I haven’t talked about it much, but I have a new boyfriend, who for privacy reasons I’ll call Hunter. Hunter and I have known each other for a while, but our romantic and relationship is new. In spite of the newness, we have clicked really well, and Hunter spent most of the last few weeks of November with with me and my family.
(Life has gotten crazy since then, and we’re in temp housing where Hunter can’t visit, but we hope to have our own place again by early February.)
Anyway, Hunter spent several nights in November sleeping on the floor of our bedroom. Not because I or Michael wanted to make him sleep on the floor, but because we didn’t have anything else to offer, and he said he’d rather sleep on the floor at our place than go home alone. I didn’t argue very hard.
Michael doesn’t always sleep well, and eventually, on the nights he stayed up until all hours, Hunter would often curl up in bed with me. We started talking about getting a place together somewhere around the last week of November. A few days after those first discussions, Michael stayed up late again and Hunter and I curled up in bed. However, this night was somewhat different. Instead of staying up most of the night and crashing after Hunter left early in the morning, Michael was ready to go to sleep shortly after midnight. He asked me to wake Hunter up so Michael could use the bed.
Michael has several chronic illnesses affecting his muscles and nerves, and if he were to sleep on the floor, he would be crippled the next day. So leaving aside any discussion of courtesy or fairness or anything like that, asking Hunter or I to move was the only option is Michael was going to sleep, and as our relationships are more hinge than full triad, Hunter and Michael curling up together wasn’t happening.
But something in what Michael said bothered me. He emphasized that he wanted to sleep in his bed. Emphasis his, as in not Hunter’s. Possessiveness of any sort rubs me the wrong way, so it stuck out in my mind. Especially since, if we were going to get a place together sooner or later it was going to be “our” bed.
All of which is a kind of long-winded intro to what I really wanted to talk about today: making to transition from ours to, well, ours.
In our society, couples are encouraged to view their property as joint. It’s our house, our bed, our dining room table, our TV, etc. There are exceptions–in a two-car family it’s my car and your car, and most couples don’t have ‘our’ clothing.
Some couples don’t have ‘our’ bed.
Now, it sometimes happens that a live-in poly relationship forms when 3 or more single-folk come together an explosion of compersion and a triad or quad or group is born. In the ten years I’ve been involved in poly, I’ve heard of it happening once.
Far more often a live-in poly group forms when there is a couple, or triad, and a single, or two couples, or some other combination of highly entwined people living together a while and person/people who are moving into the existing household.
At which point somehow people need to figure out how yours and mine becomes yours and yours and mine. And not just how, but what and when. Are the two cars used by three people now communal property when they used to be claimed by one person each? Is the computer which belonged to a newly entwined person available to the people they have moved in with? Whose bed is it, anyway?
Of course, who lays claim to what in a poly home is only a small part of the adjustments and insanity that occur when a poly-group gets a home together. Life being the mother of inspiration, and me looking at getting a new home for a new triad in the near future, I’m starting a new posting series on the joys and horrors of moving in together. See you in two weeks!