My ex boyfriend left me because I’m poly and I was trying to figure that out. he took me being poly as him not mattering to me, and it has me terrified that I won’t ever be able to date because every poly relationship I have been in has been unhealthy, and I simply can’t force myself to be mono. I just don’t know what to do anymore and I can’t stand being lonely.

Almost anyone who’s been through a few breakups knows there are situations when we feel that our partner’s reason for leaving is unfair, or inaccurate, or simply not the whole story. That is one of the biggest heartbreaks of a relationship ending, in my experience. Not all breakups are mutual. Which sucks. But it was your partner’s right to walk away from a situation he didn’t want to be part of - let yourself mourn the loss of that relationship without assuming it predicts anything about the future.

As for the fact that every poly relationship you’ve ever been in has been unhealthy: that does not mean poly is unhealthy, or even that poly is necessarily an unhealthy choice for you. What it does mean is that there is a pattern in your past that you want to break. Do some honest introspection about what made these relationships unhealthy: is there something in how you conduct your relationships that needs attention and healing? Is there something about the type of person or relationship you’re drawn to that needs some reigning in from your more responsible side? Or have you just had a few instances of bad luck, and the solution is to just get back on that horse?

Do some self-work - that might be therapy, journaling, reading up on healthy communication and healthy polyamory - and be intentional and responsible in your pursuit of future relationships. Know what your dealbreakers and red flags are, and do not compromise on them. Go out of your way to date people who have a history of healthy polyamory - try poly meetups, ask on first dates if they’ve read your poly manual of choice, try online dating and chat about poly philosophy before meeting up. 

Finally, there is a big difference between being lonely and not being in a relationship. Do not let your sense that you “can’t stand” being without a relationship rush you into something - that might be part of the pattern of you ending up in unhealthy situations. Cultivate community and friendships outside of your romantic life. If sexuality and touch loneliness are a sticking point for you, hop on Tinder and have some one-night-stands, invest in an awesome sex toy, or see if your area has erotic parties that sound fun. Go out for happy hour with coworkers, join some online forums - get out there and make connections without worrying so much about dating!