poly myths

Myths of Non-Monogamy: Polyamory is so Gay!

One of the myths of non-monogamy I face regularly is that open relationships and polyamory is a gay thing.  That straight people are basically monogamous naturally, and gay people for whatever reason aren’t.

 “There is no societal or religious pressure, no relationship archetype or historical expectation for a gay man to be monogamously coupled. Unlike heterosexual relationships, gay relationships form simply because two people want to be together.” – Tyler Curry

One of the best parts about being a part of the LGBTQ community is that because we don’t have set models for relationships we get to be creative when we decide to build them.  LGBTQ couples build all sorts of beautiful relationships outside traditional norms, sometimes we move in quickly together, other times we decide never to cohabitate, some of us embrace this freedom to date more freely (which can be a form of non-monogamy, and some of us embrace the opportunity to create intentional open relationships.  Although this great creativity allows us to experiment more and sometimes we are more likely to create open relationships this is not a universal truth.

More specifically, the commenter on my last post seemed to believe the stereotype that all gay men have open relationships.  Often this myth is used to dispel the validity of same sex male-identified couples and has been a controversial topic in the gay marriage debate.  Gay men do opt more frequently for openness than other populations, but that cannot be stated as a norm- there are plenty of monogamous gay men.

The flip side of this myth leaves out the thousands of mostly straight and completely heterosexual couples who fall somewhere in the open relationship, swinger, and polyamorous spectrum.  Plenty of straight-seeming and hetero-identified couples date other couples, share partners, swing, or play with other partners.  These fabulous straight poly people exist throughout history and research and invest long-term in making complex loving relationships work.  They have children, own homes, pay bills, love and commit just like anyone else.  Don’t leave them out by believing a myth.

Side note: I received some of these comments on a professional site for LGBTQ Therapists.  It is especially important for LGBTQ couples to seek help from providers who really understand our partnerships instead of stereotypes.  Use this guide to help find a provider near you.

Gina Senarighi, MS, MA, CPC is a polyamory consultant, sex educator and relationship coach specializing in polyamory, open relationshipsjealousy, LGBTQ issues and infidelity.  

She can help you:

Contact her for a free consultation to see if working with her is right for you.

Click here to download her free guides to strengthen your relationship (monogamous or not).