Advice for a Noob
My wife and I are new to the whole poly scene and it is very helpful to be on this forum and read all of the advice from the members of this board.
Here is my situation, my wife is going out of town to visit her boyfriend, they are planning to spend four days together. I have given her my blessing and I have communicated briefly with her boyfriend and I'm in a pretty good place as far as being comfortable with the whole situation. This will be the first time either of us has ventured outside of our marriage, and I applaud my wife for being ethical about it and being patient with me as I have been getting myself accustomed to this big step in our life.
Now the hard part, I know my demons and my fears, they lurk just below the surface and come at me at the most inopportune times; like the middle of the night when you need to sleep and your missing your loved one. I have read some really good material on breaking down fears and determining whether or not they are rational, and I know that most aren't. I love my wife and I know that we are going to be together for as long as possible, so I have security there, and I keep trying to remind myself of that. Most times it is good, but when the fear grabs me, rational thought goes out the window. I have actually experienced physical trembling when my demons get a hold of me, something that has never happened to me before. The last thing I want is for my wife to come home from her trip and find a balled up trembling pile of goo that used to be her husband, I want to be strong and happy for her and glad to see her when she comes home.
Does anyone have any advice on how to best deal with the separation anxiety and the fears that I know are going to come, no matter how at peace I feel with it at the moment? Any help is appreciated.
Hi Skater :)
Firstly, I commend you for stepping into this with such a mature attitude. A four-day stint is quite a big one to take on, since this is your first thing outside of your relationship. You're a brave guy! Braver than I am!
My best advice, since you have already started to think about processing your demons... is to keep busy.
I find that keeping busy is the best thing in the world for these kind of things.
If you're worried that you'll be anxious when she walks through the door... can you arrange to go out with a friend, or something similar, and not actually plan to come back until after she's been home for a little while? That might help.
On the plus side... I've found that once the scary stuff actually happens... it's like a huge relief. Finally, this monster you've been hiding from is right there in front of you. And you don't die. Everything is ok. That really, really seems to cut down how stressful it is after the first time.
was my reply just now on this same thing.
Perhaps think of ways to demystify your metamour person - the wife's BF.
Because he's helping now to take care of your baby and you love her so and he's prob kinda a strangerish person to you still.
But trust your wife she woulnd't pick out a nut.
Trust yourself that you can behave like an honorable Jedi.
And well... maybe start writing your thank you letter to the dude to mail when she gets home. For taking good care of your sweetie. Who is a treasure to you. And now a shared treasure.
I know it prob goes opposite to every conditioning ever movie, book, relationship whatever you have observed over life.
So what? Dare to be different. You already are in coming this far. Go then. Take it out the other end.
YOU have opportunity here to touch compersion if you can only plant the seeds and endure time in the forge.
So do it -- for YOURSELF. Not your sweetie, or the bf but for YOU.
Grow your heart big enough to take it, and the rewards come in spades.
I'm riding my own gooshy wave right now of recursive compersion and let me tell you... THIS is horrible sweetness. And it hurts me fine, and hurts me oh so good I just puddle.
First time I went there I thought I must be mad, but I was flying on instinct and for a short slice of time I lived in nirvana of a kind.
I'm living in a different nirvana of a kind -- but oh, it spades. Love multiplies. But only if you let it.
Thanks for the support, I'm going to be okay. I'm channeling Gandolf, telling my demons, "You shall not pass!" How geeky was that? Life is good and my wife is the best. I'll be okay.
Having just gone through this same thing, I learned the following:
1) Have a mantra you can say to yourself. Put together all of the best intentions that you have into a statement, and write it down. Read it out loud to yourself, record it on your cell phone and listen to it on your headphones, and use it to remind yourself of your true strength, desire for compersion and happiness for your partner.
2) Busy is good. Busy with friends is better. I had a number of friends on standby to talk me through my tougher times, and even had one of them stay over one night.
3) Go for a long walk or run, out in nature. It will clear your head and make you feel better. Exercise like a fiend, it gives you focus, brings you back into your body and helps centre you. Yoga and meditation are good too.
4) Journal, blog, or talk it out to yourself.
5) If you can afford it, schedule a counsellor or life coach session to get ready, and debrief.
6) Don't stay in touch via txt if you're struggling. I did that, and sent a few txts that I was none too fuckin' proud of, and have resolve to never do that again in the future.
7) Have movies that you like to watch, a book that you like to read, a football game to go to... whatever you do to feel good..... DO IT. Have LOTS of things that make you happy that you can do when you're feeling your demons come in.
Be gentle with yourself. This is a big bite to take for you. Not for her. For you. It was too big of a bite for me, and it taught me to be more realistic about the time my partner took with another partner - we're going to baby step it next time, as it was WAY too long for me.
You're courageous, strong and brave. You can do this. But take care of yourself, and be armed with all of the magic that you need to fight your demons the best you can. And you know what? It's okay to have negative feelings - they're feelings too. You don't have to tamp them all down, but if you want to talk to her about them, make sure you're clear about what you need first.
Hugs! And good luck! You can PM me if you want me to give you some backup support during that time, btw - been through it!
Forgot to add -- medibate the demons!
Meditate + masturbate = medibate
That's a go to for me -- because sex, even with oneself, releases all kinds of feel good endorphins.
That helps smooth the edges on the ride to me. The "dying in the forge" time. And opens me up to compersion better than "what if" tempest teapotty.
When it comes down to pushing the borders to the edge in Love, out there to the Dark Side of the Force... right on the very line?
What matters then is the direction you face.
So turn your back on the Dark, and frigg yourself over toward the Light, and hopefully your honey will come back to wash you down with compersion to yank you back the rest of the way.
Gooshy, puddle, squishy oooh ahhh release then.
Which is why I write it that way -- it hurts me SO GOOD.
I totally get the Gandalf thing.
For me my mantra is Terry Pratchett in Wintersmith:
“This I choose to do. If there is a price, this I choose to pay. If it is my death, then I choose to die. Where this takes me, there I choose to go. I choose. This I choose to do.”In choosing poly, in choosing to open when I choose to open...
I know I'm not going to die DIE. It will just feel that way and feel horrible. But that's the price to feel that good in loving many. The risk. To get to feel so, so good, it is horribly sweet. :D
But the first time in the forge is scary extra because it's NEW. But I'm sure you have stood in other life forges, and endured. The skills transfer. You can hang in there, you can get through this. Do NOT what if. Demystify, OWN it. Because this you chose to do. To go into Hang Time. Swing from the gallows.
Talk to your honey about what you might need for aftercare.
So maybe think about what YOU need for your aftercare.
The way I see it, it's my past vs. our future. My money is on our future!
Skater21 - I don't have anything to add to the excellent advise already given. I definitely love the "channeling your inner Gandalf" imagery. You have the strength inside you to recognize your demons for what they are and that is an essential component of their eventual banishment. Good luck!
GG has a point though. I save all my best porn for when GF has date night ;) Though, not because I ever thought of it helping my stress, but because I do love porn.
Ohhh... you could start playing Utherverse. I found that through porn one day. Google it ;) Four days will pass in four hours. You'll come out of it realising you haven't eaten... but, meh, small price to pay.
GG also has a great point about aftercare. One of our guidelines is to understand that all partners can feel a bit stressed/guilty/iffy/misc. bad feeling after sleeping with someone else. Not just the person that's at home. So it's really wonderful when the love can be shared upon partner returning home. I personally feel so much love for my GF when I come home from a date... for me, it strengthens that love, because I am free. I haven't had a date yet, where I couldn't wait to get home to my girlfriend and give her lots of cuddles.
I think you will do great!
Hey I know this is off topic but I couldn't help but think you sound so much like my husband .... I actually read what you wrote to him and he said this guy sounds awesome! I appreciated your geek moment... I think you will be strong and survive the time away from your sweetie by staying busy and positive. My husband copes for my extended disappearances by working out and keeping really busy with things that make him happy and stay positive. We also recently celebrated our 2 year wedding anniversary with a romantic dinner and conversation with him was spectacular. We know we want to be with each other as long as possible and that is definitely a contributor of security for both of us.
Anyway I enjoyed your thoughts and the way you expressed yourself. Hope to see more posts here and there from you. I pop in here on occasion..good luck with everything!
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