Working it out. How I found out my boundaries.
Ok so this is my first post. I'll try to keep it short.(probably won’t work though)
So my wife and I have been officially poly for a year. It started when she figured out that her feelings for a (m) friend of hers was more than just friends.
Since that time they have been together a few times. He lives rather far away so it's pretty limited. Mostly they just text all day. She also has a girlfriend who she grew up with but has only recently admitted to herself it is more. Again a little far away so only a little time.
Finally we have a couple that we hang with. So far we have been up once to see them and "have fun" but it'll probably happen some more.
For me I have not found a secondary yet. I have a Male friend whom I have been with but only once and it's not really my thing. (Fun but not life defining if you follow)
So here's what happened recently. I started an OKC account to try to find some new friends and maybe more. So, following my lead, my wife did as well. I talked to some people but nothing substantial. My wife, however, found a guy and started talking, and in about a week was on a date.
I felt some apprehension about it but figured it was the same nerves I felt when the other stuff started and that it would pass like before. Then she came home from her first date and I found out she had slept with him...
I kept telling her I was fine and that I was just "putting it all together in my head" but for some reason I just kept sliding further down in my own head. Every bit of information pushed me a little further away from being "me"
I found out the sex was good... I freaked out
I found out that sex is all he's really into... I freaked out
I found out they were texting pics... Yeah I freaked out.
I started to have panic attacks. I didn't know that's what they were but when I finally told my wife she knew immediately. To her credit she ended the relationship. (As kindly as possible) and we deleted out okc accounts. I was worried that I was really mono but she pointed out that saying I was fine with her BF and GF and our couple friends (which is true) means I'm poly I'm just not open poly. I guess I have a problem with stranger sex.
As soon as she ended the thing I felt great. I was me again... for a while at least. But the problem is now I keep back sliding. I know it's over and I know it didn't mean much but I keep dwelling on it. I keep thinking stupid things. I worry that I'm being too needy and that I'll drive her nuts with it. So I decided to post here instead.
I'm sorry you are going through this Mythos. Its not uncommon at least. You are in good company. Its really hard to just drop everything you've ever known and just go with the flow. Some can do that in time, others can't. The journey is about finding the boundary of how much you are able to handle and be happy and how much not. When that is discovered you can be REALLY happy and healthy, but like everything in life, its a journey of some hardship to find and stretch your take on relationships and sex.
The good new is that you know what isn't going to work for you right now or maybe even never. From your post I gather that;
Might I suggest that you also learned that;
This list is what I am gathering out of barely any info. I am assuming you will modify it to suit yourself. It might be a helpful exercise for the two of you.
Although your wife didn't cheat by your definition, it does sound like she broke some major boundaries that perhaps weren't discussed or assumed. I think that is an excellent place to start in terms of re-building and healing from this. You might not see it as cheating but the effects are the same. Take a look around here for threads that relate. I would suggest "cheating" "lessons" "foundations" "casual sex" and any others that you find by looking in the search engine at the tags.
Yes, it definitely sounds like the major issue here was sex without an established relationship--or at the very least, a friendship. You seem fine about the bf, the gf, and the couple. (After all, you know them and aren't threatened by them.)
But this one guy and how he and your wife went about things was beyond your comfort zone. It sounds like eventually you let your wife know and the fact she broke it off is commendable. Hopefully, lesson learned about that approach and how it's a bad one.
Those lingering feelings are left over and it's something to work out...with time.
This is not the first time I've heard of a couple going poly and the wife having a way easier time finding secondaries....you seem to have to search hard, while she gets asked out left and right. That's not unusual for poly MF couples, sorry to say.
Concentrate on your needs and wants and try to keep a trusting line of open communication with your wife open.
The thing that I see here is that you were blindsided -- you didn't guess that your wife might sleep with this guy so soon. If she had come back from the date and said "Hey, I like this guy and I think I might want to get physical with him, what do you think?" you could have had time to process the idea and get used to it and maybe say "How about no sex until I meet him" or whatever you may have needed to be comfortable. It may be that just her telling you first would have been enough to achieve that. But nobody likes to be surprised by something hard.
Next time, you guys will know better and can communicate more. In poly, I find it's a good practice to discuss ANY new step before it's taken.
Sometimes you don't know what you don't know until it happens. Kudos to you both for working through it.
Ooohhh...I instantly picked up on the "stranger" part and completely understand. If my husband doesn't know the person then he feels very uncomfortable. Very... I get it a hundred percent.
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