Home › Forums › The BBXX Podcast: Let’s Get Intimate! › Episodes 22 & 23 – "The Evolution of (Non)Monogamy" with Heath Schechinger › Reply To: Episodes 22 & 23 – "The Evolution of (Non)Monogamy" with Heath Schechinger
March 9, 2021 at 8:24 pm
This episode was so fascinating to me because non-monogamy is something I’ve been interested for some time, but I’ve never heard an academic perspective on the topic. Dr. Heath’s work made me reflect on my own experiences with casual dating vs. more serious partners. In many ways, current dating culture connects to the concept of consensual non-monogamy: when first dating someone, you may assume they are dating other people; when the relationship progresses, you may have the conversation about being exclusive (monogamous), known as “DTR” (Defining The Relationship); from this point on, couples are usually defined as either monogamous, casual, or broken up. What is important is that both partners agree on the definition of their relationship, and neither is coerced or pressured. In my own experience, I have felt somewhat pressured to agree to monogamy after dating for a couple months – however, my discomfort with the “exclusive” label did not stem from feeling limited to only one partner; it was rooted in what the term “monogamous” or “exclusive” means in today’s dating world. For many college-age singles, the label of exclusivity suggests the next step to come: the labeling of boyfriend, girlfriend, partner, etc. I felt like if I said no to monogamy, the person I was dating would simply leave; this is why Dr. Heath’s work is so important – by normalizing the concept of CNM, it would open so many more avenues for relationships that work for everyone, rather than confining us all into boxes and labels.