View Full Version : I have some questions...
11-04-2011, 08:05 PM
and was wondering if you all can give me some advice. My husband recently opened up to me and told me he is poly. At first, I was upset, I felt like I wasn't enough (sometimes I still feel like that) But then, I thought, just because I'm not this way, doesn't mean it's fake. So I decided to trust him and learn to let him be who he is. I love him, and because of that, I don't want to lose him or smother him.
We talked a lot about all of it (some of it leading to heated discussions but were resolved) but I still feel like I'm not understanding fully. I guess maybe I will never fully understand since I am mono myself. I feel stronger in our marriage now than ever before. It's me who he comes home to everyday, me he has stayed with, me who he shares a life with. but even so, I still get jealous. I don't know if these feelings of jealousy are real feelings or if they are pregnancy induced (we just got pregnant from our make up sex from finding out he was poly, go figure)
I know he loves me, but because of the jealousy, I'm terrified one day I'm going to loose him. That one day he is going to find someone else who he loves more. We have talked about it, but sometimes I feel like I can't describe how I feel accurately to him while I'm still upset about my current feelings. He always tells me he loves me more than anything and that he would be mono for me, but I don't want to try to change him. I have noticed since coming out to me about all of this, he has been more relaxed and happy. I don't want to take that away from him.
But I feel like I am still smothering him. I can't seem to let go and let him be in a relationship without me interfering. I just found out that, while they have not had sex, he has been walking around in the nude around his girlfriend. I got upset because I wasn't told about this sooner or wasn't asked if it was ok, but then felt like a controlling witch immediately after thinking that. I felt like I was losing control of the situation and thus, becoming close to losing my husband.
I'm sorry for the novel, if you got through it, then thank you very much! I guess I just needed to get it off my chest and ask for advice on how to let go and feel better about all of this. Or for someone to tell me it's just new pregnancy hormones and I need to chill out :)
11-04-2011, 09:07 PM
If your agreement is that he should tell you before they progress to new levels of intimacy then it's natural to feel upset that he didn't do so. He should treasure your open-mindedness and commitment to his happiness and be careful not to tread on boundaries. However it does seem like he chose to tell you eventually, so that's good at least.
I think it's fair to ask him to be patient and slow as long as you're genuinely working on becoming comfortable with more intimacy between him and the gf. After all, two adults in a romantic relationship, sooner or later physical restrictions are going to make the "forbidden fruit" appeal so great that they'll probably either have to be miserable all the time, split up, or break his agreement to you, and I'm sure no one wants any of those things.
Jealousy is natural, probably especially because of the pregnancy, but it's all in how you deal with it, and it definitely can get easier with time. There are some great resources here for managing jealousy and for mono/poly relationships: www.morethantwo.com
One question -- are you friends with the gf? Many people find that helps.
11-04-2011, 10:14 PM
I think it's great that you are being so openminded and working through the problems that you are having with this. And I'm certain that your husband does feel more relaxed at having opened up to you about all of this.
I firmly believe that everyone should go at the pace of the most uncomfortable person as long as that person is truely working on their issues. So it really helps to set up clear boundries. If you would rather him not do certain things until you are comfortable let him know what those things are.
For example my boyfriend would not be comfortable with me jumping into a sexual relationship with someone else. I know he feels that way So anyone that I even consider seeing knows that it may be a long time before things get sexual. I am starting to see someone knew and his wife is uncomfotable with us holding hands (because we are pagan and that is like a direct connection to each others energy, very intimate) so we respect that and don't hold hands. Since she is open with us about what she is ok with it helps draw clear lines that we don't cross making everyone feel more comfortable.
I also know couples who have written down their boundries just to keep things clear. If you can get to know his girlfriend and come to trust her too that would also bring a huge weight off your situation.
Keep us updated on how things are going. Congrats on the new addition to the family *hugs*
11-04-2011, 10:31 PM
Yay! Congrats on the baby! I'm pregnant too! Babies everywhere!
I have nothing else useful to add. Good luck with your situation. It sounds like the two of you are trying to be understanding of one another.
11-05-2011, 12:12 AM
Thank you for the replies! We haven't really set up solid boundaries, only sort of talked about what happens when they actually go to have sex. But it seems maybe this is moving a little fast for me to get used too. He doesn't seem to think so and says I have placed myself in a bad situation where I'm not accepting what could happen between the two of them, like I am waiting to deal with it instead of going ahead with it. I can sort of see where he is coming from but at the same time, feels like my feelings are being ignored. I just found out about this 2 months ago and not under the best conditions (discovered him cheating on me with this girl) At first I was really upset, but have since come a long way, but because of what happened, I just wanted some control of what was happening because of me being surprised with this situation. I felt like I couldn't control anything in my life at that point and so now I'm having difficulty with it. I am learning to deal with my emotions/feelings/thoughts and I try to open up to my husband each time I think it might be needed so I don't bottle it up inside. I guess a lot of it is jealousy, but only because I never thought I would have to deal with something like this before. We are (so far) each others one and onlys when it comes to sex and I had always thought it would be so. I'm scared he is going to have sex with someone else and realize I suck at it or something. :( He says not to worry since he thinks I am great at it and have had years to learn each others likes and dislikes. but it still scares me :(
I agree that meeting her will help, I want to meet her really bad! I hope we get along and while I am not poly and I am straight, I would love if we could all three of us be cuddly together (I'm a huge cuddle fan) and be friends. She plans to come visit at the end of the month I think, so we will see how it goes.
If you don't mind me asking, how far along are you MichelleZed? :) I'm only ten weeks so still have the morning sickness going on :(
11-05-2011, 12:15 AM
I dont mean to sound cynical or stir up doubt, and I'm new to poly-relationships and how they progress. But I can't imagine any situation where I would just happen to be walking around someone's house or apartment nude and no sex was involved, unless you live in very hot climate. Which makes me think that he is not really all that comfortable with his poly-ness. Maybe you are feeling insecure not so much because he has this other relationship, but because you sense you are not getting the whole story. If he expects you to trust him about important matters (that he is committed to loving you and your baby), he can't lie about other things, just to make it easier on himself.
I may not know much about all of this and am still struggling myself with things like jealousy, but from the stories I've read here, even the most unusual relationships can work if people are honest.
11-05-2011, 12:21 AM
Yes, I can see where it would seem weird they haven't done anything yet, but she has told me herself that she isn't interested in having sex and if they were to ever do it, she has a 4 month rule (which they have been together for about 2 and a half months) I asked my husband if he was lying to me about it, that I wasn't going to explode on him if he told the truth, and he says they haven't so I trust him. If I don't trust him, then why would it worth it to stay with him if I am always forever questioning his word? :( I don't want to live like that. I told him that was a part of me accepting this life style, we had to be completely honest with each other or it was over :(
11-05-2011, 12:45 AM
Hey SL, I'm sorry you had such a rude introduction to poly. :( I think you're dealing *remarkably* well, considering. I hope he appreciates you like you deserve.
Some questions to try to understand this whole situation better... how did you find out he was cheating? What activities was he engaging in with her, or was it mainly emotional infidelity? Has she apologized to you for starting something with him knowing he was in a closed relationship, or did she not know? How often is he seeing her now?
If you told him that certain types of activities were specifically disallowed for the time being, or that you wanted them to see each other only X times per week/month for now, would he be willing to accept that?
Sometimes clear boundaries can be good while you're still in the process of coming to terms with something. I agree with him that you're shooting yourself in the foot by saying they can have sex when you're not ready for it. That means that if/when it happens, you'll feel betrayed even though he hasn't done anything "wrong"... why set both of you up for that? Why not make it a solid boundary for the time being, even if they think that probably-definitely-maybe nothing is gonna happen yet?
11-05-2011, 01:01 AM
I found out because he went to a training class for work and was gone for 3 months, when I was unpacking he clothes to wash them, I found her underwear in them wear she had tossed them at her clothes pile but got mixed up in his. She was in the middle of moving and was staying with him in the hotel room during the move. From what I understand, it was emotional with some making out. She did know about me, and hasn't said she was sorry to me directly but my husband said she felt extremely guilty about the whole thing which I believe since she has been very nice to me the few times we have talked and tries not to butt into the time that me and my husband are sharing together. My husband doesn't get to see her much since he has to fly over to see her. He is actually currently over there for the weekend. This will be the second time he has gotten to see her since he got out of the class, so I feel bad for trying to restrict them when they are already so far apart :(
11-05-2011, 01:24 AM
If you don't mind me asking, how far along are you MichelleZed? :) I'm only ten weeks so still have the morning sickness going on :(
I'm at 33 weeks... but I hear ya on the morning sickness! For most women, it does get better, and it did for me. I hope it happens for you, too! Hang in there.
11-05-2011, 01:46 AM
Wow, I want to ask, how old are you two and how long have you been together?
A 3 month separation for his job is bad enough. Then come to find some other chick's panties in his laundry! And then he says he's "poly" which means he cheated on you and told you later. 2 different things.
Now you're knocked up accidentally and nauseated and probably very fatigued and have this new person to consider who is going to turn both your worlds upside down. And he's still flying off to cavort in the nude with his new gf?
They make out naked? Hmmm, maybe they're not having intercourse, but I'd have to think they're having orgasms together.
You might NOT be so good at love making now, since you're feeling normal first trimester illness and fatigue. Soon youll be huge and then youll have a baby and be sleep deprived and falling in love with your baby. Will he be jetting off to see gf all that time, leaving you alone with the breastfeeding and diapers and spitup?
11-05-2011, 06:39 AM
I found out because he went to a training class for work and was gone for 3 months, when I was unpacking he clothes to wash them, I found her underwear in them wear she had tossed them at her clothes pile but got mixed up in his.
This seems so dishonest which is the opposite of polyamory. I know there are two sides to everything and things like this can be worked through. In my experience a relationship needs to be really strong to go through the changes and new stresses of polyamory. I've been told in the past that if there are any underlying issues in a relationship that polyamory or an open marriage will bring those issues out.
I don't want to be a downer but from what you have written it seems he has not treated you very well, and he needs to do things your way and slow himself down.
I'm sorry but if he was with another girl without your knowledge it was cheating, even being poly doesn't excuse dishonesty
11-05-2011, 10:11 AM
We are both 24 and have been married for 5 1/2 years. We were dating for about 3 years before that. He tried to tell me a long time ago but I didn't listen.
I don't think they make out naked, she is in a one room apartment and so the times he was naked was when he was changing or getting ready/out of a shower.
She plans on moving into a bigger place as soon as possible and my husband is excited for it so that we can go together to visit her instead of him going by himself. He feels bad when he leaves me here which is why he leaves just for the weekend instead of a whole week.
I don't want to doubt what he has told me, but some of the things you guys have said makes me wonder now :( Am I being blinded by my love for my husband and letting him get away with things? I certainly hope not :(
11-05-2011, 10:19 AM
I'm a firm believer that no one ever knows what happens between a couple except that couple, and they likely see it differently. Its maily about how you want to proceed with your relationship.
Honesty is the most important and boundries, if he doesn't respect your boundries then that not only disrespects you but it disrespects the life you have together. He can't just do what he wants to make himself happy and leave you to "deal with it" while he hides behind a poly lable.
I'm sorry if I misjudged the situation, but thats how I see it.
11-05-2011, 10:58 AM
Aww Starlight, just so you know, I am 56 and have 3 kids right around your age, 20, 23 and 25. So, as a mama, I am going to continue to comment.
You and your h met at age 16 and got married at 19? You were both virgins when you got together and have only ever had sex with each other?
Is the gf also in her early 20s, maybe even younger than you 2?
So, now your h is getting some ants in his pants. I am not saying marriages where both people are virgins and only ever have sex with each other for the next 60 years doesn't happen, but it is rare, especially in this day and age.
I would say you and your h definitely need to establish firm boundaries for his relationship with the gf. Was he with her in a close relationship for most of those 3 months he was away? It sounds like they were practically living together, in her apartment or in his hotel room. sigh... I am very glad he confessed to the cheating. I am also glad you like her and even want to cuddle with her.
Please do a tag search on here for "children and polyamory." There is much to consider as far as him having a gf while you are pregnant, and especially once the baby is here needing round the clock care well into toddlerhood. Do you have a good social support system in place outside of your h to help with the baby while he travels for work or for... sexy lovey time with the gf? Does she even know you 2 are now pregnant?
At the very least you need to make 100% sure he and she are practicing safe sex when they do get to that point.
11-05-2011, 11:17 AM
Yes, we got together at 15, married right before our 19th birthday. We have never had sex with anyone else, we met at such a young age and instantly fell in love with each other. I think his gf is 21? maybe 22 im not sure.
She knows I'm pregnant and is actually super excited and says that if she lived closer to us she would come over and make whatever it is I'm craving and help take care of the baby or our 2 year old son.
They got together in the last 2 weeks that he was in the class I think, she was also in the class, its how they met, and she was moving at the end getting ready to live in a different area. I told him if he ever were to have sex, it was to be with a condom even if she were to test herself, I just don't think I can handle it otherwise. Maybe in the future but not right now.
She really is sweet from the times I have talked to her, I don't want to be mad at either of them. I want this to work out between all of us. I understand people can make some bad choices, we're human! I don't want to judge the two of them on one time in our life. It's just I'm still feeling hurt over the first time I found out about all of this (and the random bouts of jealousy). My husband is trying to help me, but usually we automatically understand one another so now that I'm trying to explain my feelings, I'm not doing such a great job at it. :( I feel like half the time, I'm just confusing him.
11-05-2011, 11:59 AM
It sounds like this is a great chance for you both to work on your comunication skills.
About your fear that he'll discover you're bad at sex -- first of all, if you two enjoy sex together now, you're doing it right. :)
The gf almost certainly will do some things differently than you, and some of that will almost certainly not be to his liking as much as what you and he do (time top explore each other counts for a LOT) but some things with her he might like better. This might be a bit much to think about for now, but... whatever new/different ways of making love he discovers with her, you two can then choose to use if you'd like, to enhance your own sex life. Like, if he were to discover that he really liked a certain type of stimulation, or being held down or something like that, just like he can re-invest his giddy NRE into his relationship with you, he can also use any new discoveries to spice up your sex life. ;)
Do you think you might ever choose to take a second partner yourself?
11-05-2011, 02:51 PM
I think it is wonderful that you are at least trying to understand what it is he is going through and trying to adapt. I will tell you from my experience, that it is not an easy road to travel. It is one that our triad deals with on a daily basis. To me, it is a process to be gone through at a pace you are comfortable with. Rushing someone who is not ready for the full-fledged gammet of poly can only lead to trouble for everyone involved. I love the fact that you are at least open enough to ask questions and try to gain an understanding to make things better...kuddos to you, and good luck!!!
11-05-2011, 04:26 PM
Ohhh, you two already have a toddler! So I guess you manage to parent that child alone, somehow, while he's away on long business trips already.
But yeah, I can totally understand your jealousy now! You're home, not only pregnant, but dealing with a child who is at a very trying age, and he's off living "single" and forming a very intimate life with another very young woman.
Do you have a job outside the home? Family nearby to help with childcare, and who can care for you as your pregnancy progresses? How often does your h plan to fly far away to see his gf? How easy is it to afford these trips?
11-05-2011, 05:56 PM
He's a lucky, lucky man, to have such a loving, open wife.
I'm thinking that even if you don't want another relationship for yourself, a situation where he gets a periodic break from toddler-pregnancy-baby is setting you up for resentment down the line. I hope you'll make sure to give yourself the same luxury. Leave him home with the kid(s) sometimes and treat yourself to a nice hotel, a girls' night out, whatever. Anything he spends on airfare, etc. to be with her, you deserve an equal amount for your own pampering. (Buying cute baby clothes doesn't count. It should be for you!) Invest in a good breast pump so he can take over night feedings from time to time.
Make sure the two of you get special times together, too, of course. His relationship with her should not take away from what he has with you.
11-05-2011, 06:51 PM
Thank you all for the advice and support! His trips are starting to get expensive, and he has only taken two to go see her :( I don't have a job, I'm a stay at home mom and no family to be with me. I have a friend here who likes to help out but when my husband is away, I try to avoid her since she doesn't know about all of this.
I normally would like the idea of pumping and having my husband give bottles, but he has to change shift every two months and so sometimes he may not be home to do that for me. I co-slept with my son and it was wonderful, I never had to really get up with him, just roll over and fit a boob into his mouth and he was good to go :) So night feedings probably won't be to much of a problem :)
My husband asked if I would like to have another relationship and gave me the green light, but I don't feel comfortable with it. Maybe sometime in the future I might find that I would like too, but for now, I'm so body shy and embarrassed to do anything intimate. It took my a long time to finally get comfortable with my husband, which he blames on my strict upbringing. My mom wasn't the friendliest when it came to sexuality.
We still try to get out without our son and have dates. Just depends if we can find a babysitter. So not very often :( I think I am going to get him to take me on a nice date since he went off for the weekend :)
11-05-2011, 07:11 PM
I do think it might be good for him to come here and read this thread, get some perspective from other people on the whole situation, and he could also share his thoughts about things.
Also, maybe the gf could save up and come visit him now and then, so that the expense for keeping the relationship going doesn't fall all on your family's budget?
11-07-2011, 12:15 AM
If you are confused, trying to deal with the hurt he caused you over cheating, dealing with jealousy and raising his kid and growing another, I think he needs to slow right down. Not to mention it sounds like you can't afford him going to her all the time. It sounds like he should be going at your pace not his. Many poly people call this "going at the pace of the one who is struggling the most." That would be you. There is no shame in that or guilt. It just is part of adapting to a new relationship dynamic.
I am really surprised at how well you seem to be taking all this. Most people in your situation would lose their mind and are very valid in doing so. You are a rare bread, but that doesn't mean that you should suck down your emotions and do as you are told without thought to what works for you and is going to be healthy for you. Its so important to keep checking in with yourself about how far you are willing to be pushed....
btw, Sorry, maybe I am just cynical, but I think they have already had sex... everything you have said points to that... mostly the fact that he cheated. Cheating is lying and if he cheated, that implies sex and also implies that he has lied to you before. I don't think I would believe that the two of you have never had sex outside of your relationship. You haven't maybe, but I think I would not speak for him as I don't believe it.
Meeting her is a really good idea. It seems that the success rate of poly relationships relies on metamours knowing each other and being able to interact even if its seldom.
The tag that Mags suggested is "children" or "kids" you might want to look at the tag "cheating" too. You can find the tags in the search engine on the tool bar.
11-07-2011, 05:56 PM
Thanks everyone again for the replies. Me and my husband had a HUGE talk heart to heart about everything. I feel much more at peace with all of this. I think I was finally able to explain my feelings to him thanks to coming here and talking to you all. We talked for HOURS, it was amazing! I felt so loved and safe :)
I went ahead and told him if he wanted, him and her can go ahead and have sex. I no longer have an insecurity about it and even if they did or didn't in the past, it is behind us now. I feel like I had a lot more understanding of him! :) I just feel so at peace with everything and I think a lot of it had to do with coming here and typing out my feelings. He has read the whole thread and it seemed to really hit home and help him understand how I was feeling. Because of that, we were able to address all of my problems and solve them together. Why I felt jealous about this and why I felt insecure about that. It was such an eye opener.
I know I may still get pangs of jealousy, but I honestly believe I am over the worst of it. He said that if I change my mind or feel like it is still not to my liking he would try his hardest to make me more comfortable. Thank you everyone for all the support and advice! It has really helped talking to you all :)
Wanted to add real fast that I will let you guys know how it goes when I finally meet his GF face to face :) I have texted with her and video chatted with her but never actually seen her myself so I'm really excited to finally meet her for real :)
11-07-2011, 06:22 PM
Just make sure that you aren't stuck at home doing all the childcare, washing, cleaning, and cooking while he is getting his jollies. It shouldn't be about "Woo-hoo, my wife will take care of me and the kids, and I get to have a girlfriend!"
He needs to remember that having an additional partner means that he needs to romance you, too, take you out on dates, AND share duties in childcare and housework. Your role in his life shouldn't be all about household drudgery and taking care of the babies while being with his gf is all about sexy fun. I hope he realizes that, and that you realize you must make sure to ask for the attention you need.
11-07-2011, 07:27 PM
I agree with NYCindie, its great that you have worked some stuff out, but make sure there is balance. If he gets to have a girlfriend and go do fun stuff, what are you going to do for fun and excitement? Take a course? Go out with friends? Take up yoga? Its helpful to have this balance.
My husband took up writing and has an active blog now as a result. He also has now started university on line. I have other partners and he has what he needs in life also... its been an amazing journey for all of us as a result. Before our relationship was about staying at home watching tv (okay, we had a baby then) and now we don't even own one because we both took our lives into our own hands and do so much more stuff on our own and together.
11-07-2011, 08:24 PM
I agree! We talked about that too. His girlfriend said she would love babysit for us so we can go out on a date or two while she is here. He also helps around the house whenever he can or if I ask so that's cool too. He still flirts with me and tells me how much he loves me and how beautiful I am :) He also still makes some sweet love to me so, as of right now, I don't have any complaints. Though I promised myself and him that if I felt bad about ANYTHING, I would talk to him about it.
11-08-2011, 12:01 AM
So glad to hear the thread was helpful and that the two of you are in a good place! Congrats!
I'm very curious -- was anything in the thread a surprise to him or a special cause for conversation, or did the whole thing generally just help you guys open up to each other?
11-08-2011, 02:43 PM
The whole thread in general helped us a lot but there were a couple of points on when I was trying to express myself that finally seemed to sink in with him. It made me very upset that he had hurt me and was determined to make it right. So far he is doing a great job! I went from feeling jealous and inadequate to being able to joke about his other relationship and tease him a little without the slightest feeling of something being wrong.
We were usually very easy going people so when we were upset and struggling to understand each other it added to the problem. But finally that understanding came to us and now we are our old selves again, joking and flirting like we were before all of this.