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-   -   Dealing With A Partner Projecting Feelings Of Jealousy/Envy (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=17079)

queertransguy66 11-14-2011 08:45 AM

Dealing With A Partner Projecting Feelings Of Jealousy/Envy
 
Hey ya'll,

wow, so nice to have found this forum... i dont really know what im looking for on here, i guess i figure it will just be so nice to have people to tell all these things to who are totally just objective, don't know me or my partner(s)

So my primary partner and i have been struggling lately with our relationship in general, it feels almost like we are barely hanging on. We`ve been together now for a year and 10 months, but things have taken a turn for the worst. We`ve been trying to get through it but its been really rough.

Anyways, there`s those issues, then there`s us being non-monog/open. Last night i hooked up with a girl who i've felt very attracted to for a while. It was so much fun and we both hit it off really well and had such great sexual chemistry. I was excited about this because even though i have been sleeping with lots of different people it hasnt felt super sexually charged like this hook up did.

My primary came over in the evening and we were cuddling watching a tv show. After it was over i told her that i hooked up with this person. I didnt think it would be a big issue at all since normally dealing with random(ish) hookups isnt really that big of a challenge for us. She totally freaked out though. She cried so much and told me how its so easy for me to find people to fuck, i can pretty much have sex with whoever i want, how she feels that she has such a hard time and sleeps with a third of the amount of people i sleep with etc. Lots of feelings of hurt and envy turned mean being projected onto me.

I knew that this wasn't a good time to be getting mad about her attacks at me, that she really needed to vent and say these things right now, so i just listened and it was really hard not to defend myself, but i didnt. I tried to sit and understand all the feelings she was having and figure out what the actual issue was... lots of telling myself not to take the things she was saying personally, just in one ear out the other and keep the important emotions she is sharing.

Mostly what it comes down to is that i find it fairly easy to pick people up, flirt and just am in general a more confident easy going person, and it helps that i am not afraid of being rejected so i tend to be way more forth-coming with the ways i ask for things or hit on people. Mostly i just hang out with people and talk and if i feel like we are getting along and have some sort of connection and i find them attractive i dont find it hard to ask if they want to kiss/make-out etc. She finds this really hard and i think comes across to a lot of people as being grumpy or uptight, when in reality its just that she is sort of awkward and a little shy at first.

She felt hurt and after she was finished saying everything she was thinking she left my house and went back to hers and wrote me an email. Its hard for me because i know that this actually has very little to do with me and who im sleeping with and everything to do with her and how she feels a huge lack of confidence in herself and her self image is obviously very terrible right now. I try to encourage her to go out and hit on as many people as she wants to, and i get so excited about her seeing other people/sleeping with them etc but it doesnt seem to help that much and maybe even might just make her feel shittier.

I dont know what to do other than to tell her i love her, support her and listen to her though all her insecurities, but i can't do a whole lot else and that feels really crappy.
How can help her feel more included in the queer scene here, she doesnt belive me when i tell her people think shes a total babe and want to hit on her. ugh. Also i dont know how to not change what im doing but at the same time have that feel less shitty for her.

I dunno, anyone got any suggestions or experience in dealing with this?

Pretty much anything would be helpful!!

cheers!

boytoy 11-14-2011 05:49 PM

Wow, you sound a lot like my partner, and your girlfriend sounds a lot like me. She has the same insecurities as I do. It has led to fights before. Maybe 3 or 4 in 3 years time. For myself, when I end up projecting something like envy (he's really hot and passes much better than I do), it's because I can't ignore it anymore. I tried, though. but that's not very helpful to you, I'm just sharing...
You are awesome for not blowing up at her - that must have been difficult. What I would like my partner to do for me, when I get obviously envious is focus on me for a little while. Let me cool off, course. Let me have a half-day of space (that's just me, if she doesn't like space, then maybe don't wait) then the next day, or sooner, slowly become extra cuddly and/or attentive for a while. For a while, I would want him to just sleep with me, but not begrudge me for it, and also continue to tell me how hot he thinks it is when I'm getting picked up by another person. If you can, I suggest waiting to fool around with someone else until she does. But if that's too long a wait for you, then don't bother. Just give her some extra lovin's - she sounds like she wants to feel super special. Remember, the world (especially ads) is telling her she's never good enough, just like the world tells us we're never masculine enough. (Patriarchy's an ass, hey?) I personally believe it's our task to boulster self-esteem/confidence in our partners when it's low - just like what you already do. I'm saying that perhaps individual attention can do this better than even the most heartfelt words.

AnnabelMore 11-14-2011 07:57 PM

Well, if these are just random, meaningless hook-ups for you, why don't you try putting a hold on it for now until she's dealing better? Focus on her, be her wingman. I mean, if your relationship is barely holding on, why not temporarily stop a behavior that's causing her stress, fair or not?

That said, now that she's had her chance to vent I would call her on her lack of sensitivity. It's not cool to lash out, even when you're feeling bad. Let her know that you're not mad or bitter but that it did hurt and that you'd appreciate it if she didn't attack you in the future. "You feeling bad doesn't mean I did something wrong," as they say.

queertransguy66 11-14-2011 10:48 PM

Hey!

Thanks ya'll for the responses and suggestions! Very much appreciated :)

As much as these are purely sexual hook ups that dont seem to be leading into anything else for me right now, it is also something that i definitely enjoy doing and helps me to feel really healthy and active in a variety of ways, so i dont know if they are meaningless but i understand what you're getting at. On the other hand i dont think that i absolutely "need" these hook ups, im just unsure of whether or not it matters if someone needs something versus wants something? I dont mean to sound selfish and i did suggest to her already that i stop sleeping with other people for the time being, she didnt like that idea because it feels like pity to her. I do think though that i can stop hooking up with people without having her feel like im doing it intentionally for her... Does that make sense?

We have plans to hang out and work through some of these issues together, and luckily i had no plans for the day so i got to sit with myself, write and try to process my feelings so that they are more clear to me. Hopefully my taking a "me day" helps with our talks later on tonight. I do have intentions of letting her process these things with me more, and to listen and show as much compassion and understanding as i can, but i also want to balance that with my needs and to call her on being mean spirited to me while she was upset in a way that doesn't feel like me attacking her back. lol I think i've got that figured out, which makes me feel way less stressed!

Ok, well thanks ya'll for your time and energy in helping me out with this situation!

take care!

SchrodingersCat 11-18-2011 06:31 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by queertransguy66 (Post 110909)
On the other hand i dont think that i absolutely "need" these hook ups, im just unsure of whether or not it matters if someone needs something versus wants something?

Yes, it matters. That's the whole point of "wants" vs "needs." Needs are the things without which you cannot be happy and healthy. Wants are the things that are fun but you can live without. If your wants are conflicting with your girlfriend's needs, then it might be good to prioritize her needs for a while.

Quote:

Originally Posted by queertransguy66 (Post 110909)
I dont mean to sound selfish and i did suggest to her already that i stop sleeping with other people for the time being, she didnt like that idea because it feels like pity to her. I do think though that i can stop hooking up with people without having her feel like im doing it intentionally for her... Does that make sense?

It makes perfect sense. You can hook up with fewer people without making a big deal out of it. You don't have to make it like you're throwing yourself down on your sword for her. You can just quietly start seeing fewer people. She may not notice that you're doing it, but with any luck, she won't notice that you're not "not doing" it.... if that makes any sense... in other words, "no news is good news."

e.g. I usually notice and complain when my husband leaves his dirty dishes in the sink. If he starts making an effort to put his dirty dishes in the dishwasher, I might not notice, but that's the point.

And if she does notice, you can just buy yourself some brownie points and say something like, it's not pity, it's love. Your happiness means more to me than getting my rocks off with random chicks.

Carma 11-18-2011 05:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SchrodingersCat (Post 111481)
it's not pity, it's love. Your happiness means more to me than getting my rocks off with random chicks.

RIGHT ON, SC. :cool:


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