Mainstream privilege

I’m currently reading The polyamorists next door by Elizabeth Sheff.

It’s a fascinating read so far and I’m thrilled that someone has spent the time and effort to do proper research instead of leaving discussions about polyamory to opinion and conjecture.

What has struck me first is within the larger umbrella of the polyamory subculture, I am slap bang in the middle of the mainstream. White, well-educated, mid-thirties, heterosexual.
I suppose it shouldn’t be a surprise. That combination of demographic factors puts me in the mainstream just about anywhere in the West.

Still, I think that it’s an important reminder that I am privileged. Remembering that those who are privileged mostly don’t realize it, this helps me to put my position in life and society in better context.
I suffer very little gender discrimination.
I suffer no sexual discrimination.
I suffer very little racial discrimination or violent abuse.
I suffer very little relationship style discrimination.
I am well-paid, have a comfortable home, clean water and good health care.

This shouldn’t be the case. The choice of polyamory shouldn’t be restricted to the privileged. It should be a choice that everyone can take without fear of legal repercussions or discrimination.
That’s one reason why I’ll continue to be an activist for this topic.

Can’t wait to read the rest of the book and find out what other results came out of her research…


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