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-   -   Two monos and a poly walked into a pub... (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=11752)

ClosetPoly 07-02-2011 06:24 PM

Two monos and a poly walked into a pub...
 
No, seriously, we did.
This is officially a how-do-you-do-it-poll on behalf of myself. A quick recap of setting and timeline:
Partner came out as poly 4 weeks ago, has intense and full set of feelings for a close friend of us, he reciprocated in full, 2 weeks ago he became her boyfriend, and 1 week ago I let all boundaries go, letting them explore their new relationship freely.
Now, I have a difficult time with 3some-settings with us, because I have issues (assorted, deep and old, abandonement, replacement, being left out etc) which come up when I see them together. Or rather, not when I see them together, but when they melt into each other, which really IS just lovely, but I'm "left out".
They have pretty intense NRE, (obviously, after letting loose 7-8 months of love), and I always feel in the way (and I am, cause they can't be "normal" around me, seeing I have issues, and so on). I already miss our group settings cause it is always fun when we do stuff together, and we make an impressive team.
I see from other threads how some people just stay away, others ignore their partners and let loose whatever feelings they have, often hurting the primary. Others again seem to have very polite and strict rules.
Now, I truly truly understand that the poly in a new relationship has no way of mirroring the same focus towards their primary as a new secondary, in a group-setting. At most, the NRE can spill over on the primary, in a group cuddle. I know I focus a lot on the future of things, of having them both around me (again, issues, I have them), and I am extremely uncertain how to approach this. Should I not arrange group-things, and let them have their relationship quietly, or should I "work" on myself by arranging it, and having them gradually be more and more open around me?

So, finally, my simple (and completely unintelligible, lost in ranting) poll is:
How do/did "you guys" do it?
- Do you avoid group-settings?
- Are the poly and secondary able to completely be free around the primary?
- How "far" has the primary come in acceptance for that to be possible?
- Does group-setting HELP a primary deal with the actual relationship, or does that come first?

No need for essays, just personal experiences, short tidbits on arrangements, timelines, etc, if possible.

This became a lot more of a rant than the easy poll I formed when walking the dog. Maybe I shouldn't click Submit new thread. Or actually, while people shake their heads about this post, I will make a list of what I *want* to happen in a group setting. There's a start! :)

ClosetPoly 07-02-2011 06:47 PM

And my second thought after posting this was quite simply, I don't think I can handle NRE in a group-setting.

nycindie 07-02-2011 08:04 PM

When you talk about a group setting, are you referring to group sex or doing social activities as a group? Is there some reason why you feel your partner's other relationship should always involve all three of you? It doesn't have to, you know, although most people would probably recommend a respectful acknowledgement kind of thing. But you don't all have to do everything together all the time... is that what you're asking? I'm just not clear on the question, I guess.

ClosetPoly 07-02-2011 08:14 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by nycindie (Post 89742)
When you talk about a group setting, are you referring to group sex or doing social activities as a group? Is there some reason why you feel your partner's other relationship should always involve all three of you? It doesn't have to, you know, although most people would probably recommend a respectful acknowledgement kind of thing. But you don't all have to do everything together all the time... is that what you're asking? I'm just not clear on the question, I guess.

Ah, indeed, Vague McWavypants at your service. See, thing is, he is an old friend of mine, we kinda fell apart when my partner came into my life, I didn't hang with the same group, and we just disappeared for each other. Then we "rediscovered" each other 2-3 years ago, and started hanging. At that time, he was with a girl in a seemingly good and steady relationship. We shared a few parties, my partner and him started chatting online, and things were good. We played a lot of Starcraft and Left 4 Dead online together, really enjoying each others company. Then he got dumped, badly, november last year, and my partner was there for him. Basically she picked up the pieces and helped him back to a normal life. That of course brought them even closer, and he was here a couple of times, we were at his place, just hanging.
Now, my partner has stated that her highest wish is to have a triad, to have both of us around at the same time, as a family. I can see that being pretty fantastic, if I can work through my "stuff". They have alone time, as much as I can arrange, but all of us also wants some group-time, to *be* a family, but it's hard for me to choose, and right now I'm just trying to take a couple of steps back and let them figure out their relationship and burn off some NRE. I don't think I necessarily am ready for any group-setting until I am truly comfortable with them having a relationship, but on the flipside, maybe group-setting would help me deal with that...I don't know, and I'm scared of making the wrong choice and hurting both of them, and myself, in the process. So for now, I'm just letting them have their alone time and we'll see where it goes...it's only been a few weeks... :)

Breathesgirl 07-02-2011 10:11 PM

From my own experience: If I don't like the metamour I can't handle their relationship with Breathes. If I like them then things are MUCH better. I can handle them cuddling, hugging, kissing, etc.

Breathes and Possibility, my primary and secondary respectively, seem to handle this very well. Last night we were at Possibility's place. There were four of us in the basement. I was holding Possibility's hand while my other arm was around Breathes. We don't get a lot of chances to do group things together (some of it by my choice, some due to circumstances) so when I'm up to it I take the opportunity and run with it!

Breathes and I have talked about it and as long as he knows I love him he's good with the way things are going.

It's best to work through your issues one at a time. Simple things like letting them give each other a hello/good-bye hug can help immensely! It lets them know you really are trying to overcome these things and it gives you an opportunity to work through it a little bit at a time without overwhelming yourself with emotions.

Search for boundaries, rules and any other word you can come up with. There's lot of advice on here for situations such as yours.

ClosetPoly 07-03-2011 11:09 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Breathesgirl (Post 89754)
It's best to work through your issues one at a time. Simple things like letting them give each other a hello/good-bye hug can help immensely! It lets them know you really are trying to overcome these things and it gives you an opportunity to work through it a little bit at a time without overwhelming yourself with emotions.
Search for boundaries, rules and any other word you can come up with. There's lot of advice on here for situations such as yours.

Well, we are quite a bit past that point. I really don't mind seeing them kiss and touch each other. Lacking better descriptions, it's the times when they just melt together in NRE, needing to hold each other and just cling. That is what makes me feel replaced and, in a way, unwanted, and that's what I'm working on, realising the real truth, understanding that she doesn't do this to hurt or replace me, quite the contrary. And no, I can't *have* that, because it doesn't exist between us, but if I get to a point of full acceptance and love, at least there is a chance of her NRE spilling over to me, when she feels totally accepted, simply by her brimming with love for us both...

We've had some good moments, laying on the sofa all together, watching a film and cuddling. And that does help me accept this, it is good training to see his hand on her thigh, and her hand on his etc...
In truth, I think it is just a silly loop of me feeling hurt (this being new, and I'm being insecure), them not wanting to hurt me, they hold back, I feel in the way because I make them hold back and so on and so forth. Obviously there must be a balance involved, otherwise it's not a group-setting, but just their alone-time with me in the way. :D I do however have problems describing this balance, and I know that frustrates her socks off sometimes. I do think this will be easier in a few months though, when some more of the NRE has been burnt off, and the clingy softwhispering relationshipbuilding hugs are not needed all the time. :) I just really want her to be happy...

Oh, and an important point, it's not Vanilla's wish to have the triad NOW, that's her far-in-the-future-goal. :) Very important, she's not pushing for anything, I'm the one dozing out their time, I'm the dating agency here. :-) which in a way really helps too, cause I can set pickup-times I'm comfortable with, and at the same time I can push myself a bit.

TruckerPete 07-03-2011 01:05 PM

If you don't like seeing them melt into each other around you, ask them not to do it.

It's really quite that simple. Come up with a code word if you need to, whatever.

It is her dream to have a family with the two of you, so she needs to take a cold shower and be more aware of how she is acting around you with the three of you together. I know, because I hear myself in this. ;)

Mr. A and Indigo and I started having dinner together once a week about a month, month and a half after he and I started dating. At first it was painful. I wanted so badly to be able to touch him ALL THE TIME in ALL THE WAYS. But obviously Indigo was not comfortable with this. So it was usually limited to holding hands and cuddles. I would check in with him during the group time, to make sure he was good, and we would go over any concerns afterward.

It was a lot of work! I was working furiously at being aware of Indigo's reactions at all times, and he was pushing himself to be more comfortable and okay with affection between Mr. A and I.

But it got better and easier. We are at a point now where if I want to kiss either of them, I do it. I snuggle with who I want, and if someone wants more attention, they ask for it or come get it. I don't have the urge to bury myself in Mr. A, at the expense of Indigo. I know that I will have time to do those things with either of them if I just wait a few hours.

So try setting aside some regular time for the three of you together. Cook for them, or have one of them cook for you and the other. I think that knowing that this once a week time was coming up and being able to prepare myself to keep it PG was crucial. Spontaneous things may have been harder.

You guys are doing well. Don't forget that. :)

ClosetPoly 07-03-2011 02:03 PM

What is the timeline on your progress? You say you started out holding hands and cuddling, and now you are at a point where kissing is ok, and you snuggle who you want. How long has this taken? I'm starting to think I might be pushing myself into a boundary-setting which will only make things take longer...

I think a weekly scheduled thing actually sounds pretty good, and I have to be open and actually say what I feel and think. We have tried the cool-it-down-thing, and they were *very* good at it, but it just got to me that every time I left the room, they melted and the last thing I heard was "kaplosh" when I left, and then the slow sucking sound of two squids being pulled apart just before I came back in. That made me feel that I was "in the way" simply by being there. I have huge issues with expressing exactly what I want or feel, cause I tend to flail a lot at times, and I debate inside my head what I want vs what I think is "fair" and then it comes out as just a wish to have my mind read. :-)

But yes, maybe a regular thing with a level I'm comfortable at, which actually is cuddling and kissing (in moderation, I'm not ready for makeout-session on the kitchen counter), hug'n'squish now and then etc. I'm still worried though about pushing Vanilla in this, me seeming overly needy etc. As I mentioned, I do realise that she can not possibly have anything close to NRE towards me, but I think 10-15 seconds of isolated focus every now and then can work well. Just to confirm to myself that I am still in her world, even though he's here. :-)

AutumnalTone 07-03-2011 05:50 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ClosetPoly (Post 89746)
Now, my partner has stated that her highest wish is to have a triad, to have both of us around at the same time, as a family.

Well, to have a triad, you'd have to be involved with him, too. Are you bi? If not, it's gonna be quite difficult to have a triad. As you've not mentioned being bi, then I'll guess you're hetero and your relationship is going to be a vee.

The next question is whether you want your vee to operate as a group at all times. If you don't want that going on, then it's up to you to reinforce your boundaries and let her know you don't want that.

My wife and I, for example, don't arrive as a matched set in our relationships with other people. She doesn't go along on my dates with others and I don't go on her dates with others. That's something in which I have absolutely no interest and isn't likely to happen without it being a bi lady who gets involved with each of us separately and then convinces us some group dating would be enjoyable.

So, just because your partner wants to have the three of you together because she thinks it would be wonderful doesn't mean it's going to be wonderful for you. You're the only person who can decide that, and if you don't care for the idea, don't do it.

Magdlyn 07-03-2011 07:00 PM

Gosh, if you and your buddy/her lover are gonna get together for an evening to hang out, and they both know that seeing them making out makes you uncomfortable (for now), they should *not* be making out the minute you walk out of the room to pee or get a beer. Then you hear the wet making out and moaning sounds start and end just as you leave and come back? That almost makes it worse.

They should abstain from the mushy stuff when you're in the same house/apt and save the wet kisses for hello and goodbye only, and the real intense stuff for their own one-on-one dates. IMO.

Common courtesy, really. A bit of self control won't kill them. If it bothers them too much to act like adults when you're there, I am afraid your wife's idea of spending cozy evenings with both her her men will not work. She, as the fulcrum of the V, must work to help both of you guys feel comfortable, wanted and desired. NRE is no excuse for rude, inconsiderate behavior.


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