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See You Later, Space Cowboy

·590 words·3 mins
Poly Issues Polyamory/Monogamy

Cowboy - Somebody who figures that these alternative relationships are unstable, and consciously or unconsciously tries to pull one of the partners off into a monogamous relationship with themselves. References “cutting a filly out of the herd”.


Three months ago, I was involved with 5 people. I’d relocated out here to Ohio, moving in with a couple I was dating, my husband in tow, leaving my girlfriend back in Maine. A dear friend of mine (and of theirs) took me out to dinner, and we found that we had a physical connection as strong as our emotional one. The couple panicked, became controlling and demanding, and the more I struggled for my freedom, the more desperate they became. When things finally went terribly wrong, I found myself living at the home of my new boyfriend, a mere 3 weeks after we started “dating,” really the point at which our relationship became physical, though the feelings had been there for many months.

The magnetism has always been strong with Skyspook and me. He was the one who listened to me all winter when I was stuck in a basement with no windows a half an hour away from any sort of civilization, when my partners were ignoring or criticizing me – I felt unfairly. We had eerily similar outlooks on relationships and what we wanted. As fetlife friends, we’d even discussed our sexual proclivities and preferences looking at fetishes and the way we self-identified and the like – and even talked about things like how we liked to kiss and be kissed – and intuited that we should be sexually compatible, though both remained our skepticism, having been privy to more than our share of disappointing sexual encounters.

Well it was different than I’d imagined. It was better. I apologize in advance for the insult I’m potentially inflicting upon anyone to say this, but it is quite literally the best sex I’ve ever had, and it’s been like that since the beginning and is getting better all the time. There’s a passion and playfulness and emotional depth that I’d never experienced before him. I always thought I was insatiable, and though I’m far from complacent and find myself wanting to try all sorts of new things with him, I have found myself more sexually satisfied than I’ve been in my entire life. Huge paradigm shift.

Now, this beautiful blossoming wonderful relationship is happening while, after spending the last 2 years of my 6-year marriage with the relationship open, I’m getting divorced.

I went from 5 to 1 in a matter of 3 months, a horrifying kind of math. Not only that, but we’re monogamous. He’s a hell of a guy, and I like to joke that he was worth leaving 20 people for, but it masks the pain, the feeling that somehow I’ve “failed” at polyamory.


Excerpt of an email from a “friend”: “If you don’t want to work it out, you don’t have to work it out, but throwing away 6 years of marriage is a very different thing from wisking from one boyfriend to another. “


I never expected this to happen. I left myself open to the possibilities – and this was the only one that made sense given the cast of characters.

Was this a meeting of two cowboys? I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s what my jilted exes would postulate. Does it make it true? No.

In any case, I think this is the part where we ride off into the sunset.


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