Episode #351: Consensual Non-Monogamy, feat. Adrian Matthews

Our Abundant Voices guest this month is Abundance Community member Adrian Matthews, LMHC. Tune in as he unpacks the ethics of non-monogamy & monogamy, explains the importance of nonjudgmental curiosity, & shares misconceptions people have about consensual non-monogamy.

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About Adrian Matthews, LMHC:

Hi, I’m Adrian. I use he/him or they/them pronouns.

I’m passionate about helping people be intentional about how they structure their relationships to be not only what they want and need now, but to make sure that they have the kinds of relationships that will grow and change with them as they themselves grow and change over time.

Relationships aren’t easy; in fact, good relationships are full of hard moments and difficult conversations. But I structure my work around the idea that–with the right attitude, a few important skills, and some support along the way–those hard moments actually create the relationships that we want.

I am affirming of all relationship structures that keep the values of autonomy, consent, and Dan Savage’s campsite rule (to make sure that all members of a relationship are in better better shape if/when the relationship ends than when it began*). This includes consensual non-monogamy, open relationships, polyamory, monogamish relationships, queer/LGB relationships, and yes, even monogamous heterosexual relationships.  I also want to celebrate the endless ways that people understand, feel, and express their gender and sexual orientations… because gender is a construct, but it’s also a party, and a playground. Or maybe it’s a quiet picnic on a blanket in a park if that’s more your speed. It’s up to you.

I’m also committed to continuing to learn how the mono-normative attitudes, norms, systems, and laws that restrict potential for meaningful relationships also intersect with and reinforce other systems of oppression, such as patriarchy, White Supremacy, homophobia, transphobia, able-ism, xenophobia, etc. All of those systems have direct impact on not just the mental health, but also the physical safety of marginalized individuals, groups, and communities. My practice is committed to translating this learning and knowledge into strategic action to dismantle those systems.

I’m licensed to provide mental health therapy in Rhode Island and Massachusetts, and I offer telehealth/remote therapy services for clients with accessibility, transportation, or scheduling needs, as well as a limited number of sliding scale slots to help people who may not be able to afford the full cost of therapy to get the help and support they need.