Forced to make a decision
I've recently... Been forced to make a decision about the relationship I have with my poly man. And I don't quite know what to do, and I'm hoping for some advice or encouragement.
Basically, in a little less than 5 weeks, there is a convention. This same convention last year, I met my guy, and since then we've had a relationship.
Now, those who've seen my posts before, obviously know I'm not comfortable with him being poly, and... I try my best to get by, and deal with it. But it really does mostly make me feel terrible. But I love him, so I try.
Anyway. This event, which I have loved and gone to for years, is basically his "crazy" weekend. I think he's already made plans to have some one-night stands, or meet people, and just really sleep around.
And... I don't know if I can handle the heartbreak of both not going to the event, and hearing about him sleeping around and meeting new partners like that.
Now, he's told me I should go with friends to the event, so I don't miss out. But I know my mind will be on him all night, and I know if I see him with another woman, I will get upset. And even more so if I see him being affectionate, or taking them up to his room.
I'm really at a loss of what to do, because it seems like I'll be hurt if I stay, or if I leave.
I asked him the other night about something he used to tell me. He used to tell me he only wanted a romantic relationship, the sort of intimacy and romance we have, with me.
I asked him if this was still true, and he changed his tune, basically saying if he meets someone else, romance is in his nature. And he tried to change what he said to what he meant. (Which, is bullshit, to me. If he wants to change it, change it. But don't try and pretend I heard it wrong, you know?)
Also, he forgot he made plans with me on Valentine's day and scheduled a rehearsal with his band... And instead made plans with me the day before.
Am I allowed to be hurt that he just forgot about plans like that he made with me? Also, the fact is that he made them, crying to me, the last time I was seriously contemplating leaving him?
I just... I don't know what to do. I really would love private conversation, or just someone to talk to about this.
I keep trying to accept the poly lifestyle he leads, but it's so damn hard when I'm such a monogamous person.
Speaking of dealing, have you voiced your concerns to him since your last post? Because if you haven't they stay in your head and he stays having no idea how you feel or what you're thinking.
Another instance where you need to be voicing your concerns. He has too much leeway. It sounds like he just does whatever he wants and you sit back waiting for the emotional fallout, thinking that's the way to deal. Your foot? Put it down. Stop everything. SPEAK UP. He needs to slow the hell down. Why is any of this okay for him to do? I don't understand.
There is a lot to figure out and discuss together before a decision can be made. And this co-dependency needs to be addressed, frankly. Whatever emotions you're trying to avoid will be felt at some point whether you sit still and do nothing or get up and go.
Neither of you speak up enough. And he is manipulating the situation by playing on your self-esteem.
No. What you're actually doing is letting yourself be taken for a ride. He knows that if he turns on the tears you'll relent and try to pick up the pieces again. He's secure in knowing that you will continue to put up with his bullshit because leaving might seem that much worse.
I say all of this not to down you or make you feel bad about yourself but I don't sugarcoat online or off.
He says I have to accept him the way he is, or else we can't be together....
:/ His actions aren't up for debate, basically. If I say anything about it, he says I'm not letting him be his own person, and I'm trying to change him. That I'm not letting him be polyamorous.
I can't say anything about the people he picks to be his lovers, and I can't ask him not to sleep around. It seems like he's already made plans. Because he said he knew how the weekend was going to go.
I just... I don't know what to do.
People tell me that I shouldn't be the only one sacrificing in this relationship, but at the same time, aren't I denying him who he feels he is if I don't let him do "whatever the hell he wants"?
Yes. I have spoken to him. This was the second time. And he basically said, this is what he was doing. And that's it. :/ I have no say in his life, or what he's doing... He just does it, and I have to deal with or. Or not deal with it.
He says I "knew what I was getting into" back when we met. Yes. He told me he was poly. But I mean... People have such vast definitions of what it means to be polyamorous. His seems to include taking lovers (and only telling me about them being together after they have been intimate. Apparently planning and meeting up before that doesn't mean a thing unless sexual acts happen.) and one night stands/threesomes/orgies/I don't even know what he has planned.
And... I just don't know. I have no say in what he does. He'd pick fucking multiple women over having a relationship with me any day. I think simply over the principle that I would be "making him choose".
I normally don't follow this thread, but I was drawn in by your name Mookitten. When I told my husband, Runic Wolf, about your post, he said that what your boyfriend is doing isn't poly and it's pretty fucked up, iho.
Yes, you knew you were going to be dating a poly person, but while poly can include one night stands and threesomes, it generally doesn't include orgies. In poly, you don't get your own way 100% of the time; it takes work and communication and a willingness to listen to your SO when they are struggling and take their needs into account.
IMO, if he was serious about having a relationship with you, he'd want to return to the place where you met together, as a couple. Not tell you to go with your friends so that he can appear single and get fucked more.... sorry, but I'd kick his ass to the curb. You deserve better than that.
Mookitten, I don't see him as being very kind nor understanding towards you. He sounds like a big ol' dictator. People shouldn't be waving the poly flag while running roughshod all over the ones who care about them. Personally, I could not stay in a situation like yours, where I was treated with such disregard. Why do you even stay?
Yes, you are "allowed" to feel hurt. Your feelings are valid because they are your feelings, and don't need to be justified to anyone.
One important question: does he use condoms, and at least let you in on his safe sex practices (if any) while he is running around fucking all these people?
We do communicate. I voice my feelings and what have you. But it doesn't change his actions... And, while I understand to an extent he wants to have other relationships and everything... I just don't understand the one-night stands.
And, to be fair, he met me and his other lover at the event. The same event. Same night... So it's not like I have anything special with him. We have nothing that's "ours", per se. Because he shares everything with his lovers... He took me to the Renn Faire for my birthday. But then just took his other lover "just 'cause". And... I feel like I need a special occasion to get anything from him... Plus, he lives with her. Which has made me very jealous. (And I've met her, I don't like her. But that's neither here nor there)
I don't know what else to do. He says this is what being polyamorous is. And that if I don't like it, then this isn't the relationship to be in. I stay because I'm in love with him, and he says he's in love with me. And, beyond everything to do with his poly lifestyle, he and I get along great. We have a connection, we love spending time together. And I'm just so happy when I'm with him...
Although I'm slightly uncomfortable posting about that sort of thing on a public forum, he and I do not use condoms. But he does with all of his other partners. And, honestly. I believe him. I do not think he has any reason to lie to me about that.
Also, he was my first, and I'm on birth control. Of course this does nothing to protect against STDs, I'm aware. But... He says he gets tested regularly, and is clean. And I just trust that.
^Well, at least you are protecting your physical health. That's good.
That's not enough, though. You need to protect your emotional health, too.
He is trying to make it sound like because he is polyamorous he can't control what he does. That is bullshit, such dishonesty. He can control his actions, but he doesn't want to.
The fact that he doesn't want to doesn't make him a bad person. He is allowed to want to live polyamorously, i.e. to have multiple relationships. He is also allowed to want to have sex with anybody and at any time he feels like it. There's nothing wrong with that, but it's not inherent in polyamory.
What does make him an asshole is that he won't be honest and say "this is what I want; if this is not what you want, we shouldn't be in a relationship".
He doesn't care about hurting you. He gets everything he wants in this situation; he can fuck around and you'll still be there to service him. Because he doesn't care about the fact that you hurt, he won't end it with you (except maybe if he gets tired of you). You need to do that yourself. Please, don't let him string you along any longer. :(
He never said he couldn't control his actions. He just doesn't want to. He is poly and decides that means he can do what he wants. And I guess it means I am separate from his life in that regard... That my emotions do not impact his decisions to sleep around. I honestly don't know how he does it. Willing to sacrifice our relationship for a string of one night stands and threesomes...
Shouldn't he feel at least slightlt worried/some emotion about how it would impact me?
I just... I don't know what to do. What to say to him. How to make this work..I want this to work. I care about him so very much, and he tells me he is in love with me...
But I just don't know how to cope. It feels like it is always me sacrificing...
Sure, he drives down to me. But I pay for gas and food and everything. And I have sacrificed activities and obviously my sanity to be with him.
I just... Don't know what to do. I do think he is being manipulative to an extent, but I don't think he means to... I don't know. I wish one of you could talk with him and search for answers. Because I just don't know anymore. and... Although I am grateful for your assitance... None of you have met him or know his entire personality.
Sigh. I really want to make this work, though.
More so, I don't want to come out of this regretting it. I don't want to come out feeling used and manipulated... I don't want that.
I am sorry that you are hurting and maybe there is much more adding to your situation that you didn't let us in about, but what I am reading here ... everything that I am able to feel when reading about your story is just: That's wrong. So wrong.
Yes, he is right, you should accept your partner for what he is, but where is his acceptance for what you are?! For what you feel? Where is your acceptance for what you feel as well? You are suffering, he does what he wants. Sorry if this is offensive, but I question his feelings for you. And I question his ability to see what he is doing to you. This may be caused by your own incapability to handle your feelings. You aren't able to get through to him and tell him what you are feeling, as it seems. If he understood how much he is hurting you and still continues, you should seriously reconsider if this relationship is worth it.
You can call what you are doing however you want, giving things a name doesn't validate them. If it causes you hurt and pain, don't do it, find a way to compromise (together!) and start having an relationship that is healthy and beneficial to you.
If that isn't possible, think about why you are staying in a situation that isn't tolerable in and of itself.
Best wishes, Phy.
He is your first, you said, so you are looking at your situation colored by some sort of romantic idea about that. But there are other men out there! There are others who would love to respect and cherish you, and work toward building a healthy relationship with you.
Don't settle for this jerkwad who only cares about himself and no one else! He doesn't really know what poly is, and I say this because he doesn't give a shit about taking care of the people in his life or, at the least, working towards a consensual arrangement/agreement with his lovers.
My advice is to end it and move on.
I am sorry, that probably means going to that event might be too raw this year, but you need to do what you can to preserve and boost up your sense of self-esteem and self-worth and invite beauty and joy into your life instead of all this pain -- and being treated so callously.
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