Polyphobia: Anti-Polyamorous Prejudice and Discrimination

Polyphobia: Anti-Polyamorous Prejudice and Discrimination

polyamory

Eli Sheff is considered a leading expert when it comes to polyamory and stigma. Eli is the CEO and Director of Legal Services at the Sheff Consulting Group, a think-tank of experts specializing in diverse subcultures and under-served populations. The following is an article she wrote for Psychology Today about polyphobia and discrimination.  Prejudice is making judgements about

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Healing from Affairs — Cheating is not Polyamory

Affairs can surface in a long-term relationship.  Can healing occur when the affairs have been covert, repeated and ongoing? Several years ago a couple, Peter and Sherri (not their real names), a married, het/cisgender couple, came to see me. They had been married for approximately 25 years. As are my usual questions when I first

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Interview with Jo Flannery, AMFT, MA Sexology

Jo Flannery, AMFT, MA Sexology, is one of four therapists to join LifeWorks this year through the Greenhouse, our postgraduate psychotherapy training and mentoring program. The Greenhouse provides new clinicians with opportunities to develop their identities as therapists, deepen their skills and unique strengths, and expand their cultural competence through hands-on experience and educational modules.Click

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Returning to Therapy — A Profound Act of Self-care

by Cindy Trawinski, Psy.D., Dipl. PW & Rami Henrich, LCSW, Dipl. PW “I can’t believe I’m here… again.” Some people returning to therapy for the second, third, or fifth time often wonder “why do I need to go back to therapy?” “was there something I should have handled the last time around?” “maybe I am

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The Long Haul

long road

The following is an excerpt from a recently published article by Rami Henrich, that can be found in Elizabeth Sheff’s book, Stories from the Polycule: Real Life in Polyamorous Families. The first of its kind, this anthology collects stories and essays written by and about real people living in “polycules”: the networks between people in

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A New Polyamory Book: Stories from the Polycule

We are pleased to announce that our friend and associate, sociologist and researcher, Dr. Elisabeth Sheff has just published her newest book, Stories from the Polycule: Real Life in Polyamorous Families. The first of its kind, this anthology collects stories and essays written by and about real people living in “polycules”: the networks between people in polyamorous

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Therapist Bias

LifeWorks Psychotherapy Center - Chicago and Skokie sex positive counseling specializing in kink-friendly, LGBTQ, gender identity, open relationships, polyamory, anxiety therapy

by Cindy Trawinski, Psy.D. & Rami Henrich, LCSW Bias influences all of us — even therapists. In fact, one 2011 study indicates that as many as 50% of clients identifying as polyamorous had seen therapists that they felt lacked cultural competency or were biased. Meanwhile, a 2006 study by Drs. Keely Kolmes, Wendy Stock, and

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Meeting Difference – Our Conflict with Contact

People looking at a gallery of photos

“Otherness, taken seriously, always invites transformation, calling us not only to new facts and theories and values but also to new ways of living our lives – and that is the most daunting threat of all.” Today, I came across this quote about the quintessential dilemma that difference and diversity pose, from sociologist and renowned

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Sex…How Much is Enough?

couple touching hands

So often in my practice I hear complaints about differing levels of libido in partners.  One partner has more interest and desire than the other. What to do? I have to say that frequently I don’t have the answer. That is, I think to myself, “Ok, you want to have a lot of sex and you don’t. I guess

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Expanding the Boundaries: Polyamory & Non-traditional Family Forms

Last weekend, I attended the 35th Annual Meeting of AFTA (American Family Therapy Academy), in Chicago.  The conference, entitled “Coupling Today: Love, Parenting, Community,” included many excellent presentations and opportunities to learn from colleagues. I was pleased and surprised to find the topic of non-monogamy well-represented in the Saturday plenary, Monogamy & Nonmonogamy: Commitments, Variations

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Longing for Belonging

On Saturday, March 30, the Chicago Polyamory Support Group met. Into its 4th year, the group has welcomed hundreds of people through its doors. Being an open support group, anyone can come at any time. Each month a topic is selected and each time the discussion flows — both on and off topic as the

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Betrayal and Trust

Thin suspension bridge

A topic that rears its head from time to time in many polyamorous relationships, and monogamous ones as well, is the issue of trust and betrayal. It seems that most of us have experienced betrayal at some time in our lives…could have been a parent who didn’t keep their word to do something promised, or a friend

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Am I Poly?

Person holding question mark over face

“Polyamory is an identification that mirrors LGBTQ identification in the sense that it is not something I can control, squash, or stop. I did not make a decision to do this. It is not something that I can stop.” That’s what Helen said when I interviewed her for a research project in 2011. For her, and many

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