Tag Archives: Q&A

Wilder Shores of Love — FREE call 4/10, 5:15p Pacific

What’s relationship success? Is your relationship a success or not, and how do you tell? How can you use “creative relationship design” to create a successful relationship tailored to your needs, and those of your partner/s?

Please join Francesca Gentille and me (Dawn Davidson of Love Outside the Box) this Thursday, 4/10 at 5:15pmPacific for the FREE INFORMATIONAL CALL about the Wilder Shores of Love!

UPDATE: Here’s the link to the recording!  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7zoIaBrfBMQ

On the Web join online here:http://apps.calliflower.com/conf/show?guid=75e9680b5da6fdf796f36cd276d54d25a73a6951

Dial in number: 415 376 1329
Your Conference Code: 1282710

While this is a call where people can ask questions about our upcoming in-person class (see below), it’s not just a sales call — we are committed to providing value to everyone who joins us on the call! We plan to discuss some issues important to relationship success… starting with the question of what IS relationship “success”, and how do YOU measure it?

So join us on this FREE call, find out more about the Wilder Shore of Love, and share your ideas about creative relationship design!

Hope you can join us… because Love is always ok!

~♥ Dawn

PS: For more information about the in-person event that’s happening on April 26th:
http://www.wildershores.com/events.html

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[© 2014 Dawn M. Davidson]

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Interview: Dawn Davidson (me!)

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A few weeks ago I published an audio interview of Kathy Labriola, author of the popular book on polyamory and open relationships, Love In Abundance: A Counselor’s Advice On Open Relationships.  We had lots of fun doing that, and so Kathy turned around and interviewed me. 🙂  The interview covers a few things, including some discussion about what I do as a coach and a counselor for polyamorous people, a little bit about my KISSable Agreements Workbook and the 5 Reasons Agreements Fail, and also some stuff about Getting To Win-Win-Win.

Tip: If you right-click the link below 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. In part because Kathy had a lot of questions, and in part because I don’t have any editing tools yet (LOL), this interview is just over 21 minutes long.

KathyLabriolaInterviewsDawnDavidson.4.1.13

Do you like these interviews?  Hate ’em?  Want to talk to us about them? Please let us know!

If you have any questions or feedback, you can certainly comment here, write to me, or comment over on my LoveOTB Facebook page.

And remember:  Love is ALWAYS OK!

~♥ Dawn

PS: Got a sticky poly problem you want to talk over? I’m happy to offer a free 30 minute session (by phone, Skype, or in person in the SF Bay Area), just for the asking. Or if you’d like a little more time, I can do 60 minutes for half off.  You can get an intro price session with the PayPal buttons on my webpage, or contact me if you’d like the free 30 minutes, prefer a different payment method, or have any questions.  Want to read what other people have said about my work? Check out my testimonials page. I’d love to hear from you, and learn how I can help your poly life be even better!

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[© 2013 Dawn M. Davidson]

Polyamory and Polygamy: Compare and Contrast

letter-writing1

Occasionally I get some interesting letters.  Recently, I was contacted by a High School Honors student seeking information for a paper. Here’s what the student wrote:

Hello, […] I am currently working on a research paper on polygamy. I found your information on the lovemore.com website and I was wondering if you would be willing to answer the following questions.

  1. How does dating work in a polygamist relationship?

  2. Did you choose to be a polygamist? If so what made you choose to be a polygamist?

  3. Did you grow up in a polygamist family? If not how does being a polygamist affect your non-polygamist family?

  4. How do the children interact with multiple mothers?

  5. How does being a polygamist child affect childhood?

  6. Do you have to be a certain religion to be a polygamist?

  7. What are your feelings on Warren Jeffs?

  8. Do you believe that Warren Jeffs is the reason polygamy is illegal in some states?

  9. How does being a polygamist affect your day to day life?

  10. Why do you believe polygamy is illegal in multiple states?

  11. Does polygamy being illegal affect your day to day life?

  12. Is there anything that you think that I should know about polygamy in order to write my paper?

Thank you for taking time to read my email and answering my questions

This email, while clearly interested in the topic and asking some worthwhile questions, shows the vast gulf in understanding in the general public of what polyamory and polygamy actually are.

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Here’s my response:

Dear [    ]:

I’ve been debating how to answer your questions since your first message.  The issue, you see, is that you have contacted the wrong person to answer the questions you’ve asked.  I’m not a polygamist.  I practice *polyamory*. Here’s a quick definition:

Polyamory =
poly (derived from the Greek for ‘many’)
+
amory (derived from the Latin for ‘love’)

In other words,

Polyamory is the belief in and/or practice of multiple loving relationships, with the full knowledge and consent of those involved.

Polyamory and polygamy are not the same thing, though they share the same Greek root meaning “many.”  Polygamy, however, shares the root “gamy” with the word “monogamy,” which refers to human marriage customs.  (See more here: http://www.affixes.org/g/-gamy.html)

You can read more about my definition of polyamory at this blog entry:
http://blog.loveoutsidethebox.com/?p=1147

If you’d like to know more about polyamory, you might want to look up some of the resources (websites, books, etc.) on this list:

http://blog.loveoutsidethebox.com/?page_id=114

For more on the distinction between polyamory and polygamy, see the informative web page “Polygamy and Polyamory” a brochure by the Unitarian Universalists for Polyamory Awareness: http://www.uupa.org/Literature/PolygamyComparison.htm
Best wishes on your paper,

Dawn

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In addition to that letter, I’ve also compiled a DRAFT of a table highlighting some of the similarities and differences between polyamory and polygamy.  I’ve been hesitant to publish it, in part because I haven’t yet run it by any representatives from the groups discussed (other than polyamorists, where I’ve run the paper by some researchers into polyamory, a few months ago.) So if you, dear reader, identify with any of these groups, and you find areas that you feel need improvement, please do bring the matter/s to my attention (gently, if you can!) I wish to provide this list as a starting point for thought and discussion, not as a prescription for division.  I myself am not a social scientist and do not claim to be an “academic.”  The references and suggested readings listed are also not meant to be an exhaustive list, but instead a starting place for further research.

 

Polyamory

Polygamy
(as popularly understood in US;
aka religious polygyny) (1)

Some similarities

Multiple adult partners Multiple adult partners
Deserving of human rights Deserving of human rights
Stigmatized and misunderstood Stigmatized and misunderstood
Lack of governmental or social recognition of family status Lack of governmental or social recognition of family status

 

Some differences

Egalitarian (shared power in relationship) Patriarchal (decisions and responsibility reserved to male head of family)
Structure not based in organized religion (though practitioners may be religious and/or spiritual) Structure originates in religious doctrine or belief
Any combination and number of genders in relationship structure Relationship structure limited to 1 man, multiple women
Mostly not prohibited in the US (2) Mostly prohibited in the US (3)
About love/romantic relationships About marriage relationships
Long-term commitment optional Long-term commitment a requirement
May be sexually open (individuals in the relationship may or may not have additional sexual relationships outside of the polyamorous relationship under discussion) Always sexually closed (individuals within the relationship may only have sex within the relationship)
Same gender sexual relationships may be allowed Heterosexual relationships only
Allows for gender fluidity and other non-normative gender expressions Binary gender expression only
Relationship focused (May or may not consider themselves part of a family) Family-focused

© 2013 Dawn M. Davidson

(1) Other forms of polygamy exist worldwide that are not based in religious doctrine or belief. This table does not address those and is not meant to imply that they either don’t exist, nor that they are the same as the religious form of polygamy discussed here. This table exists primarily to clarify the most common misperception of polyamory being “the same as polygamy,” as represented by, for instance the TV shows “Big Love” or “Sister Wives.”

See also: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legal_status_of_polygamy and http://jezebel.com/5981095/polyandry-is-actually-way-more-popular-than-anthropologists-have-thought

(2) Cohabiting polyamorous groups may be prohibited by bigamy laws in some states, e.g., Utah.  See also http://non-monodiscourse.blogspot.com/

(3) Some Christian polygamy groups advocate marrying and then getting a legal divorce in order to create a “spiritual marriage” only. This form of polygamy (in essence, a form of serial marriage) would be legal in the US. (Source: http://www.christianpolygamy.com/)

For more information, see also:

“Polygamy and Polyamory” a brochure by the Unitarian Universalists for Polyamory Awareness: http://www.uupa.org/Literature/PolygamyComparison.htm

 

Do you have anything to add to this table?  Any great references, important line items, or any comments or questions? As always, feel free to contact me on my Love Outside the Box webpage, to comment below, or to visit my Facebook page, LoveOTB. I welcome your discussion and feedback.

May you always love boldly, safely, and well,

~♥ Dawn

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[© 2013 Dawn M. Davidson]

Interview with Kathy Labriola

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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

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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!

 

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Michael Zwerling, owner of KSCO radio

Dawn & other poly activists on radio 1/21 @10pm Pacific

Michael Zwerling, owner of KSCO radio

Michael Zwerling, owner of KSCO radio

Hey folks: I was unexpectedly on the Radio this morning, along with Sarah Taub, Michael Rios, and a host of other great poly activists! See below for details on how you can listen to the show!  There’s a replay TONIGHT at 10pm, and later there’ll be a podcast to download.

Enjoy!

~♥ Dawn

[UPDATE!!  The podcast is up!  Listen to it here: http://www.ksco.com/saturday-special/28300-saturday-special-january-21th-2012-mz-explosive-discussion-on-newt-gingrich-open-relationships-a-adultery-right-wrong-or-something-in-between]

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Anderson Cooper on Polyamory

Some great footage out today on the topic of polyamory, from a segment on Anderson Cooper.  Such classics as “Do you all sleep in one big bed,” and “What about the children???”  Check it out:

[Dec. ’14: Links seem expired. Here’s some coverage of this Anderson Cooper polyamory segment over on Poly In the News]

 

video platformvideo managementvideo solutionsvideo player

Thanks to Jaiya, Jon, and Ian for your bravery and clarity!!

 

Want to contribute to the discussion? Go vote in the polls!

Poll: Would you date someone polyamorous?

Poll: Can you be connected to two people at once?

 

~♥ Dawn

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[© 2011 Dawn M. Davidson]

Interchange! and New Education & Trainings Page

Some folks have been curious about the Interchange Counseling Training I participated in a few years back. The wonderful folks over at the Interchange Counseling Institute have recently released an awesome video to give you an idea of some of the benefits and topics covered in the training. Check it out!

As it happens, there’s an Interchange introductory evening in Santa Cruz Wednesday oops! THURSDAY night (9/29/11), and one last intro evening in SF on October 11th. Whether or not you will take the training, attending the intro evening will bring you some awesome exercises and a lot of fun. (If you sign up as a result of my recommendation, please mention my name!)

And finally, to feature this video on a permanent basis, I’ve created a new Page in my About menu (in the SIDEbar; the top menu doesn’t work yet!), that shows this video, and lists my educational background and trainings.

 

Enjoy, and feel free to ask me questions about any of this, whether here, in private e-mail, or on my FB Page: Love Outside The Box.

 ~♥ Dawn

PS: Thanks to all my Interchange classmates!  You all rock. Thanks for being part of my life.

 

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[© 2011 Dawn M. Davidson]

Green Eggs and Spam: A Little History of “Polyamory”

Capital Letter In response to someone in Facebook saying (a couple of weeks back) that they hadn’t heard of “Zell, Green Egg or CAW” and wondering if they might be “Pagan communes” I wrote the following explanation of how polyamory and paganism are historically connected.  (You may also want to check out Alan’s awesome research post  at Poly in the News, on the history of the word ‘polyamory’ as well.  If you live for the joy of lex, it’s a big O all by itself!)

Enjoy!

~♥ Dawn

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Q&A: Why do people consider polyamory bad/wrong?

A few years ago, I spent some time writing answers to all of the polyamory-related questions I could find on Yahoo! Answers.  I kept copies of some of those, since I felt they represented pretty good answers to some commonly asked questions about poly.  Here’s one of them, for your reading pleasure.  Feel free to comment or ask questions!

Why do people consider polyamory bad/wrong?
what is wrong with multiple people in consenting loving relationships? note: polyamory, not polygamy

Additional Details
why do we as a culture view polyamory as bad/wrong?

I don’t personally think there’s anything wrong or bad about polyamory. However, I can tell you what other people have said as to why they believe polyamory is bad/wrong. Most people who object seem to do so because it conflicts with their own beliefs, and/or moral framework. I’ve also heard people object on the grounds that they believe it to be:
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