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-   -   Seeking empathy with new partners. (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=3019)

redsirenn 06-16-2010 03:11 PM

Seeking empathy with new partners.
This is a side thread based on a quite by Mono in another thread. I reworded it some simply for clarity's sake.

Potential reasons listed why mono-identifying people find another.


Originally Posted by MonoVCPHG (Post 32719)
1) coping by looking for other relationships even though he is not poly
2)...distraction, a sense of "showing her how it feels"
3) debase the role of sex in our relationship and essentially limit ... depth towards her.
4) The external views of others. ( Mono/Poly arrangements) For example: When I tell people that I am monogamous with a non-monogamous woman, they often think that there is something wrong with me or that I am somewhat of a fool who is being used. ...(cont.)

Caveat - I know there are others, but for the sake of this thread and my question, this is all she wrote.

What do you all think of these reasons?

Furthermore, I find myself being motivated by 1 & 2 at times. 1) finding someone else to fill needs now NOT being met by other person due to their poly orientation. 2) seeking empathy from a partner by example.

I am still wading the waters here, trying to understand what of my interests in others comes from: curiosity, simply the ability to do so in this relationship, exploration of other relationships and what they mean to me, and/or if I would operate at poly "better" than as mono. Also - envy and a sense of competition has a place in here... although I don't necessarily know what to do with that and it fogs my head up.


MonoVCPHG 06-16-2010 06:48 PM

I have to admit, I have never been less interested in others. Last weekend I was walking around a fair with Polynerdist and thier son and there were a lot of "nicely" dressed women. I was a little taken back by just how disinterested I was in even looking. I seem to remember being much more distracted by this sort of thing in the past. I believe this is a result of my new awareness regarding the role of sex in my life. There is a huge standard set by the connection I have with Redpepper which makes the simplest sexual contact with her incredibly fulfilling. A kiss from her means more than the intercourse I have had in the past with some.

My "mono" friends find it hard to believe I wouldn't be chasing everything with a skirt due to the nature of my relationship. I remember thinking the same way when I was married and thinking about the idea of an open relationship or swinging.

In summary, for me, looking for an additional relationship would ultimately indicate trouble with my connection to Redpepper.

Now if I was poly, things would be much different of course :D

GroundedSpirit 06-17-2010 10:31 PM

Hi RS,

First let me admit that I'm going to respond based on an assumption that you are living in a kind of "on the fence" mode in regard to mono vs poly and which fits you best. I might be able to know you better if I went way back and read a lot of your prior postings - but (spank me) I'm too lazy and time constrained.

But if I'm wrong on this guess it might be good for other readers too to clarify where you are at / coming from with your question.


First I'll pick on the easy, obvious one. You say that 'competition' is still a part of your psyche. And not sure how to deal with it. Maybe try this.........
Equate it to stealing ! (If you are a thief by nature <doubtful?>this won't work)
It's an undesirable aspect of your personality and a serious impediment (and risk) to your own freedom and happiness in the future. You want to embrace that ????? Get rid of it ! Period. Just like you would any other dangerous, risky habit. Totally doable - ONCE you truly realize it's danger.

The other stuff/questions relating to why you might be curious or attracted to others.....

I think that our true basic nature. And it's the part that's programmed out of us by culture/society. Think of young children. Most are totally curious about others and the world around them. But we have to teach them that curiosity can kill the cat and they have to put a check on that.
But you're not a child !
And you just discovered that much of what/why you were told about curiosity was less than accurate. So now some of that curiosity is coming back. But now you are an adult, wiser. Less risk involved (to a point) in that curiosity.
So why the surprise/second guessing ?

You question whether you would have this curiosity if you were in a classic mono situation. But why question it ? Unless you still see some danger or risk.
It's nothing more than my opinion, but I feel we all have so much to gain in so many ways by getting out there exploring the world around us (and that includes people). Yes, you have to be smart about it. But to me, the loss by being a timid little mouse in a corner is an even bigger risk.

Does that help any ?


redsirenn 06-18-2010 01:04 AM

GS -
I am on the fence... It mostly has to do with the fact that NOTHING has happened physically on my side of the equation. Therefore, I don't know how to react. I'd love to push those boundaries, but I also feel weird forcing the issue, even on myself. So - I question things... alot.

It is entirely possible that this won't go well -that is why I take the time during which no drama is ensuing to think about things and why I act the way I do. It certainly isn't because I want to sit in the corner... I just AM right now. I want to get out, but not if that means doing something that will be of detriment to my physical or mental health.

It is frustrating. I day dream about it a lot. Lots of times this is where I can vent and maybe get a bit of feedback from someone who has felt how I do, or can see something I cannot.

But - your post did help a bit. so thanks.


EugenePoet 06-19-2010 03:02 PM

Well, for me the primary reason I look for other friends -- and that's just-friends at this point -- is because my poly GF is unable to spend as much time with me as my emotional well-being requires.

This is new on several levels for me: coming out of a 30-year mono marriage and starting to date again was quite a change but to end up with a person who's in a poly marriage should have been a double shock to my system. Oddly, it wasn't -- the relationship feels quite normal. But there's no competitive urge, or any desire to "catch up" to the poly couple I'm involved with.

I do get lonely, though, and the depth of my relationship with L has opened up my mind to what is possible. So that intrigues me: is there someone else with whom I could connect at a similar level? And that curiosity and desire for another deep friendship is what keeps me looking.

My personal take on the situation: suddenly people are very interesting, and women in particular because I open up faster and deeper to women than men. You don't have to be looking for physical intimacy; the search for someone you can really share feelings with is enough reason to look. IMHO.

But mileage varies so much that any blanket statement is going to be wrong for some people.

Ariakas 06-19-2010 03:50 PM

On a side note, and only something I have observed on occasion. The mono in a married couple with one side going poly has an uphill battle. The thing I have observed, and this isn't always the case, is that the mono tends to be too reliant on the partnership instead of realizing there are other relationships out there. So many I have seen online, have no friends outside of the monogamous relationship.

This creates a real problem when the poly person starts going out. They are so dependent on the relationship that they feel loneliness. They start to go out and build other friendships and that helps. But then what? While processing their partner being poly they could possibly process it for themselves.

My point to this random saturday morning jabber is, I wonder how things would be for them if they had a social life outside of the monogamous relationship, if they had friends to lean on in and weren't so dependent on the primary relationship.

It also leaves me wondering, how many poly identified people go poly because of that dependency. They do it as a fantasy or escape from being the "one and only"...thats a craptastic amount of pressure to put on one person.

Obviously, generalizing but this thread reminded me of those realizations. Things I have simply noticed and made note of. Definitely not directed at anyone specific :)


On a completely different note to the primary section of this post, I will also say this

Why can't there be a sliding scale of poly/mono. I know someone threw one up here a while ago...but the gist would be like kinsey (I think it was idealist)...a scale 1 to 6 1 being mono and 6 being poly. It might help people understand a potential transition and or, where they fit in.

MonoVCPHG 06-19-2010 09:02 PM


Originally Posted by Ariakas (Post 33072)
The mono in a married couple with one side going poly has an uphill battle. .

I'll go out on a limb here and say that the source of the uphill battle is that the mono persons partner is not going out for drinks with friends..they are going out to fuck someone. Huge difference.

But that's just me :)

Ariakas 06-19-2010 09:03 PM


Originally Posted by MonoVCPHG (Post 33082)
I'll go out on a limb here and say that the source of the uphill battle is that the mono persons partner is not going out for drinks with friends..they are going out to fuck someone. Huge difference.

But that's just me :)

Thanks for clarifying hahaha...

MonoVCPHG 06-19-2010 09:07 PM


Originally Posted by Ariakas (Post 33084)
Thanks for clarifying hahaha...

We can laugh about it over beer soon! Woohoo!

rpcrazy 06-21-2010 02:50 PM


they are going out to fuck someone. Huge difference.
when you put it so ugly...jeez. replace fuck with love. Or even take the sentence out seeing as how I'm pretty sure it doesn't usually go down like that. At least, not for me anyway.

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