Polyamorous and Open Relationships
Polyamorous and non-monogamous relationships are increasingly common. People who identify as non-monogamous or who are in non-monogamous relationships often have unique perspectives and needs. Having a mental health professional who is educated about various aspects of non-monogamy can help you and your partner(s) to negotiate challenges to intimacy and reach informed decisions. This can be especially true for couples who are in the initial stages of "opening" their relationship. Seeing a mental health professional with your partner or partners can also help you develop strategies to improve communication, increase intimacy, and navigate relationship conflicts as they arise.
Local Experts in Polyamorous and Open Relationships
I help individuals and couples explore what relationship dynamics are right for them. Monogamy is never a given and can sometimes be destructive to the well being of those trying to force themselves into it.
Oh snap. Welcome to the world of possibility and also crazy emotions! But for real....I like to start with what needs to be unlearned and what might be holding you back individually before jumping into the realm of expectations/boundaries/etc. Again - I do not claim to be an expert...and I am also VERY willing to navigate areas that promote honesty, connection, authenticity, and trust.
Exploring your relationship values can help you ground into what you really want and need, and create the relationship orientation that is right for you. I have knowledge of many different types and styles of polyamory, non-monogamy, and open relationships. I hold the belief that any type of relationship can be healthy with the consent and honestly of all partners.
I approach this work with a focus on unpacking beliefs about roles and rules in relationships often internalized from our families and larger cultural narratives. I am particularly attentive to the power and control dynamics intertwined with all emotional relationship and that are often amplified through the practice of non-monogamy.
Over 8 years of experience working with clients in polyamorous and open relationships, supporting individuals and relationship partners in developing more intimacy through shedding reactivity and expanding curiosity and authentic connection.
I have over a decade of experience working with non-monogamous clients and have been non-monogamous myself for most of my adult life. I also recently published my first book, Building Open Relationships: Your Hands-On Guide to Swinging, Polyamory, & Beyond. In particular, I look at figuring out how to practice non-monogamy in a way that is ethical and in alignment with your own values/boundaries
I have worked with open relationships, polyamorous, non-monogamous, and relationship anarchist individuals to deepen their relational practices and how they relate to their identity for years. I believe that it is important as someone from these identities to work with someone who has lived and understand these experiences, and can help with the different challenges along the way.
I chose to become a Marriage and Family Therapist not because I hold any dogma around those traditional words, but because this path allowed me to study relationships and their complex beautiful intersections. My own experience as a person outside of the mainstream sexuality and relational path paradigm informs my excitement for multiple human possibilities.
Opening up a relationship or re-contracting an existing one can be daunting. I have experience working with polyamorous individuals and couples on issues such as contracting, jealousy and emotional transparency.
I specialize in relationships that fall outside of the conventional models, and love helping individuals in those relationships explore and communicate their needs, learn to navigate challenges in a healthy way and build stronger bonds of trust and connection.
Consensual non-monogamous relationships can be very complex! I have extensive personal experience navigating them and can offer guidance on decision-making to preserve health and sanity.
Relationships can be difficult. It\'s not uncommon to wonder sometimes if they\'re worth all the work! There are so many variables and possibilities to explore; let\'s figure out what works and what doesn\'t. Your intimate life deserves love. We can work toward finding it in as many forms as are available to you.
I have lived experience of open relationships and the structure of poly and swinger community. To avoid ethical conflicts and dual relationships, I have not been active in the Portland open relationships community in several years.