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-   -   New guy, MFF questions (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=14310)

LoveEvolved 09-07-2011 10:04 AM

New guy, MFF questions
 
whats up, my name is Bill and I'm new "poly". Have never been in a poly relationship before, but have thought about it. I have never "knowingly" known any poly friendly people before so I'm really curious about it.

I'm a straight guy, so what interests me the most is a MFF relationship just like a traditional MF relationship just with another woman. All three people would be equals and care about each other the same with the goal of being all together whenever possible, but say if one person was at work then the other 2 could be together (sexual or otherwise) with no jealousy. No one would be with anyone (sexually or emotionally) other than the three in the group.

I was just wondering how common this situation is? and how many women are really looking for that type of relationship? Also I was wondering if anyone in such a relationship all started "dating" together as opposed to a MF later adding a woman, or a FF later adding a man?

Magdlyn 09-07-2011 01:50 PM

What you are talking about is called a triad. Of course, triads can occur with any gender configuration, MMM, FFF, MMF, FFM (add in genderqueer or transgender people to make things even more complicated).

You are also talking about a poly-fidelitous arrangement, often abbreviated to poly-fi. It's poly, but closed. None of the 3 are allowed to pursue outside relationships.

Know that poly-fi triads, or quads, are the rarest poly configurations. Most poly people, even when coupled, date separately and form separate relationships. Triads can be hard because there is no guarantee all 3 members will feel equally as strong love and sexual desire for one partner as they do for the other.

Quote:

...how many women are really looking for that type of relationship?
Not too many.

redpepper 09-07-2011 07:23 PM

Hello :) try doing a search for tags such as "traid" or "unicorn" there is a lot to read here to get a sense of what to expect.

LoveEvolved 09-08-2011 06:31 AM

hey thanks for the replies. I'm not surprised to your answers. Looks like I have a challenge ahead of me. Figures... like most things i want, they seem to be out of my reach, but all i guess all i can do is try till i die

IrisAwakened 09-08-2011 05:00 PM

I think that if the "poly" familial model was more mainstream, Unicorns would be much less rare. We are all blinded by what society tells us is right, so even when a poly relationship is mentioned, some might get defensive even though it might work for them at some point in time. I am, of course, referring to my own trials. I have only now discovered this as a viable possibility, even though I had a couple of friends in a poly relationship. I always thought, "they just say their open, but he is really just cheating." I could never imagine that it was a trusting and loving relationship.

So look for a girlfriend (it might help if she is bi) who is open minded. Even if she doesn't like the idea at first, it might grow on her in time as her view of "what is possible" starts to change. Always be upfront about yourself, but know when to divulge proper info. Good luck on your search!

(Hey no glum faces, this is an adventure!)

AnnabelMore 09-09-2011 04:31 AM

Hey, Love.

There's nothing wrong with what you want. I myself started out with an FMF triad as my sexual/relational ideal. And I might even find myself in one some day, who knows. The thing is, with time and experience you begin to realize that creating a strong, healthy and balanced dynamic with two people is hard enough, with three it's exponentially hard! And relationships naturally develop in different ways at different times and at different rates... how then could things be perfectly equal right off the bat, even with three people who've all just met?

What you've described... a perfectly equal love and desire between two women and a man, no jealousy, no need and desire for outside partners... is, a very common desire and, if you set out determined that you'll accept that and nothing else, potentially a recipe for a lot of sadness and pain. We see so many stories here from hetero couples who are confused as to why things didn't work out with their third, and from thirds who've been badly burned by couples. It begins to become cliche. The problem is that people set their ideal above everything else, and refuse to see/accept the myriad reasons why it may not be appropriate for the particular people involved. The most common problem seems to be that the love and/or desire is NOT perfectly equal, and rules that have been set in place with equality in mind (everything should be done together, no outside partners, etcetc) leave one or more of the people involved unfulfilled and unhappy.

All that certainly doesn't mean that a triad can't happen for you, but if you try and force the relationships that come into your life into that mold, you'll end up hurting yourself and your partners. Instead, take life and love as they come to you, be open and honest about your desires, and read both the stories here and the essays at xeromag.com to gain some very, very important realism and perspective.

Good luck!

LoveEvolved 09-09-2011 02:59 PM

After reading your post I re-read my OP and can see that I didn't do a very good job of explaining myself. so let me try to clarify:cool:

Quote:

Originally Posted by AnnabelMore (Post 101469)
And relationships naturally develop in different ways at different times and at different rates... how then could things be perfectly equal right off the bat, even with three people who've all just met?

Its true relationships develop at different times and rates, but i guess I'm looking at this situation as just one singular relationship only with 3 people. And it would be equal in the sense that if 3 people all just met and got to know and develop feelings for each other it would all be from level ground as opposed to a couple adding a third. I don't mean equal in the sense that every single aspect of the relationship or like/dislike has to be exactly the same for all 3 people. For example, there are successful mono relation ships where each person has a different view on politics or different religion, etc.. but they still love each other and have enough in common to want to be together. so in a triad say M and F1 have same religion while F2 different, so M and F1 feel a little bit closer on that topic. while F1 and F2 have similar political views and M different so the FF's are a little closer on that topic, and M and F2 have same career field, so they're closer on that while MFF all have same exact taste in music... As long as you all feel an attraction for each other and have the desire to be together.

Quote:

Originally Posted by AnnabelMore (Post 101469)
We see so many stories here from hetero couples who are confused as to why things didn't work out with their third, and from thirds who've been badly burned by couples. It begins to become cliche.

that is exactly why I asked in my OP about triads who all started dating together from the beginning...like what i was talking about above. Could that provide a stronger foundation for a singular relationship between 3 people? I'm new to all this so maybe i'm way off base, but it seems to me from the limited experiences i have heard of, that most people in triads are thinking of them selves as 2+1 or 1+2 more so than a singular relationship.

Quote:

Originally Posted by AnnabelMore (Post 101469)
rules that have been set in place with equality in mind (everything should be done together, no outside partners, etcetc) leave one or more of the people involved unfulfilled and unhappy.

I'm not saying everything has to be done together but rather, neither member of group should purposely exclude another. like in the example above M and F1 have same religion and F2 different, it shouldn't be that M and F1 tell F2 she's not welcome to go to church with them, but if F2 in fact doesn't go with them because she's just not into that religion (not because she's unwelcome) that should be okay with all 3 of them. Of course there are things like having time with platonic friends without significant other(s) involved which i wouldn't really consider "exclusion" but rather a healthy part of any relationship mono/poly/straight/gay/wuteva.

For my ideal situation at least i wouldn't want any outsiders unless MFF all agreed on it, in which case they wouldn't really be an outsider anymore but a new member (semantics?) As I've already stated I view such a 3 person relationship as a singular relationship and in that case an outsider would create a divide and it would no longer be singular but broken into 2 and I would like a singular relationship. For me personally the most selfless i could ever be is when i'm in love with someone because whatever i have, and anything good i want for my self i want for my significant other. So for example if i was in relationship and my significant other(s) been together long enough to reach a complete level of love and trust and our relationship had progressed to the point of us living together, then suddenly things in my professional life really start to take off and the dough is rolling in, so i buy a really big, nice house even though said house would legally be mine alone as far as i was concerned i would be buying a house for us and it would be our home. Maybe thats not the best example because a significant other is not an object or a possession but the same basic principles are at play. Thats one reason why a triad is so appealing to me. If there is a love between myself and F1 than I want that love to belong to F2 just as much as myself and vice versa. If everyone involved felt the same way, then i don't really see that situation lending itself to outsiders, separate relationships, or primary/secondary classes.

and the last reason i wouldn't want an outsider has to do with sex. when i really love someone and have been with them long enough to fully trust them then i love to have raw sex (no condoms). IMO it really is the best.

AnnabelMore 09-09-2011 04:48 PM

"As I've already stated I view such a 3 person relationship as a singular relationship"

I love everything you're envisioning... triad, equality, love, poly-fidelity, fluid-bonding... I'm not against any of that, truly. But for the purpose of actually finding happiness, I think it's crucial to have a reality-based vision of how these things usually go and what you can expect. In that light, I think it's your statement that I quoted above that needs the most re-thinking.

I'm part of a relationship that's a vee emotionally and a triad sexually and friendship-wise, I've had close friends do a triad for a time, and I've read a *lot* of personal accounts here and elsewhere. So, I'm no voice-of-god on this, but I do speak from experience rather than theory. And the thing is, a three person relationship... whether it's a vee, open triad, closed triad, whatever... is NOT one relationship and can never BE one relationship.

It's four relationships. The relationship between 1) A & B, 2) B & C, 3) C and A, and 4) A, B and C together. Each relationship must be allowed to develop naturally, at its own pace. If you expect that they should or must develop at the same rate and in the same way (and I don't mean what interests you share, I'll explain what I mean below), whether everyone somehow met at the same exact moment or not, you're setting yourself up for disaster.

Nothing thrives when it's forced. It has to happen naturally. It's not that there's anything wrong with having an ideal vision of what you'd like to see happen. My worry, and what we've all seen happen too many times, is that you get so enamored with your vision that when your reality starts to naturally develop into a different shape, you try to force it to rearrange itself, or you reject it entirely. Which is such a shame.

Like, let's say you meet two lovely women both in the same night and you three decide to go for a triad. The extreme likelihood is that one set of partners, whether they intend to or not, will find themselves on a somewhat different trajectory than the other set, in terms of how fast emotions develop, lust develops, and/or desire to fully commit and be fidelitous and live together develops (this is what I mean by different rates/ways).

What do you do then? Do you stifle things amongst the set that's falling faster? Do you try to make things go faster with the set that's moving slower? Do you reject one partner or reject the whole thing? OR, do you say "this is ok, we'll keep letting this be what it is and enjoy it."

If you can honestly say the latter, then you'll be ok. If not, you'll flounder and flail and cause yourself and your partners a lot of pain.

Because ultimately, we don't love a relationship structure, we don't love an ideal, we love individuals and the thing about individuals is that they're different from each other.

And that's why it can be better not to go into anything with the "goal" of a perfectly equal triad... because if you have that goal and it doesn't happen then you see yourself or the other person/people or the whole situation as a "failure" because it didn't meet the goal. Better to have your desires and hopes and boundaries, but to go in as much as possible with an entirely open mind and heart.

Tl;dr version: poly-fi triads can and do happen, but when they happen successfully it's because of luck, serendipity and time... be careful not to do what so many, to their detriment, do by falling into the trap of ruining whatever beautiful things come your way by trying to make them fit into a configuration that's extraordinarily rare to find long-term, much less right away.

Magdlyn 09-09-2011 07:57 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by AnnabelMore (Post 101518)



Like, let's say you meet two lovely women both in the same night and you three decide to go for a triad.

I concur with everything you said, but especially wanted to comment on the above. How on earth would one meet 2 women on the same day, both single, and both want to become your lovers? You also stipulate these 2 women would not be (sexual/love) partners.

Maybe they'd be platonic friends? Would they both need to be bi or bi curious? They've had the hots for each other, but didn't feel the need to act on it until somehow their interest in you suddenly spurred them on to try sexing each other, with you in the mix? What if one was bi and one was straight? Or one was just kinda bi, but more in lust with you, the guy? Then the really bi one would feel unsatisfied.

Would they both be strangers to you and to each other? Then how could you guarantee all 3 of you would be suddenly magically equally attracted to each other, and to you, and equally interested in a poly-fi triad?

What if one lived in your town, and the other lived 20 miles away and could only get together every other weekend, say? Your relationship with the one closer geographically would have more chance of progressing more quickly, unless you all agreed to only get together when the further away one could come to town... etc.

nycindie 09-09-2011 08:59 PM

I'm sure she just meant it as an example. I think we'd all agree that there is very slim chance of this actually happening! Annabel's scenario illustrates that, even in the unlikely chance that one would meet two women in one day and start a relationship with both of them at the same time, that both relationships would still progress at their own pace simply because there are different people involved. Therefore, the idea of a perfectly equal triad is a pipe-dream.


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