I’m thrilled to announce that my workshop “Sex, Shame, & Love” has been accepted for the OpenSF, taking place June 8-10 in San Francisco. The event will bring together like minded people ready to share, explore and dialogue on creating acceptance of the non-monogamy community. This is a topic near and dear to my heart, since I’ve been non-monogamous for my entire adult life.
In my relationship with my partner of almost 20 years, I’ve noticed that one of the skills for successful polyamory is the ability to manage attachment (in the bonding sense of the word, rather than the Buddhist sense of the word). Of course, that’s a useful ability in any relationship- maintaining a relationship without veering either into enmeshment or disconnection is an ongoing practice. And when there are multiple relationships, that generally becomes more complex.
In my view, love is the emotion that both fosters and results from closer connection, while shame both creates and comes from disconnection. If we’re going to build our skills at seeking the ever-shifting balances in our relationships, we need to be able to encompass both sides. So in this workshop, we’re going to explore how people juggle that. How do we make room for connection and room for creating distance? How do we maintain a relationship with the resilience needed to allow for other romantic/sexual/loving partners? What do we do to manage different relationships with different levels of closeness and connection? What can we do to make room for the feelings that arise (and often challenge us) around both connection and disconnection? What tools do people use for these processes?
So here’s where I’d like to hear from you. If you’d like to share some of your experiences with me, I’m curious to know how you make it work. What do you do to make room for those different dynamics? What do you do to manage them? For example, some people don’t do sleepovers with secondary partners, or reserve certain sexual activities for a primary, because they find that that helps them maintain a different bond with their primary partner. Since this can vary a lot, based on a given relationship structure and the individual needs of the folks involved, I’d like to include as wide a range as possible in my workshop.
You’re welcome to comment below, if you like. Or you can send me a message through my contact form, which will be held confidentially. I’m looking forward to creating this workshop and I would appreciate any input you care to offer.