Polyamory and non-monogamy isn't new and these terms have been gaining some traction and attention over the past few years (yay!) after non-monogamy got kind of a bad rap from unethical polygamy. But something happened in 2020 that brings new legitimacy and hope to polyamorous triads, quads and assorted other polycules across the US... or at least New England.
Somerville MA passed a unanimous City Council vote for the City Ordinance on Domestic Partnerships to include more than two partners. While domestic partnerships are NOT the same thing as marriages and those are still limited to only two people, this move by Somerville is kind of a big deal to those of us in the ENM community because it's the first place to allow the legal recognition of polyamorous relationship structures stateside.
I know what you're thinking: "Haven't people in open relationships already been getting married all along?" And yes, they have, kinda... Lots of ethically non-monogamous people are in committed, legal marriages with one partner and engage in long-term, loving relationships with one or more other partners whom they may also live with. And there are some really gorgeous commitment ceremonies happening between all the partners of a throuple or quad (or more) who all live and love together under one roof. But those commitment ceremonies are just that and offer no legal rights or protections for those partners in the event that one of them becomes hospitalized or worse.
Which is why the move that Somerville made is so important and I hope more cities will follow suit. Domestic partnerships allow partners some limited rights similar to those who are legally married and being able to include all of your significant life partners in that is kind of important. There have already been some other polyamorous relationships granted legal recognition in other countries, too! I only hope that one day actual marriage will be possible between members of polyamorous relationships, because all love is beautiful. ❤
It is a fundamental, core belief for me to support love in whatever form it takes.
If you are and choose to be monogamous and that's right for you, then I support and celebrate that love. By that same token, I do not nor have I ever believed that a person has to limit their love to one person and I will always fight for the equality and representation of love in all forms so that it can be afforded the same legal status, benefits, protections and celebrations that hetero-normative couples are simply given.
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