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AnnabelMore 12-28-2010 03:17 AM

the story of a secondary
Hi all,

I've been thinking a lot lately about my poly situation and I thought I'd share here and see what parts of my story others can relate to.

I'm a bisexual woman in my mid-20's. I'd been in some poly situations earlier in my life, but nothing longer-term until Gia, my current girlfriend. Gia and her husband, Eric, invited me into their bed a little more than a year and a half ago. Hot threesome action! At first it was just fun, but then Gia and I began going out for coffee together, seeing shows, and soon enough we decided that we were dating.

Eric was perfectly fine with this, and wasn't looking for anything deeper himself. So we ended up in a vee with Gia as the hinge. I've always sort of had an FMF triad as my romantic/sexual ideal so, if anythig, I was a little disappointed that Eric didn't want a relationship, but that was his decision. And hey, we still all rolled around in bed together.

For a while I thought maybe I had made a mistake agreeing to date Gia. I didn't have a lot of time (job, hobbies, other casual partners) and I wasn't sure if I had it in my heart to give real love to her (a few years back I was in a long-term mono relationship that ended in a LOT of tears and I've never quite been the same emotionally since). But over time I found myself getting more and more deeply enamored of her, and wanting to spend more and more time with her. And with Eric for that matter! My feelings for Gia were developing more swiftly because we were actively working on that sort of bond, but I grew to care more for her husband as well.

Eventually I came to a bit of an internal crisis in terms of my feelings about Eric and asked him to tell me about his feelings/desires. He was very clear -- he was happy with our friendship and NOT looking for a relationship. I accepted this, of course, and let it be. I didn't say anything about my feelings for him to either of them, and they didn't ask. Gia and I, meanwhile, had popped the L-word with each other and were having regular dates.

Now... Gia is pregnant!!! I'm so, so, SO happy for both of them. They've wanted this for a while and they're going to do such a good job as parents. Gia sees me as being an Aunt figure to the child-on-the-way and I'm comfortable with that. I'm terribly excited to go through this process with her, and with both of them, and to meet their new child. We haven't been sexual together since she became pregnant, which has been rough, but I can hardly hold it against her, what with fatigue and morning sickness and all that. I'm pleased to report that we HAVE been continuing to spend time together, which is something I had been worried about.

The things that have been on my mind the most lately...

- I've come to terms with the fact that, as much as I love Gia, I really do feel love for Eric too. It's gotten to the point that I feel awkward about it, like my natural reactions to him are something I need to hide. I finally told Gia about my feelings for Eric and am planning to tell him too when the right moment comes. Gia says she thinks it will be just fine, which is a big relief. I'm not going to ask anything of him relationship-wise, I don't need him to say he cares for me back... I just want to be able to acknowledge my feelings and maybe relax about it a little. Is it selfish of me, I wonder, to need to let him know that, when he's made it clear that he doesn't want a deeper relationship? Is it messed up that, deep down, there's still a part of me that hopes that some day a triad will develop out of what is now a vee with a solid friendship and sexual chemistry between the two "wings"?

- Because of how strongly I feel about both of them, I'm pretty positive that I'm going to fall massively in love with their baby. It's scary, because I'm going to be emotionally vulnerable on so many fronts... when it comes to her, when it comes to him, when it comes to the child which is in no way my child and yet is the progeny of my two lovers. It seems almost impossible that there hasn't been any kind of serious drama yet. It seems impossible that I'm not going to get my heart broken in some way. And yet I'm so exhilerated by the whole situation and by the feelings it's awoken in me.

- Time has always been a problem for Gia and me, and for Gia and Eric as well. There's never enough of it! And when the new baby comes, of course that problem is just going to get a million times worse. I know that nothing can be the same, and I plan to support them as much as I can. They have lots of other good friends as well, so they'll never be without babysitters. I can see my relationship with Gia basically falling apart during this time or... maybe naively?... I can actually see it getting stronger because I'll be helping her through so many intense things.

I haven't focused on it here, but just to give you the context, in addition to my secondary relationship with Gia I have another good strong secondary relationship with a male friend and a few casual sexual partners. No primary partner at present, which is why I gave the thread this title.

So, is any of your life reflected in here? Any thoughts, questions, comments, advice?


SourGirl 12-28-2010 05:03 AM

Nope nothing similiar at all. :)
BUT,..wanted to say I really find it great, that you have thought so much about their upcoming parenthood. That is really great. This is the second, selfless story I have read on here regarding parenting/pregnancy in one day, and I get all warm and fuzzy seeing such good natured thought processes.

Congrats soon-to-be-auntie. :)

Let us know how it goes with Eric. He might be preoccupied with the pregnancy and baby for a long while yet. Hopefully the knowledge doesn`t overly stress him.

nycindie 12-28-2010 05:49 AM

Hi, I know you weren't asking for advice, but I just want to say that I don't think you need to get too hung up on THE BIG MOMENT WHEN YOU TELL ERIC YOU LOVE HIM. It doesn't have to be some huge, overwhelming thing. The fact of the matter is you simply love both him and her. So, you can say it simply without apprehension, just like you would tell a friend you love them. I know it seems so much bigger than that, but love is love, and if you don't lay it at his feet as if it's some earth-shattering revelation that he must have some dramatic response to, and just express it when it feels natural to do so, I'm sure it will be well-received. For example, you might find yourself feeling tender toward both of them at some particular moment and be spontaneously moved to say, "I love you both." And then let it be, without expectation of what he will say back or any need to explain yourself. It's not about the words, anyway.

But I am really happy for you. Sound like the relationships are in good shape.

AnnabelMore 12-29-2010 03:55 AM

Thanks for the advice nycindie, I really appreciate it. And you're definitely right that treating it like a Big Freaking Deal is probably the wrong way to go. I'm torn on whether going the nonchalant route is a good idea or not though -- I think he's going to have some concerns, and I want to reassure him. It seems like it would be easiest to do that by having a direct conversation. Just maybe even catching him on google chat and saying something like "Hey, there's something I've been wanting to tell you. I want to say first that I'm really satisfied with our situation and don't need anything to change and don't expect anything from you. But I do want you to know that I love you. I've just been wanting to say it for a while. :)"

But I don't know, maybe you've got a point! You've certainly given me food for thought.

mirrormelovely 12-29-2010 07:42 AM

Hi Annabel,

I believe you should tell him exactly what you think you should tell him but don't over think it. You already received Gia's assertion that he would be fine with you telling him how you feel, so just go for it. There can never be too much love! And in this situation, especially...this new babe is going to be SO loved. Wonderful! <3. Yay for love!! I may be looking at it very simply, but to me, that is how it all boils down.

nycindie 12-29-2010 05:59 PM

When I suggested that you simply and directly express your feelings without imbuing the message with BIG HEAVY MEANING (beyond the wonderful content of your words), I didn't necessarily mean to say you should be nonchalant about it, exactly. I just meant not to overthink and worry about the moment you tell him or his response. Just say what you feel when you feel it and it will be allright.

eklctc 01-09-2011 01:00 AM

My life has been similar to this over the last year. Well, I actually was in a triad with a married couple that turned into a vee with the male being the hinge and the wife, pretty much, being of the same mindset as Eric. In the beginning of our relationship, when we were still a triad, the wife became pregnant and we were excitedly preparing for that. Unfortunately, the pregnancy resulted in a miscarriage a few months into it. A couple of months later, our relationship changed from a triad to a vee.

All of your concerns are valid but I believe if you just continue to communicate your concerns, communicate in general, and continue to be genuine, involved, and loving ... things will be clear and everyone will be heard and each circumstance can be worked through as they arise.

I look forward to watching your journey.

AnnabelMore 01-09-2011 06:13 AM

Thanks for the affirmation, eklctc. :)

I'm feeling pretty positive about things right now.

About two weeks ago I started up a new sexual-friendship (not a relationship, at least not at this point, but some really fun playing around) with a guy named Harry. We've seen each other a few times since then already, and it's done wonders for keeping me from obsessing over the state of things with Gia and Eric. I'm all for introspection and processing, but it really doesn't do any good to dwell on stuff *unendingly*, and I feel like that's what I had started to do.

I've also found that just having talked to Gia about my feelings for Eric has really made it easier to be around the two of them together. It's like some mental pressure was released... my feelings for Eric no longer feels like something problematic or taboo to me.

So between those two things -- having talked to Gia and my new romps with Harry -- I find that I'm much more content to not worry about Eric and if/when/how I'm going to bring up my feelings. It's just not that big a deal. I'll find the right time to tell him sometime in the spring (he has seasonal affective disorder, so his ability to cope with emotional stuff is just not that good in the winter).

As of the last few months, Gia and I see each other about once a week socially and have "just us" time about twice a month. When I see other people post on here about spending a couple days a week with their non-primary partners, it makes it feel like I hardly spend any time with my lady in comparison. But that's just the way it's gotta be... both of us have *very* active and busy lives, and her energy is especially limited right now.

I wonder if my situation, in terms of time spent together, is atypical for secondaries who live in the same town as their partner?

LovingRadiance 01-09-2011 10:48 PM

Mimi isn't sexually involved with any of us. But, for 20 years she's been my "right hand man" in raising my children.

All of the children adore her (there's my dd 19 1/2 yo, ss 14 yo,Godson 13 yo, ds almost 11 yo, dd 3yo). They would all just drop dead if they lost their "Auntie Mimi".

She's such an intricately woven part of their lives that all but the youngest (give her time) consider Mimi to be a "second mom" to them {godson says third mom}.

One of the keys for us (Mimi & I) has been that I (as mom) recognise her importance to the children. SHE also has made them a priority in her life and made time for her to spend with them without me (or the father). That has given them the ability to bond with her in their own individual and unique ways.

I think its WONDERFUL that you've found such a great friend and lover in Gia. I also think it's great that you feel love for Eric.

I think it's key to understand and accept that loving someone doesn't mean that you need to be lovers, but being a supporting part of anyone's family does require that you have a love for them!

Which means that you have all of the required components to be a great supportive and loving auntie+ (I say "auntie+ because you could be "just an auntie" or you may end up being an auntie and more to the child).

Enjoy that, ask both of them about things that they find important regarding the raising of the children so you can find your special "niche" with the little one.

For example; I hate to read aloud, but I do think it's important to read aloud to small children. SO Mimi-who LOVES to read aloud, read aloud to them when they were little and that was one of her little niches.

I also loathe going to get haircuts, perms, colors etc. So, that was something that she ended up doing with the kids. She also would take them on "shopping dates" as they got older, they'd go thrift store shopping to get a new pair of jeans or dresses etc.


And-congratulations on what sounds like a great relationship!

AnnabelMore 01-14-2011 09:45 PM

Thanks for the input LR, it's really helpful to think about it this way.

Gia nonchalantly mentioned an article she'd read the other day about "co-parenting." It wasn't a poly article, per se, it was about childfree peeps helping to raise their friends kids as a way of everyone being happier. Still, her bringing it up has gotten me thinking about it a lot. Would I be willing to be a co-parent in some fashion to their child? Will I de facto be one anyway, whether I choose to embrace that term or not? There's no way to tell at this point, I think... maybe we'll come to an arrangement closer to her due date, or maybe it'll sort itself out in the months after the baby is born.

One thing that I have a little trouble with is the fact that, while we're very open with our friends, and I'm out about the relationship to my parents, Gia is only out about it to her mom and definitely isn't out to her co-workers. She works for a christian charity, and it could really jeopardize her job if her poly lifestyle came out. And her extended family just wouldn't understand. How much can I ultimately invest into a relationship that is halfway in the closet?

Questions, questions, questions.

I spent the night with them for the first time in a while the other night. Just hanging out and then sleeping, nothing naughty. I have a harder than usual time falling asleep when I'm sandwiched between them, which is annoying, but at the same time I absolutely love being so close to them. When I'm sleeping in their bed, I often have dreams about talking to them, usually about inconsequential stuff. It's kinda funny since my dreams are normally totally out there.

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