A non-traditional family is opening up about what it’s really like to raise children in a “polyfamory” relationship.
Alysia Rodgers, 34, and her husband, Tyler Rodgers, 35, were the proud parents of two children, not really looking for, or even knowing about the possibilities of expanding their relationship. That is, until they met fellow couple Taya Hartless, 28, and her husband Sean Hartless, 46, back in 2020. Alysia told Today last Monday:
“We didn’t even know what polyamory was, until we started getting feelings for each other.”
Soon after those feelings between the two couples formed, it was hard to stay away from one another — so Taya and Sean, who were driving nearly two hours to see Alysia and Tyler in their Oregon home, decided to move into a new place with the Rodgers in February 2020, beginning their journey of what they call, “polyfamory.”
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Since Alysia and Tyler already shared two children together, they of course had to explain their new dynamic, which Tyler told the outlet was, “really easy.” He explained:
“Our kids already knew we were dating Sean and Taya. We told them: ‘You know mom has a boyfriend and dad had a girlfriend and we’re going to move in together, and we’re all going to be a big family and they’re going to help parent you, so we’re going to need you to treat them like you treat us — like parents.’”
Sounds like it would be quite an adjustment… But it seems to have worked out, as in the years since living and raising children together, the quartet has welcomed two new babies — but details regarding paternity are not at the top of their list. Alysia explained:
“I birthed one and Taya birthed the other. We did not regulate the biology.”
This means that the four do not know who the biological father is for their 22-month-old and 15-month-old. Alysia continued:
“We’re all equal parents to all of the children and it’s not up for debate or discussion.”
However, if their children ever did want to know down the line, they’d totally be game for it:
“It’s not something that we’re trying to hide from the children either. If they want to know where their DNA comes from, we will absolutely go down that path with them. But at this point in their lives, it doesn’t matter.”
“We wanted to do everything we could to make sure that everybody feels like an equal parent. At this point, finding out their genetics would change nothing.”
Sean says that shows like Sister Wives contribute to a stigma around relationships beyond two people. He explained:
“Sister Wives references always make us laugh, because that’s practicing polygamy versus polyamory. I think people hear the ‘poly’ lead in and think that it’s the same thing — that’s not us. We don’t have a hierarchal situation here — we’re all trying to be equals and not have the ‘patriarch’ lead the family.”
Related: There’s Been ANOTHER Sister Wives Split!
Polygamy, of course, refers to having more than one husband or wife, while polyamory refers to engaging in multiple romantic relationships with consent. He added that their relationship dynamic offers “a big sigh of relief,” as Taya is a stay-at-home mom, so their children are always being taken care of by at least one parent. He added that their dynamic shows their kids that, “relationships don’t have to look a certain way,” and that however they choose to live and love is, “100% their choice.” Tyler added:
“At the end of the day, we’re just like any other monogamous family — there’s just four of us. Being a parent is so much more than just biology, and that’s what we’re about.”
We’re glad these four are making it work, and seem to be putting their children at the forefront of all their decisions, which is most important, so more power to ‘em!
Reactions, Perezcious readers? Could you ever picture yourself in a polyamorous relationship? Let us know in the comments down below!
[Images via Polyfamory/Instagram]
Originally published at perezhilton.com