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-   -   Not sure how to proceed (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=2979)

juney 06-10-2010 01:48 AM

Not sure how to proceed
 
So my husband and I have decided to bring another woman into our marriage. It is strictly a V relationship where she is his girlfriend, but she and I do not. I am having major jealousy/insecurity issues.

I voted yes for this, but I feel like he is constantly giving her preferential treatment. I recognize that this is not a contest between she and I, but I can't seem to always put that knowledge into practice. I also feel as if she is constantly manipulating the situation to her advantage. For example, last night was "my" night with my husband. She was constantly texting him, she came into our room unannounced and univited to return his phone (so that she could text him), and she asked him to take care of her child last night because she was just so tired from work. Yet tonight, when its her night, she made sure that she has a babysitter for the child. My husband says he is going to speak to her tonight, but I don't know if it is going to be enough. I know I need to have faith that he will handle it and work it out.

I guess I just need someone to tell me if I'm overreacting or crazy or if my gripes are legitimate. Thanks for your help and your honesty.

Quath 06-10-2010 02:42 AM

Your gripes are definitely legitimate. I think it is a relatively common problem. You did the right thing by stating what you want. She may not realize how much she is stepping in on your time. You are also having to deal with his NRE for her. That makes it even more difficult.

juney 06-10-2010 02:47 PM

Quath, thank you for your point of view.

GroundedSpirit 06-10-2010 04:01 PM

Yes Juney,

People CAN be selfish and manipulative. And the only way to zap that is to call a spade a spade. Call out the behavior, not in a nasty, accusational way, but in a clear, factual way and explain that that kind of thing will never result in anything but drama and hurt.
Good relationship skills (and relationships) call for compassion and consideration. Competition as you noted is the antithesis of this. But you have to own that philosophy - not just mouth it. Takes practice.

GS

SchrodingersCat 06-11-2010 06:01 AM

I agree with them.

I just want to highlight how you're doing an awesome job of making boundaries that involve you and your husband, as opposed to rules to dictate the relationship between your husband and his girlfriend. So you have your night, and she has hers. You're talking about how you feel about your night being invaded, as opposed to how she's behaving outside of her night.

From the way you said she came into your room uninvited and unannounced, I assume she lives with you? In that case, I would invest in a lock for your bedroom door. I also want to say a "Do Not Disturb" sign, but I'm hopeful that this can be resolved without going to those lengths. Either way, walking into a couple's room like that is extremely rude. She wouldn't do that if she were a houseguest staying with you for the weekend, and it's not her room, so what makes her think this is acceptable?

It's been said that one of the great things about polyamory is that it allows child care to be shared among more people, giving everyone a bit of a break now and then. This should not be confused with you and your husband acting like free babysitters. If you and your husband had chosen to spend the night out with your cell phones off, and she was too tired to take care of her own kid, then she'd have to figure it out on her own. It doesn't sound like it's his biological child, and I don't know enough about your history and arrangement to decide whether that would change anything.

Now to try and see things from her perspective. It would be difficult being the live-in girlfriend of a married man. She's trying to establish her role and position in the relationship. She may be intimidated by your closeness to your husband, and perhaps she believes (maybe unconsciously) that by coming between you, she can make a bigger place for herself in his life. Unfortunately, that behaviour tends to backfire.

rpcrazy 06-11-2010 03:37 PM

don't have much to say that schro hasn't already said, but as a micr-note: Being the V is pretty hard, and unless your primary has copious amounts of emotional intelligence and fortitude, I would consider helping him. Try and build a relationship with her so both of your needs can be met with empathy between all partners, i think it's the best way to make sure the V doesn't turn into a competition. This is really where you need to focus.

peace & love
-gabe

juney 06-15-2010 05:28 PM

Thanks to everyone for their perspective. I've managed to take a couple of steps back and take a couple of deep breaths. It has helped greatly and I was right to trust my husband that he would address the situation with her and he did. We have had no further instances (thus far) of the behavior I complained about previously.

She does live with us and it was something I voted for and still feel positively about, but like anything else it has its adjustment period. She and I do get along fairly well, but there is still room for improvement there.

Thanks again for your words of advice!

redpepper 06-16-2010 02:47 PM

In your first post you say that you "decided to bring another woman into our marriage".... Don't forget that you also came into HER life. The relationship you have with your husband has now become a balance of three. Not you two and her tagged on. Everyone has an equal right to the relationship you have created. Her feelings are just as valid as yours.

I also suggest that YOU talk to her about how you feel, not just your husband. Even though you aren't intimately involved with her. The relationship is still a triad in terms of emotions... my Mono and Nerdist often talk to each other about how they feel and work very hard at their friendship in order to keep the balance in our relationship. It's very important. I imagine more so that you live with her.

juney 06-16-2010 07:20 PM

Redpepper -

You have an excellent point and truthfully that is where I am lacking in this relationship - open communication with her. I can express my concerns and happiness with my husband, but I still need to work on expressing my concerns to her. I can express my happiness with her, but when it comes to anything negative I freeze. Definitely something I need to improve.

"The relationship is still a triad in terms of emotions... " - This has really helped me put it in perspective. Thank you.

I am confident that the three of us can overcome these initial speed bumps and develop a healthy and happy relationship, its just going to take some work on all of our parts.


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