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-   -   Time Management (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=28769)

StrayKitten 09-15-2012 04:01 PM

Time Management
 
I'm not sure how to balance my two relationships time-wise. See, I have my primary (D) who had kids, two weeks at a time, so I barely get to see him during that time. But I've adjusted to making up for that during the two weeks he doesn't have them, which has been perfect for me and how my attention works.

Now though, I've added my girlfriend (H) to the picture, and don't really know how to strike a balance between seeing both of them enough. It also doesn't help that I feel awkward if I see her 2-3 times in a row without seeing D. I'm still figuring out if I'm poly, but I know that I can't, currently, walk away from either without serious regrets and resentment and that I badly *want* to find a way to make time work in my favor.

The best thing I've come up with is setting aside days for both of them each week, so that I have set days I can spend with each of them...

How do others work time for all of their partners?

CielDuMatin 09-15-2012 04:58 PM

For clarification - do you not live with the person you refer to as your "primary"?

Different people have different definitions of the term, and it would be wise to make sure that we understand which version you understand.

For me, a primary by definition, is someone that I live with. A secondary is someone who I don't live with.

StrayKitten 09-15-2012 06:07 PM

I do not live with either partner. I have been dating D for (roughly) 6 months, and H for roughly 1 month.

**edit**
I don't live with anyone, no housemates, no kids, just me ;)

Anneintherain 09-16-2012 04:00 AM

I'd probably schedule some set days to see them - so that they had at least one day minimum a week to see me _if that is what they wanted to do_ too. If I was dating two people who didn't live with me but wanted to see me lots, I'd probably set two aside for each a week, then if one was busy that week, I'd see friends or do laundry or see my other partner (but that's just what would work for me).

That would also help if they start dating other people, to know that they always schedule around those date nights with you, so there's not a lot of confusion about schedules or you end up not getting to see them sometimes because you only had Friday free and they made other plans that night because they didn't know.

Really there are benefits to many different types of scheduling, it really depends on the personalities of those involved and how you can compromise to try to get everyone's needs met. Some people WILL not like making or sticking to a schedule, some people can't do without, so I'd talk to both my partners before thinking about it too much.

Papillon 09-17-2012 10:19 AM

I would say talk to them both (together if possible) about what time they want/need and how to schedule things in the best way possible. You say that you sometimes feel bad about how things work currently, but do you know for sure that your primary partner is bothered by it? Talk to him! Then everyone can be on the same page about what you all want & what is expected.

We have a schedule - slightly different situation as I live with my primary partner (my husband), but we have two days a week where we are scheduled to see our other partners (my boyfriend & his girlfriend). Some of these days are as separate couples, some are together socially as a four. Some of them are overnights, some not. It's all planned on the schedule.

The important caveat for us is that this is a minimum, a commitment to when we will always make time for them (barring exceptional circumstances, obviously). We actually often do things over and above that minimum, depending on work rotas or planned activities etc. :)

jasaty 09-17-2012 01:17 PM

I agree, talk to them and if you can schedule days with each so that they know when they can see you and not make plans for other things.

I personally need a schedule. I live for schedules. Whether it's for our daughter or my own personal one. I'm not the type of person who likes things sprung on them. I hope you are able to find a balance.

GalaGirl 09-17-2012 01:57 PM

Guh. Calendars.

I'm Closed right now. But just scheduling all the other things in my life?

DH and I have a powwow by the semester. We function on the academic calendar for the most part. Treat it in chunks like fall term, spring term, summer, repeat.
  • We spread out the weird FIXED things that need to be, and pin them on first. Family events, gatherings, holidays, special things (ex: concerts) that we want to hit. These cannot be on other days, they are the day they are. (ex: Christmas pageant is dec 24 without fail)
  • Then the known REPEATERS (ex: church on sundays).
  • Then slam in FLEX couple time for us. (A must like once a month, but can jiggle about inside the month. Not like a fixed date thing. ALONE. Without the kid. We get plenty family dates on the fly. Don't bother to sched that.)
  • Then slam in FLEX "me" time for each. (a must once a week, but can jiggle)
  • Then slam in the kid things. (Limited to ONE activity per term, we can't be doing the crazy taxi thing for kiddie activities. Everyone gets only ONE activity a month, though parents sometimes skip their opportunity for classes and whatnot in favor of ALONENESS.)
  • Then REST days where nothing is happening. We must plan this and protect it like the holiest of holy's! We usually tell people we "have a family thing already on that day." We don't tell them it is family resting. People underrate the need for rest and overschedule themselves.

Anything else on the fly.

So really just talk to your partners and get a standing date for each so there's a pattern. If someone gets sick or something, that is fine. But at least then you know what's expected and coming WHEN.

Don't feel guilty if you see H more than D. That is just THIS term's pattern. Who knows what next term's needs will bring? Be willing to be flexible, and be willing to be ok changing it up again next term to reflect those needs THEN.

HTH!
GG

jasaty 09-17-2012 02:09 PM

GalaGirl,
That sounds like an awesome way to manage everything.

StrayKitten 09-20-2012 03:47 PM

Oh, wow, that takes SO MUCH SCHEDULING! I'm impressed you make it work! :)

I'm starting to think that I need to work something out with D first, simply because he's the less flexible of the two, and then work in H time around that. And make sure there's the understanding that weeks when D has his kids I can have more H time... **sigh** I don't like things being complicated ;)

(yes, not the lifestyle to avoid complications, I know... lol)

Thanks for all your advice!

GalaGirl 09-20-2012 05:50 PM

We struggle. Part of the reason of why CLOSED in childhood with the kid. Takes up a lot of time/effort.

If you need to schedule D first, then H, that is how it is. Get it on there, fill in the rest, and be ok rolling with it like an experiment til spring term.

Because with all the holiday hoo ha of fall term, it always has a different vibe than spring or summer.

Some life patterns happen on the seasonal or yearly cycle. Not monthly, weekly, or daily and it takes some passes thru to learn that.


GG


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