Written in response to Love is Infinite’s post on coming out at work, and to Silicone Valley’s response.
I’m out as polyamorous as well as being out as bi at work (in a medium-sized third-sector organisation), and I was at my last job (in a small, private software firm) too. I’m aware that there’s no legal protection for being polyamorous, but I also know that my colleagues are basically nice people and that they like me, and that they understand or try to understand that polyamory works for me and that both my partners are very important parts of my life.
I don’t talk about polyamory all the time, any more than I talk about bi activism all the time, or being a Quaker or being vegetarian – and I probably haven’t used the word ’polyamory’ more than once or twice – I just talk about my life in the way my colleagues talk about theirs, and if they ask me questions about how any of it works I answer them honestly.
I know I’m lucky that I’ve found a job where there’s community spirit and where my colleagues care about each other’s wellbeing. In that situation, I believe that being open about what and who is important in my life gives me an easier ride and more protection than trying to keep my relationships secret.
Frankly, if I found myself in a job where I couldn’t be myself and where the 9-5 was just paying for the ’real life’ in the evenings and at weekends, I’d be looking very hard for another job. I want my real life to be happening all the time.