I’m not one for writing about etiquette but I felt it was warranted given recent experiences. I was at a sex club last night and I heard a lot of talk about newbies not really knowing how to conduct themselves. Unfortunately, a lot of these newbies are single men- I don’t want to single you all out, so to speak, but some guys don’t know how to act at a sex club. Consent is of the UTMOST importance. If a woman has turned you down, don’t ask her again if she wants to join you. No means no. If a woman is being vague about something, don’t push it. Unfortunately, women are not often taught how to vocalize their wishes. This is extremely frustrating for all genders. People tell me that they admire me for saying what I want, but I don’t always do it. I was involved in a threesome last night with a couple, which was a ton of fun. Afterward, I fooled around with another woman- she seemed to be there with one guy who wanted to do things with me and I declined because I was not attracted to him in the slightest. The woman brought another guy who I was indeed attracted to and the three of us fooled around- the other guy looked on in jealousy and asked me yet again if I wanted to do anything and I said no. Finally, another guy was in the room with his girlfriend and he tried to put my hand on his penis without asking me. This should never happen. Again, I don’t like to single out guys, but many don’t make an effort to find out what women want. Many assume that their needs come first. Guys, you can make a woman happy by putting her needs ahead of yours. You will be thanked tremendously whether it’s at a sex club with someone you just met or with your partner.
Another note about poly etiquette- the art of the heads up and the check-in. I remember witnessing this for the first time back in December. This was the night I had dinner with my ex-partner, his wife, her partner, and that partner’s wife. After dinner, the house I lived in had a party and they all came. My partner and his wife were talking and I thought perhaps something was wrong but they were just checking in. This is so important in poly, whether it’s in person, on the phone, or even in an email. Giving someone a heads up about any issue can be vital. I always say that in monogamy, the fact that cheating gets hidden is sometimes a bigger deal than the cheating itself. If we are trying to subvert norms, we need to do the opposite in poly. So, for example, if you want to date someone that your partner is involved with, let them know. There can be a fine line between doing what you want and asking for permission. I’m not a huge fan of asking for permission, but taking everyone’s feelings into account is important. One thing I enjoy about poly is being able to formulate different protocol for each relationship. Talk to your partner about how they feel about these issues and decide what works best.
If you want to contact me with any questions, my email is firstname.lastname@example.org Looking forward to hearing from you!