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  • Writer's pictureDedan K. Bruner


Married (Nonmonogamous) Daughters: “Batgirl” (8) and “Black Cat” (6) Philadelphia Area

My wife and I have been nonmonogamous for over fifteen years -way before we had our daughters. Something that affected was the number of grown-ups that my girls found themselves around. As a result, both of our daughters learned how to navigate communication with a variety of adults to get what they want. Typically, that’s about securing snacks behind my back or inviting guests to an upcoming tea party. However, in at least one case, it meant getting information.

One day when my back was turned, my older daughter cornered a romantic partner of mine and asked her “Do you love my dad?” Me and that partner weren’t quite "there" yet. But my kids could spot the familiarity between us even though we always kept things age-appropriate in front of them. While my wife and I are honest with our children about our nonmonogamy, we have friends who aren’t. Had we been less than honest at that moment, it’s likely that our kids would still pick up on that familiarity with our other partners and assume we were cheating on one another.

I guess the tip would be to prioritize integrity. Sure it seems easy to think our kids aren’t picking up on intricate details of our lives. But it’s very possible that they aren’t missing a single thing even if they don’t have the context to fully process all of it.

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