I think my partner is a Poly but he won't admit it
Hello, I am what some of you may call a hardwired mono. I have tried polyamory in the past, but I just know it's not for me. I have been dating a guy (I will use the name "Sam") for a couple of years now. We have a great relationship, get along very well, and have always been open and honest to each other about everything, until we ran into some communication issues recently.
Basically, Sam and I have been in a monogamous relationship for the past couple of years, except we sometimes have threesomes with other men or women. I guess you could call us "swingers."
A little while ago, Sam had sex with a girl (I will use the name "Molly") without my knowledge or consent. I didn't suspect this as Polyamory behavior at all initially, because a real Poly isn't dishonest nor have sex with people behind their partner's back. However, later on, he told me he cares a great deal about Molly and that she is special to him. Thus I suspected that he is probably interested in Polyamory, he just doesn't know much about it or how it works.
So I asked him if he was interested in a romantic relationship with Molly or any other women. He told me no, and said something along the lines of "I love you, and we are perfect together. I don't think I can feel the same way about anyone else." (I feel the same way about him) But I was confused. How could he care a lot about Molly, find her special, and sexually appealing, yet not want a relationship with her?
And, since then, he has been giving me more mixed messages. He bought the book "Ethical Slut" but doesn't actually intend on reading it. He also told me his fantasy is to live in a house with a bunch of girls. And whenever we are looking for a girl to join us in a casual threesome, he wants to "date" them first to make sure he likes them.
So, lately I tried to clarify my confusion and also to communicate more openly with him. But every time I bring up anything about Molly, Polyamory, or rules for our relationship to avoid future misunderstandings, he gets really angry and calls me jealous, which doesn't even make sense. How could I be jealous when I take pleasure in seeing him being sexually pleased by another woman? In fact, Sam is actually the jealous one. For instance, when we have threesomes with other guys, he doesn't like it when the other guy "kisses me too much."
I just want him to be honest with me and let me have a conversation with him about this without him getting angry. If he is in fact a Poly, then we need to reevaluate our relationship. Based on your knowledge and experiences, do you think he is? And how should I approach talking to him about it?
i think he is cheating on you i mean poly means to be honest communication if not full disclosure of his whereabouts. his desires may be real but i mean you should have a chat with him first. For me it seems it is a red flag for me since he is using poly as an excuse to date other girls without your consent and disclosure.:(
sorry for your situation
It actually sounds like he wants to avoid the term because of his own jealousies. If he can keep you around in spite of his cheating, but not open up the relationship (he may be assuming you will want the freedom to date and see other men without him) for the both of you, then why would he need to?
I would say start getting your needs met in this relationship. If you are curious about a mono/poly combination relationship (where you are mono since you stated this is your orientation and he is poly and you are comfortable with that) then he should give you a chance to communicate with him and he should communicate with you how he feels about that. It isn't fair for him to stonewall you and refuse to talk about it while he basically has an affair in front of your face.
A healthy relationship will not spring up out of sweeping things under the rug and pretending like it isn't happening. Depending on how you feel about things, there are a few ways you might call him into account for this.
"I do not feel comfortable with you seeing Molly if we cannot discuss polyamory as a couple and come to an agreement we can both be happy with. Your relationship with her has gone beyond just sex and I am not comfortable with that until we can hash it out in an organized manner and set down some boundaries and make sure we see eye to eye on everything. I am willing to consider being in a polyamorous relationship with you, but I am not willing to let this "thing" with her continue until you can be honest with me and address my needs for communication in regards to it."
"As your girlfriend, I need a certain level of communication with you. Even if polyamory is not something you end up wanting for yourself or for us, I really need to discuss it with you to make sure we are on the same page. I want us both to make any decisions together, but I don't want to keep avoiding this discussion. Your recent indiscretion has caused me to question the structure and nature of our relationship and this is a discussion that I need to have even if you don't want to have it. Please give me this respect as your partner."
Those are kind of long winded, but you can probably piece together your own thing out of some of the elements of those. I can't imagine staying in a relationship where my partner(s) refused to talk to me about any subject. Open and clear communication is one of the single most important aspects of a healthy relationship. He has not been giving you that, and has been having his fun on the side while parrying away your attempts to treat this in a mature and open-minded fashion.
Well, yes he cheated on you. If he is not open or interested in talking about ethical non-monogamy I would leave the relationship.
I could leave it at that, but sigh... You' know you are monogamous, and it is an UPHILL STRUGGLE to make it work with two new poly minded people who want to be poly. The negotiations and discussions needed to set boundaries and agreements is exhausting when two people ARE on the same page, let alone when one is being less than aware of his own behaviors (yep, that is your bf I'm talking about). If somebody isn't trying to be on the same page as you, you're better off being elsewhere, IMO.
Sigh. I am very sorry you are going through this. It must be terrible. BREATHE. :(
Do not what if. What iffing is pointless. Could WHAT IF all day long. See?
Here is what IS:
IS THIS POSSIBLE?
He cheated -- his talk is cheap. He is not a person of his word right now. What do his actions tell you?
Weigh him in the balance and see what you see. You already gave him a chance to give his information for you to take on board. He did not take the opportunity. So you can move forward without his input then.
Weigh WHAT IS here to discern for yourself -- Does he deliver what YOU want and need from a romantic relationship? Does he respect your limits? Yes or no?
I'm not getting poly here. I'm getting a jealous, possessive dude who wants to build a harem and who will NOT communicate clearly with you. Who also cheated on you.
I'm not sure I'd want to approach talking to him about it any more. Previous approaches yield nothing constructive. He does not WANT to give clear communication. He does not want to be direct. He does not want to be held accountable.
Sooo.. where do you want to take it? One last shot to try to sort out issues, or just call it enough is enough and walk away? Are you at your limit? That's your call to make.
If it were me? I'd dump him. And go get a sex health screening from the cheater thing. Ugh. :(
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