August 13, 2009

Day 5 Jus Dance- Day 40

I have a little time before school this morning, I want to spend it catching up, alleviate the stress I am feeling because of being so behind. I am also feeling another pull. A pull to be really transparent about what is going on for me, a pull to use this space as a way of creating some ease for myself and others around my choices, and acceptance of who I am . It is interesting that because I still am back logged by 6 entries at this point, that what I write today, will not be seen for a while yet, not until I have written and proof-read the entries which come before this one...geez I hope I don’t change my mind!

If I were to be with Michael today it would have been our 40th day together. We met on June 6th, and were in contact through phone and email. Then on July 2nd he came to Nelson to get me, take me to the coast and begin working together. Up until this point I have spoken of our work relationship, but I haven’t spoken about our personal relationship. Truth is I don’t really buy into the illusion of there being a separation between these two, and certainly with us this is the case. Michael is my partner, in many ways. We work together, we are friends, and we are also lovers.

I imagine for some of you reading that last line was shocking, others will likely be laughing and saying “Well it is about time!”. I imagine there are many more reactions, and I imagine a number of those involve sadness, fear and confusion. So let me speak about some of the logistics to hopefully minimize at least the confusion. Chris and I have had an open relationship for many years. There was a time when we were “in the closet” about this, there are so many misunderstandings about what this means, often it was easier to just not deal with them. The problem with this was, that it meant hiding. Hiding has a way of taking something and turning it into a dirty little secret. There is nothing “dirty” about the choices I have made when it comes to family, relationships and sexuality, I am actually quite proud of these choices. I am proud that I am willing to look at how us human beings relate to each other, with our friends, lovers, children, and partners and admit that there is much that is not acknowledged.

There is a name that has been coined for the choices we have made for living in our truth, it is called Polyamoury; loving more than one. Not really a radical idea. Most people love more than one person. What is radical in our culture is the idea that a man can be close to more than one womyn and this does not detract from his love for either, or that a womyn can be sexual with more than one person and that this is not “cheating” so long as everyone’s needs are being met. This idea tends to fly in the face of our cultural ideas of relationship based on monogamy. Generally it takes a very big paradigm shift for a person steeped in a monogamy based culture to see polyamoury without projecting a whole bunch of attributes that do not belong to it. The biggest one for me is that it somehow lacks in integrity. Before I address anything else THIS is what I need to explain. Polyamoury for me, and I feel confident to say this for Chris and Michael and Kelly as well, is all about living with integrity, being transparent, honest, and respectful of ALL people involved. It is not about “cheating”, “having affairs”, “or running around”. It is not related to polygamy or polyandry which both tend to polarize power and permission in the direction of one gender. It is not about being “promiscuous” or “slutty” or “a player”. Polyamoury addresses sexuality, sexuality is an integral part, but polyamoury is not about having sex with whoever you want, and for me is about relating to human beings on a deeply connected, spiritual level which most often does NOT involve sex.

Polyamoury is scary, mostly because it flies in the face of the foundation of what our culture was built upon, the nuclear family. A house, lot, car, and lawn mower for every man-womyn-children unit it our western world, and we have grown accustom to this. If you are comfortable with this configuration HOORAY! I am so happy for you that you are able to live in the way you choose. I personally am not happy with this way of doing things, I find it limiting. I want to live in community where there are many parents and many children who support each other. Often in communities such as this relations tend to deepen, boundaries blur. I see this as a positive thing. Again, if you don’t that is just fine, I am not trying to convince anyone of anything. What I am doing is coming out of the closet.

I am polyamorous, so is my husband, his partner Kelly and my partner Michael. I am asking for your compassion, understanding and acceptance. If you have any questions, PLEASE ASK, I will be happy to explain that our way of being a family is beautiful, and not something I want to hide anymore.

Thank you.

“What is the hardest thing you ever had to tell someone?” is the question in 12 days journal 122

And you know what? It really wasn’t that hard to tell this one, the idea of telling was a lot harder.


  1. Good for you for living your lives as you choose.

    As long as we do not cause harm to another, we should all be a little less judgemental of each others choices.


  2. Love you Bernice, your brave commitment to be transparent gives all of us permission to authentically be who we are. Hooray!

  3. I Love you...and fully accept all of you. Truthfully, you are beautiful because you are accepting all aspects of yourself. which in turn mirrors for others the chance to accept all of who they are also. Blessings Sister... Melissa

  4. I love that you are open about your life and passions and completely accept what was already -- lets face it-- pretty obvious. You said I could ask anything: Ok -- With all those husbands, partners, wives, lovers and parents, who does the laundry? Who makes the soup? And then to dance, travel, paint and write on top of it all. I just don't understand how you find the time to commit to all you do. How do you balance all the passions in your life, AND still manage to have such wonderful, balanced kids? I can barely remember to feed the dog.

  5. Ha Kath!! You forget how well I know you...perhaps I could throw it right back at you and say, I can do it because I have had many excellent role models, and entering into this life was made that much easier by having some very committed, accepting, and loving friends who supported both me and Chris right from the start. I love ya Kath, thank you for being in my life.

  6. Sharon French, Pemberton BCAugust 20, 2009 at 11:51 PM

    mmmmmmmm integrity and honesty leads to bliss.

    kelly is a lucky lady........

    tee hee.

    she smiles.

  7. I suspected as much from early in your blog. Thanks for giving me that "Aha! I KNEW it!" moment...those are always kind of gratifying, aren't they? LOL. You're a lucky person, to have had so many people in your life that you love so deeply, and who love you back as deeply. I think I'll need to find just ONE person I can have that with before I could even consider polyamoury for myself. I suspect, though, that I will only get one true love in this life, if even that.

    Hardest thing I ever had to tell anyone? Telling my dad and brother that Ian was born prematurely and wouldn't make it, and that if they wanted to see him before he died, they needed to come right away. It was so hard that I had to have my ex tell my best friend for me, which is weird, since we are able to talk about anything and everything no matter how painful.

  8. Woah woah woah....


    It's work and dedication and having balls that does it.

    Did somebody say "transparency"? C'mon now....let's not get all carried away here. Let's be 'transparent' about 'transparency'.

    I think it's time for me to beef up my blog...
    werd wyrd whirred.
    I am soooo ready to dish.