I promised I will expand onto relational anarchism today, and I will do so. I will do it by sharing my view on relationships and describe my ideals and aspirations. Before I start I would like to do a disclaimer, I am not gong to place any type of label on myself. It would be the last thing I want to do now, as de-labelling has my clear preference at the moment. There has been a lot of mononormativity going on in my life, to the point where my personal intuitions got numb and default function took over. For quite a long time I was following prescribed ways to be in a relationship and I feel that now is the moment to start making my own choices. Obviously, I don’t exclude the option that I will end up in the same spot where I started, but it will be my conscious choice to do so. Not because the only correct way for me to be is in a straight monogamous relationship and if not, then I am not normal. I was growing up in a traditional society where things in regard to relationships were quite simple. There is a clear role distinction within the family and behavioural norms are being transmitted from generation to generation. Up until this point in every relationship I have had, I was following these prescriptions without questioning them too much. I started questioning my role for the first time some years ago which resulted in a few important insights which led to reshuffling processing.
One example will be cooking, I always had a feeling I have to do it no matter what. I must take care of my man and make sure he had his meal after work. At some point I felt deep discomfort and internal conflict which resulted into a full rejection of this activity. It wasn’t a good attitude, but at that moment I was blind to what cooking actually can stand for, I was rejecting the activity without paying attention to nuances. Now I cook sometimes, but it is more special and attentive, now I actually do it to give pleasure and attention instead of carrying out my duty. Luckily my partner was always supportive to me and the whole conflict was clearly unfolding in my head rather than he gave me a reason to behave in normative way. There was a lot of internal struggle when I was changing this habit, I think at this point I feel comfortable about it. I only notice it more in the domestic situations in my parents’ presence. And again, it is my struggle, I never explicitly was asked to do anything in a certain way. That is also a scary thing about it, there is not really a tangible moment when these behaviours became my default. The inability to pin them down, complicated the process of discovery. They keep on manifesting causing discomfort without showing their true face. I noticed that from time to time some such behaviours come out, and then it is important to listen to yourself and act accordingly.
In the world that changes so quickly, I feel that having a box around relationship isn’t aligned with the spirit of time. I understand the importance of patterns and labels to build communication between people, but I also see how these labels can suppress or limit the manifestation of one’s true selfness. No matter in which relationship we will find ourselves in, whether we are monogamous or polyamorous, there has to be a space to end up there because of our own choices and not because this is how it should be. For me this is the essence of a fully aware being with another person. The desire to be with somebody, in a unique way, helping each other, supporting, holding together in time of trouble out of love, care and compassion, is what has to be at the centre and not a norm that is there to impose control and maintain the social structure. I would rather ask the structure to believe in us, humans, that we will preserve it no matter what. There is something beyond the norm that is kept dormant. Waking up the deep sense of love and belonging asks for own decisions regarding the formation processes of our relational space. Not always there is time and space to do so. Not everyone wants to get to the essence of their own desire and emotions. It is an intense practice, but I believe it pays off by creating an opportunity to operate beyond the default mode. Relational anarchism is a concept which includes some of the principles that seem important to follow. Some especially important values include autonomy, anti-hierarchical practices, lack of state control, anti-normativity, and community interdependence. Relational anarchism isn’t so much about monogamy or polygamy but it is anti-mononormativity. Meaning that the utmost value is to be able to make choices regarding your relationships based on individual choices and not on a set of norms. That’s about it. We can be whatever we want to be. Sounds rather simple, doesn’t it? Let us see what will I encounter along the way. Feels exciting, slightly wobbly and uncertain. What else can I wish for?