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-   -   Wedded Bliss? (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=2665)

LovingGirl 04-29-2010 01:56 AM

Wedded Bliss?
I'm new to these forums. (Hi there!) I'm poly, married, with a new boyfriend in the mix. Hubby and I have dated other people in the past, but this is the first time this situation has come up. Possibly because this new fellow -- we'll call him B -- has never considered polyamory before, or perhaps he really is a mono sort of guy. What made him decide to try it with me, knowing my situation, I have no idea. I'm glad he took a chance!

The background --
Hubby and I have been married for 6 years. We were separated for about 2 years, and got back together a year and a half ago. During the separation, I realized that I am poly-minded. (Hey, there's other people out there who aren't monogamous, and they have long-term committed relationships! I'm not crazy after all!) Hubby supported this discovery, has even accepted that his own needs include more than just me. It made our relationship much stronger.

Since getting back together, we have each dated a couple people, but for various reasons nothing has turned into a long-term thing. Along comes B. He seems like the perfect fit for us. Sweet, open, good communication, willing and able to commit to making this work.

B has some issues in his past regarding relationship security. He is fearful that he is expendable. Because of this, he has become very uncomfortable with the fact that Hubby and I are, in fact, married. Most of the time, it's fine. He accepts that I love him and that he is not less important for being newer. Sometimes, though, he just breaks down. He goes on and on about how he'll never be able to marry me, and he'll always be the outsider because we have that.

Now, personally, I don't care much about the legal aspect of marriage. It's handy for insurance and such, but it's not really that important to me. I'm more interested in the commitment and dedication between the parties involved. I am more than happy to have a ceremony, jewelry, vows, etc with the right person. In fact, I would be disappointed if a long-term partner didn't want to have that with me. I don't want 'primary' and 'secondary' relationships, I want a family that includes all of us. I expect to call my committed life-partner 'husband' or 'wife.' I have tried to explain this to him. I have tried to reassure him that the piece of paper I signed is insignificant compared to the commitment and care I can offer. It's no good. Maybe I just need to give it time, or maybe I haven't found the right words. I'm not sure.

The Question --
Are there any married couples here that have brought in a third (eventually) equal partner? How did you deal with the apparent inequality in the eyes of the law? How can I help B see his position as secure, important and equal? Any advice is appreciated.

(No, I don't think he expects 'equal' to mean 'same.' Hubby is dominant, B is submissive, they would both be dissatisfied if I treated them the same!)

merry 04-29-2010 04:01 AM

My only advice is to take it very slowly. Have a very long 'engagement' before making things officially equal across the board. More time together will work out some of those problems naturally as everyone gets really comfortable with each other.

vandalin 04-29-2010 04:22 AM

Have a sit down with B and find out what marriage means to him, define it, what makes it important. Is it the legality, the piece of paper, the old implied "till death do us part"? That might help with figuring out what "angle" to take on explaining why marriage (legal document) is not as important as what is behind it (the emotions and commitment).

Although I/we have not had the experience yet, this is about what I am hoping to find for my family. What I mentioned above would be an important conversation to have with a possible "second hubby". I only use first or second as a measure of time really not degree. ;)

SchrodingersCat 04-29-2010 05:56 AM

I have to admit, I did feel different after getting married.

I was always committed to working on the relationship, on myself, and supporting my husband. I wouldn't have gotten married if I wasn't already committed. But for some reason, the ceremony and the meaning behind the process seemed to somehow strengthen my resolve.

I was always the anti-marriage type, primarily because I knew deep down, before I had a word for it, that I was poly and couldn't do the whole "you and only you, until death do we part" thing. For me, it really was a case of "you just haven't met the right man" because when I did, suddenly I was willing to make all kinds of changes and compromises that I had never even considered considering...

But if my beloved would have said "I love you and I'll stand by you forever, but there's no way in hell I'm getting married and if you love me, you won't make me" then that would have been all I needed to hear, and I would have been happy. But, as it was, I got to have my cake and eat it too. And what a lovely cake it was *points down to sig*

TL4everu2 04-29-2010 12:59 PM

This is a very good question. My wife and I would LOVE to find another COUPLE who think like you do. ;) Anyway, as stated above, go very slowly. He is uncertain, and possibly flighty. I would explain to B that you are willing to have the whole ceremony and everything with him, but that you can not change the laws and that they are what they are for the time being.

Then, Do a little research into what, exactly, a marriage certificate IS. It is a legal document. Plain and simple. Everything else asside, it is a LEGAL DOCUMENT. So, then I ask, would you be willing to sign a legal document with B? If not, then you are fooling yourself. If you ARE, then explain that to him and go see a lawyer about doing just that. This may help to ease the "equality" struggle B is having with himself. Hope I helped. Take care and much love to all three of you.

LovingGirl 04-29-2010 03:06 PM

Actually, TL, I did suggest that we could consult a lawyer about drawing up a legal document giving him much the same rights as a marriage. That, plus the ceremony, you'd think would cover it. I'm not sure what else to say.

I think giving it time is the only thing that is going to solve it. He's got to adjust his life-dream of the traditional romance, marriage, and relationship. I know I can't expect him to make a change in thinking overnight. I just want to help as much as I can in the mean time.

NeonKaos 04-29-2010 03:13 PM

I know there have been cases of poly-partnerships forming an LLC in lieu of marriage.

MonoVCPHG 04-29-2010 05:43 PM


Originally Posted by LovingGirl (Post 27944)
He's got to adjust his life-dream of the traditional romance, marriage, and relationship.

He's got to want to adjust his life-dream first.

redpepper 04-29-2010 05:49 PM

there is also this link on here that talks about the marriage issue, perhaps it will help


LovingGirl 04-29-2010 10:30 PM

Thanks. I'm reading through that other thread as I have time. It helps a little to have Mono's perspective on things. It's hard for me to understand the view-point that B is coming from, and as we're both emotionally invested it's hard to be completely logical and analyze what he's trying to communicate.

I think an in-depth discussion of what 'marriage' means to B is in order. I've spoken a lot on what it means to me, but it's been hard for him to focus on what it means to him. He keeps talking about what he can't have, or things he thinks he can't have, and gets distracted from what he's trying to say.

And, yes, he's got to want it. From his words and actions, I'd say he does want it. He just isn't there yet.

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