Polyamory.com Forum

Polyamory.com Forum (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/index.php)
-   Poly Relationships Corner (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=4)
-   -   Poly relationships and your social life (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=22245)

Cleo 03-13-2012 03:55 PM

Poly relationships and your social life
 
My husband and I have been together for almost 20 years. We opened up our relationship 3 years ago - at first it was just for mostly sexual playing with others (swapping with other couples, threesomes) but this quickly led to 1 on 1 encounters with others, and that in turn led to connections with others that were (are) much more than just sexual. This as a little background.

My husband has been with his current girlfriend for about 7 months now. I've known about her from the beginning, she's been and stayed at our house (when I was away), they went on trips together. But. I only met her in person for the first time this weekend.

It was hard for me. I had not had a lot of jealousy issues lately, but meeting her brought back a whirlwind of insecurity and low self esteem related emotions. I'm glad I met her, and I'll work through these emotions, so that's not the issue here. But what I have been thinking about a lot now, is where this first step will lead us.

I know my husband is eager to introduce her to more parts of his daily life - invite her to events, meet his / our friends, etc. Obviously I had to meet her first, but now that that is out of the way, he feels we can move on. I'm not so sure. I have a really hard time imagining her coming somewhere where a lot of our friends are. We've known most of our friends for a very long time. Every one were close to knows about our situation, but I feel that 'knowing about it' and actually ' knowing her' are very different things.

I guess I would prefer to keep things more separate. I have 2 lovers, they both live in different cities, and although we have a deep and meaningful connection and talk about our lives and the things that go on in it, I have no desire to introduce them into my social life.

So obviously, husband and I have different wishes and preferences here. How do other people in poly relations deal with introducing 'secondary' or other relationships into their regular lives?

Derbylicious 03-13-2012 04:39 PM

This woman is obviously an important part of your husband's life. Do you think there might be a way to introduce her to your social circle slowly? Maybe by inviting her to very public events to begin with.

You and your husband know your friends. Is meeting another partner of yours something that is likely to freak them out? I don't know your friends but I think that you're going to have a harder time adjusting to her being around than they are. Chances are your friends will just look upon it as a new person to be friends with.

Maybe you can get better acquainted with her one on one before introducing her to your friends. Once she's more integrated into your life it will seem more natural to invite her to social functions.

Cleo 03-13-2012 04:46 PM

well, it's not so much that I worry that it will freak them out (a lot of our friends are curious to meet her), it's that I know it will freak me out!

Maybe it's because we've been together for such a long time and have been going places as a couple for such a long time. How does it even WORK when he would go somewhere with the both of us, me and her? I guess I'm really territorial about this, which is a side of me I don't really like, but it's here and I have to deal with it.

The thought of her showing up at tis event next week just about gives me a panic attack. The thought that she's coming over to our house tomorrow while I'm at work for what will most likely be 'lunch in bed', is perfectly fine with me.

Cleo 03-13-2012 04:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Derbylicious (Post 128671)
Maybe you can get better acquainted with her one on one before introducing her to your friends. Once she's more integrated into your life it will seem more natural to invite her to social functions.

the thing is, I don't really want her to become more integrated into my life. I'm much happier with the situation where it's all more separated.

I think husband and I have some serious negotiating ahead of us....

Derbylicious 03-13-2012 05:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Cleo (Post 128676)
the thing is, I don't really want her to become more integrated into my life. I'm much happier with the situation where it's all more separated.

I think husband and I have some serious negotiating ahead of us....

It sounds like you really do. If you can both give a little it will probably work out just fine. Everything doesn't need to change overnight. Be very clear on what you're comfortable with right now. Also be clear about what your ideal situation looks like. Ask him to do the same (and possibly ask his girlfriend as well). You might find that when you are very clear that there is a bit of overlap and that's where you start from with the negotiations. Maybe for a while it will be that you take turns going to group events with your husband, there's no rule book saying that you all have to go to things together after all.

AnnabelMore 03-13-2012 05:42 PM

Maybe it'll be easier if you have a better sense of what the dynamic will be between the three of you, which a brief meeting can hardly provide. For instance, the three of you could go out for coffee or a drinks a few times, see if you can be friends and be comfortable. Then, if the vibe is good, it won't be such an unknown quantity to think of the three of you interacting with your other friends. Of course, if the vibe is not so good maybe your fears are justified.

You could also ask for initial guidelines as you feel out your comfort level like "hugs are ok but no kissing either of us when we're all out together and make sure to spend equal time with both of us to the best of your abilities" or something like that.

I was already a part of the same social circle as my gf and her husband, so it didn't come up for us. As for inviting them into the same social circle as me and my bf (which is a largely separate group of people), I would always offer him the option before inviting them to a particular event that's more his thing or his and my thing than just my thing (if that makes sense) since he's more sensitive about being around metamours. But I wouldn't consider it acceptable for anyone involved to insist that one or more persons stay entirely out of a particular social circle... it doesn't seem fair to expect anyone to stay hidden out of sight or miss out on special social events like birthday parties.

Cleo 03-13-2012 06:05 PM

thanks guys. I knew there would be words of wisdom here:)

Derbylicious, I really like the idea of us both writing down what our ideal situation would look like.

AnnabelMore, yeah, I'm trying to feel around within I myself how much interaction I want with her.. the three of us. Maybe that is also something we should discuss, the level of intimacy / friendship between the three of us that we are all comfortable with.

There is one issue that further complicates things. Girlfriend only lives in our city part time. The rest of the time she lives quite far away. In her hometown, she has a boyfriend, who doesn't know about her relationship with my husband.

It's not my position to judge this (although I guess I do, just a little), its my husbands decision wether or not he wants this. But. When they went on a trip together, they met a bunch of her friends and were in HER social circle (though the boyfriend wasn't there), and those friends were not allowed to know the nature of the relationship between my husband and her, because she wants to keep this a secret. So they pretended to be 'just friends' for a week.

So this sort of rubs me the wrong way.. its a bit childish maybe but I keep thinking: why should I welcome her with open arms into my life, while she is keeping her relationship with my husband a secret from everyone who is important to her?

dingedheart 03-13-2012 06:37 PM

How long has your husband talked about integrating her into the social fabric of your lives?


Have you told your husband about your reluctance and discomfort?

Derbylicious 03-13-2012 06:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Cleo (Post 128684)

There is one issue that further complicates things. Girlfriend only lives in our city part time. The rest of the time she lives quite far away. In her hometown, she has a boyfriend, who doesn't know about her relationship with my husband.

It's not my position to judge this (although I guess I do, just a little), its my husbands decision wether or not he wants this. But. When they went on a trip together, they met a bunch of her friends and were in HER social circle (though the boyfriend wasn't there), and those friends were not allowed to know the nature of the relationship between my husband and her, because she wants to keep this a secret. So they pretended to be 'just friends' for a week.

So this sort of rubs me the wrong way.. its a bit childish maybe but I keep thinking: why should I welcome her with open arms into my life, while she is keeping her relationship with my husband a secret from everyone who is important to her?

Yeah that would bug me too. Cheating isn't ok and I would wonder if she is cheating on someone else if she has the capacity to be cheating on your husband as well. Honesty is important. Has your husband encouraged her to come clean to her boyfriend about their relationship? I wonder if you'd feel more comfortable with her being a part of your social life if everything was out in the open on both sides.

Cleo 03-13-2012 07:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by dingedheart (Post 128689)
How long has your husband talked about integrating her into the social fabric of your lives?


Have you told your husband about your reluctance and discomfort?

he's absolutely not pushing me about this. But he does get upset about the fact that I am much more averse to letting her 'in' than he would be about meeting and socializing with any of my secondary partners. We are just very different in this respect. He doesn't have any of my jealousy and insecurity issues.
He knows about my discomfort and would never do anything to make me more uncomfortable. But I have to acknowledge his needs, as well.


All times are GMT. The time now is 07:09 AM.