I’ve recently had a few people ask me questions about vocabulary I use in my daily speech to talk about poly/relationship things. Some of them are common poly community words, some of them came from my local community and some of them I think I’ve just started using. Maybe after this they’ll catch on
Metamour (n) – A partner’s partner. Generally either someone similar to you with whom you get along fabulously, or someone nothing like you who you don’t know how to interact with at all. Rarely are they in between.
Polycule (n) – The 3-D map of how you, your partners, your partner’s partners, your partner’s partner’s partners… etc. interact. Often encodes things like who’s having sex, who’s living with/committed to/married to whom, who isn’t talking etc. Common configurations include: “Vs”, triads “Ns”, tetrahedrans, carbon rings etc.
Polywog (n) – A generally affectionate term for a newbie to poly, often one who has been spawned by being friends with, sleeping with, or dating an experienced poly person (a polyfrog?)
Polysaturated (adj) – The feeling of having reached ones relationship limit. Sometimes spurred by existing relationships taking up more time, or accidentally starting to date three new people in one weekend. Often characterized by the strange feeling of meeting someone you find attractive and not really caring if you get a chance to talk to them.
Relationship Hangover (n) – that depleted feeling you get after spending too much time with too many people. You’re not quite sure if you want to be alone in your room for a week, or curled up against a lover. Home remedies range from journaling to hot baths to alcohol to ‘the hair of the dog that bit you’ in the form of snuggling, dates, threesomes, etc.
Relationship (v) – Relationshiping – the act of engaging in/working on relationships. Activities range from scheduling, going on dates, having overnights, processing, seeing a couples counselor, etc.
These are just a few of the more unusual poly terminology I’ve been confusing my friends with lately. For a wonderfully complete glossary of poly related terms, check out this site.