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In general, privilege is not about consciously believing that you’re better than other people; it’s about assuming that you are normal -- and that other people probably should want the same things you want (in this case, a primary partnership).Solo polys, though, often do not want what primary romantic partnership has to offer.Instead of trying to weasel their way into a primary role or hoping to undermine an established relationship, most solo polys simply want a full and equal voice in the conduct of their own relationships.Thanks to Aggie Sez for commenting on an earlier draft of this article.

In these cases, the couple will often close ranks against what they see as an external threat to their sacrosanct coupledom, and the secondary partner or solo poly can be discounted, emotionally trampled, and silenced in the process.

When this importance comes at the expense of others, it becomes couple privilege.

Couple privilege is the (often unconscious) idea that committed, emotionally and sexually intimate relationships are fundamentally more important than other types of intimate relationships.

Some people in polyamorous communities dismiss solo polys who don’t have any primary partners as not “doing polyamory right.” In this they echo the dominant cultural assumption that there is something wrong with people who don’t have/want at least one primary-style partner.

Couple Privilege These stigmas generally boil down to the common social presumptions associated with “couple privilege.” With such intense social emphasis on coupling and living happily ever after, it is no surprise that couples often see themselves as a legitimate unit worthy of recognition.

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