Why open relationship agreements, jealousy workbooks, and other non-monogamy tools aren't cutting it
When I first started working with clients, I would focus only on non-monogamy related problems. I'd help folks figure out what to put on their dating profiles, encourage couples to have conversations about their relationship agreements, and guide triads through conflict resolution. This worked for some, but time and time again, so many people kept running into the same frustrations: recurring arguments, unmet needs, feelings of loneliness and abandonment, broken trust, and piled up resentments. Problems kept arising, no matter how many books on polyamory they had read.
I've worked with hundreds of clients since 2015, and I've found a simple universal truth, whether you're newly opening up a relationship or you've been exploring non-monogamy for years.
Solid non-monogamy requires a solid relationship. Solid relationships require a solid foundation.
This may seem like an obvious realization, but it completely changed the way that I worked with clients. Rather than starting by focusing on the nitty gritty of non-monogamy education, I started taking my clients through a thorough assessment of the state of their relationships.
Do they each feel loved and secure?
Is there pain from the past that has never been resolved?
Do arguments on certain topics always spin out of control?
Once I could assess what's already going on in the relationship and take stock of the existing strengths and challenges, then we could begin healing, repairing, and constructing a solid foundation that would lead to non-monogamy success. Once the foundation was in place, then we could dive into creating agreements, going through jealousy workbooks, creating safer sex plans, and taking advantage of the wonderful wealth of specialized non-monogamy resources available today.
How research can upgrade your non-monogamy
My work for the Multiamory podcast has involved thousands of hours of reading up on the latest relationship research and most effective communication practices, usually developed by therapists, counselors, and experts who are primarily working with clients in traditional, monogamous relationships. We've spent years taking that information and "translating" it into resources that are applicable to all kinds of relationships.
In particular, my work has been heavily informed by evidence-based practices developed by the Gottman Institute, one of the world's leading institutions for relationship research. But, like many other experts in this space, the Gottman resources are only targeted to people in monogamous, married relationships, leaving behind the rest of us who color outside the lines.
That's why I created Building a Solid Foundation for Non-Monogamy. I am tired of seeing people who are frustrated and emotionally exhausted being told that non-monogamy itself is the root of all their problems. I'm pained to watch people reading all the books, listening to every podcast, and shelling out for workshops and weekend intensives without getting answers as to why their relationships still feel shaky.
What's covered in this course?
I'll be taking you through the fundamentals of what you need to know in order to create a solid foundation for your non-monogamous relationship, explaining how modern relationship research can be most effectively applied to your practice of non-monogamy, and offering exercises, journal prompts, and discussion questions to tackle with a partner.
These are the resources, tools, and interventions that I am repeating over and over again with my clients, especially when I work with couples. I may even make this course a pre-requisite for working with me -- that's how much I reference this information in my sessions.
You can preview the first module of the course below to see if my approach is a good fit for your learning style.
Is this for me?
You may find this course valuable if you relate to any of the following:
- You want to open up your relationship but you're not sure where to start.
- You and your partner are already non-monogamous but can't figure out why you keep running into conflict.
- You've read multiple polyamory books, listened to podcasts, and followed many different educators and influencers, but you still feel insecure in your relationships.
- You're interested in working with me or another therapist/counselor/coach but not sure if you're ready for the time investment and financial cost.
- Your therapist/counselor/coach is supportive of your non-monogamous relationships but won't offer any practical advice, exercises, or homework.
- Your therapist/counselor/coach is NOT supportive of your non-monogamous relationships and either can't or won't help with your relationship issues because of it.
- You like having practical exercises, journal prompts, and homework to help turn theory into action.