Oh, for fuck's sake...
I had hoped I was done with emotionally draining comics with 2018, but it rears its ugly head one more time as a long time, and what I had come to think on as good and close, friendship disintegrates over, of all things, women and being poly.
Polyamory is a word mixed of Greek (poly: many, several) and Latin (amor: love), and is defined, basically, as "the practice of engaging in multiple sexual relationships with the consent of all the people involved." Wikipedia goes on to add to this definition with "it has been described as 'consensual, ethical, and responsible non-monogamy'."
I have bumped up against poly lifestyles for the better part of two decades, now. I can count on one hand the poly relationships and marriages I know of that have remained stable and viable... and still have fingers left over. (As of this publication I have learned that another has just tanked and is heading for divorce.) So, it's safe to say that, for the most of that time I have been a big detractor of the lifestyle. It appears to not work; spiraling down into all kind of trust and communication issues, and the usual kinds of petty hang ups that someone of my more traditional upbringing would find obvious.
Then, this past year, I became entangled in something best described as "monogamish", and I'm getting this interesting view of the thing from the inside. And I find I am having to revisit my thoughts and views on the whole of the thing. (Point of full disclosure; I have, in the past, reaped the benefits of the "open relationships" of friends and associates, so it's not like I'm treading a whole new territory, here, I suppose.)
You know what I've been finding? It's not so much that thing thing is bad, per say, as it is the people who try and engage in it. My library now includes a couple books on the subject because, well, let's face it, I am studious like that. And, with all my reading and asking around, I've found that, in my experiences, a lot of the people who engage in this aren't so much people with a lot of love to spread around as they are people looking to control, be regarded in a higher manner than they ought, or are looking for radical change after a series of unfortunate events. Often these people are also the kind that want to have their cake and eat it, too; controlling others, demanding accountability, and fitting themselves to a social center without, themselves, being held to as much.
Yeah, people suck, sometimes.
Above, though, there's another layer going on. This former friend got called out on some shit he pulled, and got butt hurt over it. His retort? Well, after some social hints that he wanted to amend and repair things, pulled the above chat storm with me after my "So long, 2018" comic. Why? In an attempt to belittle me and exercise dominance? To inflate his fragile ego and assert some sort of superiority? To sooth his smarting conscious? You know, I really don't know, and at this point I really don't care. I wish the actual conversation had been this easy, but it was lengthy, drawn out, and ultimately painful; I never like losing a friend, and this guy, until now, had been a good one. And what came between us? I became friends with one of his partners without his permission.
It is funny, however, that when we first parted ways, he had said he was putting distance between us, including not reading Stuff any more, only to find that he's never stopped. So, because I know you're still here, thanks for your continued patronage.
As for polyamory, well, I've got news for all of you who are its disciples. No, it's not the future of modern relationships for the whole of society and the human race; most people are still, by nature, monogamous. It's your thing, and just your thing. That doesn't make it a bad thing at all. But some of you may be in it for the wrong reasons. I suggest seeing someone; it might help.
But, for those of you making a good go at it, and I know some of you personally, you get on with your bad selves, and get all the love you can spread around. Because people all love differently, and there's, generally, nothing wrong with being different. You can even kick some of that love down my way, if you like. We're all good... ish.
If you've been a long time reader of Stuff, you know that Love isn't one of the strongest suits in my deck. This new dimension in my life has been... interesting... to say the least. There is precedence for it, though, in my world, with some of the non-romantic, yet very personal and connected relationships I have had over my almost forty five years of living. So, maybe this becomes a thing, or maybe it's just me taking a trip into a foreign and unfamiliar land, just to say I have been to that place, I have met those people; building an understanding so that I can appreciate my fellow humans.
And, in the end, isn't that what's most important.