What Is Romance? What Makes Hooking Up and Hanging Out Different Than a Relationship?

a silver label maker
Image by Jamie / CC BY

If Labels Are for Organization, Then I Guess I’m a Bit of a Mess

“So what are you looking for? Something casual? Dating? A relationship? Something romantic?” she asks me.

And it takes me a long time to formulate an answer to the question. Not because I’m not interested. And not because I don’t care about her.  » Read more

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Mapping Territory Off the Escalator: An Interview with Amy Gahran

City of Baltimore Topographical Survey, c. 1894 (George Peabody Library Maps 3.13 and 3.14)
Image by Matthew Petroff / CC BY

I’ve long been a fan of Amy Gahran’s work. Under her pen name Aggie Sez, Gahran founded the blog solopoly.net, where she has been writing for many years about the unique challenges faced by those who tackle “life, relationships, and dating as a free agent.”

One post in particular, “Riding the Relationship Escalator,  » Read more

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Running Out of Side Quests on the Quest for Primary

the shadow of what appears to be a man holding a lightning bolt, like the god Zeus
Image by vasse nicolas,antoine / CC BY

“If you asked most people whether they believed in love or not, they’d probably say they didn’t. Yet that’s not necessarily what they truly think. It’s just the way they defend themselves against what they want. They believe in it, but pretend they don’t until they’re allowed to. Most people would throw away all their cynicism if they could.  » Read more

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“That’s Not Poly”: Polyamorous Sex Negativity and the Relationship Escalator

a rainbow escalator (used to signify the diversity of relationships that are possible if we get away from sex negativity in polyamory)
Image by Graham C99 / CC BY

Polyamorous Controversy Over “Benefits”

As readers responded to our recent post 7 Common Myths About Being Polyamorous on social media, one debunked myth quickly emerged as the most controversial:

4. If you have flings, you’re not polyamorous.

Some other folks may feel differently about this, but for me polyamory is about radical openness to whatever happens to develop.  » Read more

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