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-   -   To boldly go where no one has gone before (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=63979)

Spock 11-15-2013 10:02 PM

To boldly go where no one has gone before
Well, not really. The whole point of this exercise is that I am surrounded by like people on both sides of the fence.

I already created an intro, here, but thought it might be more correct to actually write here.

Since Please has already gone out on two/three dates, I figure I should fill in the backstory so that my posts going forward make more sense.

My wife got a new job, a very exciting one, since prior to that she had been a housewife and doing part time retail stuff. Unfortunately the job meant she had to live 300 miles away for 5 days at a time for 4 months straight, coming home on the weekends. Coupled with that was my own job search so we could be together, which was of course filled with about 50 rejections, so I was feeling particularly miserable. On top of that of course was the fact that I was also still working a dayjob and coming home to two kids at night. Thank god my sister in law was so nice as to help us watch them!

Of course there were some rough spots. My wife would go out drinking with co-workers when I desperately needed affirmation that everything was going to be okay, that we would in fact live in the same household, and that she wasn't taking advantage of me by finding a new husband. We hadn't even talked about poly at the time, so I was concerned when she was tipsy so she crashed at a guy's house for a couple hours, and this happened three times with different guys.

She told me she was flirting with them, and how a couple of them were cute, but she was being good, so all I had was fear, really, and doubt, but nothing really to be upset about. I wasn't helping because in my fear I was constantly ruining her evenings out by texting her every 10 minutes. Now she leaves her phone off, or turns off notifications, when she wants to have fun, which of course leaves me feeling a little panicky.

Things do get better! The guy she is flirting with politely turns her down and asks she talk to me, and suggests we read the Ethical Slut; she does, finally, come clean to me and we talk one weekend and we both start reading the book.

Things magically got even better. I got two interviews at two fantastic companies and she promised she would slow down and wait until we were back together again; she has her own story here, of course, because being turned down broke her heart, but I think it was fair given that:
1) She was married
2) We had no agreements

Had he not turned down my wife, I don't think I would have been very happy, nor would I have been willing to talk to him afterwards (we have met twice now and have had fun, but not talked anything poly).

So now we are living in one apartment again, in the same state! We see each other every night and every morning, and have since then been talking about the poly life.

As best as I understand it, she has these deep emotional responses she would regret not at least considering, and these are:
1) Sexual
2) Loving
3) Sharing

So we are exploring that now, together. She has gone out on two official dates with two guys (the second guy was yesterday for lunch, which is why I joined this forum!) and is in the process of using me to seduce her second love, D, by having us play Go together.

R1, her first date, has not contacted her again in a month, while R2, her second date, already wants another and has suggested a friend he knows to make everyone 'even steven' for the short term. I think the biggest struggle right now when she goes out is the fact that when she goes out she loses track of time; she says she'll be out for two hours but is then gone for three.

She is aware of that, and how it is unfair to set my expectations and then ignore them. Will keep posting as I have the feels.

Spock 11-15-2013 10:46 PM

Oh! I got to meet one of her crushes (she might have more than she lets on, really), D and got to play Go with him.

I felt a little sad when she sat next to him and tried to be kittenish with him the entire evening, instead of sitting next to me or favoring him when I tried to form an alliance with her during the game we were playing.

I mentioned it to her that evening and we both cried and she got really upset, because she didn't know how it was going to work out. I'm still not sure. We got over it, and she has since gone out on a date with R2, we've had another game night with D, and she has reaffirmed that she is still very much in love with me, even giving me the same kind of loving and adoring gazes that would cause my heart to stop.

So I'm happy, even if apprehensive.

Spock 11-16-2013 05:54 AM

Feeling a little pit in my stomach, a little jealous of R2. He French kissed my wife after their lunch date. Jealous because I don't even try with her because I think she would turn me down because it is in public. It makes me feel naive and dumb.

I'm not sure if she enjoyed it, she said it surprised her I think.

Magdlyn 11-16-2013 01:38 PM

Keep in mind all your wife's potentials will have different sexual styles from you. That is the point. Note I said different, not better.

I am so glad you two weathered your separation period and are settled in with 2 good jobs. This must be a big exciting time for your wife, new full time job after being full time mom, and now getting to explore her poly side as well!

She might seem like a whole new person to you!

Spock 11-18-2013 04:40 PM

It's definitely exciting. Not sure I'm enjoying the ride all the time, but it's exciting.

This weekend was eventful. We talked about her date with R2, and our own relationship, and what she is exploring (since she doesn't actually have a concrete idea yet) with R2.

It's funny, I think. Part of my fears going in is that I'm hesitant about her opening up because she is going to change and become different, ie, I'm willing to build a box around her. I also know that (I think I've said this in another thread or post) that even if she doesn't go out, date, etc, she can change and be a different person, so that's not a good excuse at all.

So I'm trying not to box her in, though again I am still hesitant. I've been trying for years to improve our sexual relationship, so some of the jealousy stems from the fact that it was a multiple year struggle to get sexual affection and attention from her (not her fault, we had kids, she was tired, she was overtaxed, etc), and so I've been damping down my own advances because I didn't want to make it worse, or to cause a fight, etc. So when R2 comes up and kisses her, in public, I'm upset because I don't have that privilege, and want it too. We talked about it, of course, and she says she's still not comfortable with it, and then as we talk it comes out she might be building a box for me too.

She can always dump R2 if he's unsuitable, or if she's uncomfortable, or it goes too far. She is a lot more conservative and careful with me because she doesn't want to lose me. She has repeatedly said that I've won and I'm a keeper, and it makes more sense to me now that she is, from my perspective, treating me like a unicorn she has caught. Of course you'd be extra careful! Unicorns are exceedingly rare!

Not that it makes me feel better, but we are talking about it.

So that's the other thing; talking about this stuff is exhausting and draining, and she doesn't have to do any of that with R2. If the boundaries are pushed and he won't respect hers, she can say, "That's not right, you're out." If they disagree on what the relationship needs, she can say, "I'm sorry, this won't work then. Good luck and goodbye."

With me, I think, she absolutely wants to say, "That's not right, we have to fix this." or "I'm sorry, let's see how to make this work for both of us."

That's a lot more investment, work, and effort.

So the flip side, since the weekend wasn't in fact a big long emotional slugfest; we got sexy and took pictures because it's been long one of my fantasies. One of the benefits of exploring boundaries with R2 is that, hey, why can't we explore boundaries together, too? Phew. I hope I didn't write too much.

Spock 11-18-2013 10:13 PM

We had a good talk today, and tenatively agreed that if she's persuing a relationship she needs agency in the behaviors (so long as she adheres to safety ground rules, and a couple I imposed that I think are fair):
1) Condoms to prevent disease/pregnancy
2) Not involving our children (unless we both agree)
3) Keeping promises (if she says it's three hours, then she spends three hours. If she wants four hours, she needs to ask for four hours, or overnight, or whatever)
4) Not drinking too much (since of course alcohol impairs judgement!)
5) Not using me as a baby-sitter so she can have her cake and eat it, too

However, there's still a bit of panic, and I'm still confused (maybe she is too) as to why this is important to her. She says, in a questioning lilt, "Because I want to know I can still do it?"

Not exactly what I was expecting.

Spock 11-19-2013 05:27 PM

Had a very interesting conversation yesterday that lightened the mood for both of us.

I told my wife that ultimately it wasn't my body/choice in terms of behaviors, lovers, etc, and that she needed agency to be happy or else there's no point in being poly. I still have to struggle to process my own emotions, but that's independent of who she is looking for and what she wants to do, outside of safety/security boundaries we had agreed on. So after that conversation, several hours later, my wife tells me that a dark cloud had lifted that she hadn't realized was there.

My vocalizing the issue of agency meant she wasn't in a rush any more, that she didn't have to settle for the first guy she met, etc. Agency means not only being able to choose for herself, it also meant she could say no, or wait, or later, too. It's like having money burning a hole in your pocket, in a way, saying, "I have to spend this now!" as opposed to the realization, "I can wait a week and get it on sale!", though of course the motivations are different.

The flip then is true too; I'm not in a rush to find a second partner, and that I am totally free to look for someone better and not someone now.

Spock 12-14-2013 12:03 AM

Holidays are busy!

But you knew that right? Going to get my first live Christmas tree this weekend, wife is still enjoying the company of other guys but has also been sick and tired for the last week so hasn't really gone out of her way to do anything.

I'm still focused on her, and have been very happy around her, and still feel a twinge of jealousy and sadness when I'm reminded that she wants to spend time with other guys. I cherish every moment she chooses to be with me however.

I keep reminding myself that it's okay for her to develop relationships with other people, and other guys. The difficulty is in telling myself it's okay that she wants more than friendship. We had a serious poly talk a couple weeks ago, and that has been settling in for a while.

Part of my hangup is that I've been patient and dedicated and committed to her for several years now, and we have been exploring our own sexuality together the entire time, and I harbor some resentment when someone is more aggressive and demanding and forward with her and I feel like I've been wasting my time. Yes, it's dumb to think of it that way because sex with my wife isn't a reward, but I still feel cheated because many things I want to do had been sidelined for years because of kids and health and personal comfort levels.

We've been married 8 years now, and it seems to have taken that long for us to have really hit the sweet spot in our own sexual relationship. Things are awesome for two months, then she gets a job 280 miles away so I only get to see her for 8 days a month or so for four months before I finally get a job out here too.

So for four months I was stressed out and scared because I had no idea what she wanted and felt like I was losing control of my life. For two months or so I struggle with myself while she is actively trying to date other men.

So I finally got to French kiss my wife in public last month for the first time ever after letting her know that I had been waiting for years to do so, and upset that her first date with R2 had ended with such a kiss (though initiated by him). I'm also holding her and touching her in public, now, too.

Spock 12-17-2013 02:30 AM

I'm not convinced I have the energy right now to be poly. I'm trying to get major dental work (cavities, braces, extractions, and implants) done in the next year.

Spock 01-04-2014 04:57 AM

My stomach hurts.

Two weeks ago my wife decided to stop taking Paxil. It was, we believe, contributing to manic behavior that made it difficult for herself to be in control and hard for me to trust her judgement. She has calmed down considerably and has started to be a lot more present and mindful.

Today she had a second date with R2, and the bar they had chosen was closed so they went to his apartment instead to have drinks and hang out. I finally understand why I'm so anxious, I think. I'm worried about being humiliated. He works out, he's got a big cock, and he seems to be quite experienced by his behavior.

Me? I was a virgin when I met my wife so everything I know about sex and love I learned with her. She says I'm awesome, which is flattering, but of little comfort when she is eyeing someone else.

She knows I'll be waiting up for her to come home, and I'm hoping she doesn't get carried away with the drinking and such.

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