When Dan Savage says polyamory is not a sexual orientation.


Poly is not a sexual identity, PP, it’s not a sexual orientation. It’s not something you are, it’s something you do. There’s no such thing as a person who is “a poly,” just as there’s no such thing as a person who is “a monogamous.” Polyamorous and monogamous are adjectives, not nouns.

My quick two-cents: In the end, I agree with Dan’s assessment that "Polyamorous Polymath"'s decision is his to make. His quip about sexual identity is irrelevant to the value of his advice which is: If you’re with someone who is monogamous, you have to decide whether monogamy is a price of admission you are willing to pay. Whether or not it’s one’s romantic identity is sort of inconsequential, since I’m sure he could have given the same advice to a bisexual guy whose girlfriend never wanted him to be with guys.

(This is just another case of Dan Savage saying pretty excellent things wrapped in a package with some potentially mean/irrelevant/misguided things. I love Dan a lot even though I acknowledge all criticisms of him and the things that he’s said— but he’s always willing to engage people and change his mind, which I respect. Can’t please everyone, can you?)

I think regardless of whether one “chooses” to be poly or not, whether it is an orientation (which I’m partial to but I’ll save that for later), it is still a legitimate issue of relationship compatibility with a partner that we have to take into consideration.