The Smart Girl's Guide to Polyamory Book Summary - The Smart Girl's Guide to Polyamory Book explained in key points
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The Smart Girl's Guide to Polyamory summary

Dedeker Winston

Everything You Need to Know About Open Relationships, Non-Monogamy, and Alternative Love

3.7 (23 ratings)
21 mins
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    The Smart Girl's Guide to Polyamory
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    Polyamory for beginners

    When it comes to love, most of us grow up ingesting the fairy tale myth – that idea that someday we’ll meet “the one,” our soulmate who perfectly fulfills all our needs. But for many, that template ends up feeling limiting or unrealistic. 

    What if intimacy could be more expansive and colorful?  

    Polyamory offers an alternative paradigm to traditional relationships. The word polyamory has Greek and Latin roots, meaning something like “many loves.” As you may guess, polyamory involves openly having multiple romantic or sexual relationships with the consent and knowledge of everyone involved. Rather than restricting emotional and physical intimacy to a single person, polyamorous people simultaneously nurture intimacy with multiple partners.

    This may seem like a whacky new invention, but consensual non-monogamy has existed across cultures for centuries. When the early Christians discovered America, they were shocked to find some tribal cultures openly embracing practices like brothers sharing wives or one man wedding two sisters. During the “free love” era of the 1960s, many people experimented with open relationships and group marriages. Some scientists even argue that early humans lived in polyamorous communities. 

    So while the terminology is new, polyamory has existed throughout human history. And while it can now mean different things to different people, it is based on three key principles: ensuring clear consent, communication, and emotional transparency with all partners. 

    There’s no “right” or “wrong” way to do polyamory. For some folks, it may mean having a handful of intimate yet casual sexual partners outside a core couple. For others, it involves forming close-knit polycules – networks of three or more people in committed relationships, who share intimacy, and maybe even a household. 

    Regardless of style though, practicing ethical polyamory requires self-knowledge, emotional intelligence, strong communication skills, comfort with uncertainty, and plenty of emotional maintenance work. It’s not for everyone. But for those who feel limited by cultural rules around love and intimacy, it can be liberating – a way to create connections full of richness and depth.  

    If you’re curious to explore polyamory, here are some questions to get you started: What stories about sex, love, and romance were you taught growing up? How did you actually experience those things as you grew older? And which parts of the fairytale – finding the one, getting married, having kids – do you truly want for your life?

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    What is The Smart Girl's Guide to Polyamory about?

    The Smart Girl’s Guide to Polyamory (2017) offers practical relationship advice for women seeking to break free from jealousy, possessiveness, and competition through discovering polyamory. Incorporating real-world experiences and practical exercises, it covers exploring your relationship style, conquering jealousy, and “coming out” as polyamorous – helping you craft unique connections tailored to your needs.

    The Smart Girl's Guide to Polyamory Review

    The Smart Girl's Guide to Polyamory (2017) explores the world of polyamorous relationships from a female perspective. Here's why this book is worth reading:

    • It offers insightful advice on navigating the complexities of multiple partnerships, empowering women to explore their desires and build fulfilling connections.
    • With its personal stories and experiences, the book sheds light on the realities and challenges of polyamory, providing practical tips and guidance.
    • Dedeker Winston's compassionate approach dismantles stereotypes and misconceptions surrounding polyamory, fostering understanding and acceptance.

    Who should read The Smart Girl's Guide to Polyamory?

    • People interested in exploring non-monogamy and alternative relationships
    • Those curious about opening up a current monogamous relationship
    • Anyone looking to gain confidence in communication skills

    About the Author

    Dedeker Winston is a relationship coach, writer, podcast host, and leading advocate for polyamory and non-traditional relationships. She is the host of the popular Multiamory podcast, which provides advice on open relationships. Her book Multiamory: Essential Tools for Modern Relationships was published in 2023. 

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    The Smart Girl's Guide to Polyamory FAQs 

    What is the main message of The Smart Girl's Guide to Polyamory?

    The main message of The Smart Girl's Guide to Polyamory is to provide guidance and support for women who are exploring or interested in practicing polyamory.

    How long does it take to read The Smart Girl's Guide to Polyamory?

    The reading time for The Smart Girl's Guide to Polyamory varies, but it typically takes several hours. The Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is The Smart Girl's Guide to Polyamory a good book? Is it worth reading?

    The Smart Girl's Guide to Polyamory is worth reading as it offers valuable insights and advice for women navigating polyamorous relationships.

    Who is the author of The Smart Girl's Guide to Polyamory?

    The author of The Smart Girl's Guide to Polyamory is Dedeker Winston.

    What to read after The Smart Girl's Guide to Polyamory?

    If you're wondering what to read next after The Smart Girl's Guide to Polyamory, here are some recommendations we suggest:
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    • The Ultimate Retroactive Jealousy Cure by Jeff Billings
    • The Ethical Slut by Janet W. Hardy and Dossie Easton
    • 101 Questions to Ask Before You Get Engaged by H. Norman Wright
    • Come Together by Emily Nagoski
    • I Didn't Know I Needed This by Eli Rallo
    • Single, Dating, Engaged, Married by Ben Stuart
    • The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey