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-   -   Waiting is difficult for me. (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=2949)

Erato 06-06-2010 02:07 AM

Waiting is difficult for me.
I'll just link my Introduction before I start.

So I'm still in a monogamous/exclusive, long-distance, heterosexual relationship. My boyfriend has a severe panic disorder, for which he is receiving thorough and successful treatment, as well as his abandonment issues and he's definitely definitely monogamous himself.

I definitely, definitely am not. I thought maybe I just have a tendency to feel abandoned and go looking for (sexual) attention from other people when my partner was absent (either with not enough time for me or emotionally distant from numbness/panic) and I do recognise that I have a tendency to do that (and I am working to improve that) but also I am just poly too. I wasn't sure when I made that intro post months back but I am now.

This brings me to the point of this post: I love someone other than my boyfriend. This may make thing even more sticky but the person I love as well as him is my ex-boyfriend. My ex is also distance, lives in the same country as my boyfriend even, so there is no chance of meeting (or cheating) in person at this time.

At the moment, until I visit in September, my boyfriend and I can only explore the sexual side of our relationship intellectually. I've read that a lot of sexual activity actually takes place fore-mostly in the brain and I am far from dissatisfied with that part of our relationship. I am very attracted to my Ex and would like to share that part of myself with him too. I've outright asked my boyfriend if he would be comfortable with that and he said that unfortunately he would not, and may never be, so I've tried to just put it to one side. I'm trying not to let the "may never be" part freak me out so we'll just put that to one side for the moment.

My boyfriend feels that he wants to take this a step at a time. He wants to get us local, either me go over there or him come here, and enjoy our relationship for a while before even starting to consider such a step as an MFF threesome. I'm so scared of cheating but I can't talk to my boyfriend about this without him freaking out. His doctor who is helping with the panic disorder has forbid him from thinking/worrying about the future so my (very present) concerns about this have been put into the too hard basket right now. I feel selfish for needing to talk about it but I'm so worried that sometime irrevocable is going to happen and short of not talking to my Ex ever again I feel like it's inevitable.

I feel lost.

And please, please, please don't suggest that I leave my boyfriend. I know that it may not work out but I am not willing to end it yet. I want to work at it so any suggestions on what I can do, or even just comments from people who have been in similiar situations/have some type of experience with this, would be most appreciated.

Erato 06-06-2010 03:10 AM


So I just tried bringing it up, very gently, not even talking about it directly with my boyfriend and he knew exactly what I was getting at and started to get afraid.

I guess my only option for now is to avoid the Ex or set some strict boundary with him until my man is ready to talk about this. I know that this is only a stop-gap measure but I'm out of ideas.

jkelly 06-06-2010 06:20 AM


Originally Posted by Erato (Post 31883)
I guess my only option for now is to avoid the Ex or set some strict boundary with him until my man is ready to talk about this. I know that this is only a stop-gap measure but I'm out of ideas.

You're in a long-distance relationship with somebody with mental health issues who is making a good faith effort to work on them, and that you are unwilling to break things off with. You got into this relationship while you, presumably, still had feelings for your ex-.

Look, I normally am an enthusiastic advocate for poly- people pushing their partner's boundaries, but in this case you are really correct about what your only option is.

Erato 06-06-2010 10:47 AM

I'd just like to clarify one point: the ex to which I refer is not my boyfriend just before this one. He is the one before the one before this one. I can't think of how to write that less confusingly. There was D, L and E. D is the Ex I like and E is my current partner.

I don't want D as a primary partner, that's not what this is about, and I don't know if anyone can just turn love on and off, can they? I sure can't! I envy those who can.

But yes, I get what you're saying, at least I think I do. E is trying his best and I know and trust that he is doing all he can. He's been texting me while I was at work tonight saying that he regrets being unable to talk to me about this stuff or be comfortable enough for me to have other lovers.

I need to suck it up a bit, methinks. I've already sent D a message saying that we need a break from talking for a while.

GroundedSpirit 06-06-2010 03:11 PM

Hi Erato,

Well, damn, I hate to say this but have to call it as it is.
You have gotten yourself attached (somewhat) to someone with deep emotional problems. There's going to be a huge tendency for him to construct a dependent relationship with people - YOU in this case! You will become his support system, nurse, ad hoc psychologist etc.
It will likely be a turbulent, stressful affair. You are going to have little freedom to make choices in your own life that take you in the direction you want to go.

If there is ANY possibility of doing this - and ASAP - I suggest you extricate yourself from this situation. Explain to him that as much as you DO care about him, NO relationship can grow and blossom unless the people in it are healthy. Go and work on your own health and let's talk in a year !

I know this seems cruel. It FEELS cruel. But having seen SO MUCH of this I can't see any better alternative. :(


Erato 06-06-2010 10:57 PM

Thanks, GS.

I've been in co-dependent relationships before - being the dependent and the dependee - and they are not something I wish to include in my life any more.

I do have a support group for my issues with relationships. I will make more effort to attend meetings and contact people from there and see how I go.

I see a lot of sense in what you're saying, and I have been thinking that it might come to that, but I want to keep trying at this stage. Thank you, again, though for your words.

GroundedSpirit 06-07-2010 04:16 PM


Originally Posted by Erato (Post 31985)
I see a lot of sense in what you're saying, and I have been thinking that it might come to that, but I want to keep trying at this stage. Thank you, again, though for your words.

Yea - I know Erato,

The good side of us all has a deep desire to fix/heal all the worlds troubles - especially the one's closest to us. It's an honorable trait.

But eventually reality dawns on us. We can't fix the world. It's not in our power. All we can do is 'fix' ourselves and hope the world follows suit.

Procrastinating in that realization, in the long run, only makes things worse - for ourselves and for everyone else in our life-often including those we 'think' we are trying to help.

Good luck Sweetie...........


Erato 06-08-2010 04:10 AM

Completely true.

I've given up on saving the world, honestly. I'm enough of a train wreck myself.

It his job to work on getting well and my job to work on getting well too as well as both our job to cultivate patience with each other. That's just how we've always functioned as a couple. I need to take better care of myself but it's hard for me to keep consistent with that a lot of the time.

Live and learn, I guess.

Thank you for your well wishes.

idealist 06-08-2010 04:47 AM

I have a soul mate that lives 1,000 miles away from me. We did have a monogamous exclusive relationship for one year. It didn't work and I don't see how that could ever work. I am still in love with him, but this type of relationship is difficult at best.....even without the psycological issues. Both of your guys are long distance also, which seems like a major drawback to me. But, you have to honor yourself!!! good luck and keep sharing !!!;)

Erato 06-09-2010 03:20 AM

Thanks, idealist. I'm sorry it didn't work you for you and your guy. I hold no illusions that he and I might end up the same way but I have enough hope for now.

Distance isn't actually so much of an issue for me. I'm visiting him in September this year and then hoping in a year after that to do a working holiday over there for a year. But, we'll see, I think I was getting a bit ahead of myself anyway.

Over and over again I've seen on these boards that advice that your primary relationship needs to be strong and solid before you can handle anyone else being involved. If the fact that I'm poly is tearing us apart (even though I'm not practising polyamory) then we have some work to do!

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