Chris's article

Poly dating and poly relationships can be amazing. Meeting new people and beginning a new phase of your life is exhilarating, especially when you find someone you really click with. However, things can go wrong. If it does, the heartache can have a serious impact on your mental and emotional well-being. 

All forms of dating are full of ups and downs, but the experience of polygamy dating is a unique one. It can be difficult to feel confident in your pursuit of finding a sister wife or poly partner when you’re new to the community and/or have been burned when poly dating online. That’s why we’ve compiled all the top tips to maintain your mental health while dating as a polygamist.

Set and maintain boundaries

You, your spouse(s) or partner(s), and the person you’re dating should all set boundaries that make you each feel safe and comfortable. You don’t all have to have the same boundaries, but you do need to respect them. Don’t allow yourself to give into any mental, physical, or commitment pressures. If you are the person who is pursuing a new partner, then it’s your job to facilitate any communication between your current and potential partner. If anyone in the equation cannot respect your boundaries and use anger, guilt, or other emotional manipulations to force you to shift your boundaries for their benefit, you must remove yourself from the situation. True love does not manipulate in any shape or form, and you shouldn’t accept anything that makes you feel unsafe and/or disrespected.

Check-in with yourself

Throughout the poly dating process, frequently take time to reflect on your own. It can be a few minutes each day, or an hour every 2-3 days. Polygamist relationships can move quickly, much quicker than a monogamous one. Taking time to be alone and be introspective can help avoid you getting swept away in the excitement of falling for someone new. Ask yourself things like: 

● Are there any potential red flags I overlooked?

● Is what I’m feeling lust or love?

● Do I feel like I can truly trust this new person?

● Will this person make a good partner to me and a good addition to my family as a whole?

● Are our goals and plans for the future aligned? If not, what sacrifices am I willing to make?

Remember that rejection isn’t indicative of your worth

If you interpret every rejection as a reflection on your self-worth, poly dating will be a nightmare. Everyone has their own requirements for partners and lifestyles, which they cannot change. As polygamists, sometimes rejection can feel like a harsh judgement of us due to our non-traditional lifestyle. However, it’s important to take rejection as a reflection of that person’s preferences, rather than as a judgment of you.

Have realistic expectations

Beliefs, values, and lifestyle choices are important in finding a companion, but you should not expect your next partner to share the exact same ones as you. Keeping your feet on the ground will be difficult if you really like someone, but it's important to resist being carried away by fantasies and daydreams. Don’t try to fit the person into a specific mold, or be completely turned off when you’re unable to do so. This is especially applicable when dating someone who is new to the poly lifestyle. If you’re their first venture outside of monogamy, always be prepared for them to get cold feet. A good mantra to have is “hope for the best, expect the worst” - that doesn’t mean be pessimistic, it just means don’t get overly optimistic and naive. This will help cushion the mental and emotional blow if things don’t work out.

Communicate openly and often

When it comes to poly dating and relationships, you can't expect your partner to assume your thoughts and feelings without you voicing them. Vice versa, you shouldn't assume that their feelings or thoughts about you and your new relationship are the same as your own. Directness is an important part of building and maintaining a good poly dating life.

Practice positive self-talk

There is still a ton of stigma associated with people that struggle with mental health, which can make it really tempting to keep it a secret. It can often cause those who are struggling to develop negative self-talk about themselves, which can potentially keep you from speaking up about your needs in your relationships. To alleviate this, try reframing any negative thoughts related to you as a partner, your dating life, and your overall self-worth.

Maintain your own identity

In general, it is natural to relinquish some of your personality, identity, and independence to your spouses/partners as you become closer to them. Although this demonstrates intent to be together, it could harm your mental health. Your identity should not be discarded. Maintaining a feeling of self, especially in relation to your relationship, is not good for either of you.

If you want this, remember to put your mental health first and give priority to your partner's decision to be with you for other reasons. When it comes to a poly relationship, you may end up feeling less of yourself if you keep aspects of yourself suppressed. It is possible that your loved ones may no longer see you as the person they once fell in love with.

Lean on the poly community

Sister Wives is more than a poly dating website and app, we’re a community! On our site, you’ll find forums, groups, events, personal blogs, and more to help you feel connected and supported. Don’t be afraid to utilize these channels to ask for advice and learn from other people’s successes and missteps alike. No one will understand what you’re going through better than people who have already experienced it! 

Be sure to keep up with the official Sister Wives articles section, too. There, you’ll get posts that give you poly dating advice (like this one!) and community updates.

Published By: Christopher Alesich 

Matchmakers Inc:

When the COVID-19 pandemic began last March, people had no idea how much their lives were about to change. We don’t just mean wearing masks and working from home, either - quarantining alone with one other person was enough to bring a lot of monogamous relationships to an end. Due to the pandemic's exposure of the flaws in traditional marriage, several people have turned to polyamory and polygamy to suit their needs.

Society's perception of poly dating has already evolved significantly since Sister Wives debuted on TLC. What was once largely dismissed as an "alternative lifestyle" and/or a “loophole to cheat” is now being viewed as a viable way of life. This acceptance is partly due to increased awareness created from social media. Things such as Jada Pinkett Smith's Facebook Watch show Red Table Talk, which recently aired an episode on the subject of polyamory that garnered 4.3 million views, the poly subreddit with 200k members and growing, and content creators on platforms such as YouTube and TikTok who create content that follows the everyday life of being in a poly relationship. 

So, why is this happening? Ross Dawson, a futurist and co-author of the 2016 Future of Sex report, feels that the pandemic simply accelerated pre-existing patterns and trends that existed going into the pandemic. People who may have been interested in pursuing polygamy or polyamory before the pandemic are now more likely to pursue things that were once out of their comfort zones. After over a year of social distancing and near solitude, people are pursuing any and all outlets that can provide pleasure - not just sexually, but mentally and emotionally, too. Plus, seeing how fast the world changed last year, many are choosing to live exactly how they want without fear of judgment in order to make the most of the time they spend living their lives. 

There’s also an increased need and prioritization of finding something new and exciting. That’s why online dating is popular: There’s always someone new to interact with. Sometimes, craving something new is a desire born out of pure boredom. However, sometimes that desire comes when something just isn’t working anymore. The pandemic provided the ideal opportunity to expose and intensify the flaws of traditional marriage: Namely, the fact that running a household, raising kids, maintaining careers, and paying the bills can feel like a workload that’s just too big for two people. 

Add in trying to do that with someone you’re in a relationship with while trying to still feel like you’re in a relationship with them. Being able to ensure that everything goes properly in the family and that adults get ample time away from the children - whether together or alone - was a bigger struggle than ever thanks to remote working and learning. All of this can deplete anyone's passion, making the prospect of a third partner - or more - sound not just thrilling, but comforting as well. 

All of that is to say, extended time together made a lot of couples realize their needs weren’t being met. So much so that many felt they were hitting a breaking point. It makes sense that when life got harder on everyone, more and more people started to feel like they had almost earned the right to pursue things that would make their lives more fulfilling. Especially those who either divorced or almost divorced: What’s the worst that could happen at this point? We’ve all lived through a year of losing loved ones, jobs, savings, etc. Once you’ve lived through this kind of unexpected hurt and loss, it often removes the fear surrounding getting hurt again. 

Plus, going back to the need for connection, people are realizing that they might actually communicate better in non-monogamous relationships than monogamous ones. Polygamists and polyamorous families have had to learn how to be really thorough, honest communicators with one another in order to make the relationship work. That level of consideration and transparency is often a much-welcomed change to a formerly monogamous person. 

Many people’s biggest fear in a traditional relationship is that they’re being cheated on, and many of the biggest problems traditional couples face revolve around a lack of communication, honesty, and/or trust. So when they begin poly dating and experience this new communication style that really promotes mutual respect and trust, it really breaks down barriers that the person may not have been able to break down because they didn’t have that with their previous partners. The more people feel they can trust their partner, the more vulnerable they allow themselves to be, which results in a deeper connection than they’ve felt in a long time, or ever. 

To understand the bigger picture, the concept of marriage as a whole has evolved a lot, too. The rise of platonic marriages is another trend that has been accelerated by the pandemic. More and more people are marrying someone with who they have good companionship that would be a good partner, but have their own respective rooms and sex lives. This is relevant because the further society moves away from the traditional lens it views marriage in, the less room they have to not allow polygamous and polyamorous people the same rights as everyone else. 

Polygamy is practiced by up to 60,000 persons in the United States. Even though they’re U.S. citizens, polygamists encounter a slew of legal obstacles, impacting inheritance, hospital visits, parentage rights, and taxes. For example, if a sister wife who isn’t legally married to their spouse files for assistance as a single parent, they’re considered dishonest or even accused of committing welfare fraud, but if they file their taxes jointly then they’re breaking the law, too. 

We say this information not to scare people new to the practice, but to point out that there are fundamental flaws in the illegality of poly lifestyles that will have to be addressed as more and more people identify as polyamorous or polygamist. Seeing so many people join and be embraced by the poly community has been heartwarming and instilled a lot of hope that change is around the corner. And, it’s no surprise that after spending months in isolation, people are realizing that sometimes more really is more when it comes to love!

Published By: Christopher Alesich 

Matchmakers Inc:

No doubt, there’s a respectable roster of poly+ dating sites online. Some are built exclusively for poly+ members, and others feel like an afterthought hastily programmed after prioritizing features for monogamous couples. Inclusivity is fine, but when you have websites that focus on poly+ arrangements like the Sister Wives site, all other matchmaking services feel inferior. Catering strictly to the poly+ community, Sister Wives is dedicated to helping you find the right match.

And no, it’s not marketing based on a fairy tale ending. Just facts. I’ll be frank - some poly dating sites make poly+ dating seem like a wild goose chase. Whether it’s finding out you’ve been chatting with a fake profile (or worse - a troll bot account), immature users, or just incompatible people, joining a dating website can be a wild ride you want to get off of. So let’s review again why Sister Wives is a great choice out of all the sister wives sites.

Interactive social features

On the Sister Wives Dating Site, you can enjoy expected features like private messaging and match notifications. However, you can also leave comments on other members’ photos, create group chats, and even launch your blog. Whether it’s a witty, weekly commentary on your experience on Sister Wives or a practical guide on poly+ dating is up to you.

Just know we offer more than your typical matchmaking service because we’re all about building meaningful bonds. Lest I forget - you can also video chat directly on our program, so you don’t have to take it to sites like Zoom if you aren’t ready to give out more personal information.

Fewer fakes, catfishes, and scammers

It’s disheartening when you find out someone you’ve been flirting with turns out to be a catfish or something similar. Our site isn’t 100% immune to these profiles, but we do take extra steps to keep them out. We monitor new and existing profiles to weed out potential scammers and catfishes so you have a genuine, straightforward experience.

Flexible arrangements

Most matchmaking services build their programs around this simple formula: “Single Male/Female looking for Single Male/Female.” No hate for monogamous relationships, but the reality is there are many people in the dating world looking for more. That’s why you’re here, right?

The Sister Wives site accounts for these nonconformist arrangements. You can sign up as a single Male/Female, couple, or group and set your preferred matches to single Male/Female, couple, or group. If your ideal arrangement is none of the above, you can also leave a note in your profile, letting others know what you’re looking for right away. This increases your chances of matching with others who feel the same.

Free VIP membership offer for single women

Though you can sign up as any of the profile types mentioned above, many of our users fall into the “Couple looking for single Female” category - hence our name Sister Wives. We support all arrangements, but this is a common relationship structure many people seek.

Therefore, we offer single women free VIP memberships to fill that demand and make sure these customers have the chance to match with every possible member that fits the criteria.

Dating support and advice

Most matchmaking services and sites push you to create a profile and then try to match you with as many people as possible until one sticks. Our approach is a little different. The poly world can be confusing, especially if you’ve never stepped into it. So we also offer dating support (and really, general life pro tips) on our website. 

We cover everything from Trending News to how to recognize a Toxic Relationship. We also go into detail about poly+ terms, how to navigate poly relationships, what to do, and what not to do. When we created Sister Wives, we wanted a community where members can come together to discuss everything to do with the poly+ lifestyle and maybe to talk about other things going on in your life.

Even if you’ve found your match, we hope you continue to use our platform and help us build a welcoming, resourceful space.

Sister Wives is also available on smartphones and tablets

Some matchmaking services are only available on PCs, smartphones, or tablets. Good news: Sister Wives is available both on a web browser and as an app. This means you have access to your profile on your preferred electronic device whether that’s a tablet, laptop, PC, or phone. Dating is exciting, so why not keep your matches at your fingertips?

From informative articles to a social media-like user interface, our intentions go beyond matchmaking. Above all else, joining Sister Wives means you come for the perfect match and stay for the community. And if you haven’t found a suitable match 12 months after you join our VIP membership, no worries. In this case, we’ll cover the costs for the next 6 months. 

Sign up today - a standard membership is free!

Published By: Christopher Alesich 

Matchmakers Inc:

COVID-19 restrictions are mostly lifted, with many states adopting a fully reopened status. But just because restaurants, bars, and stores are back in full swing, it doesn’t mean the virus has disappeared. New cases are still growing in a majority of states as of July 2021. 

But you’re still looking for a sister wife, and want to be cautious. We get it, and we’re right there with you. Some basic precautions can help us get back to that “new normal” we’ve been yearning for the past year and a half. So let’s dive in and see how we can keep dates poly-friendly and COVID-responsible.

Go on first dates outdoors or in spacious establishments

Ventilation and space are key to a safe, post-pandemic date. You might know whether a bistro or cafe (or wherever your go-to first date spot is) will be crowded on a given day, but you can limit your choices to COVID-responsible places. Think restaurants with patio seating, cafes with socially distanced tables, or bars with a guest limit. Bonus if it’s a rooftop bar or bar with a terrace!

Other ideas I’ll throw out are picnics, walks at the park, or even bike rides. This could be an opportunity to try new things with new people - it’s a sure way to bond quickly, and it’ll be less pressure than your typical dinner date.

Get vaccinated if you can and be honest about your status

If you have the resources, time, and physical ability to get vaccinated, do it. This not only boosts your body’s immune system response if you’re exposed to the virus, but it protects others around you. Without getting into too much detail and risking sounding preachy about vaccination, I’ll leave it at this: it’s the responsible thing to do.

If you’re been chatting with someone about going on a date and find out they refuse to get vaccinated based on unfounded pop-science research - it might be best to look for a sister wife elsewhere. You have a valid reason to want to know whether someone’s vaccinated, and you don’t have to sacrifice your health just for a first date.

Alternatively, you might hold off on dates altogether if you aren’t vaccinated yet. In this case, video calls, texting, and social media are your friends. Keeping in touch minus the risk has never been easier!

Communicate about your recent travels and whereabouts

By now, you’ve probably heard of superspreading events - gatherings where many people (from tens to hundreds) are infected by a highly contagious disease. COVID-19’s efficacy is no joke, and it’s easily spread during social events when your guard might be down.

Common events include weddings, birthday parties, business conferences, long public transportation rides, and gym classes for starters. It’s the worst when asymptomatic people go about their daily lives unknowingly transmitting the virus to more vulnerable individuals like the elderly and immunocompromised patients. (Another reason to get vaccinated if you can - you can help save people’s lives who are not able to receive the vaccine.)

So the bottom line? Be honest about whether or not you’ve traveled to a risky event, city, or country. When advised, quarantine for two weeks to avoid infecting others. You and potential sister wives have a right to know about the risks of a date. No matter the burning chemistry between you all, a close-contact date can wait!

Wear a mask when it makes sense

I know you’re probably tired of hearing this, but wearing a mask is one of the most basic things you can do to avoid catching and/or spreading the virus. This is most useful in crowded areas or if you’ve recently traveled to a risky area, but need to be around other people.

A double-layer mask is great and is generally breathable Of course, every building or workplace may have different requirements, so act accordingly. For casual outings, however, a double-layer fabric mask will do just fine.

Remember the 3C’s

I’ll leave you with this fundamental guideline we’ve all been following since the start of the pandemic. Try to avoid the 3C’s - “closed spaces, crowded places and close-contact settings.” Researchers have consistently found that this combination of factors increases your chances of catching the virus and spreading it to other people.

So date ideas that involve the great outdoors, spacious dining and lounging areas, and non-physical contact are our best choices for now. Let’s lead by example and show how the poly+ community is still taking COVID guidelines seriously no matter the number of cases.

There is a light at the end of this tunnel, and we’re nearly there, so let’s keep marching on - safely.

Published By: Christopher Alesich 

Matchmakers Inc:

In queer and poly+ spaces, bi-poly folks - that is, bisexual people who are polyamorous - possess a unique identity. There are many reasons why bisexual individuals lean towards polyamory also and why you’ll come across them on any given poly dating app.

Bisexuality and polyamory have a complex relationship. They share several stereotypes evident in both heterosexual and LGBTQIA+ communities. To illustrate the prominence of bisexual individuals in the polyamorous scene, consider that in one survey of bisexual women by William Burleson, 61% identified as polyamorous. Another report by Heidi Bruins Green showed that 21% of the participants were currently in polyamorous relationships, and 40% identified as polyamorous.

Let’s unpack the reasons why bisexual individuals sometimes feel compelled to participate in poly relationships regardless of their initial stance on polyamory.

Polyamory reaffirms bisexual identity tangibly

In Margaret Robinson’s article “Polyamory and Monogamy as Strategic Identities,” she argues that poly relationships (which are commonly gender-blind), may help stave off the “bisexual erasure” bisexual individuals feel in bisexual and queer communities.

Unfortunately, bisexuality suffers from stereotypes similar to the ones polyamory is subject to. This includes being labeled promiscuous and expected to only be able to form non-monogamous relationships. Additionally, others view bisexuality as a fleeting chapter in someone’s sexual or identity journey - up until they find either a person of the same sex or one of the opposite sex, according to Linda Garnets and Douglas C. Kimmel’s 2003 book, “Psychological Perspectives on Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Experiences.”

In other words, others see bisexuality as a stopping point before individuals eventually choose to be gay or straight. When bisexual individuals lean towards polyamory, however, they can refute the misconception that bisexuality is only “...a sexual and behavioral phenomenon rather than as a social political identity.” (Garnets and Kimmel, 2003).

Like Robinson asserts, polyamory and monogamy should be considered strategic identities, which “...serve a political, social, or interpersonal function and are adopted by in-groups living under the surveillance of powerful out-groups.” There is a lot to unpack here, but here is my main takeaway from her work.

When many people still regard bisexuality as an invalid orientation that belongs to neither heterosexual nor gay category, it makes sense that bi-poly individuals find the welcoming spirit of the poly world a refreshing change.

If a bisexual person has a monogamous relationship with only one person of a specific orientation or gender (for instance, a bi woman with a straight, male-identifying partner), then they feel their bisexual identity is overlooked. This results in a mental conflict about their true identity and how they can reconcile being in a monogamous relationship while signaling to the world that they are indeed bisexual.

Looking at the situation in this way, it’s easy to see why bisexual folks are attracted to polyamory, then. Being able to connect with multiple people of multiple genders is a visible way of actualizing and living out their true identity as bisexual. Additionally, this bi-poly identity allows them to feel part of an accepting group that may share their social and political perspectives.

Benefits of being in a bi-poly group

In Geri Weitzman’s “Therapy with Clients Who Are Bisexual and Polyamorous,” several benefits of being in a bi-poly community arise. First is the opening of relationship doors - whether that’s finally finding partners who are also bi-poly or finding partners who have no gender preference.

Second is the freedom to express one’s innermost desires or fantasies without feeling judged. The third is the possibility of forming triads or quads with no gender limitations. Fourth is the feeling of acceptance. It’s no surprise that the mainstream is unkind to unconventional ideas and lifestyles.

Alienation and prejudice is an all-too-common experience for anybody who strays from compulsory heterosexual monogamy, and it’s even more common in bi-poly folks who might get shunned from both bisexual and heterosexual communities.

How to avoid a social faux pas with bi-poly folks on poly dating apps

Like I mentioned above, there are stereotypes that bisexual people fight daily. If you practice polygamy, chances are you’ve probably come across these stereotypes, too. In short, we mustn't discriminate when it comes to courting bi-poly folks on dating apps or websites.

First, not every bi-poly individual wants to have wild, erotica-novel fantasies with multiple people of different genders at once. Each person is different, and the key is establishing comfort levels, respecting boundaries, and meeting needs.

Second, not every bi-poly individual wants short-term, casual encounters. This stereotype that bisexual people cannot thrive in long-term, committed relationships is harmful and disrespectful. It’s rooted in the idea that bisexuality is a constant push and pull struggle where the bisexual individual is never satisfied staying with one gender. Of course, every person signs up to poly dating apps like Sister Wives with different intentions - it’s up to you to determine whether a relationship will work out or not.

Third, don’t try to “convert” a bisexual person. Whether you’re a man speaking to a bisexual man and trying to convince them that they’re gay or you’re a woman speaking to a bisexual man and trying to convince them that they just haven’t found the right woman yet, this line of thought is completely inappropriate and tinged with biphobia.

Fourth, don’t assume that a bi-poly person is completely out to their friends and family. A person’s coming out experience should be determined by them and them only. The specific time, location, and conditions should be in their power, not yours, to respect their agency.

I’ve given you four basic tips on how to unlearn any misconceptions you may have about bi-poly individuals, but the truth is, every relationship is different. Moreover, every person is different, and one’s identity is never set in stone. In short, it’s impossible to cover every single scenario.

However, that’s why I take pride in our poly community - we live our truths unashamedly, and welcome others with open arms who wish to do the same.

Published By: Christopher Alesich 

Matchmakers Inc:

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