My short bio: I was born in 1994 into a then conventional household. However when I was nine my parents got divorced and my dad involved himself in a polyamorous relationship. I lived primarily with my father, who lives in a house with 2 other men, and 4 women, but moved out and back in with my mother full time when I was 18. I am now in college (home for Christmas break!) and I will answer any questions you have about myself, or the polyamorous house I lived in.

My Proof: Since this is very difficult to prove I am doing this for the Casual Christmas Week! Happy holidays everyone!

Comments: 278 • Responses: 64  • Date: 

Promotheos73 karma

Do you see yourself living that lifestyle in the future?

Captain-Nemo211 karma

Not even remotely. While I am sure that some people can make polyamory work for them, all I saw from it was jealousy, fighting, and distrust. I will be monogamous as hell when I get married.

PantyPixie26 karma

Mono/Poly hey whatever works for you. :) But there is jealousy, fighting and distrust amongst many Mono relationships...and from what I've seen its actually been in almost every mono relationship at one point or another (at least among my peers). Fidelity and trust certainly has more to do about the participants in the relationship than the actual structure of said relationship.

Wishing you a happy life with as many people as you feel right for you! thanks for the AMA.

Wirocajun87 karma

...I'm sorry. I'm sorry. > Mono/Poly Mono/Poly Monopoly.

Captain-Nemo11 karma

This made me laugh unreasonably hard.

SpareTimeMusings56 karma

Could you tell us about the jealousy and other issues you observed? I'm starting off a polyamorous relationship at the moment and, although the dynamics in my particular case sound very different to your father's living arrangements/relationships, I'm really curious to hear about the messy side of things.

Captain-Nemo98 karma

The jealousy was only present in about half of the people involved. the other half actually make it work for them. However two of the women are constantly manipulating everyone else and trying to become the "alpha" female I guess. They would always start arguments in public pulling another member in the middle. "which one of us do you like more" sorta thing. It probably doesn't help that one of the women has more mental health problems than anyone else I have come across.

My advice is make sure that everyone involved can deal with sharing everything, and at the first sign of trouble, run. Many people get stuck in unhealthy relationships, (my father is one of them) and getting out is hard enough when there is only one other person involved.

Whatsthisplace26 karma

I'm no expert on the subject but it sounds like these two are breaking a poly rule. Were they called on it ever?

Captain-Nemo39 karma

I dont know the poly rules, so I don't know if they are breaking it. but they dont trust anyone, so thats breaking rule number 1 in relationships

Roznak5 karma

They would always start arguments in public pulling another member in the middle. "which one of us do you like more" sorta thing.

I as a poly would terminate the relationship if you pull this question on me. I do not allow jealousy and toxic elements in my poly relationships.

My advice is make sure that everyone involved can deal with sharing everything, and at the first sign of trouble, run.

I completely agree with this. Stable poly relationships cannot be created by having toxic people in your relationships.

Captain-Nemo4 karma

the same can be said about any relationship

not_margaret18 karma


Captain-Nemo31 karma

This is the first I had been exposed to this subreddit. It's actually rather lovely to see people making Polyamory work. :)

PantyPixie48 karma

Is there anything that you found to be particularly nice and beneficial being a child in this sort of arrangement?

(besides lots of bday presents as you already stated)

Captain-Nemo125 karma

The house itself had 5 incomes. There was always a surplus of everything and there was plenty of disposable income for fun activities and trips

HI_Handbasket33 karma

That's what I keep telling my wife! Another wife = another income. And another mother-in-law, but mine is wonderful; maybe I'd luck out twice.

Captain-Nemo22 karma

The risk is high!

Manate9614 karma

I am curious I had a friend who had divorced parents who had both remarried and he was required by colleges to report all 4 incomes even though he was only receiving financial support from 2. This kinda screwed him out of financial aid. Was this a problem for you at all?

Captain-Nemo13 karma

My father made to much money for me to qualify for any financial aid. so I am not sure how many had to be reported since it didn't matter anyways.

Manate965 karma

I also just realized that the reason his were all reported was due to marriage on both sides, and I am assuming your dad was at most to only married to one of the women correct?

Captain-Nemo8 karma

This seems correct. He is only married to one because of legal reasons

ilikewc33 karma

uhg that sounds so nice

Captain-Nemo3 karma

It certainly has its benefits.

felixtre35 karma

How were things like birthdays, christmases, sleepovers with friends at your place. Did people at your school treat you differently?

Captain-Nemo75 karma

In a very selfish way birthdays and holidays were better. More people=more presents. I never had many friends stay over because it was always awkward explaining my situation. My friends in Jr. and Sr. highschool new about my house situation, but they were very respectful and polite about it. Luckily for me the general populous at my school never found out. However one teacher did find out and was overly sympathetic about it.

Whatsthisplace21 karma

I'm late here but did you say you were the only kid in the house? Have you talked to your dad about how you felt/dealt? What about your mom? Did she weigh in on your situation? You sound like you figured a lot out. Good for you.

Captain-Nemo35 karma

I was not, there was girl several years younger than me who I treat like a sister.

I have recently talked to my father about how I feel about everything, with limited success.

My mother doesn't like my father or his choices. (there divorce was messy and complicated)

Whatsthisplace14 karma

That girl/sister is probably glad to have you to talk things through, good and bad.

Good luck with your dad. He's human but really, you come across as pretty put together. Don't know what to say about your mom. Hope she's moved on.

Captain-Nemo10 karma

I ended up ok I think. So did my mom. Words still out on my sister, but I hope she will be ok.

onekrazykat4 karma

How old is your sister? Is she living with your father?

Captain-Nemo9 karma

She is 13 now, Like me she moved out. She lives an hour away from me now.

felixtre7 karma

It is so cool people around you view your situation in that way. People can be dicks.

Captain-Nemo16 karma

I was very lucky with my friend group. Splitting the group up for college was difficult.

felixtre4 karma

Its hard but donĀ“t worry, they will always be your friends. Also in college you will meet all kinds of new people.

Captain-Nemo6 karma

I certainly have done that!

thepanichand28 karma

Did you find any of the relationships worked long term? No matter how open minded/nonjudgmental I try to be, I always find the poly people I've known break up over it, no matter how into it they seem to be.

Captain-Nemo35 karma

I would be surprised if 5 years from now my father was still involved. I've had to watch as he has been trampled by this whole experience.

megazver28 karma

How did the dynamics of their relationship work? Was everyone banging everyone? Any good stories of the aforementioned jealously, mistrust and hate?

Captain-Nemo61 karma

There were a few pairs of people who were not banging, but mostly it was everyone banging everyone. I try my hardest to not think about the dynamics because it involves a parent and no one wants to think about their parents banging anyone.

jefffffffff11 karma

I scrolled all the way Dow. For this question. Thx

Captain-Nemo8 karma

no problem :)

reeper151 karma

You mentioned there was about 7 people in the same household, but we're there any gay/bisexual relationships going about or most straight since you mentioned your dad was only slept with women.

Captain-Nemo4 karma

Some of the women slept with Each other. Unsure about the other men

elcucuey23 karma

Did you consider any of the people in the relationship as parents?

Captain-Nemo45 karma

I did for my father of course, but I never did for any of the others. Only one of them ever tried to put herself in that position and I did not get along with her in the slightest.

elcucuey12 karma

Did you not get along with her before that or is her attempt what caused you to dislike her? Also why weren't you living with your mom, was it court ordered?

Captain-Nemo34 karma

I never got along with her, she is the epitome of alternative, super hipster lifestyle. Plus she was a super bitch to both me and my father.

I lived with my father because he still lived in my school district. I didn't want to change schools so I stayed there.

Wordsworthswarrior21 karma

It sounds like you were a part of a very unhealthy and likely co-dependent relationship structure. How much of the negative aspects of what you saw would you attribute to the fact that there were multiple partners in the house vs the fact that those partners were not mentally well, and why? Do you feel like your fathers relationship with one or another of the women would have been healthy, were it not for poly?

Captain-Nemo39 karma

I would say most of it was due to the people in it, not the fact that there are multiple people. My father could have a very healthy relationship with some of the people in the group, the others unfortunately seem to ruin it for everyone.

Vanbone39 karma

As someone who has been in a poly relationship for a number of years now, I'm very glad this was your takeaway. So much of any relationship is about the people in it. Thank you for doing this AMA. We hope to have children one day, and a perspective like yours is very much of interest.

Captain-Nemo12 karma

If you have any questions feel free to PM me :)

megazver20 karma

How attractive were the people in the household? Every time I meet polyamorous bisexual snowflakes, they're fat as fuck and/or weird looking. And Wiccans.

Captain-Nemo63 karma

I would consider my father to be an good looking dude (its in my best interest genetically.) But I found none of the females to be attractive, mainly because they are all in their 30's and 40's. Also all of them are Pagan, not Wiccan. However my father had been pagan for almost 20 years prior, so I am not sure how important them being pagan is.

EDIT: Extrapolation, accuracy, and spelling

Atroxa5 karma

Can you elaborate on this? I honestly have no idea what the difference between pagan and wiccan is. I know it's a religious ideology but are they two different philosophies that essentially negate each other? I'm just trying to understand.

Captain-Nemo22 karma

as far as I know Wicca is a new agey revivalist subset of te larger pagan faith. Calling pagans, Wiccans is like calling Christians catholic.

hashtag-blessed16 karma

Did the "line up" of people in the relationship ever change over the years? How would a break up work in that scenario--if one person wanted another person gone, but some people wanted that person to stay, how would that play out? Thanks for doing this, it's super interesting to me as a traditional household kid and now a traditionally married adult.

Captain-Nemo19 karma

The number only grew over time, no one left the group. it grew from 4 people to 7 over several years. And i'm glad to be able to share my experiences :)

_PaftDunk_15 karma

Did your dad like specific people more than others?

Captain-Nemo30 karma

he had relationships with all 4 of the women and none of the men

pippi214 karma

When your parents split (or when your dad became involved with other people), did they tell you why right away?

Captain-Nemo30 karma

No, and actually it took me two years to figure out what was going on. my 9 year old brain didn't really understand sex, let alone what polyamory was.

Vanbone9 karma

What was it like, finding out? In retrospect, do you wish you'd have known sooner? Or do you think it was for the best that you didn't know for those years?

Captain-Nemo25 karma

At first I was really angry. I had been put in a situation I didn't understand, and had no voice in. However I'm glad I didn't know. Nothing I could have done would have changed anything so it saved me a few years of anger.

CrowSoup7 karma

Were the relationships discussed with you after you came to understand some of how the "adults" interacted? Either the dynamics or the nature of these relationships? Did you ask?

Captain-Nemo11 karma

Since I could witness the relationship for so long I just grew to understand it over time. Though I did ask for clarification later in life.

mjfc89313 karma

What was the adults' bedroom situation like? I think I read that you shared with your sister, so I started wondering how many rooms the house had, whether each adult had their own room, etc.

Captain-Nemo21 karma

There are three bedrooms. who sleeps in which rotates nightly. some times people crash on the couch as well

CrowSoup5 karma

How long did you have to share your room with your sister?

Captain-Nemo12 karma

5 years. It wasnt as bad as I thought it would be though.

Atroxa11 karma

Just curious...but is your father doing this for religious reasons?

Captain-Nemo27 karma

He claims that he is. But the men in my family have a record of infidelity. I think he is using it as an excuse to bang a lot of people with out recourse honestly. I could be wrong though.

CrowSoup11 karma

Was your "sister" born into the situation, or similarly imported?

Captain-Nemo12 karma

Similarly imported. but at a much younger age

painahimah10 karma

Hey, me too! I was asked to do an AMA but declined for the same reasons. What, should I get a note from my mom?

Question to compare experiences - how did you handle dating and friends visiting? Did you explain the situation first or just let them figure it out?

Captain-Nemo6 karma

I explained before hand, with varying degrees of success.

Iii5209 karma

What were some of the major adjustment and changes you have/had to make when u first moved jnto the household?

Captain-Nemo12 karma

Not a ton of adjustments. Honestly the biggest one was having to share a room with my younger sister.

AbomodA8 karma

If you could go back in time to when you were born, what advice would you give your Dad? What do you wish he/they had done differently?

Captain-Nemo23 karma

I would tell him the same thing I tell him now. Crazy is crazy.

theadoptedtenenbaum7 karma

A bit of a two-parter here. What specifically about the people in the relationship do you feel contributed to its toxicity? And, further on, do you believe that if they were (in some fashion or another) in monogamous relationships, would they still engage in unhealthy/insecure behaviors? (Checking phones, accusing of cheating, limiting contact, etc.)

Captain-Nemo13 karma

There was a lot of insecurity in the women. I dont know if this is common in polyamorous houses. One in particular had no concept of talking like civilized adults. the smallest things turned into screaming matches with her. Ironically enough, she was the mother of my sister who has proved to be very normal so far.

Yes and no. The jealousy directed toward the other women would be gone but that wouldn't solve all their problems.

theadoptedtenenbaum12 karma

An adult who throws tantrums will do exactly that regardless of relationship dynamic, if there is one. Believe me. Ugh.

Captain-Nemo11 karma


bluescrew7 karma

Seems like it might even be a good thing your sister had multiple female role models to choose from, seeing as her mom was apparently the worst one.

Captain-Nemo4 karma

Yes very. One of the other women in particular was very much the mother to her, to everyone's benefit.

thepathwaslong6 karma


Captain-Nemo10 karma


thepathwaslong7 karma


Captain-Nemo59 karma

relationships where one person calls the other one captain? well you cant spell relationship with out ship ;) but if you mean polyamory, I think its like communism. It looks great on paper, but people keep screwing it up.

braeica4 karma

I'm sorry to hear you were stuck in the middle of an unhealthy situation, though you seem to have handled it and moved on like a total boss. Poly can work in a healthy way for other people, though. Please don't let that particular situation color how you think of all of us.

Captain-Nemo7 karma

As I said else where I think some people can make it work :) glad its working for you

ViperOrel234 karma

From my experience, a major way people screw it up is if they're trying to use poly to paper over a problemed relationship.

Poly is like deciding that playing the relationship game on "easy" difficulty is boring, so let's crank the difficulty to "expert" where both the risks and the rewards can be greater...

I believe that one should already have a near perfect, ultra stable, long term, loving, supportive relationship before one should consider adding more people to the mix. And then people should be added very slowly so that those relationships can either become just as stable and supportive or fall off of the main due to discovered flakiness. One should not "poly-date" someone just bemuse they're cute and potentially lovable, people who want in should also be ready and able to play the relationship game at "expert" level.

I believe there's a reason that polyamorus people who are older tend to report much more happiness in their poly relationships. In my experience there is a qualitative difference between 20 year old poly people who are still trying to sort through mono issues in a poly setting and >40 year old poly people who have 20 years or more experience with making relationships work.

It sounds to me like someone in your dad's household should have stepped up a long time ago and voted one or two of the people introducing hostility and instability off of the island.

Have you ever said anything about this to your dad? There's absolutely no good reason for 5-6 people to be stuck in the same abusive relationship with one emotional abuser...

Captain-Nemo2 karma

Life is hard enough. I don't want to play it on legendary :(

I have made my opinions on his life and his choice of life partners very clear to him. He just is to scared to step up and take action on it.

thepathwaslong1 karma


Captain-Nemo3 karma

I am a guy

InukChinook6 karma

You said you only need to know one thing.

thepathwaslong8 karma


Captain-Nemo12 karma

We get confused

FrancisGalloway5 karma

Does the mixing of Greek and Latin roots disgust you?

Captain-Nemo7 karma

I have now taken 5 semesters of Latin and the fact that the Latin is muddled by the filthy Greek makes me livid.

C0rvette5 karma

Obligatory, did you ever see more than you wanted to?

Captain-Nemo17 karma

I don't think it is obligatory, and luckily no I did not.

poohspiglet4 karma

How do you define yourself sexually? and do you feel any of your parents have been trying to persuade you to be one thing or another?

Captain-Nemo12 karma

No, My parents never tried to change my sexuality. I am straight and will always be straight. My best friend is a lesbian though, so I am in no way against homosexuality.

wassamatta23 karma


Captain-Nemo8 karma

1) My father did after I confronted him about it when I was 12

2) Not really I was an awkward nerd throughout middle school like a lot of other people

schnp2 karma

Two things.

1) I wish people would stop asking you general questions about poly (I'm sure you do too) as you're not really able to answer most of their questions as you were/are not poly yourself. They should ask someone who has actually tried it.

2) I don't see this yet, but how did your dad come out to you? How was his coming out to the rest of his family and friends?

Edit: Make that three things.

3) Was his interest in poly part of the reason he and your mom split?

Captain-Nemo8 karma

1) People seem to want me to decide if Polyamory is good or bad, but it would only serve to confirm their biases.

2) My dad came out after I asked him why he went on dates with two different girls in one week. He explained what it was and what it meant.

3) It was the reason. My father wanted to open the marriage, but my mother was against it. My father decided the best idea was to sleep with multiple women anyways. That ended the marriage very quickly.

schnp-2 karma

1) Confirm what biases? Do you mean confirm their assumptions that you're against it?

3) I hope you don't let your father's poor behavior color your opinion of poly so much. Your father (obviously) did not engage in ethical relationships. Most poly people are very ethical about it and don't cheat on their partners.

Captain-Nemo5 karma

1) Confirm the opinions they already hold.

3) No I know my father is an idiot and is not the rule of thumb.

SteveSmith20202 karma

Would you say there is an alpha male/female within the group? If so, what makes you think that?

Captain-Nemo3 karma

The men don't really vie for alpha status that I have seen. The women fight, but only because two of them instigate it.

KaleidoscopeGuardian1 karma

Are the 4 women independently involved with each other romantically as well? Or is your dad basically the hinge in this poly setup? Where do the other 2 men stand?

Captain-Nemo2 karma

Some of the girls are involved with each other. No one is really the hinge per say, while some people seem to be more of the decision makers.

Subs-man1 karma

Even though you don't see yourself in a polyamorous relationship in the near future, Do you feel it will have to become necessary or even inevitable that monoamory/monogamy will become obsolete & polyamory/polygamy will have to take place?

Captain-Nemo1 karma

I dont think so. It may become more common but I dont see it becoming a majority thing any time in the near future

polyspice-2 karma

It sounds like you had an incredibly negative experience. It also sounds like you tried your best to ignore it and escaped the house as soon as you could. Is there really something of value on poly you think you have to contribute?

Captain-Nemo34 karma

The only thing I feel qualified to say is if you are in an unhealthy relationship, (poly or not) get out. No amount of time can fix pure unbridled crazy.

megazver-15 karma

Was the experience so offputting you're not even into the Reddit favorite two-chicks-at-the-same-time? If so, your father has done a disservice to you.

Captain-Nemo6 karma

Two chicks at the same time in a relationship. No.