morning Glory Zell, Pagan Priestess, author, and (co-)originator of the word “polyamorous.”  Many others will tell her story more fully, and with more historical references. I’ll be telling the ways in which she affected me personally, and how she intersected with my experiences of both Paganism and Polyamory.

Meeting Morning Glory

Morning Glory had an impact on my life long before I knew it. I first met her in the late 80’s or early 90’s, up at Annwfn, the Church of All Worlds retreat center outside of Ukiah, CA. Continue reading

Polyamorists Next Door — December 15th!

Elisabeth-SheffDr. Elisabeth Sheff, premier researcher on polyamory and other “alternative” relationship styles has a new book out. It’s called The Polyamorists Next Door: Inside Multiple-Partner Families and Relationships.  Based on personal interviews over nearly a decade, her research sheds new light on polyamorous people in the United States. Right now it’s available as either an e-book or a hardcover book from publisher Rowman and Littlefield.  In order to attract interest from other publishers to do a paperback release, she’s asking that anyone who’s interested in purchasing this book please do so ON SUNDAY DECEMBER 15th, which will hopefully propel the book to the bestseller list on that day.

http://rcm-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/cm?lt1=_blank&bc1=000000&IS2=1&bg1=FFFFFF&fc1=000000&lc1=0000FF&t=unchlove-20&o=1&p=8&l=as4&m=amazon&f=ifr&ref=ss_til&asins=1442222956

Here’s what Dr. Sheff has to say:

If everyone who is interested buys a copy on December 15 then it has a good chance of being rated as the top seller in that category on that day.  Being a best seller is important because it can help get the book published in paperback, which is a lot less expensive to purchase and more likely to be in mainstream bookstores. Rowman and Littlefield only publish hardbacks and ebooks, and if the book is a “best seller” then it will be easier for me to get a different publisher interested in doing another run in paperback.

If your group or organization is interested in learning more about sexual and gender minorities in general or polyamorous families with children in specific, I am available to speak to groups large and small, and willing to travel to do so.  For more information contact me at drelisheff@gmail.com or see my website at http://elisabethsheff.com.

Please help me make this book more affordable to everyone by purchasing it on December 15.

Thanks! I wish you a lovely holiday season.

All the best, Elisabeth

“Eli” Sheff, PhD
Expert witness, educator, speaker, and consultant CEO, Sheff Consulting Group (SCG) http://elisabethsheff.com http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-polyamorists-next-door

I’ve had the pleasure of meeting Dr. Sheff on several occasions, and I can say that she’s not only a fabulous and dedicated researcher, but also a kind and warm-hearted person. Helping her out in this way will also help get her important research into the hands of a wider audience, and (hopefully) pave the way for greater understanding and acceptance of polyamorous people everywhere.

Thanks, Eli, for your excellent research, and I hope that your book sells well on 12/15 and thereafter!

Because Love is always OK!

~♥ Dawn

love_outside_the_box_white_on_dark_t_shirts-r734308d7aa2c48a6a7a731d0498738ca_8nfnu_216PS: Want to declare that you Love Outside the Box? Hop on over to my Love Outside the Box Zazzle store by end of day tomorrow (12/6), and get 50% off all T-shirts, and 20% off everything else!  Use code 48HOURSDEALS at checkout to get your discount. Great for Holiday gifts, too!

 

∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥

[© 2013 Dawn M. Davidson]

Green First Aid Kit

Got Jealousy? Get First Aid!

Green First Aid KitHello, all you poly/open folks!

Have you or someone you love ever experienced painful episodes of jealousy in an open relationship?  You know the ones… maybe you feel alternately cold, and hot, and like you want to do damage to the furniture, or your partner, or maybe even yourself.  You want to scream, and feel like this poly/open stuff is just too hard, and you just want to throw in the towel and give up. Ever felt like that?

Yeah, me too! And honestly, who hasn’t? (Well, ok, maybe you haven’t, but if so, I’ll bet your partners have! And that’s not fun either.) Jealousy is all too common, and it’s never fun. Would you be willing to invest about an hour of your time in order to learn effective, practical in-the-moment techniques to reduce these jealous feelings — even as they are happening?

If so, then you”ll want to register for our free teleseminar:                                           

“JEALOUSY FIRST AID”       

Wednesday Sept 4, 2013, at 5:45 to 7pm

This free teleseminar will be facilitated by Dawn Davidson and Kathy Labriola, two well-known polyamory educators and counselors in the San Francisco Bay Area. Understand your jealousy, and learn and practice two very effective exercises to manage your jealousy in this short and powerful class!

During this class, Kathy will help you to create and understand “Your Personal Jealousy Pie Chart” to reduce the fear, anger, and sadness of jealousy. Dawn will lead you through her “Juggling for Idiots” jealousy exercise using a simple modified-EMDR technique that anyone can use to get immediate relief from an acute jealousy episode. This teleseminar will be participatory and will include a Question and Answer period as well as valuable take-home materials for continued learning!
RSVP today for Jealousy First Aid, and get some great information and tips from not just one but TWO experts on de-fanging the green-eyed monster!

Kathy and I can’t wait for you to join our call!

…because no matter who or how many you love… Love is ALWAYS OK!

~ Dawn

Dawn icon portraitDawn Davidson
http://www.loveoutsidethebox.com
loveotb@gmail.com
510-686-3386

kathyLabriolaKathy Labriola, Counselor/Nurse
anarchofeminist@yahoo.com
(510)841-5307
http://www.kathylabriola.com
Pre-order the NEW “The Jealousy Workbook”!

PS:  Having trouble with the signup form, or just want to talk to a human being first?  You can also contact Dawn at LoveOTB@gmail.com, 510-686-3386; or Kathy at anarchofeminist@yahoo.com, or (510)841-5307.

PPS:  Don’t suffer longer than you need to!  RSVP today for Jealousy First Aid!
https://di986.infusionsoft.com/app/form/jfa-event-sign-up

∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥

[© 2013 Dawn M. Davidson]

Love In Abundance: A Book Review

kathyLabriolaHave you checked out the awesome book by Kathy Labriola, Love in Abundance: A Counselor’s Advice on Open Relationships?  Here’s what I said about it on Amazon the other day:
This review is from: Love In Abundance: A Counselor’s Advice On Open Relationships [Paperback] [2010] (Author) Kathy Labriola (Paperback)

Kathy Labriola’s book, “Love In Abundance: A Counselor’s Advice on Open Relationships” is a great contribution to the literature on polyamorous and/or open relationships. She gives excellent advice garnered from her extensive counseling experience, and backs up her recommendations with clear, helpful examples. Her topics are helpful and interesting, running the gamut from communication advice to suggestions for how to deal with jealousy, and much more. One especially unusual and helpful aspect to the book, in my opinion, is Labriola’s commitment to sexual orientation inclusiveness. In her relationship examples, she seamlessly includes same-sex relationships as well as heterosexual ones. She discusses several kinds of relationship formations as well, and not just the “usual” heterosexual, primary-secondary/hierarchical model.

On the not-so-perfect side, some people have found her section on advice about communication between men and women to be a bit “gender-essentialist,” and others find her advice in general to be somewhat “basic.” I myself think she has observed some true patterns over the years regarding communication between men and women, and has some good communication advice that isn’t limited to relationships between the gender binary, nor to any particular style of relating. I also find her advice to be grounded in reality, and a gentler introduction to the concepts than some of the books that came before.

I highly recommend this book to my clients and other people interested in polyamorous/open relationships. I think it fits in nicely, filling the gaps between the groundbreaking Polyamory: The New Love Without Limits : Secrets of Sustainable Intimate Relationships by Deborah Anapol, and the book touted for years as the “poly bible,” The Ethical Slut: A Practical Guide to Polyamory, Open Relationships & Other Adventures by Dossie Easton and Janet Hardy. Not as radical as Redefining Our Relationships: Guidelines For Responsible Open Relationships by Wendy-O Matik and far less dense than Ravencroft’s Polyamory: Roadmaps for the Clueless & Hopeful, I think this book is a solid guide in an often confusing territory, especially helpful to those completely new to the concepts.

Highly recommended for relationship explorers of any sort, and a must-have for any counseling professional who serves these communities.

By the way, did you know Kathy is releasing a new book in September? It’s the Jealousy Workbook, and it looks like another fabulous resource.  I have a small part in it too, with one of my Tools for “Riding the Green Wave” published in the section called “Ask the Experts.”  Hooray! The new book isn’t available yet, but you can pre-order it directly from Kathy.

Green First Aid KitAlso, Kathy and I are hosting a Teleseminar called Jealousy First Aid, on September 4th, at 5:45pm Pacific Time.  I’ll be doing a more formal announcement of that soon, but in the meantime, I’ve just finished the web-form to sign up, so if you’d like to get started, feel free to fill out this form, and get on the list! (And please do let me know if the form doesn’t work right or something; this is the first time I’ve used this program to do this, so I’m a little nervous about it working!)

Here’s hoping all your relationships are going along swimmingly this summer!

~♥ Dawn

PS: Interested in talking to me directly about your jealousy or other poly/open issues? I’m happy to do a free 30 minute, or a 1/2 price 60 minute phone session with you. And through the end of August, I’m still running my summer special, so you can save over 30% on a package! Contact me via my webform, Or call me (510-686-3386) to set up a time to talk!

 

∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥

[© 2013 Dawn M. Davidson]

 

 

 

Interview with Kathy Labriola

kathyLabriola

Kathy Labriola, Author of Love In Abundance

The interview I did with Jessica Burde was so much fun, I decided to do another one!  This time I interviewed Kathy Labriola, well-known counselor/nurse, and author of the popular book on polyamory and open relationships, Love In Abundance: A Counselor’s Advice On Open Relationships.

As many of you know, Kathy is a great resource for people in polyamorous or open relationships. She’s been practicing some form of polyamory/open relationships for about 40 years, and has been counseling others for more than two decades. She’s very dedicated to serving the low-income population, and has been providing excellent advice for many years via her variety of free pamphlets, which she mailed out to any who requested them. Any by “mail” I mean she licked the stamp and dropped it in the mailbox, because she started long before the internet existed!

Cover of "Love In Abundance", by Kathy Labriola

Love In Abundance,” by Kathy Labriola

So I was very excited when Kathy accepted my offer to interview her, so I could share some of her great knowledge with others. As last time, we conducted this interview via Skype in audio only.  What I did not do this time, however, was to transcribe the interview. Sorry! You’ll need to listen to the recording in order to enjoy Kathy’s excellent discussion about the three main types of open relationships, and a few of her many tips on what makes people successful. And as a bonus, at the end of the interview, Kathy shares her favorite jokes about polyamory! (If you’d like to volunteer to do the transcription, both Kathy and I would appreciate it!)

Tip: If you right-click the link and open it in a new tab, you should see some sort of player for the interview. You could also choose to play it in iTunes. The interview is just over 18 minutes long.

DawnDavidsonInterviewsKathyLabriola4.1.13

If you’d like to order Kathy’s book, you can get it directly from her own website:
http://www.kathylabriola.com/Love-in-Abundance

You can also get it from Amazon (and if you click on the link below I’ll get a tiny, tiny percentage), but honestly, Kathy keeps more of it if you buy it directly from here: http://www.kathylabriola.com/Love-in-Abundance.

Hope you enjoy listening to the interview as much as we enjoyed recording it!

~♥ Dawn

PS: There’s more to come!  The same day we recorded this interview, Kathy also interviewed me.  So watch this space for another recording. Also, Kathy is in the process of writing a new book, The Jealousy Workbook (which will appear next spring from Greenery Press), to which I’ve contributed a technique for battling jealousy.  I’ll certainly be announcing it when it appears, so if you’d like advance notice on that, you can sign up for my LoveOTB List. (Kathy doesn’t have a list, though of course she’ll announce it on her website as well.)

∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥

[© 2013 Dawn M. Davidson]

Polyamory and Pregnancy: Author Interview

JessicaBurdePhoto

Author Jessica Burde

Hi folks!  I have something new for you today.  My friend and colleague Jessica Burde of Polyamory On Purpose has written a book called Polyamory and Pregnancy:

She’s doing a Blog Tour, and today is her stop at my blog. You can read more about the book and the blog tour over at Alan M.’s Polyamory in the News. She and I did a fun, quick interview a couple of weeks back, and I’ve placed it here for your listening pleasure.  You should be able to listen to it by double-clicking on the mp3 link, or opening it with iTunes or something similar:

Interview.jessica.burde.03.11.13

[3.3 MB; 13 min 42 sec]

I’ve transcribed the interview and included it below the cut, in case there are issues with the recording for anyone.

One note for any who might not have run into the term before, “metamour” means another partner of your own partner.  So in this case Jessica refers to the [female] partner of Jessica’s husband Michael as her metamour.

Hope you enjoy listening to the recording.

~♥ Dawn

PS:  A request on behalf of the author:  If you’re ever planning to buy this book from Amazon, could you please do so this week (March 17-23)?  This will help her get a good one-time Amazon ranking in the book’s specialty category.

PPS: Check out the other books on poly, relationships, and communication I have listed in the Amazon widget below and to the right
=====>>
There’s some awesome information to support your poly relationships in there… and if you buy through that link, you’ll also be supporting me (in a very tiny amount).  Win-win-win!

 

Continue reading

Self-love As a Path to Loving More

The Self-Love Tree poster, by Christine Arylo

From Christine Arylo’s Madly in Love with ME

Happy Self-Love Day!

My friend Christine Arylo, author of Madly in Love with ME: The Daring Adventure of Becoming Your Own Best Friend, has declared Feb. 13 to be the International Day of Self-Love. You can read more about it, and download her free Self-Love Kit here.

In her self-love kit, she challenges each of us to choose a branch of the self-love tree, and focus on that for the next year.  They’re all good categories, so it’s hard to choose!

  • Self Acceptance
  • Self Care
  • Self Compassion & Forgiveness
  • Self Empowerment
  • Self Esteem
  • Self Expression
  • Self Honor & Self Respect
  • Self Pleasure
  • Self Trust
  • Self Worth
  • Self-Awareness & Self Honesty

For me personally, I’m constantly in need of extra work on Self-Compassion and Self-Forgiveness (I’m going to commit to forgiving myself for needing to work on forgiving myself more! *chuckle*.)  And she’s spot on when she lists “self-worth” as the root of the whole tree.

In terms of the title of this post, however, I’m going to go out on a limb (ha ha!) and say that for the purposes of loving yourself as part of loving more (whether that’s through polyamory or any other “outside the box” path), that Self-Awareness and Self-Honesty are key. If you don’t know yourself, and understand your own needs, it’s hard for you to truly understand the needs of another.  And of course honesty is a crucial cornerstone of any polyamorous relationship… and honesty with others begins with honesty with yourself.

Being honest here, I’m behind in posting this message, and so many of you will not see it till tomorrow. That’s ok. (See how I forgave myself there? ;)) You can still check out her book on Amazon, download the free kit, and get a lot of good out of working on loving yourself, whether that’s today, tomorrow, or at any point during the year. And tomorrow, you can share it all with those you love…  whether that’s one other, many others …  or just you. After all, don’t you deserve to give yourself a Valentine’s Day gift, too? 😉

With much LOVE to all,

~♥ Dawn

PS:  It’s still not too late to take advantage of my Valentine’s coaching specials! I’m happy to help you in whatever way you need, in your path to loving more, whether that’s through guided visualizations to support your self-love, or by helping you craft personalized Agreements with others.  Let me know how I can help YOU create your own best life and loves!

PPS: See you at the  Academic Poly Conference in Berkeley, CA, this weekend (February 15-17)? I’ll be there!

∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥ ∞ ♥

[© 2013 Dawn M. Davidson]