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-   -   "We'll go out Friday night if... (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=25849)

WhatHappened 07-21-2012 03:06 PM

"We'll go out Friday night if...
...my wife doesn't have plans for me. I'll let you know."

Is this the way it's typically done in polyamory?

Particularly when the man is going directly home to his wife, doesn't call that night and doesn't call until late the next day with any information?

I'm still looking for where that balance is in this situation.

sparklepop 07-21-2012 03:33 PM

This personally wouldn't bother me at all, if I was dating someone who was married and considered his marriage his 'primary' relationship.

How often do you get to see him? Do you feel like he blows you off often? What's the underlying issue?

I don't think that there is a "typical" way of things happening in poly. I think it depends completely upon your personal arrangements and agreements.

Sometimes my girlfriend solidifies dates with other people without discussing it with us (her husband and I), but most of the time she pencils in a date with them and then mentions it to us. She does that to be considerate of us and to make sure she doesn't double book.

Are you feeling like you come second, after your boyfriend's wife? Do you not like being second? Do you have a casual relationship or something pretty serious?

BrigidsDaughter 07-21-2012 03:47 PM

My boyfriend, Wendigo, is married. I'm married and we both have a child with our respective spouses. I expect him to check with his wife if I want to have a date or even if our regularly scheduled game night needs to be moved around for one reason or another.

For example; I recently asked my boyfriend if we could spend the day together a 2 weeks in advance because we'd just gotten back from a week long camping trip and I knew he'd want time to reconnect with his wife and son. He talked to her, they agreed that he'd be free to spend last Thursday with me and we'd have or regular Wednesday night game on Thursday instead. So we went ahead and got together around 1pm and spent the afternoon together then picked my husband up from work for game. Halfway though game, my boyfriend asked what the date was, knowing his mom's birthday and his anniversary were some time that week, but having been sleeping poorly, the days were running together for him. When we told him, he said he had to go home as it WAS his anniversary. He and his wife had both lost track of the date/ days of the week. She wasn't mad, but I did take him home right away so they could spend some time together.

TequilaMockingbird 07-21-2012 04:37 PM

I think it sounds normal. My husband will ask me a couple days in advance when he's planning on seeing his girlfriend. It avoids scheduling conflicts, and keeps us from intruding on each other's private time. We just see it as a way of being polite to everyone involved.

Althought I do have to admit that Husband did schedule a date for with his girlfriend for my birthday - when I mentioned that, he called her right away and changed it to the next day. When he told her why he was changing, she told him he was a dumbass for forgetting my birthday. :D

It works well for us. If you're feeling left out, or like you're not getting what you need, let him know. I'm finding more and more that assumptions about what each person expects will get you in trouble every time - it's best to speak up. :)

AnnabelMore 07-21-2012 06:08 PM

I disagree with the other posters, I wouldn't be cool with that and I don't think it's necessarily "normal" even if it's what some people do. I have a busy life and I NEED to be able to plan things in advance. Ever once in a while a "we'll play it by ear" is ok, but in general I need any partner of mine to be willing to make plans with me and stick to them. After all, we all make plans with our friends and stick to them, shouldn't a partner get the same treatment or better??

Maybe Friday night is too much to ask for if that's often a special, flexible night for him and his wife to be spontaneous, but if so you two should just pick a different day that he CAN plan for in advance.

AnnabelMore 07-21-2012 06:22 PM

"We'll go out Friday night if my wife doesn't have plans for me. I'll let you know."

The root of my problem with this statement is that he he gets to spend the night with a partner either way -- his wife or you. He's guaranteed a date. You, on the other hand, are implied to be waiting to hear from him, in which case you can't make other plans without breaking your end of the bargain. Not fair, not cool.

A more balanced statement would be "We'll go out Friday night if my wife doesn't have plans for me and if you don't make other plans in the meantime. We'll let each other know." Still kind of a lame way to make plans, but at least it acknowledges that you have the right to continue to have a life rather than just wait around for him. Either reserve your space in advance and plan to keep your reservation, or accept that there's no guarantee the time you want will still be available, mister.

sparklepop 07-21-2012 06:40 PM


Originally Posted by AnnabelMore (Post 144750)
The root of my problem with this statement is that he he gets to spend the night with a partner either way -- his wife or you. He's guaranteed a date.

A more balanced statement would be "We'll go out Friday night if my wife doesn't have plans for me and if you don't make other plans in the meantime. We'll let each other know."

Annabel makes a really valid point here.

I don't expect anyone to wait around for me... my girlfriend, my friends-with-benefits, or even my actual friends.

If someone has to wait around for my decision, I'm never upset if their plans change and I missed my boat. My own fault for being so flaky and indecisive.

The girl I'm dating right now is great for me because our dating schedule is extremely flexible. The last girl I dated needed to know as soon at the end of each date when we'd next see each other. Not because she was particularly busy, but because she was very clingy. This drove me mad. And drove me away. The more she pushed, the less I wanted to see her and the less eager I was to solidify plans.

It wasn't her fault - she just needed someone who was more committal than I was. And a lot more love and attention than I could offer. I didn't want to make her unhappy and she wouldn't end it, so I did, so that she could find someone better suited to her needs.

So... is your boyfriend flaky? Non-committal? Committal to his wife, but not to you? If he's non-committal with you, why's that? Is he 'just not that into you'? Does he just want to keep it casual, but likes you lots?

It's never good to be in the position where you are waiting around for someone else to make you happy. I sympathise with that. I actually dated a married woman when I was 17 and I would wait around for her to make decisions on when to see me. It seemed like she'd confirm plans with everyone else but me. I was the last of the priority line, it felt. And I would put off all other plans in the hope that she'd confirm a plan with me. But.... I let her do it. If I'd made my own plans, it might have forced her to sort her act out. Or it might have made me realise how low I was on her priority list and just face that fact. Then shift my priorities accordingly.

TequilaMockingbird 07-21-2012 06:50 PM

Just a minor clarification - I didn't intend my idea of "normal" to cover everyone's circumstances. Just what's normal around OUR house.

And I wouldn't expect anyone to hang around waiting on my plans or decisions either - I think if you snooze, you lose. Although I do ask husband (man, i gotta think of a pen name) to let me know his schedule, I don't ask him to change plans without a damn good reason.

Sparklepop, I always enjoy what you have to say. It makes sense to me a lot of the time. Thanks for that!

CielDuMatin 07-21-2012 09:16 PM

I can imagine that you'd be upset with this - it sounds too much like "I'll spend time with you if I have nothing better to do" - how is that respecting your relationship in any way?

nycindie 07-22-2012 02:18 AM

Ugh, I would not tolerate that kind of disrespect. Sounds like he expects you to accept whatever crumbs he throws your way... but you deserve a full slice of pie!

There is no typical scenario in poly, but I know if I were you, I would rather he had said, "What night is good for you? Let me know and I'll clear my schedule with my wife." Then if it doesn't work out, he comes back and says, "Friday doesn't work [for whatever reason], but I have Saturday daytime, Sunday night, or Monday night available. Which would you prefer?" YOU have a say! A considerate man -- a gentleman -- would ask you when you would like to get together even if he does have to check with his wife, and then try to accommodate you, NOT tell you to have his leftovers. How dismissive he is of you and the value of your time! Grrrrrr.

From now on, take a stance. Don't wait for him to tell you what is okay with his wifey-poo. YOU tell HIM, "If you want to see me, I have such-and-such nights free. Let me know which works for you by [specific date]. If we can't get together this week, I guess it'll be next week, then." And if he doesn't give you a satisfactory answer by your deadline, go make plans with friends, family, other lovers, but don't sit around waiting! If a couple of weeks go by and he has a fit because he hasn't seen you, he will have to start making more reasonable accommodations to be with you. This is how we train people, frankly, to start being more considerate. He has chosen to have a girlfriend and a wife, so he had better learn to manage his relationships so that both of you feel respected and cherished individually, and not treat you like some extra thing he's trying to squeeze in, after everyone else gets theirs. Ugh, treating people like this disgusts me. If the parameters of his marriage won't allow for you to have a voice, then walk - really, why stay? Most women have to get out of the habit of being too available -- being accommodating is what society has taught us, but being overly accommodating enables others to trample over us!

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