Hierarchical Polyamory

Hierarchical Polyamory

Partners in hierarchical polyamory have a preference for a particular person. This person is often their primary and makes all the major decisions together.

What You Should Know About Hierarchical Polyamory

Polyamory can be hierarchical or non-hierarchical. Both are forms of non-monogamous relationships. In hierarchical polyamory, there is a central relationship that partners focus on. Other partners are considered secondary.

When you are a secondary partner in hierarchical polyamory, you don’t enjoy the privileges like the primary partner. You receive little attention and resources, and you are not necessarily involved in decision making.

A primary partner can end a relationship with secondary partners at any time since they are the core decision-makers. So, secondary partners can have their feelings hurt at any time, since they may not be informed when the decision is being made.

So, before joining this form of a relationship, consider:

  • If you can be comfortable sharing limited time with boundaries with your partner
  • Whether you can be comfortable having someone else given better attention than yourself
  • You can be comfortable being categorized in a sexual relationship
  • Whether you acknowledge the presence of hierarchy
  • Whether you are a primary or secondary partner. This point is essential when you are a newbie. It helps you prepare not to expect too much from the relationship, especially when you are a secondary partner.

Sometimes, when you are a secondary partner, you can be hidden from people that matter to your partners. That is, you get to be in a relationship like a ghost. You do not enjoy the publicity and cannot attend social events with their friends or family members.

However, it always depends on partners. There are thousands of people enjoying deep passion in their hierarchical polyamorous relationships. In some cases, people that are basically considered secondary partners in a relationship, feel more happy and free in their lifestyle, than a person who is considered “central” due to the more strict rules within their relationships. Sometimes, the “distance” between a secondary and a primary partner makes life easier for both sides. Not only they don’t get tired of each other easily, but they also tend to take their relationships more simply. But, as was said before, it always depends on the partners and their individual preferences, of course.

Non-Hierarchical Polyamory

A non-hierarchical polyamory relationship gives equality to all partners in a group. All members are important and do things together. Communication and decision making is made together, while time and resources are shared without bias.

Poly people in this type of relationship tend to be happier and have long-term relationships. Even if you join an existing couple to form a triad in non-hierarchical polyamory, you are treated equally. You enjoy all the privileges the other partners have without discrimination.

Love and sexual attachments are shared equally, too. In non-hierarchical polyamory, what is important is following the group rules and honesty. If you want to have another relationship, you should not do it behind your partners’ backs. Here, you have to be honest and as open as possible.

If there are children in non-hierarchical polyamory, they are raised by all partners equally. Some groups even introduce their partners to their children so they can understand what is happening. They spend ample time to learn and bond with each other, including going on vacations.

Nobody holds veto power in non-hierarchical polyamory. So, if there is a pressing issue or one member is not happy with a few things in the group, they can sermon all members. The problem is discussed critically among them until a consensus is reached.

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