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-   -   New Relationship Difficulties (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=170)

Lemondrop 04-20-2009 09:49 PM

New Relationship Difficulties
I finally agreed to give the whole polyamory thing a go. I've been married a long time to one man, but our closest couple-friends are interested in being more. They've been together a long time, too. We all have children at home, and mine are the oldest. I have little experience with polyamory, but we did have friends who were polyamorous and it turned out badly for them. (My friend, I'm not sure what to call her but I guess we'd refer to her as wife#2, says that's commonly referred to as "relationship broken, add people".) Anyway, we communicate frequently, so I feel pretty good about our chances, though still nervous as all get out.

One of my issues is insecurity. My husband, my primary husband, is not overly affectionate and I tend to feel unattractive and second-best, even before we embarked on this adventure. He's a sweet guy, and tries to reassure me with words that he loves me and finds me attractive, but it's hard to believe when you don't get the physical reassurance. Wife#2 reassures me that he adores me and talks about me all the time when I'm not around.

I haven't been here very long, so I hope I'm not overstepping here...WARNING that I may be oversharing. Wife#2 is really into BDSM. I understand that, and it doesn't freak me out. It really seems to appeal to my husband, though. This weekend, for the first time we all got together in the bedroom, all of us. My husband really, really got into it, and I could tell from physical evidence that he was really enjoying himself. Husband#2 didn't seem as excited, but he was joining in. I, however, was really not enjoying any of it and sat in the corner the whole time. I am really not into BDSM. Really, really. I was upset and uncomfortable.

So here's the thing. I love this other couple very much. I love my husband very much. I REALLY want this to work out. But what happend the FIRST TIME we all got together as a group? I got left out. I WANT to believe that everyone loves me and this won't keep happening. But what has happened is I feel like 1) I'm not important. 2) My husband is into this and I can't do it for him. Worse, he didn't even bring his appetite to me afterwards, so he is eventually going to realize that he isn't interested in me. 3) I'm always going to take second fiddle to Wife#2. 4) Because this was all done unintentionally, this is what they REALLY want and they just don't realize it yet.

I want this to work out so much. They make me happy. I don't want to be jealous, I don't want to be the thing that breaks us up and I don't want to be the one who gets left out. I'm hoping that someone has some insight that will help.

mellsey 04-21-2009 11:46 AM

The first and formost thing you need to do is set all four of you down and discuss what is bothering you. i have been there. When our quad started, we had no idea what we were in store for. We have spent a lot of time talking and getting through situations just like this. Be honest and don't hold anything back. This can not work unless you communicate how you are feeling with everyone. Maybe you jumped to soon into the four of you being together at once. Take your time and talk.

AutumnalTone 04-21-2009 09:53 PM

Time to sit and talk. Looks like you need to state your need to not feel excluded--and I'd extend that to needing some sex play that doesn't involve fetish play. Negotiating getting your needs attended to generally won't break a relationship, unless the others involved simply don't care (and then you wouldn't want to be with them, anyway).

Next, I'll also suggest that you begin dealing with your insecurity, as that will bring down a relationship. I'll suggest a book called "Ten Days to Self Esteem" (it's a workbook) that helps you sort out what you're doing to feed your insecurity and how to change it. From here, I don't see a grain of truth in any of your numbered points above, and I suspect you'll be able to sort that out before long and realize that you're beating yourself up without cause.

So, while waiting for your book to arrive, sit down and talk about your feelings and what you need, sexually. I'll suggest that having everybody involved in having sex at the same time every time probably isn't going to satisfy everybody non-stop. You may want to have sex with husband #1 alone, with husband #2 alone, with just the two husbands, with just the wife, with just the wife and #2, or the wife and #1 or any combination thereof.

You may want to experiment with some forms of BDSM play to find out if you enjoy any of it. You'll also want to negotiate having regular non-fetish sexual play to make certain you're getting what you need. The only way you'll get what you need, however, is to advocate for yourself to get it.

Keep your stick on the ice--we're pulling for you.

Quath 04-22-2009 01:36 AM

One little piece of advise I can toss out is to realize people like different sex play or kink differently. So you may discover some kind of sexual activity with one of your partners have no interest.

But you are feeling left out, so I agree with the others that you should talk about this with your partners. Maybe you all can work out a way for you to fit into their play in a manner that you like.

But it sounds like there is a lot of potential for you four to have a great relationship. I wish you the best.

Lemondrop 04-29-2009 06:24 PM

I know it's been a long time, but I did want to say that I did talk to them and get it worked out. I was very cowardly, so I wrote an e-mail trying to express how I was feeling in a non-blaming way, and they were all very understanding. This whole polyamory thing isn't very easy, is it? But I feel so wonderful when I'm with them.

mellsey 04-29-2009 06:47 PM

I am glad that you have gotten this worked out. You are so right, Polyamory is not very easy. Just when you think all is great, something always comes up. But at the same time it is worth all the hard times you have to go through to have the feeling of completeness you get when you are with the people you love, well worth it.

yoxi 04-29-2009 09:06 PM

...and it's not like monogamy is a walk in the park, eh? :)

MonoVCPHG 04-29-2009 09:44 PM

There is nothing cowardly in how you communicated your feelings. Being true to yourself and voicing how you feel is always a brave action no matter what method you choose. Although I am monogamous, I have never communicated as openly as I have since becoming involved in my amazing polyamorous relationship. I cannot imagine going back to anything less open.
Sincerely happy for you :)

nikkiana 05-08-2009 04:26 AM

I also wanted to reiterate that there's nothing cowardly about writing an email vs. talking to them in person.... It isn't the means of communication that matters, what matters is you're needs are being heard and taken into consideration.

The BDSM element probably adds a layer of complication onto the situation that's a bit tougher to muddle through than some of the rest of it, I would say... Especially since your partners are into it but you're not at all.

These I'm asking more as rhetorical questions (though if you feel comfortable, feel free to share)... What are your quads guidelines about sex? Is having sex as a group a necessity or can you break off into twosomes/threesomes as you see fit? If you're going to have sex as a group, can certain activities be off limits so no one feels left out? In your shoes, I'd be asking myself and my partners these questions to figure out what will work to make sure everyone's needs are met.

And you're right, Lemondrop... Polyamory isn't easy, it takes a lot of communication, negoitation skills and patience.... I personally feel that it's a rewarding endevour though.

MonoVCPHG 05-08-2009 04:43 AM

Polyamory has given me the opportunity to share the most amazing Lover I could ever have imagined! Without it I would not have found someone I trust more than any other person...I mean that. Redpepper is my best friend, my confident, my partner in exploration and passion. I don't have to be polyamorous to enjoy it and respect those that can share in a love style that demands more communication and honesty than I ever experienced in a monogamous relationship. Not easy...at first. It does get easier though with the right people involved. I am incredibly fortunate!!

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