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-   -   Phy's story - As you like it (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=11803)

Phy 07-04-2011 11:39 AM

Phy's story - As you like it
Hey all,

this is Phy and I decided to start accompanying you in this section because I want to share my story. It is not a sad one. At least up to today, hopefully won't be one in the future as well but you never know as I see it as a comedy of errors most of the time ;). The two men involved in my story won't be able to be with me and have their say in it, because of language boundaries. I will try to include their point of view as well if possible. As I have touched on the language thing, I will try my best to keep this readable and grammatically correct, but I can't promise to be 100% spot on in every case.

Well, why do I wish to blog, in a different language, telling strangers what my life looks like? Hm, I asked myself this question for about 2 weeks, then I noticed that I mainly would like to do this because of myself. Just get the things “on paper”, write it down to clear my mind. I could have done this in private, but you guys helped me big time with your stories and I thought “Well, why not? It won't harm you to share as well, maybe someone will take interest in what you have to say.” And it is a really good exercise language wise :D

So, here we go.

Phy 07-04-2011 11:43 AM

So, who is this about? Dramatis Personae so to speak :)

Me: I didn't introduce myself on this board, so I will catch up on this now. After some detours I ultimately became a student of History and Philosophy as well as English. I love to study, could go on with my studies for years, if there wouldn't be some financial aspects to this wish unfortunately. Therefore I am about to have my finals in the upcoming two terms. There is this opportunity I mentioned in my first thread, which would shift my occupational orientation quite a bit. But this isn't set yet, we will see what happens in August. Game developer or teacher, what will it be?

My husband: I know this is kind of odd, but I do not like this first letter abbreviations, therefore I will name him Sward, because that is the closest I can get to catch up on the nicks he likes to use normally. He has got green thumbs, he loves plants and trees and nature and all that stuff (I personally get every green thing in my surrounding to die within a week, never been good with this). He is a gardener, working mainly on the tree farm and in the nursery garden and loves to be outside. One of those rare ones that love their job like a hobby, doing hours and hours overtime without complaining and like to continue with work in their free time as well.

If I would have to name a special trait of his, he has serenity, peace of mind as a main characteristic. This helps him to put up with my egoistical and capricious moods in the morning and my demanding ways, if I got something into my head. If you would ever talk about firm as a rock, this would be what fits him best.

My best friend: I will use one of the short forms he is often called by friends who play with us online. He will be called Lin. Lin has been ill most of his life. He has a severe heart disease, which caused three heart attacks up to now (first one with 16). I will not talk about the bad times, there have been plenty, but at the moment it looks like everything takes a turn to the brighter side of life. Again something that the next upcoming months will show. He is a painter, unbelievable creative, unfortunately I suck at giving supportive feedback on his works. I love them all, but if I think something is well done I simply say “Oh well done!” or “Good.” and that's it. On the contrary, if I think that this or that could be improved, I can give plenty of criticism. Constructive one, but still criticism. And he hates it.

We are both pigheads, real mules so to speak and he can be short-tempered at times. We get into heated discussions that can build up to real fights, but after a short explosion and some silent minutes we start over again and clear the misunderstanding in a more settled manner. We are able to talk and talk and talk for days. Main traits for him would be sensibility and pride.

Phy 07-04-2011 02:02 PM

Short summary
As I explained in the first thread I did on this forum, I was really overwhelmed with all these seemingly contradictory emotions and unsure how to handle them.


Thanks again to all who helped me out there in my first confusion about the road to take.

Phy 07-04-2011 02:21 PM

Double standards
After the first confusion left me, I tried to imagine what the reactions would be like. An what has bugged me most till now was a special realisation about my own double standards. While I was trying to imagine what my husband would have to say about my coming to terms of loving two men, I tried to imagine his reaction based on my possible one. What would I actually do when confronted with my “one and only” saying out of the blue: I love another person. I still love you, but there is just another one.

And I know that I would never be able to tolerate this at first. I would be possessive, furious, irrational, outraged, hurt, scared, terrified and what not. Even though right now I myself feel that it is possible, that none of them is missing parts of my love or the maximum I am able to give, I am utterly incapable of turning this around and seeing them in my shoes as well as me in theirs. If one of them would say this to me, I would still feel threatened. And this part is just so damn illogical.

How can I ask them, with a pure conscience, to come to terms with my wishes ( or just, with me) if I would be unable to grant them the same in a case vice versa? How self-serving can one be? I mean, I am asking them to change their standards concerning family and future for my sake.

I can grasp this notion logically. No problem. I see all the dangers ahead, I can tell how difficult it is for them to “grant” me the freedom I am asking for and 'to believe' in my words. Just because I know how difficult it would be for me. They told me they can't comprehend how it would feel like to love two. I wouldn't have been able to imagine how this feels if I hadn't experienced it myself.

Can one still be “mono” when actually being “poly”? I kind of get the feeling that my thoughts are on a different level than my feelings and that my feelings are more logical than my thoughts. But the moment I put them together they blow up and everything is just a part of the whole, with me in the middle trying to align the pieces while the instruction manual is written in a language I don't know.

How to combine knowledge and emotion? I know I love my husband. I know I love my best friend. I know I want them in my life unconditionally. I know I want them to understand that they mean this to me and that I am not searching in some weird ways what one is missing within the other or what ever strange assumptions one could make in this regard. And now comes the BUT: I know I would be jealous if I were in their shoes. I know I would try to secure what I had before. I would search for flaws. What did I do to cause this, why does he feel the need to develop this feelings, where did I encourage this reaction, how could he dare to belittle me with putting another one right next to me … I am so damn possessive and a real hypocrite at times ...

This is were Sward and Lin are so much faster than I could ever be. I want to reach this point but I do not really know how.

Phy 07-05-2011 07:53 AM

Inner workings
Maybe this is caused by my own amazement.
I still can't get the whole picture. How is it even possible that this works? How can there be such a strong feeling like love in a way that affects more then one person exclusively? It is difficult enough to experience the love and all of it's aspects for one person; how the hell could it be possible to develop and handle this twice?!

The perspectives I already know add to this confusion. My best friend is ahead of me. He already got this mess kind of cleared. He was able to trade the positive gains against the negative ones and has found his ground to stand on in this. He knows that he will be jealous, that he needs to overcome this in order to make this work. And he seems to be confident that he can actually make this happen. He is such an optimist, it sometimes frustrates me. Why can't I see things like he is able to see them? Being optimistic doesn't mean he leaves out the traps and pitfalls he can imagine, but he just focuses on the positive sides to get his mind set.

I asked him: What could be positive about this 'arrangement'? Why would you give up your idea of what your life should be like for it and are determined to find another? He said that it isn't just the love for me, it is the friendship he feels for Sward. They are connecting really well.

Same answer has been given from my husband. He likes Lin, they started to talk for hours already and he thinks, that some positive input has been inserted by Lin regarding our marriage. Like: We quarrel, I spoke to Lin (times when best friend status was still there), he gave another perspective, we talked again or the problem was already solved with this.

But even in a situation were they can give me their positive piece of minds, I am so defensive when it comes to uncertainties. I picture the worst to prepare myself for it. This is my easy way out. I am literally driving my friend insane with this trait. He thinks he has to smooth me and tell me that everything will be o.k. Quite natural reaction I think, but I can't explain to him that he is just experiencing my way of going through the options. I feel uncomfortable and nearly bound to know what could be in all this for me to handle and to face. Never would there be a way out of thinking, as long as I could think of another possibility that has not been explored by my mind yet.

Yes, I know how arduous this is, but even on the verge of losing too much sleep, crying till I am too exhausted to continue or getting myself down the spiral of my own negative thoughts, I can never stop. But mostly, while this happens, I am looking at my own actions and smirk in a corner of my mind. I know that I just have to get through with this to be satisfied. “Ah, me again.” if you want to phrase it; I can shrug my shoulders on the one occasion and tear my hair on the next one, but I am kind of used to it.
On the other hand, I get easily lost in positive thoughts. They inspire my greed. If I want something and set my mind on it, I want it all. No exceptions or compromises.

It is a strange thing with my head and what is going on in there. I keep on thinking till I got the feeling I have revised and gone through all options. And then I come to a decision. And this one is fix. I would never back down on it. I am able to discuss it but it is really hard to get me to reconsider fundamentally.

Concerning the double standard, I think that's the reason why I can't picture myself in their position. Why I couldn't live with the thought of sharing them with another person and claim them just for myself the other way round. Because I came to this decision already. It took me three and a half year to realise my needs concerning my best friend. The final decision concerning my husband took five years. Maybe it is time to make myself reconsider. But I just don't know how.

Why all this rambling? Because I feel that I owe them to be a partner who is coherent at least. And that I am not at this point in time. All should be treated equally, but I am just asking without granting and that can't be right.

Breathesgirl 07-05-2011 11:06 AM

Hello and welcome.

Keep on writing. Writing helps me to clarify things in my head so I can speak them clearly once the emotions have passed and the time to speak has come.

You say you are having a hard time telling Sward & Lin (thank you for giving them names, I can't stand initials either) with your voice. Have you considered translating what you have written here and letting them read it for themselves?

Good luck.

Phy 07-05-2011 11:39 AM

Hey Breathesgirl,

thanks for the welcome. Yes, at one point I got that idea already and started to do written discussion with Lin. I am utterly incapable to voice my thoughts as soon as I have to deal with emotions. I do not know where this comes from, I just can't speak my mind when I try to say how I feel.

This is especially hard on Lin, because as the circumstances are at the moment, all we can do is talk. He is still 8h away from me. But I am getting better at addressing the problems.

A whole different story are my positive feelings unfortunately... He is able to speak about everything that is on his mind. I can't even start with the little things. It is frustrating for him and in regard to those feelings, I can't even write them down. And this particular trait is a complete mystery to me. I have no idea where it comes from. As I have never had a LDR before I kind of never broached this issue because if I wanted to express myself, I just had to act it out. Impossible at the moment ... *sigh*

SNeacail 07-05-2011 07:44 PM


Originally Posted by Phy (Post 90144)
Yes, at one point I got that idea already and started to do written discussion with Lin. I am utterly incapable to voice my thoughts as soon as I have to deal with emotions. I do not know where this comes from, I just can't speak my mind when I try to say how I feel.

HeHe! I'm like this as well, when my emotions are running high I turn into a babbling idiot and I can't convey even half of what I'm feeling and just forget trying to figure out why. I finally started a private blog for myself, which my husband reads. I was always lousy at "journaling", but the blog seems to be working. Here I was able to try and pick apart my feelings and insecurities without worrying about him always trying to "fix it". Sometimes I just need to share what's going on inside my head, without someone else dissecting it making me feel inferior (even if that wasn't their intent).

Phy 07-05-2011 09:17 PM

Ah well, I never forget to try to figure out why I am feeling what I actually feel. I love thinking about all this stuff. Sometimes I think because I like to think ... if this makes sense :p And yes, I need some time to figure things out. I tend to go silent in discussions if I feel that I need to consider a certain point before I continue arguing.

And again yes, this journal thing was never something for me before. I will see how it works. Normally I got long train rides to sort out my stuff on my way to university. But this only helps me personally. Now I need to communicate what I am thinking emotional wise and this is kind of hard.

The main problem is still the 'positive talk'. What hits a nerve is not the part that is about the negative thoughts. I can speak my mind there, too much actually. Because of this Lin tries to console me. If I get negative, I can communicate well.

But if he is down and in need of supporting and emotional words I tend to be silent. I kind of have the notion that this is too private. It is hard to explain, but I am somehow protective of my emotional thoughts and deep feelings. I do not want to share them if they are 'too positive'. Maybe this is because I feel vulnerable if I open up this section of my mind. I need some of them for myself; I regard those as exclusive for myself.

It took me years to come to this point with my husband, I directly voiced "I love you" after a year. And I know that I knew Lin for nearly 6 years now, but he was mainly on the 'friend' level. At least I pressed him to be there. I am not ready to go way beyond that. But of course my "way beyond" is nowhere near the level others I talked to, or he especially, consider as 'normal'.

I just need more time for the intimate stuff, he knows it, but sometimes he just needs more. But we are able to talk about it and after some reassurance everything is fine. I am just not satisfied, that he is always able to help me ease my mind in minutes because he can talk about his feelings and give me the support I need, and I can just sit there and listen and stay silent on the important parts while I got the thoughts already formulated in my mind but am not able to say them out loud.

But well, we will see how long it takes me to be as open and honest as he can already be. :rolleyes:

Phy 07-06-2011 02:09 PM

Retrospection; thoughts I got when everything started

I know that there is some kind of qualitative difference. One relationship has been there for more then 11 years. It was given it's time to develop, to fail and rebuild, to show what it's got and what it's secret gems and abysses are. And it has become part of me in an inseparable way. I am utterly scared that this might change. I couldn't imagine that Sward would take what I was going to tell him separately from what we have had up to now. It is still likely to change. To transform into something that might never be as good as what we build up to now. One of my biggest fears.

That he will never look me in the eyes as trusting and as secure as he could. That he changes his ways with me, hurt and distant, no more casual touches, no more joyful moments in harmony and comfort with each other. My guts are clenching in fear when I imagine this to happen and I can hardly breathe. I was not sure if this may not happen in the beginning. At least this fear has been nullified. He suprised me in every possible way, what made me just love him more.

To some extent this has happened as well with my best friend. Of course the quality was a different one in some regard because friendship is never on the same level as a romantic love. It has been forcefully shut down and was forbidden to come to life. In theory, at least. If I have learned something from all this mess: Never underestimate your feelings – they will find a way to get right back at you. This 'getting back' took them some years but they never buckled. Sometimes I am just dumbstruck how much I can be up to astonish myself. Well, it happened and I am now wondering about another thing that just didn't came to mind before, because I forcefully avoided to think about any issues that were related to the unseizable part of my head and heart.

But another point of view concerning quality was long left out of my field of vision. Lin got his share as well. He is scared of the immeasurable amount of intimacy (from his point of view) that my husband and I have, compared to the near zero experiences he shared with me. Yes, he is the person who understands me best in most parts of my thoughts and feelings. To some extent he does have a better insight than Sward. But, there are parts of me, that he doesn't know, that he is a beginner with and that this could be a threat to him, never occurred to me before.

When I thought about his “lack” in the intimate apartment (not in general, just with me), I always regarded this unknown field as one that we simply have to explore, AFTER all the mess was sorted out and we would be on a road that at least could be called a road and not a wild jungle in the dark. He was afraid of comparison right away when we started to be honest about our feelings and when the idea had settled down a bit to share me in a lifestyle that included him and Sward. Still a strange way to put it btw .. share me …, well never mind.

And thus I began to think about, what really was in each relationship. What had brought this absurd situation to life? What were the feelings based on that I developed for them? And I realised how long the lists are on both sides. And how different. Of course, some points were similar, but they are basic ones like honesty, loyalty, faithfulness, being true to themselves and so on. But some are so astonishingly different, that I wondered if I haven't been tricked by myself again.

One of my fears is to be accused of looking for what one couldn't give me in the other. As far as my own opinion is concerned, I didn't do this intentionally. But fact is, they do not resemble the other personality wise or physically. I just can't make up my mind if this is good or bad. I know that each one gives me different things, that I turn to them for similar things in different ways and am satisfied with what each of them is able to provide me with. Everything just feels natural, but when I think about explaining it, all gets way to complicated.

It is what it is ... it will never get simpler or more complicated than this. I just can't phrase it better.

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