Non-monogamy and polyamory’s dark sides

Bo Winegard tweets,

Educated elites who believe that polyamory can be practiced and enjoyed by most of the population remind me of the math professor who believes differential equations are within the grasp of anyone who makes a serious attempt at learning.

There exists compelling research that normative monogamy is beneficial and leads to myriad positive social externalities.

Polyamory is fine as a niche relationship modality, practiced mostly among the extremely WEIRD [Western, educated, industrialized, rich, democratic].

He’s right, particularly regarding people who want real families (a topic we’ll come back to in a moment). Despite what you’ve read here, I buy this Bo Winegard argument… we’re also not willing as a society to have an honest conversation about what’s happening below the IQ median. The people driving the conversation at the top really don’t have any idea what’s happening down there, and choose deliberately not to. They don’t really understand what it’s like to not have the cognitive capacity to get top-end jobs or have the conversations non-monogamous people need if their relationships are going to survive.

Nash follows up with…

“Burning Man style: POLYAMORY is more standard than monogamy. Men get the variety they want. They think sharing their women and it’s a ‘form of love evolution’ (they are no longer jealous), but what is happening is it pretty much destroys most of those relationships.”

“In ‘Burning Man’ it’s fine to take off your clothes and dance around really sexually. If you were at your grandma’s house having dinner (or around children), and you did that, would it ‘open everyone’s heart?’ Or would it create a fiasco? It would create a fiasco.”

Those are from David Deida talks. Deida’s more right than wrong, right now… poly/open is a fiasco in all instances except, basically, as casual sex, which is how I do them. Some light swinging can work too, especially in very long term relationships (that get stale and need some more heat). A very small number of people can really do them as described. Mostly, “poly” and “open” are about rationalizing casual sex (which is how I use it… because it’s a form of normalizing and institutionalizing casual sex for me, I don’t get caught up on the terminology). In that post from two years ago, Nash said, “for me the ‘poly’ community is a fucking mess. I live in CA and I am surrounded by these folks… and it’s an ugly shitshow. I watch guys ‘try’ this all the time, and they are a fucking sad bunch, mostly.” “Mostly” he’s right. The guys doing this at the higher end are also focused on one guy and two women, and they often don’t highly advertise what they’re doing. Most top guys don’t want to advertise what they’re doing. A lot of chicks also don’t want to come out as sharing a guy with another chick.

Poly and open are (mostly) a disaster for people who really want families, cause kids are challenging enough w/o all that adult drama. For most people, in effect, poly is a way to f**k around, avoid commitment (avoidant attachment styles are everywhere in open relationships), and enjoy sexual novelty… things I have tended to enjoy… most guys don’t want to raise another man’s child (and won’t) and most chicks aren’t eager to raise another woman’s child (but might if the guy is good enough). People in “poly” relationships who think they’re going to “have a child” together usually discover that infants and toddlers are a lot of work, reduce the amount of sex had (for a couple years), and are a lot less “fun” (though often joyful…). So… there’s a strong tendency to split. Find someone new, unencumbered. Repeat this process enough and you get the epidemic of lonely old people we see in western societies. Even married couples tend to have problems adjusting to kids. The woman’s body often goes to hell, for months if not forever… having kids is a great thing, don’t get me wrong, but almost no one will do it for kids who aren’t theirs. A lot of women also peak in their late 20s and men in their late 30s, so there’s that mismatch, which can fuel jealousy. Some people out there appear to experience no or very little jealousy… with the Internet, they can find each other and also proselytize for open relationships, in a way that wasn’t possible before the Internet. The Internet lets us learn things and share them widely and also anonymously, and we can learn things we’d never publish in a newspaper or say on TV. 

In my own case… I’ve liked f**king around… and as I point out in the book, “open” relationships, “poly,” sex clubs… they’re a way to f**k around while retaining the girl, or the primary girl, cause most girls will want to define the relationship with the guy they’re f**king, relatively quickly. They’ll want to “lock him down” if you prefer that terminology (I often don’t, but girls use it). This is a way to keep a girl around, offer her super exciting experiences, but still have some of the prowl. For a guy who wants to be a player, this can be a powerful ideology and frame. I don’t want to pretend it doesn’t have huge costs, though. Many “poly” advocates are simply delusional about its costs, particularly in terms of family and children. Human societies are organized around family and kinship for good reasons. We’ve spent the last bunch of centuries trying to reorient around strangers and material goods. This has some good things associated with it but it has some costs, too. We’ve decided to elevate the individual over the family or community… which has some nice features… and some bad ones… we’re almost never willing to even state directly that this has happened.

There’s an argument kicking around the evolutionary biology communities, that intelligence didn’t really evolve to solve problems or be objectively “right,” but to form group coalitions and support a given narrative. That may be why “intelligent” people in an IQ sense may be better at self-delusion and maintaining narratives than less intelligent people. We see this especially in places like politics, where most people prefer tribe to knowledge. High-IQ poly people can convince themselves and sometimes others of their narrative, without having the desire to question their own narrative or discover what’s “underneath” it. The higher their IQ, the more “reasons” and rationalizations they can come up with. And many of those reasons are real… in specific circumstances. 

Poly is probably bad for societies, because it creates male winner-take-most systems. But as people become more individualistic and ever-less connected to family and place, we’re seeing the rise of alternate relationships styles. Like old-school Roissy used to say, “enjoy the decline.” Or figure out how to make it work. And there are also plenty of chicks out there who aren’t participating in the modern mating game… but they’re not the ones on the apps, out in bars, etc. They’re probably already in a relationship and meet men through family, school, and friends. They’re the girls who, if you’re not serious about a relationship and family, will disappear right away. Who will stick around if you’re not? That’s where the game comes from.

 

Author: The Red Quest

How can we live and be in society?

10 thoughts on “Non-monogamy and polyamory’s dark sides”

  1. As someone who’s interested in open relationships and possibly taking girls to sex clubs, I find this all very interesting. So far, I haven’t found any who are open to it. Most of the girls I’ve been with over the past couple years either: A) have wanted to lock me down in a monogamous relationship, or B) have just wanted to fuck, NSA, and a fair number are in it simply for the ONS–though if you put on a good performance sexually, many do eventually come back.
    The other thing is that hypergamy is far more advanced than anyone seems willing to acknowledge. Of course, most people in society have no idea what that is–they’re caught in the blue pill lie that men and women are mostly the same and people pair off in a fairly egalitarian way, then eventually settle down and get married with kids.
    Don’t get me wrong, that’s still what happens in many cases, but with the rise of OLD and social media, nearly every woman has access to very high quality men who she either thinks are in play, or may actually be in play because the guy got horny and over swiped on Tinder.
    We all know that in most cases, many these women are delusional and RQ, as you point out, for women who aren’t delusional and want a relationship, they can mostly get a BF without too much trouble. But I think part of it isn’t a delusion: women really can now employ their dual mating strategy, and some are now explicitly stating this on places like Twitter, Tik-Tok, IG, etc.
    Contrary to the overall effect of this on society, I contend this is a GOOD THING for players–especially for doing BDSM, threesomes, sex clubs, and non-monogamy. But, this means you have to max out your fitness and looks and have very strong game. This is especially true for younger girls who don’t want attachment and just want to fuck around in their 20s, something Yoylo has done quite well over the past year. What guys need to understand, however, is this is really only going to work for guys who are both good looking (top 10%) and very intelligent–which is maybe the understated point of your post here. Because if a chick is choosing you as the “sex guy” then you have to fit that roll for her. This is one thing that seems lost in the community: yes, game matters and by learning cold approach, you can access more women and have better opportunities than just using the apps or social circle alone, but it’s only going to go so far in this highly visual environment. There’s always going to be a blackpill element of either the girl sees you as the hot sex guy or the provider/BF guy, and if it’s the latter I don’t imagine you’re going to have much success in sex clubs, OR worse, you’re going to be left watching while she fucks the other hot sex guys there.
    So to come full circle, the idea polyamory is going to work for most guys is incorrect–for most guys it’s going to be a disaster, because almost any man–even hot sex player guy–has less sexual power than a hot young chick. In actuality, I wouldn’t be surprised if in the next 10-20 years, it does become far more common for women to share top guys openly, leaving the bottom 80% of guys to do what happens on Tinder where they compete for the bottom 20% of women.

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    1. I think it’s often necessary to lie (implicitly) to the girl, and often to yourself, about whether the relationship really means anything. IMO there are two types of relationships… one in which you have kids with the woman, or want/plan to, and all other kinds.

      Most “poly” “open,” whatever you call them, relationships are first kind, and often masquerading as the second.

      The “eventually settle down and have kids” thing is risky, especially for women… if they wait too long, their SMV starts to drop. Plus… a lot of women are (realistically) too narcissistic and self-involved to compromise effectively, like a normal person. Or to realize that real relationships require a lot of giving, from both parties… and a lot of women are incapable of doing that properly today… https://theredquest.wordpress.com/2020/07/27/what-does-quality-girl-mean/

      So yeah it’s great for players…. but I’m not sure most guys want to be players, over a long enough term….

      Very few guys are operating at or near the top of their SMV… not many have basic diet / lifting locked down…

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  2. >The guys doing this at the higher end are also focused on one guy and two women, and they often don’t highly advertise what they’re doing. Most top guys don’t want to advertise what they’re doing.

    YES.

    RPMcMurphy > What guys need to understand, however, is this is really only going to work for guys who are both good looking (top 10%) and very intelligent–which is maybe the understated point of your post here.

    YES. Top 3%, specially if you don’t want to share your women, and I can’t think of a reason anyone would.

    Poly’s are worse than cuckolds. In my experience, hard harems are the way to go if you can pull it out.

    Thank you for the article. There aren’t enough discussions about this so aspiring top men can have a glimpse of what is possible.

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  3. You’re missing the most significant problem, in my experience, with “ethical nonmonogamy”.

    I don’t give a rat’s ass about raising a family and I’ve done open relationships and “plate spinning” loads but have pretty much left it generally behind. Why?

    I have shit to do.

    Maintaining an emotionally bonded primary partner takes up a lot of time and emotional effort. Keeping your game sharp, or especially try to improve it, and having a regular stream of new partners takes up a lot of time and emotional effort. Try to have a successful career and maintain physical fitness, and heaven forbid a hobby? There’s just only so many hours in the day.

    I’ve been doing, and plan to do indefinitely, the short purely physical fling then let her go after a month or two pattern and this suits me well.

    Time management and a productive and fulfilling life outside of women, emotional bonds, and physical variety, I’ve found I really have to pick two. I’m fairly “avoidant” generally so I’m not all that troubled in resigning myself to dropping the second. And honestly I’ve never met anyone who can successfully do all 3 long term. I guess somehow you’ve managed to square that circle, at least sometimes, so hats off to you.

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    1. My respect to Tank. You’re showing a solid POV. I know a lot of guys feel like you do here.

      > I have shit to do.
      > Maintaining an emotionally bonded primary partner takes up a lot of time and emotional effort

      This POV comes up a lot when guys look at the lifestyle of daygamers – we spend a LOT of time approaching. And some of us (but certainly not all) in the emotionally bonding parts that follow when you catch a good connection. Not monogamy, just depth with a given girl (could be one of many).

      I think your POV is cold and dispassionate… But very “no-nonsense” masculine. It is literal efficency, where I would be romantic. I respect it. I think many guys see the opportunity like you do.

      I like the sex. I’ll take a quick notch, for the sex (even when it’s bad, and ONS often is bad sex), for the experience, for the story.

      But I want the emotional time. Sometimes because I personally need it. But more often as a chance to lead the girl and watch her open up… Watch her bloom beyond “excitement” and the physical/sexual.

      I am working hard to EMOTIONALLY “OPEN” every girl that will date me. Even when a girl likes me, it is not easy. Girls will give you new/different tests when they feel the potential/risk of “opening” to a man. I never make promises of time/commitment, but I can’t get them “deeper” without showing more of myself as well.

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    2. I think this is the key sentence: “I’m fairly ‘avoidant’ generally so I’m not all that troubled in resigning myself to dropping the second”

      I am too, to an extent, and I think that if you have an avoidant attachment style, short-term relationships are a way to achieve that attachment style: that’s the way you are right now, and the rest is reasoning. Most people (myself included) jump to a conclusion, then reach back for the rationale to that conclusion. See for examples of this Jonathan Haidt books. Or Daniel Kahneman.

      IMO bonding particularly early on is fun. It is necessary to set some boundaries with girls, and I find that they’ll respect them, if they feel they also have a place in your life. “I’m going to do [hobby] from 8 – 4 on Saturday. Let’s have dinner Saturday night” usually works. A girl who is petulant about that, or who has some co-dependent qualities, will not respect that. Most girls will in my experience.

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  4. > In my own case… I’ve liked f**king around

    Me too. The sex. And the “unfolding” of each new girl in front of me. I predict my current stasis won’t last forever… But I still love both parts. I remain completely fascinated.

    > and as I point out in the book, “open” relationships, “poly,” sex clubs… they’re a way to f**k around while retaining the girl, or the primary girl, cause most girls will want to define the relationship with the guy they’re f**king

    Yoylo really pounded this point home online a few weeks ago in a way that made me really feel the truth of it (and he credits TRQ for this line of thinking). I think it is brilliant. It’s not for me (I won’t repeat “why” now), but I think it is a very valid path.

    For me… I like “don’t ask, don’t tell” – where even that rule is unspoken. Which can be functionally the same (you get to fuck around), but takes away all the “in your face” conversation about “others.”

    > an argument kicking around the evolutionary biology communities, that intelligence didn’t really evolve to solve problems or be objectively “right,” but to form group coalitions and support a given narrative.

    This is very interesting, BTW.

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    1. > an argument kicking around the evolutionary biology communities, that intelligence didn’t really evolve to solve problems or be objectively “right,” but to form group coalitions and support a given narrative.

      >>This is very interesting, BTW.

      It matches experience, from what I can tell. You will have “very smart” people making deep and detailed arguments on many sides of a given political/social/religious/economic issue, and some of those very deep, very detailed arguments can be hugely wrong (example: favoring communism/true socialism (where the state owns all business activity, land, etc.)). Or people who are supporting “their” side, even if a few minutes/days/weeks/months ago, they argued against whatever the thing is. Why is that? It seems we did not evolve to try to objectively weigh evidence (as objectively as possible)… so what did we try to do?

      Play team sports, intellectually, is an answer that makes a lot of sense.

      Very few people change their minds, value consistency, judge fairly, etc. That maybe happens over time… but not in the short term.

      Even science, the one institution that is really about trying to judge fairly and accurately, “Advances One Funeral at a Time.”

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