Jealousy is nearly unavoidable in most relationships, and that’s true in polyamory as well. Polyamory is when people agree to have multiple, simultaneous romantic relationships. You can imagine how jealousy may show up there—but you’d be surprised at how similar those experiences are in all kinds of different relationships.
Dr. Joli Hamilton has long been fascinated by the concept of jealousy. It has featured in many of her life experiences, including her own polyamorous relationships, and eventually led to her doing her dissertation on the topic.
In this episode of From Betrayal to Breakthrough, Joli talks about the importance of setting boundaries, investing in yourself, and taking the time to confront and understand your jealousy in creating a lasting and loving relationship, regardless of how many people are in it.
Joli Hamilton is a research psychologist, an AASECT certified sex educator, a TEDx speaker, and a sex and relationship coach. She has a doctorate in depth psychology from the Pacifica Graduate Institute and is a professor of human sexuality. She is also known for her work on the archetypal experience of jealousy. Over the years, she has helped many of her clients improve their relationship skills, giving them the tools they need to meet the relationship’s changing needs. She has opened over a dozen different business ventures all while managing her own relationships, pursuing a graduate degree, and raising and homeschooling seven children.
Joli has felt all the wild highs and terrible lows that come with business ownership, marriage, divorce, and reinventing love from the bottom-up. She is committed to helping women create sustainable, soul-nourishing relationships without sacrificing their careers.
In This Episode
- Who is Joli Hamilton? [0:11]
- Why study jealousy? [2:25]
- What is polyamory? [3:57]
- Her experience with polyamory and jealousy [7:46]
- Lessons from her polyamorous relationship [23:51]
- How to successfully address jealousy [26:28]
“We can’t just decide to start a whole new relationship structure with nothing behind us, with no background, no model…and polyamory is not for the faint of heart, right? If you’re going to get into something where there’s more than one love attachment, betrayal is like right there, jealousy is right there.” [5:00]
“One of the things that I tell people when they’re going to have a complicated relationship, any kind of complicated relationship, is the foundation needs to be extremely secure. You need to be secure in yourselves and secure together. And if it’s not then alterations to the standard model are probably going to bring big challenges.” [17:12]
“Would I change my polyamorousness? I wouldn’t, because for me, that is the honest truth, that I fall in love with more than one person at a time…if I deny my own sense of falling in love, all that happens is I keep secrets, and that doesn’t work for me, so instead I pull it out and it lives as a central part of my life that I stay very aware of.” [24:39]
“If we only measure our relationship’s worth by its longevity, we’re missing out on measuring all the things we learned, all the love that was had, and all the joy that we found while we were in it.” [29:45]