My name is Jess
I have basically felt that I was polyamorous since I was a teenager, but didn't have a name for it and made no attempts to understand it. Over the last few years I've opened my mind a bit more to it, but tonight's the first time I really browsed the forum to see how it applies in real life.
I am going through a divorce right now. It's going to take me a long time to heal or want to start another relationship, but I want to understand and accept myself and the unusual way my mind/heart seems to form multiple bonds with no confusion, crossing of emotions, or fading. So that when I am whole again, I'll accept that I'm poly instead of trying to commit myself to a monogamous situation.
Which brings me to the situation that has driven me here tonight. I have been seeing an old friend for a few months now. We have been friends for about 6 years, give or take, and he has been dear to me the entire friendship. Time and circumstance have never affected what this man means to me. What first started out as a friends-with-benefits mutual rebound session has turned into something.. else. Since it very quickly evolved into something that I was not prepared for, and still feel incapable of coping with.. I am not sure how to proceed. He is hard-wired for monogamy. His past and his willingness to attempt has shown this, he's tried it, it's a bad experience for him. I am not at all suited to monogamy, and we all know where the rest of the story goes. The thought of me having interest in or becoming involved with anyone else is incredibly painful for him. So I'm here to try to find a way to proceed. Not sure which would hurt more. If we walked away from this and were left wanting each other through life, or if we tried to find a way to work with our differences. My biggest priority is not hurting him. I've been thinking about this almost constantly.
I'm going to continue to read the forum over the next few days, but if anyone can link me to particular threads that would be helpful, I would appreciate the time it would save me. I have read many of the "gold nugget" threads tonight.
Welcome to our forum.
Alas I can't think of a thread for your particular situation; I myself haven't explored the site that thoroughly yet. There is a "search" and a "tag search" function you can use (top of the page, a bit to the right), so maybe that would help?
Your best bet for making a mono/poly relationship doable, for you and this old friend you've been seeing, is to do some mutual learning about the details of polyamory and how it works, thus perhaps reducing the "scare factor" for him through familiarity. You might consider investing in the book "Opening Up;" it covers a lot of ground and does it well. It might also help if your friend could join this site, become a member here and field the questions and concerns that he has.
Once you have attempted all that educating and familiarizing, if he is still dead-set against you being poly and is still devastated by it, then you'd probably have to break up (perhaps revert to being platonic friends if that's possible). Not a happy thought, but a reality that might have to be faced. You could only do the educating and familiarizing on the gamble that it *might* work. If it doesn't seem worth the gamble, then I'd really have to suggest breaking up right away. :(
Would he be willing to learn more about polyamory? There's not much you can do about it if he's not willing.
Hope this helps in some small way.
Thank you for your reply..
This man means a lot to me, on so many levels. He's been a very dear friend for 6 years now, and that is what I have decided to focus on. We both agree that now is not a good time to pursue anything more, and each of us has a broad range of reasons why. My polyamorous mindset is not the least of these matters, but also not the worst of them.
I have spent considerable time reading the forum, I have learned so much. I told him to come here and do some reading himself, if he wanted to see first hand how my mind works. We have come to the agreement that we'll put things on a shelf for a while. I'll be working hard for the next year and a half to make something of my life and myself, and the job I just secured will make it nearly impossible for us to continue to see each other anyway.
I know what I feel for him. It doesn't scare me to walk away from it now, because I know it won't change. I'll always be here for him. In the meantime I just hope someone doesn't claim him unless they can understand him and love him for what he is, instead of what he has built or what he can do for them. If he's happy, I'll be happy. If he's less than thrilled when I show up on his doorstep in a few years time... Oooh, if he doesn't find someone to make him happy, I know I will, if that day ever comes. I find it will be easy for me to be the friend I've always been. Platonic is something I can return to, the only issue I've ever had with this is keeping affectionate gestures to myself when otherwise they'd be second nature.
Thank you for the welcome. I'll be popping in occasionally on the boards, but more than likely I'll be reading more than piping up.
Sounds good. I hope all will go well, for both you and him. If you ever do want to post a thought or a question, don't hesitate to do so. In the meantime, you'll find a lot of valuable reading material here.
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