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Many people think polyamory is for couples who simply are “bored” of each other. While that might be true of some, it is not a catch-all for those who participate in non-monogamy.
My husband and I have been married for two years, but friends for seven; to say we know each other is an understatement. When we began our relationship, I was frank about my forays in the local kink scene. He found that exciting, and I gently introduced him into my circle of friends who liked to dress up in leather and frequent dungeons on Saturday nights.
As the years passed, we starting attending symposiums and frequenting a sex positive coffee shop in the area. We noticed that many of our coupled friends were flirting with other couples or singles. I was intrigued, and so was he. Since we are both bisexual, we knew that if we wanted to find a third, the field would be relatively open. But since I worked and attended university full-time, and he worked two jobs, the time for pursuing someone was difficult to find.
About a year into our marriage, a group of mixed kinky and vanilla friends introduced us to Violet*. My husband was taken with her. Since I wasn’t present at their initial meeting (a group outing), I didn’t have an opinion on her yet. He asked if it was OK with me if he talked to her over text to find out if she was interested in anything more than friendship. I gave him the OK, and thought no more of it.
A few days after, he pulled me aside and showed me their conversation. She was definitely interested. As most people say, she was a unicorn. Dan Savage describes a unicorn as a third party willing to engage equally with a married/committed couple. I was thrilled -- she was cute and in college as well, two positives in my eyes.
We invited her to our apartment.
The first night she was there, we had sexual contact. Since we had already cleared the STI hurdle, with her bringing proof, we were excited. There was heavy petting, lots of tongue-touching, and general pants-tightening/wetting action.
The next day, we all made plans to go out to eat. We discussed more in depth how we would envision a relationship functioning -- she was going to date both of us, separately and together. It would be a group activity!
As the months went on, we went out in public. People sometimes stared, but the benefit of living in a major city is the general public’s inability to give a fuck. I was out at work (since at that time, I worked in food service, who cared?), and some of my good friends were aware of our arrangement. I was thrilled to have a woman who was passionate about me and my body.
After about four months together, it was time for my husband and me to set off for Tokyo. Twelve hours after leaving the United States, we were in Japan! As I got off the flight, I rushed to the airport bathroom. Since I am on continuous birth control (I haven’t had a period in roughly two years), the wetness between my legs was rather concerning. As I peeled my panties down, I saw this horrific grey-green discharge. I changed into the outfit I had packed in my luggage.
We spent a wonderful week in Tokyo. Thank God for the Japanese and their bidets, because they kept the itch and mysterious discharge at bay. I emailed my doctor mid-week explaining my symptoms, and set an appointment for when I arrived back stateside.
As we alighted in our hometown, we called Violet and told her when we would be home. At this point, she was staying at our apartment most days of the week, and had stayed to take care of the cats while we were gone. She said she’d go out to grab some food and let us nap. My husband and I passed out when we hit the sheets.
Four hours later, we called Violet again to let her know we were up and around, and asked if she’d come back. She said she was on her way, and we were excited to see her. I hunted for my laptop, and opened it up to catch up on a few emails when I noticed my screen was completely shattered. I was floored. I had left my laptop it its case, tucked away when I left. I realized it was sitting on the couch when I picked it up.
As Violet walked in the door, she noticed we were rather silent. I asked her what happened. She said she didn’t know. I asked again, and said I’m not upset that it happened -- I just wanted to know how. She again pled ignorance. I called Hewlett-Packard to get a quote on a new screen.
As I was on the phone, I heard my husband speaking in the other room. I walked out, and she had bags of her stuff and was on the way out. I finished the call, and he said she was going home. I was rather upset, as she had been crying on Snapchat all week how she missed us.
Skip forward through a few days of silence to my doctor’s appointments. Aside from the judging eyebrow raise I received when I mentioned Violet, I was told to wait a few days for results. Well, the results were: Trichomonas vaginalis. My head exploded. I called her, and left a voicemail telling her she needed to call me back ASAP.
Ten minutes later, she did. I asked her how she gave us an STI. She shakily admitted she faked the STI results she showed us, because she didn’t like going to the doctor. I told her I’d have the rest of her shit at my work that night, and if she didn’t get it, it would be in the dumpster.
She picked up her stuff that night, and I was silent. Then, two days later, my husband’s phone kept going off at 3 a.m. I read the messages and she was sending about two messages a minute asking for two bottles of nail polish I had omitted from the bag. I told her to leave us alone, that they were her loss at this point. She kept going.
Finally, at 4 a.m. I called the cops and told them where she lived. She stopped texting him. The next day, I found out she had written a blog post about the police visiting her house in the wee hours. I felt no pity.
Between the two STI tests (I ended up getting blood, throat, and vaginal cultures) and my laptop, the damage she had caused was upward of $1,100. As we surveyed the damage she had caused, both emotionally and financially, we just decided the insanity was not worth it. It took us four years to move from friends to dating, and in four months there was no way we could have possibly been making the right choice to introduce her permanently into our lives.
Thankfully, she moved away from our city and we have peace in our house once more. I have nothing against polyamory -- I am just not sure if I can put forth the insane effort it takes to keep us safe from the plethora of insane motherfuckers out there. Now we are two, and that’s right for us -- but especially my sanity.
*Names have been changed.