Communicate 1-on-1 for nonmonogamy!

Communicate 1-on-1 for nonmonogamy!

On April 25, 2015 Nookie presented the topic Communicate It! for a private group. The original presentation was audio recorded, and has just recently been pulled out of the archives.

Here is a clip from that 2-hour class, where Nookie talks about communication for nonmonogamy and poly relationships, and how it gets super-complicated super-fast.


I’m going to touch real quick on communication within poly relationships.

Because right now, poly’s, all the rage. It’s like, it’s like the neon of the 80s, (it’s everywhere) and sometimes it works, and sometimes it’s hideously ugly.

(Just like neon!)

Um, and I, find it funny.

There are so many challenges to running a single successful relationship and yet some of us are crazy enough to want to multiply that and bring in more relationships.

So I’m not knocking it, I do this shit. I’m crazy, I know it.

But there is one key from my perspective to understanding any sort of poly communication above and beyond any other communication that we’re talking about today.

Because all the other communication that we’re going to be talking about today is across the board. And this is true too, but this specifically applies to poly that, I hope all of you will keep in mind. And even not poly…

It applies to vanilla relationships with horrible in-laws. It applies…

I mean, there’s so many things that this applies to and that is: Every relationship that you have is with one person.

If I have a relationship with my Pet, my relationship with him, and the way he treats me is with one person.

If we bring in a third or for example, in the cuckolding that we do. I still have a relationship with my Pet. I then might also have a relationship with my Bull.

My Pet has a relationship with me and he may or may not have a relationship with my Bull.

But if he does, his relationship with my Bull doesn’t have anything to do with me, it has to be separate.

It’s not to say that we can’t talk about it and you know, compare notes and so on and so forth, but there cannot be a person that acts as a go-between, because that doesn’t exist.

The relationship has to be between two people because only two people can sort things out together.

Once you bring in a third person, you’re talking, not just one more relationship, you’re talking THREE relationships.

So instead of one relationship, as soon as you bring in a third, you have three relationships.

You have two more relationships to deal with.

And that’s too much to deal with at one time.

Deal with one relationship at a time.

So for two people, you have one relationship.

For three people, you have three relationships.

You have four people, then you’ve got five relationships.

And so on, you’ve always got more relationships than you’ve got people, unless it’s just one-on-one.


I’ve talked about this in many ways over the years and I’m pretty adamant about it.

I would not talk to my partner about my girlfriend, expecting that communication to get to her, or to be communicated properly.

I would not talk to them both about any potential issues I have with one of them (or with both of them). I would do that separately.

Because each person deserves the chance to communicate with me, on their own terms.

Without feeling ganged up on.

Without feeling embarrassed by another person.

Without trying to explain themselves to more than one person at a time.

The way I look at it is that it’s hard enough to communicate well one-on-one. AND, I can only talk to a person about their behaviors and interactions and expect anything to come of it. Having another person there just gums the works.

But what if it’s how they both act together, when I am around?


However, I would still say that it makes sense to talk to them separately.

It’s not you against them.

Or you trying to control/manage their relationship.

It’s you and each person collaborating on how to have a better relationship.

And once you have collaborated with one or both, they can talk to each other about what they have chosen to do, and collaborate together as well.

Of course there are exceptions.

When the three of you are planning a trip together. When you’re deciding what paint is right for the shared living room, etc.

But for interpersonal conversations, especially difficult ones, I’ve found over and over that one-on-one is best.

What are your thoughts?

Do you feel that difficult conversations in nonmonogamy are best handled one-on-one, or in a group?

Have you ever been in a group conversation, and felt ganged up on, or like you couldn’t keep up with multiple needs and emotional levels all at once?

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