By Monsuta and Bella – Pacific Northwest Polyamory
Polyamory is about sharing the love, however, that looks for you, within your boundaries. Defined, polyamory means having multiple committed relationships at the same time with the knowledge and consent of all partners involved. In our understanding of this definition, polyamory falls under the ethically non-monogamous umbrella as does swinging, friends with benefits, and many other open relationship types. A person can even be both a swinger and polyamorous. Some swingers enjoy the coined term of “swolly” to define a polyamorous swinger.
Kink, plainly put, is a fetish a person may have which is perceived as abnormal or bizarre to mainstream culture. A fetish may not be sexual in nature, but it often is. It can range from sex in public to foot worship, or even restraint and domination. A number of fetishes require a partner and some form of power exchange, where one partner becomes a dominant figure while the other, is a submissive.
While a polyamorous person doesn’t have to be kinky and a kinkster doesn’t necessarily have to practice any form of ethical non-monogamy, the overlap of these personal desires does happen and is often, pretty common. This article will focus on the dominant and submissive aspect of kink and while we don’t have the space to dive into the many details of the work which goes into building and maintaining power dynamics, we will address how these dynamics can add more complexities to polyamorous relationships.
Bella: Sharing my nesting partner and watching him be happy with people outside of me? No problem. Feeling compersion and joy for his happiness even when it’s not because of me? Sure thing. However asking me to share my Daddy with another kinkster who also identifies as a Little? Bring out the possessive claws! Logically, as a polyamorous adult, I love the idea of adding more people and feelings to my poly tribe, however it’s difficult to process this in Little head space where the adult thought process gets put on hold. In a poly dynamic on its own, people struggle with things like jealousy, envy, fear of missing out, or loneliness. If my partner has dates often and I don’t, I might feel that envy and loneliness even more, but when I think about sharing the kink dynamic on top of poly, it adds a whole new layer of fears and emotions. I suddenly feel possessive, territorial, and more mistrusting when I consider sharing my kink dynamic. Not mistrusting of my partner, rather the potential people who could break his heart. Although I do know all of these are my own emotions caused by my own thoughts based on outside circumstances and once I get a handle on my thoughts, I imagine that sharing my Daddy Dom in any sense would be wonderful.
Monsuta: I’ve been involved in various D/s dynamics in my life and have experienced a range of relationship types and power exchanges. Often, a common theme I have seen is when partners and metamours resonate with similar or shared dynamic roles. For instance, from a Dominant viewpoint, I may have a service sub with whom I have worked to establish a specific set of rules and protocols. This sub may find herself dating another Dom, they have negotiated a dynamic with a different set of protocols. This brings quite a bit more work for the sub, who now needs to be sure she is in line with the proper protocols with the proper Dom, a potentially more difficult task if both Doms have vastly different expectations of their shared sub. Another noteworthy challenge for all involved is when all three individuals find themselves interacting with each other at a lifestyle club or other sex positive environment, who is served first, what sort of protocol negotiation must happen to prevent a conflict?
On the flipside of this coin, and drawing from my Daddy Dom experience; say I’m pursuing a second or third little and playing with the idea of pulling Daddy Double Duty. Accepting a little, or any sub, is no small decision. How do I split my Daddy time between multiple littles? I have to consider each dynamic as its own, just as each romantic relationship is unique. If I cannot build individual and meaningful dynamics with each of my partners separately, am I providing need fulfillment to each of my partners and creating a mutually beneficial connection or am I just having my needs met at the expense of others? Just as each Dom operates in a specific way, each sub will have their own manner of indulging in their fetish.
Often, polyamorous kinksters choose to establish different dynamic types with different partners in an attempt to navigate some of the parallels. A Dom may be a Daddy for one partner, a Master for another, and perhaps even a Pet Handler for a third. This approach helps build individual need fulfillment with multiple partners which a single partner may not want to or be able to provide.
We believe polyamory brings out self development and growth in all of us and feel sharing a kink dynamic adds an extra layer to the mix. If you can work through the tough patches and the surface level fears, there is a wonderful place of cuddle puddles, trust, and mushy squishy love where everyone is getting their needs met in different ways and can be happy for each other while enjoying the roller-coaster ride of kink exploration within polyamory. Sharing isn’t always easy but, like so much of polyamory, with enough open and honest communication, anything is possible.