This Comic Nails Why People in Polyamorous Relationships Are Not Selfish

December 27th 2016

Danielle DeCourcey

Polyamorous relationships are becoming more popular in America, but there is still a social stigma attached to dating multiple people at the same time: some people think that polyamory is selfish.

The Tumblr page Learning to be Poly uses a comic to explain the reality for many people in polyamorous relationships. They're not being selfish, they're being realistic about their needs in a relationship.

Comic about selfishness and polyamory.

The comic, created by Danielle of Girls with Slingshots, shows that Jaime is upset that Keith appears to be not available to date because he has a girlfriend who is presumably not polyamorous. The friend she's speaking to calls her "selfish" for wanting to date multiple people at the same time. However Jaime responds that it is less selfish to date multiple people than to "have one lover and expect them to fulfill you in every way."

Learning to Be Poly explains why the character Jaime is not selfish.

"Jamie’s reply is perfect, because it shows the argument doesn’t end despite someone having played the selfish 'trump card'.

"If Jamie was selfish, she’d be chasing Keith despite his girlfriend.
"If Jamie was selfish, she’d be angry at the girlfriend for “stealing” Keith.
"If Jamie was selfish, she wouldn’t be stepping back from pursuing Keith.
"If Jamie was selfish, she’d keep pushing for what she wanted, no matter what anyone else wanted.

"Ethical non-monogamy is not selfish."

What is ethical non-monogamy?

The term ethical non-monogamy refers to types of relationships where all parties involved have consented to a relationship with more than two people involved. Polyamorous actress and blogger Gracie X wrote a list in the Huffington Post last year about six different types of ethical non-monogamous relationships:

1. Polyamory

"Polyamory is the non-possessive, honest, responsible and ethical philosophy and practice of loving multiple people simultaneously," according to the Polyamory Society.

2. Swinging

Swingers are people who have an open sexual relationship but are usually committed to a partner.

3. Polyfidelity

People in these types of relationships are polyamorous but only have sex within the same set group of people.

4. Primary and secondary relationships.

This type of relationship is where one couple has a primary committed relationship with each other and then one or two secondary side relationships.

5. Sexually Monogamous Polyamory

This seems confusing at first, but Gracie X said this is a distinct type of non-monogamy. "There are folks who have a beloved that they are married to or live with, and also have someone else that they are in love with and/or have a deep erotic attraction to but do not have sex with," she wrote in the Huffington Post. "Everyone involved is fully on board with the arrangement. You could say these practitioners are sexually monogamous but emotionally polyamorous."

6. Open Marriage

An open marriage is where two married people agree to have sex outside the marriage.

RELATED: A Sex Wiz Explains Why Polyamory Is More Popular Than Ever