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-   -   Concerned I've messed things up (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=21056)

SittingPretty 02-07-2012 01:19 PM

Concerned I've messed things up
 
Hi all,

I've been poly for a while, but I am the first poly person that my partner B has been in a relationship with. After much discussion and communication he feels that poly is something he can identify with, and wants to try for himself.

He recently met someone through a mutual hobby, and we all sparked up a friendship. She would frequently bemoan the fact that she is single, so my partner asked her out for dinner. This hadn't yet been organised, but she had said yes.
On Friday we were out, and I was drunk (believe me, I am utterly hating myself right now). B had told me that this girl, H, was not sure that I was okay with the two of them dating, so I took her to one side and tried to reassure her that I was okay with things as long as she was nice to him. I don't remember exactly what I said.

Since Friday H has been very quiet with my partner. He has messaged her on FB about the dinner, and there has been no reply. Similarly texts aren't replied to.

My partner hasn't got great self confidence, and he swings between feeling like the reason she has been out of touch is the conversation I had with her, or because he is "fat and old and ugly" and thus the situation is all his fault.

I know that I was out of line for approaching this girl while I had been drinking. There is little excuse for that, and though my intentions were good I should have kept my nose out. I am fully aware of this. I have offered on a number of occasions to get in touch with H myself and try to apologise, but B refuses and either says that I have "done enough damage" or that "it wouldn't make a difference anyway".

I'm worried that if things don't happen with H, B will blame me and resent me, and that it will sour things for us. This is the first time that he has been interested in someone outside of the primary relationship.
Part of me also feels that perhaps H didn't like him that much in the first place, that maybe at 19 she isn't okay with poly, or mature enough to handle it (B is 38 and I'm 29). But I then worry that these are judgements I'm making in order to make myself feel better about the situation.

I also feel like maybe she is just busy.

In a nutshell, I am concerned that I have scared off a potential partner of my other half, and would appreciate any advice on what to do now. B and I are spending a lot of time talking, the old adage "communicate until it hurts, then communicate some more", but I am very worried that even with all this communication he will blame me if H choses not to get in touch again.

As a side note it should be perhaps mentioned that I have a secondary partner, a girl that I will refer to as E. I don't know if this is relevant but thought I ought to add it for completeness. I had been hoping that B finding someone would make E being in my life slightly easier for him to deal with.

Sorry if this is long and rambling and confused. I appreciate any insight or perspective anyone may be able to give on this.

nycindie 02-07-2012 09:11 PM

Geez, was this his only shot at it or something? He needs to move on, I think, and stop blaming you or himself. Dating is always hit or miss, it probably doesn't matter what you said or how he feels about himself. It's far more rare for first dates to lead to second dates than he realizes. Not every date turns into a relationship. That's how dating goes. It's like he's putting all his eggs in one basket. If he wants to have another gf, he's gotta keep asking women out.

CherryBlossomGirl 02-07-2012 09:13 PM

Time is your best friend.
 
Sounds like a tuff place to be - worried that by trying to help, you've accidentally screwed things up. Doesn't sound to me like you were coming from a bad place though, so all you can do is learn from it (sounds like you wish you hadn't talked to her when drunk, fer example, so there's a solid lesson!) and let it go. It's up to her, and I wouldn't try to fix it. There's lots of lovely people out there for your partner, and if this one isn't the right fit/is gunshy of you/is too young for this, then that's a good thing to know sooner than later, right? I don't think you can hold yerself too accountable - honest mistake, and if you've taken responsibility/apologized for where you think you were wrong, then time is where it's at, right? Hugz!

BlackUnicorn 02-07-2012 10:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SittingPretty (Post 123836)
She would frequently bemoan the fact that she is single, so my partner asked her out for dinner...

Part of me also feels that perhaps H didn't like him that much in the first place, that maybe at 19 she isn't okay with poly, or mature enough to handle it (B is 38 and I'm 29).

Hum hum, I would bet she just couldn't think of a polite way to say no, and brought up your possible feelings to dodge the date. He is literally twice her age, so I don't see this necessarily developing into a relationship anyway. Why stress?

SittingPretty 02-07-2012 10:59 PM

Thank you all for your answers - they have really really helped put my mind at rest.

AutumnalTone 02-08-2012 03:39 AM

That's for them to work out--not you. One of the things about adult relationships is that you have to let other adults work out their own relationships. Let them.

AnnabelMore 02-08-2012 07:40 AM

Um. Wth is up with your partner giving you grief and guilt ("done enough damage", really??) when what you did was a GOOD move to try to help things?? I think it's always good to hear from a potential partner's partner so that you know things are on the up and up.

So what if you'd been drinking, all the more reason for her to know you were being honest. I mean, do you have a history of horrifically mis-stating things and coming off badly when drunk? Even if that was the case, even if you butchered things, that doesn't justify her ignoring him. That's just a shitty move on her part (assuming that she's not, in fact, just busy). He should be annoyed at her, not you, you did nothing wrong. After all, if she'd gone up and kissed him after your talk with her, he'd be praising you to high heaven, don't you think? Instead, he's upset that it didn't go the way he wanted and is taking it out on you. This doesn't bode well for future poly entanglements. Maybe I'm coming down a little hard here, but I really think he needs to check himself on this impulse.

SittingPretty 02-08-2012 08:30 AM

My motivation was that I would also always prefer to know from a potential partner's partner that they were fine with me dating their partner. My thought process was that it means that everyone is on the same page, and everyone is comfortable with the situation.
I had been told that H was quite unsure of dating someone who was in a relationship already, so it seemed logical to me to try and reassure her. And I don't have a history of coming across badly when drunk.

I think you make very valid points, AM, in that he shouldn't blame me for her dropping out of contact (it's a very valid point also that she is half his age). His relationships are his own, and I can understand why he felt I was sticking my nose in, but I think (and he now can acknowledge) that he was far too harsh.

As far as monitoring this for future poly entanglements, it is a source of great worry to me that he won't be able to handle poly, as it is a dealbreaker for me. I know that there are plenty more fish in the sea, but I love this man and would like to make this work if at all possible. I am concerned however that sometimes in the interests of making things work I am more likely to apologise and accept blame/responsibility for his feelings when I should be telling him to man up.

Thank you everyone for your input.

Magdlyn 02-08-2012 01:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SittingPretty (Post 123952)
My motivation was that I would also always prefer to know from a potential partner's partner that they were fine with me dating their partner. My thought process was that it means that everyone is on the same page, and everyone is comfortable with the situation.
I had been told that H was quite unsure of dating someone who was in a relationship already, so it seemed logical to me to try and reassure her. And I don't have a history of coming across badly when drunk.

You did the right thing! Most experienced poly people like to meet their new partner's other partner(s), just to make sure everyone is cool with the situation. I've got a new bf (2 months of dating), the Ginger, and this past weekend I took my primary, miss pixi, to the his house to meet him, and for both of us to meet his wife. It went great (see my blog last's post).

Quote:


As far as monitoring this for future poly entanglements, it is a source of great worry to me that he won't be able to handle poly, as it is a dealbreaker for me. I know that there are plenty more fish in the sea, but I love this man and would like to make this work if at all possible. I am concerned however that sometimes in the interests of making things work I am more likely to apologise and accept blame/responsibility for his feelings when I should be telling him to man up.
Don't despair and let yourself think he'll never be able to handle poly. It's a learning curve, and sometimes a rollercoaster. Traditional dating is hard enough, being poly just makes it even more challenging.

As for your husband saying he might be too "old, fat and ugly," that's his own low self esteem talking. He needs to take responsibility for that. He isn't really ugly, right? And 38 is so not old... altho to a 19 year old, it might be. As for his weight, he can embrace and love his burly physique, or if it really bothers him, start watching his diet and working out.

I'm 56 and I've got two 34 year old lovers... and my oldest lover (the Gentleman), at 63, sometimes has told me he thinks he is "fat, old and boring," especially compared to them. I won't stand for it. I told him (affectionately, sensitively), "How can I love you if you don't love yourself?" As a result, he is now working harder at battling his depression issues, eating better, and renovating his condo, which he had let fall into disrepair.


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