Now on to a recurring issue in polyamorous relationships, jealousy and envy.
Polyamorous folks engage in a lifestyle where they are forced to contend with these raw, base emotions all the time. In general, those who participate in polyamory engage in a social order that puts them at greater risk of exposure to envy and jealousy than monogamy.
The base emotions he refers to are envy and jealousy. First, I don’t think these emotions are exclusive to poly relationships; most “mono” couples seem to have similar raw emotions at times. There is rarely a night when I don’t see the look of envy when one member of a “mono” couple is chatting up some stranger in the bar! The countless times we get calls from a woman asking if her husband is here. The gossip is also vicious: “I don’t like it when he’s here having fun with his friends!” Everyone in relationships, it would seem, has to deal with jealousy and envy.
In a monogamous relationship, the jealousy can be greater because there is often more emotional dependency on the other partner. My partners are usually blase about my cavorting with other patrons. At least until things get more involved and by then I’ve learned it’s time to lay all of the cards on the table.
It may be that poly people have more experience dealing with jealousy and envy because these emotions occur more often in open relationships. They have much more at stake. It is imperative they might get to the root of the feelings:
I think you hinted at the root cause of at least jealousy – insecurity. It doesn’t help that society generally regards polyamory as “abnormal” with their smug “I told you this would happen” reactions. It means that the threshold for polyamory is a lot higher and those who want to preserve these relationships have to work a lot harder at keeping them or default to monogamy.
I’ve learned from painful experience. If I push things too far by playing around behind my partner’s back, I can hurt more people and torpedo the relationship that I cherish!