So, for example, while I'm perfectly happy to wander around WisCon or various strange cities holding hands with Jed and snuggling, I have to overcome a little self-consciousness about doing that in Oak Park. It's a village -- after barely a year of living here, I already tend to run into people I know everywhere -- the grocery store, the yarn shop, the library, etc. and so on. And most of them don't know about the poly thing yet. So I know exactly what they'll think if they see me holding hands with some guy they don't know.
Well, actually, I don't know exactly what they'll think. They'll probably be confused. I mean, I'm obviously not having some kind of secret affair, since I'm not being very secret about it. What do monogamous folks assume in that situation? And do they worry that if I'm clearly not being faithful to Kevin, I'm going to come after their husbands? (I'm not just making this up, by the way -- more than one woman has said this to me. Sigh.)
I want to have female friends in Oak Park! I don't want to be ostracized like Hester Prynne at the playground, the grocery store, the schoolyard. Perhaps I should wear a button: your husband is safe with me!
Which of course makes me immediately want to add another button: you, on the other hand...
Just kidding. Sort of.
Anyway, it was lovely having Jed here for the week -- he was a great help in getting me through some of my backlogged projects (we're actually caught up on recycling, for example, rather than having Kavi's room filled with un-broken-down boxes -- apparently, California boys are very good at recycling). And while I didn't have a lot of free time -- mostly we got to hang out while watching the kids -- Kev did kindly let us have an evening off from kid-duty so we could do dinner and a movie.
Funnily enough, the movie, Easy A, which I strongly recommend for funny, sweet, a fabulous tribute to 80s teen John Hughes movies as well as Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter, and featuring a totally endearing protagonist (and her parents, whom I would like to be when I grow up), also managed to teach me a good lesson. Or rather, remind me of one I already knew, but apparently have to learn over and over again.
If I choose to go back to Jed's hotel room with him after the movie, and happen to run into someone I know on the way, it really is none of their business what we're doing there. They can speculate as much as they like, of course. And I'm pretty sure in a small village like this, I won't be able to stop them.
Really, the easiest solution is for Jed to come visit a lot more often, so that people quickly figure out the whole poly thing. I think that should work well. :-)