hollymath: Selfie: white person, three-quarter profile, smiling, brown hair shaved on the side we can see, chin-length on the other (Default)
My thoughts on seeing Stuart say on Facebook "Googling Polyamorous Valentines Cards results in valentines cards for dogs."

1: valentines cards for dogs! <3 It's no surprise they're associated with polyamory: ever since I heard [personal profile] miss_s_b's theory about dogs all being naturally polyamorous, I keep finding more evidence that this appears to be true...

distant second: shit, if he's looking at polyamorous valentine cards, I should buy him a card!

I think this adequately illustrates both how much I love dogs and how unused I am to partners who do valentines day. I do love that he loves it, though.
hollymath: Selfie: white person, three-quarter profile, smiling, brown hair shaved on the side we can see, chin-length on the other (Default)
Following on from yesterday's theme of doing things normal people do, James called me this evening. He has a cold, and he said he understood that it's also a normal person thing to talk to people you love when you're ill.

Then he said, "But I don't know what to talk about! What do the normal people say? I suppose it wouldn't be normal for your boyfriend to ask how your husband is."

I answered him anyway. (The answer is that Andrew's busy with what has become his traditional Sunday; getting this week's podcast episode edited.)
hollymath: Selfie: white person, three-quarter profile, smiling, brown hair shaved on the side we can see, chin-length on the other (Default)
I'm still waiting for the part of polyamory that's all orgies and stuff like people seem to think it is.

Right now, for me, it means two partners need help with disability benefits at the same time.

It is to laugh.

Got a big chunk of the first application done today. Fucking knackered now though, and worried I've got a migraine, which probably isn't surprising I guess. Worth it, anyway.
hollymath: Selfie: white person, three-quarter profile, smiling, brown hair shaved on the side we can see, chin-length on the other (Default)
So except for my parents finding out, here's another reason I've been a little bit cagey about being poly:
The number of foreigners getting British passports plummeted from 194,370 in 2012 to just 123,229* last year, following a tightening of the rules for bringing over family members and a steep increase in the cost of applying.

The most common reason that submissions are rejected, however, is a rather vague one. Since 2012 the number of applications thrown out under a “good character” clause has doubled. In 2016, the most recent year for which data are available, this was the cause of 44% of all refusals.
...
Yet the definition of bad character is extraordinarily broad. The guidelines list characteristics that “should not normally, of themselves, be relevant”, including drinking, gambling, divorce, promiscuity and “eccentricity, including beliefs, appearance and lifestyle”. But, they go on, somewhat ambiguously, applicants may be rejected if “the scale and persistence of their behaviour” has made them “notorious in their local or the wider community”. The Home Office was unable to say how many of the 5,525 people rejected for their character in 2016 were turned down for being persistently and notoriously promiscuous. Lawyers say notoriety is very seldom invoked.
"Very seldom," and I realize that white privilege and English-speaking privilege will mean I am probably less scrutinized than another sort of poly person would be, but still. Polyamory wasn't something I was going to do national BBC interviews about like I did about being bisexual (or disabled and unemployable, for that matter) because it's pretty much the definition of promiscuity in some people's eyes. Particularly when my legitimacy as an immigrant was obtained by virtue of me being married to a British citizen. I continually had to prove that marriage in order to progress through the stages of visas, residency and citizenship.

I'm aware it's unlikely, but even a small chance wasn't worth the risk of having my relationships associated with my name to anyone I didn't really know. It could easily be argued that my "appearance, lifestyle and behavior" are "eccentric," or that I'm "notorious in the local community" if you ask certain members of the WI!


* One of those is me!

New year

Jan. 1st, 2018 07:11 pm
hollymath: Selfie: white person, three-quarter profile, smiling, brown hair shaved on the side we can see, chin-length on the other (Default)
I didn't think I had any New Year's resolutions, but it turns out I'd really like to write every day (in hope of getting my book done, but writing here also counts), and read every day (especially paper books, because I have such a backlog of ones I want to read, going back at least to last Christmas).

So there might be more potentially-boring diary-ish entries here, for days that I can't face working on the book. You can't say you haven't been warned.

The best thing that happened today was getting to hear [personal profile] magister's voice a little; he called [personal profile] miss_s_b when she was brushing her teeth so she put him on speakerphone, and then came down the stairs to where Andrew and I were, so I got a little bit of an update on how he's doing, which was so nice after not having had more than the odd text message for the last fortnight.

It had been a strange New Year's Eve, being at his house as we have done for many years now (at least one where he and I weren't a couple yet so that must make this the sixth?), and watching the Doctor Who Christmas special which of course I very much associate with James, and him not being there. So it was really grounding to hear from him today.

At the end of the phone call, Jennie said "Love you" and then I said "Love you!" too, and it was one of those moments where I just marvel that this is my life, that we do both love him and we get to be some support for each other in trying to support him through the aftermath of losing his dad. It's another of the benefits of poly that doesn't occur to the people who think it's just about orgies; this level of closeness and of being able to share elements of the experience of being someone's partner is way more valuable and relevant to my polyamorous life.
hollymath: Selfie: white person, three-quarter profile, smiling, brown hair shaved on the side we can see, chin-length on the other (Default)
Both the questions I've been asked so far -- How did you get in to being poly? and When did you decide to move to Uk? -- have the same (short-version) answer:

In general? LiveJournal. And specifically? Andrew.

Long version got long! So here's the poly bit. )

And here's the getting to the UK bit. )
hollymath: Selfie: white person, three-quarter profile, smiling, brown hair shaved on the side we can see, chin-length on the other (Default)
Sometimes the word "friend" feels really inadequate when you're poly.

Sometimes something happens to someone close to you and there are people you can't tell, or at least you can't tell them how excited or devastated you are at whatever kind of a thing it is (they've won an award, they have a serious illness, whatever) because you're not out, or they're not out. Or maybe because you wouldn't use a word like partner for them...but friend isn't enough, either.

We don't have the vocabulary.

And when it's a happy thing you're affected by, this might seem less of a problem because at least you're happy. When it's a sad thing, it seems extra sad that you can't even explain why you're so sad.

Spoons

Nov. 11th, 2016 06:05 pm
hollymath: Selfie: white person, three-quarter profile, smiling, brown hair shaved on the side we can see, chin-length on the other (Default)
Me: "I'm starting to think [person] has a crush on me."

Andrew: "Well that would make sense, because you are best!"
[This is pretty much what he's told me every time this has ever happened. It still makes me smile, even though I don't believe it.]

Andrew: "I'd rather you didn't get any more boyfriends right now!"

Me: "I'm not planning on it!"

Andrew: "I'm not saying you can't. Just that I'd rather you didn't."

Me: "Yeah, I know, but it's still not gonna happen! I don't have time or energy for anything as it is!"

Andrew: "Polyamory is for people with spoons."

Me: "Yeah."
hollymath: Selfie: white person, three-quarter profile, smiling, brown hair shaved on the side we can see, chin-length on the other (Default)
...you have a dream about randomly snogging one of your friends (the kind where even in the dream it makes no sense and upon waking you feel a bit like you should apologize to your friend for your subconscious) and then in the dream you ask them "What does this mean?" and they start talking about how to talk about this with all the existing partners.

Hee.
hollymath: Selfie: white person, three-quarter profile, smiling, brown hair shaved on the side we can see, chin-length on the other (Default)
My emerging from upstairs after an attempt to sleep off a migraine meant [personal profile] miss_s_b had to explain to the Geeky Games Night newbie about me and James and her and James and said "this is where you find out about polyamory."

"I was warned about this!" the new person said. "I asked if this was really a board game night or an orgy."

There were the requisite "that could be arranged!" comments from the peanut gallery, but I like being an example that people can be in more than relationship and still like playing board games. It reminds me of Eddie Izzard's story about being harassed by people who that a bloke in a dress is the most risible thing ever, and when he said he was just trying to buy some crisps they were like "what, you eat crisps?"
hollymath: Selfie: white person, three-quarter profile, smiling, brown hair shaved on the side we can see, chin-length on the other (Default)
Andrew's able to smugly tell me that "everyone who's dating James likes my blog post!"

I didn't tell him that I liked it! I think he just assumes that.
hollymath: Selfie: white person, three-quarter profile, smiling, brown hair shaved on the side we can see, chin-length on the other (Default)
Andrew and I finally got around to watching the last couple of Doctor Whos this evening.

The first one, with all the trees, was bobbins. But I did like the beginning, where all the kids were having a sleepover in the museum.

"I want a sleepover in a museum!" I said. Andrew laughed, of course. "Can't I have that for my birthday present? My friends can come too, of course, if they want."

I texted [personal profile] magister (who's been keen to know what I thought of last night's episode): "Now, as well as a space train, i want a sleepover in a museum."

I watched Mummy on the Orient Express with him, and as soon as I saw that first shot of the train zooming into CGI space, said, "I want a space train!"

James didn't even look up from his phone or computer or whatever he'd been doing, and said with an utter lack of surprise in his voice, "That's exactly what Jennie said when she saw it."

"Ha!" I said. "You clearly have a type!"

Couples

Oct. 26th, 2014 11:06 pm
hollymath: Selfie: white person, three-quarter profile, smiling, brown hair shaved on the side we can see, chin-length on the other (Default)
The wedding photographer looked worried when our table burst out laughing when she suggested taking photos of each couple around the table. I'm sure this isn't much like the reaction she usually gets, and I didn't blame her for saying "What? What'd I say?"

None of us could think of a good answer for her. So she tried again: "How many couples are there here?" Our laughter this time was if anything louder and more hysterical. Finally [personal profile] miss_s_b was able to help the poor woman out. "I'm in a couple with him, and him, and him," she said, pointing at a different person with each "him." "And she's --" (pointing to me now) "-- in a couple with him and him..." and of course by this point one of the "him"s had been pointed to twice.

The photographer just went with it, took a photo of Jennie and the three boys she had with her, and then [personal profile] magister, who'd been standing behind her, walked around the table to stand behind Andrew and me for our picture. And then the photographer looked at the two people left at the table who hadn't been part of any of these photos/couples so far, asked them who they were with, and they said they weren't with anybody there, but they didn't mind having their photo taken together either. Since they were sitting on the side of me where Andrew wasn't, it was a short stroll over for James to stand behind them, too, and so in those pictures we're all cracking up. "Just call me Benedict Cumberbatch," James said afterwards, which worried me for a while (I am not a fan!) until he reminded me of this Cummerbund Bandersnatch beautifully photobombing U2 at the Oscars this year.

And the photographer probably thinks we're all insane.
hollymath: Selfie: white person, three-quarter profile, smiling, brown hair shaved on the side we can see, chin-length on the other (Default)
I am very glad that one of my husband's few good friends also happens to be my boyfriend's girlfriend. It leads sometimes to nice overlaps of care and consideration, to the easy transmission of news about our lives, to us all being there for each other to lean on in different but mutually beneficial ways.
hollymath: Selfie: white person, three-quarter profile, smiling, brown hair shaved on the side we can see, chin-length on the other (Default)
So yesterday people are turning up for the wedding feast/party and milling about with drinks and such (I have now tried Pimms! it just tasted like cucumbers...) and I find myself close enough to where [personal profile] magister is standing that I hear my name so wander a bit closer and find him laughing at something someone-I-can't-remember-who-it-was said. She explains to me that she was just telling him "we'll have to get you married off", so I hide my startled open mouth behind my hand, but can't keep from giggling, and the more I think about it the funnier it gets and it takes a while for me to stop laughing.

We hadn't really thought about how this poly thing might complicate things. I only got told once that I'm probably called Janice (close enough...) and that I live in Brighouse, but people seemed to have the rough idea that we lived together and have been together possibly longer than we have. James rightly didn't want to scandalize or confuse his relatives on a day that was supposed to be about his sister, and it wasn't really a problem, but that 'we'll have to get you married off" line is still making me giggle for so many reasons.

This is the second wedding I've been to since my own and the first one I enjoyed. Probably not being invited to The Actual Wedding helped. But also enough time has passed now I think that my own doesn't make me so sad any more (I'm happy I'm married, but everything about my wedding was miserable and I hated it). I was a little wistful hearing the father-of-the-bride speech, but I realized this is more because I couldn't imagine my dad doing anything like that. I'm mostly content with the alternatives that choice and circumstance have led me to, but sometimes I I do get a twinge of longing for convention.

Then we raised our glasses in a toast to the bride and James jogged my elbow just as my glass touched my lips, sprinkling cider (we were using a lovely dry fizzy cider for champagne) all down me and, worse, making me laugh which caused more ripples in my drink that sloshed onto my borrowed posh clothes and up my nose. Yes it would be nice to do everything "right" but that's never gonna be me, and at least I was laughing.

The food was amazing. My hopes were not high when I found out it was a hog roast, but everything else was vegetarian, and there wasn't a thing I didn't devour --lentils and beetroot, new potatoes with chili flakes, green beans with some very light orangey dressing, butternut squash with a bunch of lovely stuff I don't remember (everything was really well labeled but I couldn't see the labels so James read stuff out for me and I basically forgot everything immediately after I was told), including some kind of actual nuts. And gorgeous moussaka! If aubergines were always like that, I wouldn't have to work so hard at trying to like them (I taught myself to like mushrooms cos they're in so much veggie food and that worked so well I'm now trying courgette and aubergine, with less success so far). I basically ended up eating two platefuls because James gave me his and went back for more moussaka.

Oh and our table won the quiz, much to my astonishment (not least because James, who set it, was told by his mother to fix it so someone (I can't remember who but I think it might have been the person who called me Janice) won because he'd put a lot of effort into it). We might have been at something of an advantage what with the bridesmaids being at our table so they could answer all the "how did the lovely couple meet?" kind of questions. I wasn't even paying attention because, never having even met them before, I knew I'd be useless. But my ears pricked up at the first line of Pride and Prejudice and then there was a question about Jane Eyre and the bridesmaids (and, I think, partner of one of the best mans) were dead impressed with me for knowing these things. They said if we won it'd be down to me, and indeed no one else wanted to take the wine and chocolates home so I've got them.

I had a nice drunken conversation with the Australian bridesmaid, who seems to live some kind of complicated bi-hemispherical lifestyle, about how hard, but also nice, it is to have two places you belong. James's sister said at breakfast this morning that I'd apparently made a good impression on her, which really surprised me because it turns out losing my inhibitions only makes me talk a lot of depressing garbage these days (well, it still makes me want to kiss girls too, so there's hope for me yet), so it's nice if baffling to hear that I wasn't too off-putting anyway.

I needed a brilliant weekend, to get me through the week now ahead of me. I'm glad I got it.
hollymath: Selfie: white person, three-quarter profile, smiling, brown hair shaved on the side we can see, chin-length on the other (Default)
I got a card from [personal profile] magister's parents with sympathy and good thoughts for my mom. It really surprised me (though not James, who thought he knew what it was before I'd gotten it out of the envelope) and I found it really touching.

This is exactly what I grew up with (jokes about whisky-acquisition are a more recent development in "how to be nice to someone who has bad news"): you buy a nice card probably with some pastel watercolors on it and you write a sentence in it and sign your name (and that of your husband, yes, this is not a perfect system, just my native one).

Also, I've only met his parents twice and I am the first example of poly not just as something their son's put up with from his girlfriend for the last few years but as something he's interested and involved in himself. I want them to approve of that even more than of me, because that'll be good for James in ways more far-reaching than those which directly affect me. And they have certainly been nothing but welcoming and kind to me. I really enjoyed the Easter weekend James and I spent at their house.

But his parents and I don't otherwise talk -- as evidenced from the fact that the card was sent to his house and had only my first name on it -- and it hadn't occurred to me that James would've told his parents about my mom, though of course it seemed perfectly obvious that he would once I gave it a second's thought. So it was an unexpected kind of loveliness, and a reaffirmation not just of the network of love I feel privileged to be surrounded with, but also of how important the kindness of other families is to me at the times when I feel furthest away from my own.
hollymath: Selfie: white person, three-quarter profile, smiling, brown hair shaved on the side we can see, chin-length on the other (Default)
"James thought of one I didn't," Andrew said, because these two are continuing this idiotic conversation from a pub last night that neither of them were in (which planets has the Doctor visited in more than one story on TV?). "Which is the planet River Song was imprisoned on."

Andrew seemed very dubious about this -- of course it being The Welsh Series he doesn't know, care, and/or remember -- so I pointed out that it makes sense because most prisons are on a planet.

"Yeah, but it has a name," he said. "Apparently."

"Oh, it needs a name now too, huh? Like the Bechdel test of Doctor Who?"

When I was young and naive and monogamous, I never would've imagined I'd have a husband and a boyfriend. But even if I had, I probably wouldn't have expected one to ring me to talk to the other about pointless trivia of a TV show I'd never heard of at that point.

This makes me smile.

Hollyamory

Dec. 31st, 2013 09:15 pm
hollymath: Selfie: white person, three-quarter profile, smiling, brown hair shaved on the side we can see, chin-length on the other (Default)
Oh wait, I thought to myself, deleting the last couple of words I'd typed and replacing them with "my boyfriend." I can say this again!

I don't know what it is; maybe I really underestimated the negative effects of not being "out" or maybe they're getting worse as I get older. But something means that just being able to include that in a text message felt awesome. It was a huge weight off my chest.

I'm really not surprised that all kinds of mental illness is caused and exacerbated by having to hide sexuality or gender identity or relationships (as I keep telling people in regards to the "bisexuals have worse mental health overall" work I do).

Speaking of my boyfriend, he sent me a picture of him in his fetching new clothes and it's so adorable. I've made it the background picture on my phone, so now whenever I pick the thing up I see him and smile. It's pretty cool.
hollymath: Selfie: white person, three-quarter profile, smiling, brown hair shaved on the side we can see, chin-length on the other (Default)
So many text messages I sent and received this morning that I sent one to [personal profile] magister that was meant for Andrew's sister. I didn't even realize I'd done it until he called me, all confused (because the text said I wouldn't see him today when I'd just gone to such lengths to arrange when and where and how I would see him this evening, not an hour before!).

I felt really idiotic, and mean (even though of course I hadn't meant to be!) but I also thought that it was probably better to send him a text for her than the other way around, especially because Andrew doesn't want his family to know I'm poly and thus (because while most of our texts are entirely prosaic, sod's law would dictate I'd mis-send one that'd arouse suspicion) much hilarity could have ensued.
hollymath: Selfie: white person, three-quarter profile, smiling, brown hair shaved on the side we can see, chin-length on the other (dinosaur)
Okay, it was funny to contemplate what would have to be hidden in our house before my parents get here tomorrow morning (Andrew even helpfully looked at the bookshelves to make sure things like Alan Moore's history of pornography were not too obvious on the shelves). But it's also bothering me in some ways that are decidedly unfunny.

First of all, it's more than just a few books, a stray valentine card, and some paraphrenalia from the Lib Dems' LGBT group or Biphoria that needs to be tucked away (though I've left the rainbow-colored "Love counts more than gender" postcard in the corner of our corkboard that has been its home; an inexplicable sociological experiment on my part).

It's people.

Last time my parents were here, I was functionally if not theoretically monogamous. Not letting them know about my multi-relationship predelictions was like not telling them I fancy girls sometimes: what they don't know doesn't hurt me. But now that I have two actual boyfriends, whose status if not whose existence (they've both said they'd like to meet my parents... which I suppose is fair enough after I've gone on about them so much) I have to conceal, it's hit me a lot harder than it did back when it was just one of many things I don't talk about with my parents. (Yes i've been home a few times since i acquired these boyfriends, but not slipping up is easier there, and not just because there's no chance of them being around so there's no chance of me forgetting to curb my instinct to hold hands or say" or whatever. It's also because it's so easily to slide back into the mindset I had when I lived there, and all that time I was not only blissffully unaware of polyamory, but unable to get even one date in the first place.)

Dan and Stuart could not be more lovely and understanding about this; they both accept the situation and seem unfazed. But this just makes me feel that little bit more guilty for having to suppress their loveliness for the week and a half or so that we'll have to pretend to be just friends. They mean a lot to me, and so do my parents, and it doesn't seem right for this relationship to be a one-way mirror: where the boyfriends see the parents clearly but are not themselves seen, at least not as what they really are.

This isn't all I have to watch out for this week. I am unhappily reminded of my mom reacting so badly to the fact that one of my high school friends was gay -- looking very nervous whenever I said I was going to the movies with a group that included him, or going to a party at his house, repeatedly pointing out that he'd be "the girl" in his relationships (which is even more infuriating for being completely unfounded, even though that shouldn't be the point) -- that I just stopped telling her about them after that. A couple of years later she thought I made encouraging noises whenever anything came on the TV news about gay marriage only because of this one gay friend of mine.

The only non-straight person I know.

Yeah. The chasm grows ever wider, and I know that children are meant to go their separate ways from their parents, but still I love them and I'm sad to see them recede into the distance.

Profile

hollymath: Selfie: white person, three-quarter profile, smiling, brown hair shaved on the side we can see, chin-length on the other (Default)
Holly

April 2019

S M T W T F S
  1 2 3 4 5 6
7 8 9 1011 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24252627
282930    

Syndicate

RSS Atom

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags