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-   -   Is there a "how to" guide? monogamous to poly/mono (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=19809)

PolyKat 01-07-2012 03:22 AM

Is there a "how to" guide? monogamous to poly/mono
Hi, I'm new here. This entire poly thing is new to me, but when I discovered it while googling 'coming to terms with monogamy', I ran into a poly article that discribed my fantasy (not sexual) of my fiance and I married, happy, living in our dream house with our kids, his live-in girlfriend and my live-in boyfriend...

The problem is that my fiance can't stomach the thought of me being with another man, and is convinced that no matter how many times I tell him it's okay, it would hurt me to see him with another woman.

Telling him that I believe I'm poly would be telling him that I would like the freedom to have another man in my life. That would hurt him deeply. Is there a way to describe my feelings to him that helps him understand that it's not anything lacking on his part, but the fact that I just truly don't believe in monogamy?

Your "how to" guidance would be most helpful.. and if it comes down to the fact that I'm just stuck being monogamous, then I'll continue on my google search.

PolyKat 01-07-2012 03:28 AM

Let me also state that I am highly susceptible to some men's pheromones. Not too often do I find a man that pushes me over the edge, but very rarely. He and I have already had that discussion and again, he didn't understand it and found himself livid that another man, by scent (or unscented sense) alone could stir something up in me. Adding poly thoughts to that might just be too much if not done right.


MonoVCPHG 01-07-2012 04:09 AM

If you can get him to read a few books on opening up your relationship then that would be a start. Both of you should read together. Here's the thing though, he might simply not be willing to invest heavily in a person who is not monogamous. I think it would be very wise to explore this before you get married. You need to find out if you have compatible relationship goals - marrying a mono man will likely not make the situation easier and I am speaking from the perspective of a mono man.

dingedheart 01-07-2012 04:15 AM

I'd say you got your work cut out for you. The problem will not be pitching the intellectual argument ...or even getting agreement on that level. It's the gut punching emotion...or pain that's hard to overcome.

Acceptance or full embrace would be great but tolerance might be a good short term goal.

Do a search on poly/mono relationships and red pepper blog.

Good luck to you both D

RainyGrlJenny 01-07-2012 04:36 AM

I totally get the pheromone thing! So much so that I've only had lasting relationships with people whose skin (not soap or perfume or cologne) smells good to me. It's very weird to me that it's *such* a strong attraction for me.

I sympathize with your struggles with your fiance. For a while, I was dating this guy I really adored who was monogamous, and wanted to be monogamous with me. He really couldn't wrap his head around the idea that I'm happy with more than one person in my life, and kept trying to convince me that my open/poly relationship with my boyfriend was abusive to me (?!), that I should let him sweep me away for a nice little conventional marriage.

I finally had to cut off contact with him, because my capacity and desire for multiple relationships was so very hurtful for him, and he couldn't seem to find peace or let me be who I am. I also knew that I couldn't let him continue to hold onto hope that he could "convert" me.

I agree with MonoVCPHG - it's important to figure this out now, before you get married, and it's good that you're trying to find a way to be authentic before you make promises and commitments to each other. I think if you feel like being monogamous would be being "stuck," then you may want to take some time to decide if that's a route you can travel without resentment, bitterness, despair, or restlessness down the road. Ditto for the fiance, but the other way round :)

I'm not sure where you're from, but something that really helped me understand polyamory in a tangible way was to attend some local poly community events. It's one thing to read about it, but seeing someone and their girlfriend and their girlfriend's boyfriend and their three kids eating couscous at a potluck makes the whole thing seem much more normal and less bizarre and less sexually charged. That may be way too much for your fiance right now, but it's something that was beneficial to me.

I wish you luck that you and your fiance can come to a point where both of you are happy and fulfilled :) And welcome to the community from one newbie to another!

opalescent 01-07-2012 06:37 PM

I also have to second the smell and attraction thing. If I am attracted to someone, they always smell good to me no matter what they've been doing, how sweaty and so on. Oil Man has come over reeking of gas and while i notice it, he just smells earthy to me. (He showers anyway - gas is a powerful solvent and not something one wants near delicate lady parts.) On the flip side, if someone smells bad to me, I will never be attracted to them - it doesn't matter if they are physically good looking, charming, good personality, etc. Not going to happen.

More importantly, please don't get married until you and he have sorted through this. This is deal breaker territory and needs to be addressed before there is any further committment to each other.

PolyKat 01-07-2012 08:24 PM

Thanks everyone.. goodness. This is a frightening ride.....

We are definitely in deal breaker territory and I'm praying it ends well (or lasts for many happy years), but so far, not so good. In the past 7 days he has had more honesty than he probably ever though possible! From pheromones to polyamory.. and it has to be a real kick in the balls because it all revolves around feelings for others and he fails to realize that my passion for him is so incredibly deep.

nycindie 01-07-2012 09:16 PM


Originally Posted by PolyKat (Post 119102)
He ... found himself livid that another man... could stir something up in me. Adding poly thoughts to that might just be too much if not done right.

Sounds like he feels a sense of ownership over you, as if you are his property. Being that possessive does not bode well for you if you really want to live polyamorously. This is going to need lots and lots of talking and soul-searching, perhaps even for a year of more, before embarking on any additional relationships.

PolyKat 01-07-2012 10:16 PM

He does feel a sense of ownership. He states that, "...as long as you're mine..." when we get into these discussions. He wasn't possessive when we got together. It seems like somewhere along the road, I made him that way.

AnnabelMore 01-07-2012 11:08 PM


Originally Posted by PolyKat (Post 119251)
He does feel a sense of ownership. He states that, "...as long as you're mine..." when we get into these discussions. He wasn't possessive when we got together. It seems like somewhere along the road, I made him that way.

You didn't make him any way, though it's possible that his relationship with you helped him realize/express that side of himself. Or maybe this is just something that would have happened for him no matter what. It's up to him to decide if it's something he wants to embrace or work around, though of course you can encourage him in a certain direction.

I highly recommend the essays at www.morethantwo.com, the intro ones are written as if talking to someone who completely doesn't get the concept of poly. Maybe something on there could be helpful.

Good luck.

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