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07-Aug-2019 10:38

In Germany, polyamory strives to 'come out' By Frederic Happe Berlin (AFP) - Misunderstood, dismissed and often hidden, polyamory, or having several romantic relationships simultaneously, is slowly coming out into the open in Germany aided by the efforts of a counselor and support network.

At the age of 19, Christopher Gottwald decided he didn't want a monogamous relationship and spent the next decade searching for a partner who shared his outlook. The best thing is to say to yourself 'let's, us two, live together while remaining open to what may happen'," he said.

Activism Advertising Advice columns Agreements Anthropology Art Autobiographies Bisexual Books Book reviews by me Buddhist Celebrities Children College Comics Coming out Conferences Critics of poly Dating Feminism Gay GLBT Heinlein History Humor Jealousy Jewelry/Pins/Clothing Jewish Kids Leftist/Anarchist Legal Lesbian Marriage Merch Metamours Millennials Movies/plays Music Open marriage Plays Politics Poly 101 Polys of color Polygamy Radio Relationship anarchy Religion/spirituality Research Science Fiction Showtime Season 1 Showtime Season 2 Songs Spaceflight Speeches by me STDs Supreme Court: Obergefell Supreme Court: Windsor Swinging The Next Generation Theory Therapists TV For the last couple years I've hardly mentioned polyamory in the news in non-English-speaking countries. But coming onto the radar last month was an article from Germany (in English) that Agence France-Presse (AFP) distributed around the world.

For maybe, with the eyes of a hawk, Blinded by my lust for adventure, I forget to halt to look around.

Change has been glacially slow, but it is now possible for men to live together without much arching of eyebrows, and it is almost unremarkable for an MP to be openly queer; even QCs and captains of industry have publicly dipped their toes in the water, and we accept the ordination of queer priests, though squeamishly (and unrealistically) requiring them to be chaste in thought as well as deed. Most of us – and certainly the generations for whom, when they were young, any expression of homosexuality, no matter how trivial, was outside the law and “pretty policemen” (the Met’s own term for them) were sent out to tempt and arrest the unwary – are content with civil partnerships and have not pleaded for gay marriage.

Thus the recent institution of civil partnerships seemed to be the final necessary reform, giving homosexuals the right to inherit each other’s property, just as may a man and his wife; and if they want a family, there is now no barrier to their adopting children – in the case of homosexual men, so long in error bundled together with paedophiles and pederasts, an astonishing recognition of moral responsibility. But every minority has within it a core of single-issue politicians and protesters who are never satisfied and always ask for more, and homosexuals, both male and female, are no exception.

The severity of the punishment, however – the notoriety and disgrace that ripped apart family and friends as tough to bear as the months in gaol – had unexpected consequences.

It proved to be the tipping point into a long and very slow change in the attitudes of society that, six full decades later and almost to the day, gives homosexual men and lesbian women the legal right to enter into marriages. Ridiculing ignorance, false assumption and blind bigotry, I have quietly done my share of campaigning for equality – for equality of opportunity to live my life as I wish, and for other homosexuals to find employment in the Armed Forces and the police, in law, medicine and education, even in the press, some areas of which are as residually homophobic as the football field.

For maybe, with the eyes of a hawk, Blinded by my lust for adventure, I forget to halt to look around.Change has been glacially slow, but it is now possible for men to live together without much arching of eyebrows, and it is almost unremarkable for an MP to be openly queer; even QCs and captains of industry have publicly dipped their toes in the water, and we accept the ordination of queer priests, though squeamishly (and unrealistically) requiring them to be chaste in thought as well as deed. Most of us – and certainly the generations for whom, when they were young, any expression of homosexuality, no matter how trivial, was outside the law and “pretty policemen” (the Met’s own term for them) were sent out to tempt and arrest the unwary – are content with civil partnerships and have not pleaded for gay marriage.Thus the recent institution of civil partnerships seemed to be the final necessary reform, giving homosexuals the right to inherit each other’s property, just as may a man and his wife; and if they want a family, there is now no barrier to their adopting children – in the case of homosexual men, so long in error bundled together with paedophiles and pederasts, an astonishing recognition of moral responsibility. But every minority has within it a core of single-issue politicians and protesters who are never satisfied and always ask for more, and homosexuals, both male and female, are no exception.The severity of the punishment, however – the notoriety and disgrace that ripped apart family and friends as tough to bear as the months in gaol – had unexpected consequences.It proved to be the tipping point into a long and very slow change in the attitudes of society that, six full decades later and almost to the day, gives homosexual men and lesbian women the legal right to enter into marriages. Ridiculing ignorance, false assumption and blind bigotry, I have quietly done my share of campaigning for equality – for equality of opportunity to live my life as I wish, and for other homosexuals to find employment in the Armed Forces and the police, in law, medicine and education, even in the press, some areas of which are as residually homophobic as the football field.Sixty years ago, on March 24 1954, the 20th century’s most notorious trial for homosexuality concluded with the imprisonment of Lord Montagu, his cousin Michael Pitt-Rivers and his friend Peter Wildeblood.