I recently came across a new concept I was unfamiliar with: reclamation.
From my understanding, it is based in the Stag and Vixen play, which is essentially a respectful “borrowing” of the female, who is then returned and is intimately reclaimed by her partner.
I found the concept interesting. It brings focus back on the primary couple. I get how that could seem attractive to some people. I have some thoughts, though.
I think my issues with putting this practice into play in the polyamory context come from a couple of places.
One of my issues is the idea that someone must be reclaimed, as if they did not belong to each other for the time away. My Daddy having another partner that He loves doesn’t take anything away from me, emotionally. While I definitely see myself as belonging to Him and to some degree the reverse, I don’t feel that Him loving someone else or participating in sexual activity with her means I need to reassert my claim over Him. Perhaps it helps that I don’t tend to become jealous over physical intimacy, but the idea seems possessive to me.
In the context of an open relationship or hierarchical polyamory I could see making a case for reaffirming the primary relationship. My personal preference is to avoid building relationships where people feel less than someone else. I may be living with Daddy, but that doesn’t mean He shouldn’t love and value another partner just as much, or afford her as close to an equal share of His time and attention as everyone’s schedule will allow. The idea of reclamation seems necessarily exclusionary to me, as if I would be not only reasserting, but taking Him back from her. Somehow, that feels wrong when engaging with poly partners who are in long term relationships.
Lest I seem to be denouncing the practice altogether, I can see its usefulness in several situations. In any of the derivations of cuckolding, whether it include the humiliation aspect or not, or in open relationships wherein outside partners are sexual only without emotional connection I can not only understand that practice, but think it might be a particularly helpful relationship tool. To a lesser extent I can see it being used in hierarchical polyamorous relationships, though I personally struggle with that particular style of polyamory.
While the practice of reclamation may be useful for some situations, because my poly concerns tend to center on creating equality rather than focus on just one relationship in the bunch. I personally am not interested in incorporating it into our dynamic for that reason, though it makes for interesting discussion. However, I always encourage people to discuss new concepts and evaluate usefulness based on what works best for them, since every relationship has different needs.
About the Author