As Told To Itohan
When I was in JS2, I started dating a lot of people consecutively. I was never really single. I dated two best friends. I even once dated a set of twins and their elder brother. Most of them were older and bought me gifts, which was risky because I was young and lived with my parents. So they mostly gave me money. The thing is, I didn’t date them for the perks. For me, it was just another way to validate my existence and sexuality.
I knew men were attracted to me but the thought never excited me. So most times when I dated men, it was just to prove that I could get with whomever I wanted. I can’t count the number of people I’ve dated but I know it’s nothing less than 25. However, the number of those people that I actually liked can be counted on one hand.
I think another reason I started serial dating was that I was exposed to a lot of sexual activity at a young age. My parents were always in church, which meant that I spent a lot of time at church or with family friends. There was a boy whose parents’ house I spent a time in. One day, we kissed. Then it became a regular thing. Whenever he saw me going somewhere, he’d follow so we could make out. It could be to his room, my room, or the bathroom at church.
My first crushes were on two seniors in my school. A guy and a girl. The guy and I used to write letters to each other and meet in the library. He was very sweet. The girl, however, I just liked. What I felt for them never overlapped because it was easy for me to compartmentalise my feelings.
My very first relationship with two people at once, was when I was 16. The guy was my ex’s best friend, and the girl was my younger sister’s friend. They didn’t know about each other until the girl broke my heart. The guy saw me crying about it, and when he asked why, I told him. He left without saying anything. We eventually broke up.
I started looking for more ethical ways to date people when I cheated on my girlfriend in 2019. We broke up after I told her but got back together later. After that, we decided to try an open relationship. She told me I could sleep with everyone but this one girl but I slept with her anyways. She was my best friend, and I somehow always slept with my best friends. I think that’s when I figured that monogamous relationships couldn’t work for me, even though they seemed to be all that was available.
In 2020, I came across people on Twitter who posted stuff about being polyamorous and how they engage in multiple relationships at once. I realised that maybe that’s what I am. I never wanted to cheat. I just felt suffocated. For me, feelings for one person doesn’t mean fewer feelings for another. I consider my feelings for all of my partners completely separate. I didn’t practice ethical polyamory until 2021. Before then, it was separate relationships with people that weren’t aware of my other relationships.
The two people I’m dating now are both polyamorous and it’s been amazing. I enjoy their company and I’m completely in love with them. It feels more freeing than having to hide because not only are they both friends, they understand me. I wish I realised this sooner and was able to have better, healthier relationships.
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