Polyamory, Open Marriages, Swinging – Psychotherapist’s Update

When an article is written, the reader assumes the data is up to date. The reader trusts that the quotes are taken from information of the now, not from years ago. For most certainly there are certain topics that psychotherapists such as myself, may share a different message then the message they shared say 5 years ago, 10 years ago. Why may the message shift? Think about it. A Psychotherapist such as myself who specializes in couples, a marriage therapist meeting with approximately 40 couples and/or individuals per week, after year 1-10, year 10-20, year 20-30, with a brief solution focused style, has now experienced the reports and stories of massive varied couples through those many years. Most certainly in the changing cultural climate of literal time, the data such a mental health professional shall accumulate shall be of great significance.

Which brings me to today’s brief blog article. Polyamory, Open Marriages, and Swinging, is today’s topic. I have been wanting to write this article for a while as a shift has indeed occurred. What prompted me to take action and write this brief article today, is that google sent me an email, yes, that is what happened. Google informed me that my name was used in an article. Thus, I checked it out. What did I discover? CNN.com posted an article from an interview I did in 2013. Reddit.com, RockdaleNewtonCitizen.com to just name a few . . . are re-posting my words from that interview, as though they are my words of the now. I immediately contacted the author via email, several emails in fact, and I also left a voicemail expressing my concern about the data not being up to date. I feel awful for the public! Therefore, I decided to take it upon myself to write this brief article in the hopes that the public shall be up to date.

First, the article states I am a Boston based psychotherapist. I no longer am based in Boston, easy to discover this. Although I provide consulting, coaching and counseling for clientele state-to-state, I am based in Arizona, as listed in all my social media outlets. Secondly, and most importantly what prompted me to write this article, is that it is so important to me that the public have accurate information. It is my greatest passion to touch the lives of the many with cutting edge, up to date information. It concerns me deeply to think that a message is being sent to the public that is inaccurately depicting what I would say in 2020. Data must be updated. The messaging I shared with the public, most often frequently during the 2011-2013 time range about the topic of Polyamory, Open Marriages and Swinging, is out dated. Based on qualitative reporting, my previous assertion that consensual non-monogamy is damaging and destructive to ‘all’ individuals and couples, is not accurate in our current cultural climate. It has come to my attention in speaking with countless couples, and individual men and women as the years progressed, that there is an additional perspective. In addition to clientele, men and women would contact me through the years to share their success stories, as they read my quotes from interviews, read my blog articles, watched the documentary I did in 2012 for discovery network, and other TV and media outlets. Each success story I would hear, I would ask questions to learn more due to my interest in understand our changing times. Thereby progressing to an altered stance in 2020 if I were to be interviewed, in comparison to the Dr. Karen Ruskin who was interviewed over 5 years ago, 10 years ago . . .

Psychotherapist’s updated stance: Consensual non-monogamy is healthy and advantageous for some. Yes, this is a fact, based on client and non-client report. Therefore this is my stance of the now, from accumulated success stories I have heard within the client-therapist relationship and outside of that relationship dynamic. I do not judge the information. Of course there are those of whom consensual non-monogamy would not be a good fit. This is not a sales pitch for or against consensual non-monogamy. This is providing an important update, and, I actively receive human reports to date of the successful and enlightening journey many individuals and couples have and are experiencing. This is not my commentary and assertions over 5 years ago, 10 years ago, 20 years ago. For those were not the bulk of the stories articulated back then. To be clear, so there is no misunderstanding, consensual non-monogamy is not advantageous for some, yes, that perspective has not changed. What has changed is the assertion that it does not work out well for ‘all’ couples. One cannot categorize and state it is destructive for all, which was my assertion well over 5 years ago . . . Additionally, my articulation well over 5 years ago, 10 years ago . . . was the stance that bringing in additional people into one’s life distracts one’s self from dealing with one’s primary mate. Again, an assertion, based on clientele I met with to date during those years in practice. Alternatively as the years progressed, as mentioned above, in speaking with couples and individuals I heard other stories. Stories of great love and success opening up one’s heart, mind and body to additional people. Stories of personal and relational growth, discovery and connection. For many couples, Polyamory, Open marriages and Swinging is value add and opens up dialogues with one’s spouse/primary mate that would otherwise never have been discussed. In meeting with couples and individuals in the “Lifestyle” (those who either consider themselves in any one of the three categories as listed above, and more), many took the time to share with me their stories that are beautiful, healthy and exciting. Many couples who are poly, have open marriages or are swingers are deeply connected and committed to their spouse. Some couples in the lifestyle have healthier relationships then monogamous couples, and others do not. It works both ways. This is not an either/or debate, which is the different stance then asserted from this professional years ago. This is an important update that has occurred from literal time within our changing cultural climate.

In summary, the point of today’s article January of 2020 is simply to state a fact: there are couples that consensual non-monogamy not only works for, it is advantageous for the couple unit and the autonomous individuals as human beings within the couple whole. And, there are other couples, it is not. This is not an either/or debate, rather it is a both/and assertion. Today’s article is not about going into the categories of the distinction between polyamory vs open marriages vs swinging and all the nuances within. We can save that for a future date, perhaps. Today’s article is about setting the record straight, with up to date information based on the reports of the many couples and individuals I have had the opportunity to speak with in and out of the context of the client-therapist relationship. As a relationship and human behavior expert, whether with this topic or any other, I will continue to be open to hearing the reports of men and women to assure that I remain up to date with the culture of the now. I am neither judge nor jury, though I am here to provide up to date information as I continue to live my greatest passion which is to touch the lives of the many, helping people to help themselves live their life with authenticity and happiness. I am hopeful this brief blog article provided the update I was and am interested in providing.

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