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-   -   Grounded (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=14107)

Curmudgeon 09-02-2011 05:16 AM

My husband and I have been in a monogamous relationship for 6.5 years, and recently began exploring swinging/poly. After our first swinging experience I asked, and he consented, to me meeting with an acquaintance individually. This entire experience has revitalized our sex life, but the problem is I was seeing the other man about once a week, and consistently was home later than anticipated. The last time my husband asked me to be home at a certain time, and would not budge when I mentioned that it was an unrealistically short time frame and would be hard to meet, but agreed to try to be home at the appointed time. Well...things ran a little late and I was about 1.5 hours past the appointed time(btw, I was keeping him updated via text as the night went on). I had previously suggested being "grounded" for a period of time (1 hour late = 1 week no individual play time) to provide incentive to wrap it up in a timely manner, but we had not formalized the agreement and he had understood that 15 minutes late = 1 week no individual play time, so I am looking at being "grounded" for six weeks (rather than 1.5 weeks), although we had only been tossing ideas around and had not come to a formal agreement. I don't want to make him feel badly, but I feel unfairly punished by standards that I had not agreed to. Do I need to grow up and accept responsibility and consequences or does he need to realize that I am grown up and we need to clarify our expectations more clearly? Thanks for any input.

MichelleZed 09-02-2011 05:28 AM

He sounds like he was pretty excited at the prospect of you not going out with another guy for 6 weeks. Are you sure he's okay with individual playtime at all?

If he really is okay with it, then he has to let you do it. Is there a reason why he needs you home at a certain time like that? Do you have kids?

Curmudgeon 09-02-2011 05:37 AM

He certainly wasn't thrilled with me having solo time because I became interested in someone shortly after we began poly-possibly discussions. He is now interested in someone, but it hasn't moved to the next stage yet.

We do have a child, I was late getting out because I needed to put her to bed. He doesn't like having me out late at night because he worries about me and can't sleep (and we both have jobs/school first thing in the am).

opalescent 09-02-2011 01:47 PM

You're an adult. Why in hell should you be grounded for anything?

TruckerPete 09-02-2011 02:55 PM


Originally Posted by opalescent (Post 100310)
You're an adult. Why in hell should you be grounded for anything?

Ditto. It wounds like you both need to grow up a bit, sit down and have a real conversation about expectations, limitations (what he can handle, not what he's going to impose on you), and some good, old-fashioned communication instead of covering up feelings with just grounding someone.

Unless you're in a D/s relationship. Then this probably works wonderfully. Although you've said you didn't negotiate this, so it's still not healthy.

Man, if one of my partners evern tried to ground me, I would laugh in their faces ...

SourGirl 09-02-2011 03:41 PM

'Grounding' ? Really ?

How about, you just be home when you say you`ll be home ? If you can`t be home at the time asked, SAY you can`t.

Don`t agree to times that don`t work for you, just to get what you want in the moment.

Even though you kept him 'up to speed' via text, you still didn`t keep your word. What you did, is the equivalent, of when someone confesses the truth after a initial lie. You did right, but it doesn`t mean you are off scott-free.

You also seem to be going at your swinging/poly rather quickly. When you mention in your initial post that you had one swinging experience, and then decided to go out by yourself, (on a regular basis right away) that is quicker then average for a previously mono couple of 6.5 years. There is nothing wrong with being outside of the norm, if everyone seems ok with the pace.

However, usually what happens is this very thing. The pace goes fast, and a spouse is initially ok, but then the inevitable question comes
into their mind, " Will my spouse just keep snowballing ?'..then they panic. They didn`t get time to digest each stage, and now it all catches up with them.

Compromise will get ya there. Delta will not.

JuliaGay 09-03-2011 12:44 AM


Originally Posted by Curmudgeon (Post 100268)
Do I need to grow up and accept responsibility and consequences or does he need to realize that I am grown up and we need to clarify our expectations more clearly? Thanks for any input.

I agree that the idea of you being grounded, as an adult, seems absurd. But in answer to your question...I would say Yes and Yes. If you agree to be home at a certain time, then be there or expect that there will be some kind of consequence. Probably something like loss of trust between the two of you. He does need to treat you like a grown up, you have to act like one, too. And ALWAYS clarify expectations. Since you have had problems in this area, I'd suggest writing them down for a while until you get the hang of it.

All that said, it sounds like he is having a problem with you being with someone else. One of the poly mantras (besides Communicate, Communicate, Communicate) is to go slowly for the person who is struggling the most. If you want to keep him in your life and keep exploring poly, perhaps it's time to slow down. Perhaps see your new partner once every two weeks for a while, if that would help.

And I'd throw out the 1 hour=1 week vs. 15min=1 week since it was obviously a big miscommunication....

Hang in there and keep talking. :)

redpepper 09-04-2011 12:31 AM

If you agree to something, stick to it. I would go with "If it doesn't work, change it for next time." That builds integrity and trust. I agree that this is going REALLY fast and I would wonder if he needs you to slow down and thinks this is how to do it. Treating you like a child and grounding you is disrespectful I think. If you agreed then I would wonder if you are disrespecting yourself. Talking about feelings and ideas on how to make poly work in your life should bring you to some agreements/boundaries that work for both of you. I would be considerate, responsible and respect each others pace. You might want to do a search in the tags on "boundaries" to see if there is anything in other threads that helps.

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