Posted on February 25, 2009

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This entry is part 2 of 8 in the series How to Start a Polyamory Group

It may sound obvious, but one of the main things that is required in order to form a group is people.  This leads us to the first hurdle - finding others who are either polyamorous already or interested in exploring the relationship dynamic.

Unless you plan on outing yourself to your family, friends and co-workers, you will probably need to start off by looking outside of your immediate circle of influence.   Fortunately, this process is made simpler through modern technology. There are several social networking sites that you can utilize to find other polyfolk in your area:

 

  • Facebook - A quick word of caution- make sure you double and triple check your security settings, especially if you don’t want to be “outed” just yet.   The downside is that there’s no simple way of indicating that you are “poly”.  The closest things they have are if you’re in an “open relationship” or “it’s complicated” with one person.
  • Tribe.net- some of my friends call this the “grown up” version of Facebook. I haven’t fully leveraged this site yet. It does have a lot of features and customization options, in contrast to the previously mentioned site.
  • Polymatchmaker.com - This is a very simple, free, minimal advertising/spam site. Plus, you’re coming into this knowing that everyone else that uses this site is poly (or claiming to be…). 
  • OkCupid.com - Yes, there are quite a few poly people that use this site :-)

 

Tips and tricks on using social networking sites

Determine how “naked” you want to be with the world.  The Internet does provide us with a certain level of anonymity, if we want it.   Any information that we disclose also runs the risk of falling into the “wrong hands”.  There are those that believe that openly declaring themselves poly would ruin their professional careers or cause social services to take away their kids.  I can’t comment on whether those fears are justified. However, from personal experience, I can attest to the risk of /drama should the wrong people in your life find out about your poly’ness before they’re ready to accept it.   Therefore, you will want to make sure that you have the right precautions in place before you provide information online that can be linked to your identity offline.

Time boundaries are good too.Give yourself a limit of how much time you will spend checking your messages or digging around through the social network site. It may be fun to spend hours looking at profiles of other polyamorists in your area, but remember you have other obligations too ;)

I’m poly, you’re poly, we should date - not!  We typically want to engage in relationships with people that share similar values and ideals.  It may feel exhilarating to find out that you’re not the only polyamorous person in your area, but try to hold back on the temptation of starting a dating relationship right away.  If they’re friend material, start there, and build a relationship based on emotional support and camaraderie rather than romance. It will save you from /drama later.

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  1. [...] our previous article, we discussed different methods of seeking out other like-minded individuals with whom to form a [...]

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