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I’m Sierra. I live in the Boston area with my family.

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Coming Soon To A TV Near You: My Family on 20/20

by Sierra on April 16, 2012 · 37 comments

in Uncategorized

My household, along with several of my friends and loved ones, are being profiled by 20/20 about our ethical nonmonogamy, a.k.a. polyamory, a.k.a. open marriage. The part where Martin and I are happily married and also happily dating other people, whatever you want to call that.

The episode is currently scheduled to air this Friday, April 20, at 10 p.m. EST on ABC.

Here’s what I hope you will do with this information:

1. Spread the word. I’d love for there to be a large contingent of engaged, progressive viewers for this show. 20/20 has a typical audience of 7 million people. Most of my friends (probably most of your friends) are not their target demo. Let’s represent!

2. Watch the show. It’s bound to be interesting. The whole piece is on the “evolution of marriage”, and will feature my family, some of my friends and lovers, and another poly community in Seattle. They’ve talked to some interesting authors and researchers as well.

3. Record it and send me a copy. I’ve figured out how I’m going to watch the episode when it airs, due to the graciousness of one of my dear friends who has a TV and knows how to use it. I have not figured out how I’m going to keep a recording of this madness for future reference. If you can easily record it, please do!

4. Thank ABC for their work. Remember that audience I was talking about? This is a controversial topic. I’m sure they’ll get plenty of criticism for covering it at all. It’d be great to know they’re also getting positive feedback. So even if they fuck it up, let’s say thank you and offer constructive critique.

5. Give me some lovin’. I’m exposing myself and my family to a huge amount of public scrutiny and criticism. Throughout this process I’ve worried about everything from how my relationships will be portrayed to what middle America will think of my housekeeping. I can’t overstate how much support from readers means to me. Your kind words keep me going. Please offer me constructive feedback and support if you can. This goes double for everyone else who was involved, if you’re lucky enough to know the other cast members.

 

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  • Amykuras

    Sierra, I have to say that when I first learned about polyamory I had what is probably a pretty typical monogamous reaction. Your open, honest writing about your relationships and the “whys” of all of it has really opened my eyes to the joyfulness, for lack of a better word, of it. I always believed that love meant the whole “forsaking all others” thing, and in my relationship it still is because that’s what we both need. But I understand much better now that loving relationships can take many forms. Thank you. (Also, they are interviewing Talyaa Liera, who was also a Strollerderbian known as Karen Murphy before your time, in the same show, it appears! A big night for SD!)

    [Reply]

    Sierra Reply:

    Whee! Strollerderby represent! I’m so glad to hear that my stories have mad a difference. Thank you!

    [Reply]

  • http://childwild.com Sierra

    Thank you! I’m really looking forward to it.

    [Reply]

  • leaf

    Wow!  Add me to your cheering section!

    No TV here either, but I see that the 4/13 show is already up here: 
    http://abc.go.com/watch/2020/166626 so maybe within a few days after it airs it will be online?  

    [Reply]

    Sierra Reply:

    They do seem to post their episodes pretty quickly after they air them, but not to offer streaming of the broadcast.

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  • Colicmommy-1

    Your kids are going to be so messed up. Nice job.

    [Reply]

    Sierra Reply:

    This is a perfect example of the kind of feedback I’m not looking for. I won’t post every comment like this that comes my way, but I’m letting this one through to demonstrate What Not To Do. Don’t be this jerk: you’re not helping me, my kids, yourself or the Internet.

    [Reply]

  • Alan Wexelblat

    It’s a brave thing to do. I hope it comes out well. Getting one’s 15 minutes can be pleasant or can be horrid and one has little control over that.

    Love and support to you and your family.

    [Reply]

  • Plinerd

    We will record it.  I hope they do you and your family justice.  I’ve reposted this on FB  with your quote ”
    Throughout this process I’ve worried about everything from how my relationships will be portrayed”, reminding people to be open to the effects of editing.  Best of luck!!  So glad they’re putting this out there.  :)

    [Reply]

    Sierra Reply:

    Thank you!!!

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  • http://www.mutantsupermodel.com/ Mutant Supermodel

    You are so brave. I don’t think I could do this, honestly. I’d be so freaked. Good luck to you guys. I’m going to try and watch it but I might be out and about

    [Reply]

    Sierra Reply:

    Thank you!

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  • Alan alan7388

    May I have permission to reprint this ASAP on Polyamory in the News?

    Thanks,

    Alan M.
    Polyamory in the News
    http://polyinthemedia.blogspot.com

    [Reply]

    Sierra Reply:

    yes please!

    [Reply]

  • Alan alan7388

    Oops — my email address is alan7388@gmail.com

    [Reply]

  • http://www.sarahtaub.com/ Sarah Taub

    Thank you for doing this, and good luck!  My poly household will be sending good wishes!

    [Reply]

    Sierra Reply:

    Thank you!

    [Reply]

  • jeff

    I’m looking forward to seeing it, and I hope they portray you beautifully.

    [Reply]

    Sierra Reply:

    Thank you!

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  • http://childwild.com Sierra

    Thank you! It means so much to me to know what we’re doing can make a difference.

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  • Laura

    From our poly house to yours ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    [Reply]

    Sierra Reply:

    Aw! Thank you!!!

    [Reply]

  • Katieimp

    I’m so excited to read about this.  I hope I can find a way to watch!  I hope all goes well for you and yours, and thank you for putting yourselves out there for your community!

    [Reply]

    Sierra Reply:

    Thank you! It’ll be posted on the website after it airs – I’ll link to it here when that happens.

    [Reply]

  • http://childwild.com Sierra

    I don’t have any easy advice beyond the obvious: read poly blogs and mailing lists, go to meetups if there are any in your area, check out OKCupid. Good luck to you!

    [Reply]

  • http://twitter.com/bluepotatoes66 bluepotatoes66

    I hope I can find some way to see this, whether it be an original airing or a recording of some kind.  I hope everything goes well for all y’all.  Thanks for putting yourself and your family out there for the poly community.  My special thanks go out to you as a fellow member of the Seattle area poly community.

    [Reply]

  • Shankar

    Wow!! As someone who has only seen this in movies/sit-coms, this was so very real and interesting. Very brave of you.

    I am a clear mono,but  strongly feel that all things consensual and honest are to be defended , encouraged and also celebrated.

    Good luck to you guys.
    (A reader from The Big Questions)

    [Reply]

    Sierra Reply:

    Thank you!

    [Reply]

  • http://cardioblogy.blogspot.com/ Jens Fiederer

    Heard of you from Landsburg’s blog, good luck on the interview – and I’m sure you’re housekeeping would be more than adequate by my standards (our youngest son is still in college and DOES come home at times, so we aren’t used to the idea that we can actually control the look of the house yet).

    I don’t think I’ve ever watched 20/20, but I’m almost tempted…in the end, though, I already know consensual choices are OK with me, so probably would not find it all that interesting.  I’m glad you’re willing to talk about it, though.

    [Reply]

  • Alan alan7388

    The 20/20 site has put up a written description of the show, and it makes your part sound very good. Looks like you’re maybe the 3rd of 4 segments of the 1-hour show. It says:

    —————-
    Open Marriage with Kids: With one in two marriages ending in divorce, some couples, instead of blowing up relationships, are quietly expanding them. “20/20″ profiles two couples who are living the open marriage lifestyle while raising kids and growing old together and they say it has made their relationships better. Having other paramours not only spices up their love life but the romantic intimacy builds a kind of extended family that actually helps with childrearing.
    —————–

    Alan M.
    Polyamory in the News
    http://polyinthemedia.blogspot.com

    [Reply]

    Sierra Reply:

    THANK YOU. It’s such a relief to see that. I can’t find it on their site though; can you send me a link? 

    [Reply]

  • Alan alan7388

    Here’s exactly the resource you want:
    http://polyevents.blogspot.com/#localgroups

    [Reply]

  • Alan alan7388

    > Postivity in the media to show them… 

    A special selection for exactly this purpose:

    http://polyinthemedia.blogspot.com/search/label/Show%20Your%20Parents

    [Reply]

  • Alan alan7388

    More news: ABC News has just put up a long, incredibly nice text-and-photo article on you guys:

    abcnews.go.com/Health/honey-home-date-mass-families-open-open-marriage/story?id=16171027

    [Reply]

  • Kevinkaren2011

    Hi Sierra
     I have to take my hats off to you all. In society it is slowly taking off with this lifestyle. I am glad to see people like you doing this. My wife and myself have dabbled in this also, at the present I am keeping two houses, one with my wife and family, the other with my girlfriend.Good luck

    [Reply]

    Sierra Reply:

    thank you!

    [Reply]

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