Difficulty with defining things
I guess that I feel like talking to strangers on the internet about my personal life. I hope that works well for you guys.
I've considered myself polyamorous for awhile. I didn't really date before I was poly as I tended to feel strong emotions for a lot of people and had trouble reconciling that. So, I was much more likely to keep very close friends and chose not to get into relationships. The truth is that I felt out of place in the monogamous community in which I found myself and just didn't have access to an alternative.
Within mainstream society, I felt like I was constrained to monogamous relationships or sex without attachments with people that I was only superficially attracted to. A couple of years ago, I had a partner who was poly and I was interested, so I inquired about having them as a partner. Really, I was considering them to be a friend who I had sex with and that's how we identified for a long time.
That person is still a partner with me and I like them quite a bit and truth be told, this person has affected my life immensely. Through them, I began to explore queer politics in a way that I hadn't before. I mean, I had conceived of some of the ideas that I now consider my personal politics, but only in a non-personal way. I think that they helped change my life in a lot of ways.
And polyamory has changed my life a lot. I've always been a very flirty person, but I wouldn't date or even go on love dates very often. But I learned to be much more open with my emotions and that I didn't need to be afraid of letting people know that I am not a monogamous person. I'm also proud to have never been a CPOS.
I've found that I can get into relationships with great people relatively easily in my current queer community of amazing people. I have a ton of friends who I resonate with on a very deep level and with whom, I can't imagine my life without. I can talk to them about anything and I can openly ask them anything and they will lovingly and openly discuss it with me.
So I started spending time with a friend of mine who I felt a strong attraction to on many levels. I always found her attractive and we had some amazing moments of sharing very openly in which we discussed very difficult topics about our families, our feelings, our politics, our childhoods and we had some moments in which when we touched each other, it was amazing ecstasy. I became infatuated with her very quickly.
Things were going nice, but she has a busy life with children and work. It was difficult sometimes not to feel like I wanted more time with her, but I knew this about her life.
Then, I had sex with a friend. I mean, it was no big deal and she didn't treat it as one. We had a moment where we mentioned polyamory but it was still early and we hadn't negotiated anything, so I called her up. I wanted to be very open and certain that she knew that I had sex with somebody and that she wouldn't be surprised by it. I was very nervous, but she sounded calm. She didn't sound like it would be a problem at all. She told me that I didn't need to be nervous and we'd talk about it and I was pretty excited about it.
A couple of weeks had gone by and she just seemed more distant to me. I mean, she seemed to touch me a bit less. We saw each other and we'd hug and cuddle, but it felt to me like I was touching her and that she let me, but that she didn't seem to be excited about it anymore. At first, I thought it could just be a bit of a different mood. I mean, it would be crazy to expect her to have a strong passion for me every time she saw me, but it happened enough that after a night of very little sleep, I was very bothered by it and brought it up. We both said a flurry of things a very tired, emotional state, but I came out of it feeling rejected even though we hadn't said anything about ending what we were doing.
But, I felt good that we decided to talk later when each of us was more lucid.
So, after a tumultuous week, we finally sat down and talked.
And it I guess the point is that had a lot of feelings, but one of them seemed to be that she felt like she didn't want to inject drama into my life. And her life is much more complicated than mine is. I don't for example have children and my life is easy. I live very freely. Very spontaneously and I am very much in control of what I do. I have simple thoughts. I think, "I like spending time with you and I value you as a person", so I think, "I'd love to become close to you and to be intimate with you." I think, "I'm sexually attracted to you" and so I think, "I'd love to share a sexual experience with you."
Another feeling that she mentioned was not being sure if she wanted to share me and feeling guilty about that feeling.
Part of me imagines being monogamous with her, but I know that she doesn't have much time. And I really don't think that any one person can fulfill my needs for love and I know that I'll have to squelch my feelings for other people to be monogamous with her. And part of me really wants to just do it. I care about her a lot and even if we don't become partners, I know that we will be friends (I tend to not lose friends like other people do.)
So, before I talked about partnership, she didn't have to consider it that she was sharing me. She could just live in the now and enjoy the times that we spent together and I could do that too. But I wanted to talk about things because I wanted to have boundaries that I wouldn't cross.
It feels paradoxical to me that trying to talk about things to understand boundaries and avoid conflict led to some conflicted feelings. And I just know that my feelings are strong and I very much want things to work.
And second conversation went well in some ways. We talked about ourselves and our flaws and what we value and our feelings. Of course, nothing came to resolution, but I feel like both of us feel strongly and that we had been moving a bit quickly and blindly. And I communicated that I find good communication vital.
I told her that I want to spend some time talking about our feelings regularly even if it's for 15 minutes over the phone because I know she doesn't have a lot of time, but that just matters a lot to me.
Also through this, I feel guilty for my occasional feelings of considering monogamy because that would mean dumping my other partner which I don't really want to do, because I still love them, but for whom my feelings aren't as imminent.
There are other complicating factors like not really knowing how to interact with her children. I was raised by a single mom and I don't like the idea of somebody entering the children's lives and then leaving after they become attached and so I want to be careful, but I'd also like to have a relationship with them. I think that they are really great.
And also with her already having children, I sometimes think about wanting to have children of my own, but I think that it's less likely that she'll want to have more.
And I feel like I could raise a child or maybe two in my community of caring people including my family and my amazing friends, but my mind starts to wonder what that would look like. Not that I want to have a kid with her now or anything, but I just wonder what that would look like or how to negotiate that outside of a mainstream context where communication is stifled until somebody is accidentally knocked up or where somebody looks to get married to find somebody with whom they can reproduce.
If anybody wanted to discuss any of this, I'd find it interesting.
HI DragonPie, sorry I'm kinda confused about what you mean by "queer community" do you mean LGBT or something else? I'm lesbian and it's pretty common in my local LGBT community for people to be in open relationships, or be single and dating multiple people at the same time, so if someone wants monogamy they are expected to ask for it directly, and not assume it. So if your friend had some expectation or assumption of monogamy from you, I feel like it was her responsibility to mention that directly, and not ignore the topic and then get upset when you had sex with someone else. That's not a good sign for how easy it's going to be for the two of you to communicate about important issues, seems to me.
I don't mean to oversimplify what is probably a really complicated situation, but if she's not ok with you being poly, and you're not ok being mono, sounds like this isn't going to work. If you might be agreeable to a mono relationship with the right person, that's one thing, but deciding to go mono to please one specific person seems like not the best idea. yes it's necessary to make sacrifices for any relationship, but starting out by compromising on a core believe or live strategy seems like getting off to a bad start.
sorry to be so gloomy, I just got out of a year-long relationship that ended due to incompatibilities that were there from the beginning, I was just too caught up in the romance to realize it. Don't want you to make the same mistake. :) Good luck!
So, even though I am a monosexual male-bodied person who is not sexually attracted to penises, I consider myself to be queer. And I definitely belong to a community of queer folks who would not assume that monogamy is the default. And she didn't assume this. And I know that in the past she has considered herself non-monogamous, but I think that she was feeling jealousy which is a legit emotion that we all feel with our romantic partners, our friends and even sometimes strangers, so I don't want you to get that impression.
But I do think that she isn't as comfortable communicating about this stuff as I'd like and that bothers me.
I don't think I'm willing to go down the forced monogamy road with her, but I like her a lot. And I really want to make it work.
It sounds to me that she isn't big on poly, and you are as you have other partners that you enjoy having in your life; she could take or leave your arrangement in regards to sex not being a big deal, where as you don't want to; she has her hands full with kids etc., where as you don't and would like to have kids one day (your life paths might not be mergable). All stuff to be concerned about...
on the other hand, maybe you are better off just seeing where this all goes and hanging out enjoying her company in the mean time... if she is a mum, then chances are it will take longer to get to these bigger questions you have as no doubt she is more concerned and concentrating on kid issues... as well she should be. Take your time and see where it goes, all the while keeping your feelings expressed and goals in mind. At anytime change happens, embrace it and carry on, with or without her. That's what i would suggest. :)
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