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-   -   How many is too many? (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1673)

PickMoreDaisies 12-05-2009 08:30 PM

How many is too many?
So I am currently facing a quad situation that may be amazing. I am giddy with NRE and very excited about where things might go! If my exbf comes around to giving things another try (hubby is very sceptical about things so that might be something to take very slowly) then maybe I would be open to that possibility in the future because we have spent so much time working on things and there are definately positive things that I get out of the relationship with him. There is this woman that both hubby and I are very interested in and I am also giddy when I am around her.....

How many is too many?
Am I just going crazy with this new way of being?
I am I going to burn out if I take on too much?
Has anyone else had this rush of excitement and wanting it all at once?

LovingRadiance 12-05-2009 09:44 PM


How many is too many?
That completely depends on how many relationships you are FUNCTIONALLY capable of maintaining with the amount of time and resources (emotional, physical, psychological, financial possibly) you have available to utilize.
I couldn't have that many lovers.I definately don't have the time. But I also have 4 kids-so with a husband and a boyfriend that's 6 primary relationships in my home not including my sister wo lives with us or any outside friends!


Am I just going crazy with this new way of being?
Probably. That's not necessarily a bad thing. But definately something to be aware of.


I am I going to burn out if I take on too much?
Only you can know FOR SURE-but if you are trying to START so many relationships at on time, it might be good to remind yourself that MAINTAINING an already established relationship takes less time and attention then is required in starting and stabalizing one. I would be wary of starting so many all at once. There are inevitably complications, misunderstandings and details that need to be ironed out in the beginning of a relationship, and if you have to many starting at once either they will all move very slow getting to a place of stability or you will suffer unnecessary drama in one or more of them due to not putting enoug attention into them or both.


Has anyone else had this rush of excitement and wanting it all at once?
Yep-Maca did. And it only took two months for it to "blow up in his face" and force him to slow down and recognize that each new relationship, experience, situation and major dynamic change requires a good deal of time an energy to establish and become stable. Also that each one changes something about you and/or opens up something hidden within you that also needs addressed and attended to be sure you move to the positive and not drop down a negative path. :)

Good luck! Hope some of that helps or at least gives you food for thought!

ImaginaryIllusion 12-05-2009 09:45 PM


Originally Posted by PickMoreDaisies (Post 14590)
How many is too many?


Originally Posted by PickMoreDaisies (Post 14590)
Am I just going crazy with this new way of being?

Why not?

Originally Posted by PickMoreDaisies (Post 14590)
I am I going to burn out if I take on too much?

Not if you remember to stop drop and roll!

Originally Posted by PickMoreDaisies (Post 14590)
Has anyone else had this rush of excitement and wanting it all at once?

This is the answer that you can actually take seriously.
And rushing is a great way to stub toes or crack heads open on low doorways. Take your time.

Hopefully others will have more complete and useful answers for all your questions.

constlady 12-05-2009 11:59 PM

I usually refer to it as the "kid in the candy store" phase of discovering polyamory ;)

Oh the possibilities out there, once you begin this journey of open loving and it's so difficult to pick and choose once you don't have to anymore.
Each of us probably has our own individual limits on how much time and energy we have to devote to multiple relationships and no one can really tell you what yours is.

Through trial and error, I've come to believe that my own limits are probably two "primary-type" relationships at the same time, with the possibility of maintaining a couple of less daily-life-entwined love connections.

I do want to echo LovingRadiance's take on starting multiple relationships at the same time though. My personal experience has been that each relationship is better served by having its own time to develop. I feel the need to know that each relationship has a solid foundation before adding others to my life and that takes time to establish.

PickMoreDaisies 12-06-2009 04:08 AM

kid in a candy store
I DO feel like a kid in a candy store lol. I actually didn't imagine that we would be presented with so many options all at the same time! I thought it would be a struggle to find people that were open to it at all.

I know that establishing trust and stability is important as my husband and I have done that for 8 years before opening up our relationship...so i will try to keep in mind the advice to take it one at a time...

Glad that others have had the same giddy stupid feelings. I feel like amongst all the struggle that poly has brought there is a silly joy in being allowed to just be who I am.

Thanks for the posts...stay grounded with my head in the clouds perhaps

redpepper 12-07-2009 01:29 AM

I agree with constlady. Taking the time to develop each relationship is key. I also agree that for me two primaries and a couple of tersiarys is more than enough.

I was trying to juggle a husband, a male OSO (Mono), a tersiary woman and two tersiary men at one point and be an attentive mother. It was far to much.

What it meant was no one got quality time with me and most of all I had no time to attend to my own time. I still struggle with that last one and I have two less now in my life.

The thing with having NRE about poly or what some people call limerence is that it makes us feel un-stoppable and on top of the world. It works out fine to have many relationships at once when the realationships are new because the depth isn't there yet. Trouble is that eventually the next level of relationships is to work on depth and that is when its hard not to be spread too thin.

In my circumstance I found that I had to drop a couple of people (one man and the woman) in order to make way for depth with the three left. I don't regret dropping them at all, but it was hard to say to them that I couldn't spend time with them because I wanted depth with others. I am still friends with the woman and the man and I are still negotiating speaking terms. I would of avoided all that by not jumping into sexual and intimate relationships with them both from early on. My version of poly was different from theirs too and I wished I had negotiated all that before getting invovled with them.

Thankfully there was another man at the time that I didn't become intimately involved with and he ended up being the closest to me in the end. We don't have a sexual relationship, but our friendship depth is deeper because I didn't sleep with him and decided at the last minute to take it slower and work on the relationships I had.

Enjoy your time my friend :) you are in an exciting time. Keep your eye on what you want out of it, because in no time at all it will all die down and you will be sorting out who stays and who goes. Give a lot of thought and time to everyone concerned and draw it out as much as you can in order to make the right choice. This is what I wished I had done. It worked out well for me in the end however as I have just what I need and just as much as I can handle.

ladyjools 12-07-2009 02:13 AM

i have 3 lovers,
all of whom are very important to me, id say they are all primary, but i hate the term :P

I was aiming for 2, but then the 3rd popped into my life unexpectedly and i did not want to turn him away, i am coping with 3 at moment but having to be very careful how i split my time and energy it is HARD work rewarding but difficult :)

i would not have anymore than 3 relationships, i would maybe take a more casual lover but in reality i prob couldn't have anymore sex than i am currently having - i think i would maybe break if it tried my body would be complainging :P

How many is too many?
it depends on what kind of relationships u are looking for, how you split your time and how much energy each relationship needs,

Am I just going crazy with this new way of being?
yes prob but thats ok

I am I going to burn out if I take on too much?
you are likley to get exhasted

Has anyone else had this rush of excitement and wanting it all at once?
yes i guess i have and do, and i have to think seriously about whats important :)

Erosa 12-07-2009 02:54 AM

If my very novice opinion counts; I would say that 'too many' is when you start to feel over-stretched. The capacity for love may be absolutely infinite. But the ability to spend adiquate time and affection on each lover is something that will vary from person to person and lifestyle to lifestyle.

My mother would say that anything that is supposed to be a pleasure should STAY a pleasure.

At the point at which is becomes a stress, it's no longer doing what it should be doing.

Not to say that at the first sign of stress one ought to bow out of loving relationships. But if I were you I'd look not just as 'how much love I can give' but 'can I maintain these relationships in high quality with the time, strength, energy, and responsiblities that I have'.

Hope I didn't sound like a downer there. LOL

vodkafan 10-01-2010 10:20 AM

question for poly old timers
I am of course newbie to all this.... but I was wondering (from things I have read on here) if there was a tendency on the part of people who felt themselves to be naturally poly....to progress into ever more complex relationships just for the sake of it...
For instance a poly in a primary relationship with a mono might first be happy with second partner in a v or triad..but as soon as he /she felt they could handle it might want more and more partners just for the emotional buzz?

And another example: a poly couple might be happy at first with a unicorn but pretty soon feel more fulfilled in a quad; their secondary partners might have primaries or secondaries of their own, and so on and so forth...sorry but my head starts to spin here.

Can love for each stay just as strong or does it get diluted down ? What is the practical limit for a poly?

NeonKaos 10-01-2010 12:34 PM

Something tells me you haven't looked at this thread yet:

Master Thread - links to other threads worth reading

I think you'll find a lot of answers to your questions there, and if you still have questions, you can add them to one of those existing threads. This way, when other new people read this, they can find all those questions in one place and benefit from the question you maybe will have asked.

In other words, one big thread on a topic is better than 20 little threads on one topic.

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