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theladybug 11-05-2012 07:19 AM

New and Jealous
 
There's a lot of information on here and I'm very new, so even just links to previous advice posts would help.

My boyfriend and I have been dating for a while. I'm bisexual and he's straight. About 2 or 2 and a half years into our relationship, we starting having frank and open conversations about our sexuality. Before, we had felt we couldn't be as open about being attracted to other people because we felt it might hurt the other person. But we soon realized it didn't have to mean that at all, and I suggested we try to get a girlfriend.

We're both sweet and empathetic people. Compersion in the basic sense, happiness for your partner's happiness is something we have a lot of. When we met a girl at a music show and she was into me, it was so cool. And I was so happy when she and him kissed. I was happy for him and excited about the possibilities. She later decided the lifestyle wasn't for her.

This summer, we got into a fighting phase that was mostly miscommunication (you know how it goes). This girl in our friend group was burning through the men like fire, and started to flirt with him, massively. I found out about all this because I accidentally read a text to him. Yes, accidentally, although after I saw that first text I couldn't stop reading. All the little smiley faces made me sick and I felt betrayed. So much more so than if he had done sexual infidelity. The girl was a skank and he stopped it with her before it went anywhere, and we both decided that we just needed to forgive each other completely if we were going to move on. And we did.

Which leads me to right now. Because he had never been with another girl besides me, I had given him "permission" to be with other girls before at various times, such as when I was out of town on his birthday. He never did it. This weekend, he went out of town with friends to a show. Beforehand, he shaved everywhere, got a haircut.. and we hadn't talked at all about him being with another girl. I talked with his friend the night before they left and jokingly set up ground rules for the weekend "No jail, no stds!". Well, apparently he got with some girl there. I suppose I shouldn't feel jealous but I do. I feel.... nervous. Just like I did when I was finding all those horrible texts on his phone. He answered every question I had about the whole thing though, and we hugged me, and was really concerned about me being angry or upset. And.... I'm not. I think. But I'm feeling nervous.. anxious.. a little jealous but I suppose mostly scared.
How normal is this? What would do in my situation?

Do you think I'm ready for a polyamorous lifestyle?

I feel like a lot of the innocence and beauty of a triad was ruined by the emotional "cheating" and I don't know if that's something people just past eventually or if I would be dishonest to say I still feel polyamorous.
The idea of a girlfriend still seems good, and the idea of us being together and sexual and emotion together seems good, so.... i guess, I just don't know what the problem is?

Is it because I feel like he wasn't completely forthcoming with me? Is it because I feel left out? Is it because I am possessive or jealous or still hurt from the summer?

Thank you, in advance. I can't sleep so hopefully someone can help!

NovemberRain 11-06-2012 04:56 AM

Welcome, theladybug :)

One quick language tip: Usually, 'the lifestyle' is a phrase used by those into swinging, moreso than those in polyamory.

Quote:

Originally Posted by theladybug (Post 164209)
Which leads me to right now. Because he had never been with another girl besides me, I had given him "permission" to be with other girls before at various times, such as when I was out of town on his birthday. He never did it. This weekend, he went out of town with friends to a show. Beforehand, he shaved everywhere, got a haircut.. and we hadn't talked at all about him being with another girl. I talked with his friend the night before they left and jokingly set up ground rules for the weekend "No jail, no stds!".

So, you noticed he was shaving, and haircutting, but you didn't start a conversation about what might happen while he was gone?

Quote:

Originally Posted by theladybug (Post 164209)
Well, apparently he got with some girl there. I suppose I shouldn't feel jealous but I do.

Why shouldn't you? I would have been very angry without conversation before hand, but that's me.

Quote:

Originally Posted by theladybug (Post 164209)
I feel.... nervous. Just like I did when I was finding all those horrible texts on his phone. He answered every question I had about the whole thing though, and we hugged me, and was really concerned about me being angry or upset. And.... I'm not. I think. But I'm feeling nervous.. anxious.. a little jealous but I suppose mostly scared.
How normal is this? What would do in my situation?

Sounds perfectly normal to me. What I do? I'm not entirely sure. Do you mean, now, going forward? Or What would I have done before, during, immediately after?

I'd like to think I'd have had more conversation before hand. It doesn't read like you granted blanket permission for whenever he was out of town.

Now that's it's over, maybe you can think about what would have made it better for you; and ask for that. 'hunny, I'm so glad you had a good time. Next time, could you maybe talk to me before you get with someone else, instead of after? I think I would feel more loved and secure if you could do that for me.' Or whatever it is for you.


Quote:

Originally Posted by theladybug (Post 164209)
Do you think I'm ready for a polyamorous lifestyle?

No idea. But I do not think your feelings mean that you're not ready. Polyamory is not about controlling feelings. Poly people feel jealous, and anxious, and scared, and all the feelings anyone can feel. The key is what you do with them. I like what GalaGirl says all the time, about feelings being like the weather. Wait a bit, they will change.

Sounds like you're committed to his happiness, as well as your own.

Quote:

Originally Posted by theladybug (Post 164209)
I feel like a lot of the innocence and beauty of a triad was ruined by the emotional "cheating" and I don't know if that's something people just past eventually or if I would be dishonest to say I still feel polyamorous.

I'm confused, I thought you said she decided the triad wasn't for her. I can see where you see him as 'cheating' but you didn't say how the other girl was ever a possibility for you. ?


Quote:

Originally Posted by theladybug (Post 164209)
The idea of a girlfriend still seems good, and the idea of us being together and sexual and emotion together seems good, so.... i guess, I just don't know what the problem is?

You might want to search here for 'unicorns' and 'unicorn hunting' Sharing a girlfriend is a different situation than him having a girlfriend and you having a different girlfriend.

Quote:

Originally Posted by theladybug (Post 164209)
Is it because I feel like he wasn't completely forthcoming with me? Is it because I feel left out? Is it because I am possessive or jealous or still hurt from the summer?

Those are all good questions for you to answer. I know I get rather nutted up when I feel left out.

Anneintherain 11-06-2012 10:03 AM

I can see where there were really mismatched expectations. I imagine he took the fact that you had said you were fine at other times to mean he could do as he liked, because well...some people don't really talk or think. Have there been other non poly things that this has happened with, you thinking you had an understanding but later finding out you weren't on the same page?

Me, I'd be PISSED off, but I am very clear about what I want or need ahead of time so if my husband did that to me, it would be a clear betrayal of our agreements. Don't think you need to be pissed off, but would understand if you were - but who would blame you if you were hurt or confused about why he didn't mention ahead of time he was going to look for a sexual partner when it had been on his mind. Why wouldn't you be scared? It can be scary when you are surprised by a partners behavior. Sounds like you may be a bit like me in some respects, you let your partner know everything that goes through your head, wants, desires fantasies, hopes and dreams, etc, so expect and hope that they will give the same back to you. It can be hard to understand when they don't do that. However, it's a good sign he was able to answer all your questions about what he did, it doesn't sound like he was avoidant or defensive, so I imagine he feels he didn't break any agreements, and wouldn't make it the biggest deal in the world (unless he wasn't planning on mentioning it if I hadn't brought it up - then I would be exiting that relationship just for my emotional well being - somebody with expectations so far off from mine that didn't feel it was important to see if we were on the same page would just mean years of struggle I feel).

The important thing now is probably to to clarify what you want and need or would prefer, be it a heads up that he desires to seek partners without a pre-talk (or to be honest that you are not feeling OK with that), discussion about if you are both free to seek partners separately and how you each feel about that, including clarifying safe sex agreements. It's also a good time to see if your wants and desires are still compatible, and smart to be open to the possibility that you may have different ideas about how you want to go forward (though I hope that isn't the case). If there are things that you don't want to deal with (like random hookups when your partner is out of town) it's the time to be clear about your boundaries, the ones that are definite and the ones that might be flexible.

I really don't read that you are jealous, just that you're a potentially great partner to have in a poly relationship, with a partner that isn't forthcoming with his own wants and desires. It may turn out he is operating under less than ideal circumstances, and hopes you'll just put up with whatever he does instead of having to have the maturity required to sit down and let you know where his head is at and make sure both of you are doing OK. I'd guess that if you can't get him to sit down and talk clearly about this stuff, that he probably isn't a viable candidate for a happy healthy poly relationship at this point in his life.

GalaGirl 11-09-2012 04:26 AM

Quote:

This weekend, he went out of town with friends to a show. Beforehand, he shaved everywhere, got a haircut.. and we hadn't talked at all about him being with another girl.
So.... when you noticed the extra primping before going out, did you ask what that was all about?
Quote:

I talked with his friend the night before they left and jokingly set up ground rules for the weekend "No jail, no stds!".
Why are you joking with the friend rather than getting what you need to know from the BF? Clarificiation if his intent is to cash him his "free pass card?"

Quote:

The idea of a girlfriend still seems good, and the idea of us being together and sexual and emotion together seems good, so.... i guess, I just don't know what the problem is?
a)Could it be you are upset because you did not want him to use the "free pass card" and did not articulate it at the time?

b) Could it be that you are bothered by casual sex hookups because you prefer sex and emotion to come together and be more meaningful and not just recreational? Wanted him to actually date a bit first not just jump into bed with the first willing partner?
I think you guys could talk and sort out your parameters for how to be in right relationship to each other while in this "Open and Dating" phase where you both are seeing other people.

I don't think you sound like you are both are on the same page.

Galagirl


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