• Laura Boyle

Do I Still Count?

I have times where I wonder if I still count - if I'm still polyamorous enough - because I've only had one partner for so long. It's comforting, in a sideways kind of way, to blame the ongoing pandemic - how on Earth am I (physical touch love language human that I am) going to have built a serious relationship when my socialization options have been non-physical for more than six months now? And, in a very personal, only-applies-to-me way, I was figuring out a chronic health flare and moving house for months before that, so there goes about a year. So it isn't that I don't have reasons for having been in a bad place to effectively date - it's that I'm sitting in "wait - I've been only dating one person an awfully long time between all of that - am I polyamorous enough" along with:

  • COVID-19-induced mental health challenges

  • Chronic-illness-induced physical health challenges

  • *Waves hands at the state of the world* all-that-induced anxiety

  • Seasonal mental health challenges I can see looming (I'm looking forward to them meeting the COVID mental health issues)

  • Garden-variety anxiety I always have

  • And wondering if I can't write because that many kinds of anxiety dry up the content producing imaginative parts of your brain like no one's business.


But, I've tried to take my own advice and talk to my therapist and my partner and my friends, and everyone assures me that I'm definitely still polyamorous and it's totally just the brain weasels telling me that being in only one relationship this long means I've crossed a line that kills all skills I acquired over many years and actually I'm terrible at the relationship I'm still in. I'm not sure I believe them yet (that's the problem with being anxious and a ruminator - the overthink is sometimes stronger than the reassurance), but I'm much closer to it.


Why am I, apparent authority on this subject, telling you, reader who may be here looking for insight or a lesson or a laugh, that I not only don't feel like an authority today (for the last few weeks, to be honest), and I don't have a funny story either? Because maybe you'll feel this way someday. Because I've had a friend ask me this question before and it was obvious to me that they were still polyamorous and I said so, over a cup of coffee; and I've had a bad night and worried about this before because you don't go 13 years without no partners or one partner at some point, but I've never sustained this and had it feel like an internal struggle before. So if we've been friends for years and you read this, and we've had that conversation and my reassurance over coffee or a cocktail ever felt glib, I'm sorry, because I didn't realize that while it's not a dark night of the soul- although WOW does a lot of the rest of the world feel like oneand does that not help right now- it is certainly kind of a twilight-y teatime with very unpleasant rain just above freezing, and my responses didn't rise to that.


On the bright side, me & my household adopted a dog and she is the best pupper and the idiot who abandoned her and didn't treat her right is a fool. So, have a cute dog pic, and I promise back to more substantive content in the next post, but I hope you all don't mind a personal update.






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