Swing Your Partner Round and Round

notactuallythat_LargeI’m such a good wingman.  If my bros don’t hook up by night’s end, I’ll bang them myself.  While my friends may not always take me up on that offer, my partners often do.  I play matchmaker for my partners if they like.  And I like it too.  I think doing so reinforces the structure of my polyamorous relationships.

Polyamory takes more than just tolerance of your partner having other liasons.  Polyamory is about appreciating the other connections your partner is building.  I like to take it the step further and enable those connections when I can.  There is value in helping your partner find other partners.

Outside of the fact that I want my partner to have someone good to them, it’s great having a metamour who’s good to me.  Especially for those of us who are still feeling out polyamory, having a more personal stake in your partner’s romantic decisions can help ease folks away from conventional dating.  And dating is work, but one of the nice things about polyamory is that you get to share the load.

One of my favorite ways to spend a night in with a partner is to sit around drinking wine and reviewing each others’ potential dates.  We’ll go through a few rounds of swiping left and right where we giggle and tease like the immature bisexuals we’re too old to be anymore.  From there, we get the chance to scoop through who each of us is talking to.  This gives us an opportunity to air our excitements and also our hesitations.  So if I see someone who lists an interest in motorcycles, then my partner can get a date and I might get a new riding buddy!  Similarly, I might see someone I know that I would not like to become metamours with and let my partner know about that right away.

I’ve always been of the mind that metamour relations are one of the truest determining factors in the success of any polyamorous engagement.  While your partner might have a decent idea of the kind of metamour you would like to have, you know better than they do.  So just like mixing cocktails or performing oral sex, it’s worthwhile to let your partner know what you like.

Awareness of your partner(s)’ romantic preferences is integral in polyamorous dating.  This is one of the harder parts for people to adopt when they are just getting started with nonmonogamy.  Plenty of couples just decide to date people together.  Most commonly, this is a straight couple who start looking for a bisexual woman to be their third.  While this practice is met with grand disapproval from many polyamorists, branching out of monogamy together is a fine idea.  I just strongly encourage people to ease back on how together you are when you’re branching out.

When I was first breaking into this whole polyamory thing, I found it much easier to have metamours that I helped to arrange.  It was very beneficial for all the emotions that came along with my partner having other partners.  When I would hear about the hard times my partner had with a metamour I had a hand in arranging, I wasn’t so quick to dismiss their quality as a partner.  When my partner is out with some yahoo she met on OkC named “4ngry1nches” and she tells me that the dates are anything but a pristine joy, there’s a real good chance I’ll encourage her to cut bait.  But if she tells me that she’s having a hard time communicating with the cute programmer that I encouraged her to swipe right, I’ll give her some stratagems to keep his attention.  After all, I’m practically responsible for that.

Opposite bad dates, when my partner is gushing about their newest fling with the most impossibly handsome, charming, wealthy adonis of a man; I may start to feel a bit insecure.  I might feel insubstantial, jealous, even threatened.  However, if I helped my partner arrange this date, my ego will take over and I’ll be flushed with pride.  It’s like when you give someone advice on what to get their spouse for their anniversary, and they get the perfect gift.  You don’t get to give or receive the booty, but you can still relish knowing you’re responsible for the assist.

Assistance is key, by the way.  Dating yields good results when it’s fed good labor.  The best way to get good labor, is sometimes to just get a little more labor.  Many hands make work light, so cruise around OkCupid or Tinder with your partner together.  Help your partner write a good Boiler Plate message that they can send to profiles they really like.  The two of you can even just sit down over dinner and talk about some people the two of you might know who would be worth asking out.  One of you two could even play messenger.

I’ve never asked anybody out on behalf of my partner before, but I have been asked out by a lady’s boyfriend in the past.  In no way did it cheapen or invalidate the proposal.  I actually found myself cozied with an extra sense of security.  I could immediately bypass the worries that this was old-school polyamory noncensensual nonmonogamy.  And I was flattered to be considered such a solid choice that her man made the approach.  As long as you have your partner’s consent, you can certainly take the initiative if they’re too shy.

You can’t date half a couple.  Similarly, you can’t date a full couple.  That sweet spot in between is where polyamorous dating can flourish.  Finding partners outside a polyamorous relationship has so many dimensions because there are relationships being created between all involved parties.  Every relationship that’s created, be it romantic, social, or at least just civil; is independent and unique and worth care and consideration.

What works for you, though?  Have you ever helped a partner get a date?  Have you ever been assisted? What works with that?  What hasn’t worked?  Be a wingman for my blog and post in the comments!

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