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-   -   Meeting my husband's gf... help! (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=4137)

minibeast 11-05-2010 04:35 AM

Meeting my husband's gf... help!
I'm new to the forum, and I apologize if something similar has already been posted and discussed, but I've run into this problem and I was wondering if anyone could help. My husband Binh and I have been married for 3 years and polyamorous for 1. He has dated a few girls before, but never anything serious, and his partners have always been mutual friends so meeting them was never an issue.

Binh is now entering into a relationship with a girl from work that he thinks may become serious. According to the rules we established, when one of us enters into a relationship outside the marriage, the other needs to meet with the new partner. Binh is having trouble convincing his new girlfriend to meet me. He doesn't seem especially concerned about this, but I am... I'm worried that it means that his new girlfriend is not really willing to admit that he is married. I am certain that I want to insist on meeting her, and my husband is willing to insist as well, but what I'm wondering is, does anyone have any advice about how to convince her?

My other question is, when we do meet, how do we make it not unbearably awkward? How much time do we spend together? Should we just introduce ourselves quickly over a cup of tea before she and Binh go out on a date, or should we actually get together and have a discussion about polyamory and our expectations for these relationships? I suppose that everyone does things differently according to their own needs and comfort levels, but does anyone have any experiences with this sort of thing that they would like to share? What did you do, and how did it work out for you? Looking back, would you have done anything differently?

Thanks to everyone for your time and help!
Jen in BC

redpepper 11-05-2010 05:36 AM

Good questions! No actually I don't believe we have discussed the subtitles of meeting metamours...

I think it depends on the metamour for sure... When PN met Mono for the first time is was a quick hello at the door with a hand shake and then Mono and I left. That was good until next time when we talked a bit more about what the hell we were doing. I met PN's loves after he had been chatting with them for a while and he had been on a date or two. I knew Derby's husband before I dated her, so that worked out well... I asked him if I could ask her on a date.

I would suggest calling her up and asking her how she wants to go about it as it is definitely not a choice... what is a choice is how/where and for how long. Maybe a quick hi and then meet up to chat next time, or maybe invite her for supper, or just you and her go for coffee... you can suggest ideas according to her comfort, but making sure she knows that it's not optional to meet.

dragonflysky 11-05-2010 05:50 AM

Ours was a long distance relationship. They lived together. I was the new one. So, after he and I became acquainted through emails and phone calls, we started adding her into some of our phone calls in casual conversations. (She didn't like emailing.) Then when we decided to meet in-person, they gave me the option of just meeting him, alone, first, or both of them....either in neutral territory or in their home area. It happened that she was working the night shift the first time we were to meet in-person, so it was just he and I. But, he and I went and took her lunch the next day at her workplace.

Now, it took me awhile to reach the point of wanting to have contact with her. When he and I first "met" online, poly was a new idea to me and I was very cautious. I really enjoy her company now, however, and we get along just fine.

If she agrees to meet you at some point in time, maybe it would help to ask her what would help her feel most comfortable in terms of time, location, activity, etc.

Seekinganswer 11-05-2010 12:13 PM

Hey minibeast, openness, openness and then some. Be yourselves and all will be well. If it was meant to be it will be. I asked S to meet his D 3 weeks after I discovered their affair. I knew her before this so it wasnt a first time meeting but after I realised how much S felt for D and wanted her to share our life, I agreed that we propose poly to her. We were both very nervous and took a few deep breathes before we made the call.For D, it was unexpected but she was open to it. S was able to explain how he felt and what he hoped for us all. It marked the beginning of our journey.. Regardless how our story ends, I dont regret making the step to contact D. I would never have been at peace without having tried knowing how S felt.We are taking tentative steps. Good luck with the meeting

TruckerPete 11-05-2010 01:31 PM

If her hesitancy is stemming from nerves, then a quick meet would be best.

If she's hesitant for the reasons you've mentioned, well you already know where you'd like that to go.

Vinccenzo 11-05-2010 01:56 PM

One of the things I'm realizing is that by placing a bunch of importance on them meeting you, you get this idea in your head that it will be freeing or good feelings will then be shared.

Met her, knew her before hand, given inclusion and respect? Check check check and check.

It doesn't guarantee anything you're hoping for will happen.

So I'm voting a quick hello introduction and then add to the amount of time spent around each other with each next interaction as it seems appropriate. Forcing it makes it that much more frustrating because you start building up some preconceived impression of them via their reluctance or some misunderstood reaction. Now I look at it much more as a "I'll meet you when I meet you" scenario.

Also gone way down on my to do list is seeking them out for friend time one on one after you meet them. If it happens great! But there won't always be reciprocity for your efforts and I found a tendency in me to let their lack of effort make me feel slighted. And I saw feeling slighted was making it harder for me to accept them.

Whatever it is that you're worried will happen if you don't meet her - meeting her won't guarantee it doesn't come to pass anyway.

GroundedSpirit 11-05-2010 02:05 PM

I like TP's thinking also.

Out of kindness, I lean towards to quick meet at first. Just enough to say 'hi' and prove to her that you are 100% on the page and in the know about their exploration.
More than that, for someone never exposed to any thinking outside the 'old' model, can be pretty intimidating and even scare them away before they have a fair chance to get their feet wet.

But as we've said many times here, good poly relationships really do require a certain level of at least friendship between all parties to succeed.

After that initial "have fun" meeting, the responsibility now falls to your husband. Unless it just happens naturally (she might even initiate it), he must push for a longer, sit down-get to know each other meeting. Dinner somewhere. An outing together somewhere. And somewhere in there, some time for you and her to have some private 'girl time' to establish some real understanding - and hopefully - bond. It doesn't have to be sexual - not a requirement. But you have at LEAST one common interest and you both need to be on the page about how you are going to nurture that interest. HIM !

Not that hard really. Try to be considerate, but don't waver on the necessity !


CielDuMatin 11-05-2010 03:06 PM

I tend to feel that if a metamour doesn't want to meet those already in the relationship, then that is a warning sign of something. It may just be nervousness, in which case that can be overcome, but it may be "mistress syndrome" - and I have come across that a few times. "Don't talk to her about me, don't tell her anything about us, and no I don't ever want to meet her". That doesn't "feel right" to me, and it would make me question a lot of the motivations.

In terms of meeting - neutral ground would be very good. A place where talking is easy - i.e. not a nightclub. Also a place where it can be as short or as long as feels natural to everybody.

The last two relationships I have pursued, the three of us met before anything happened in terms of taking the relationship beyond "it's got potential". In the most recent case there were several meetings - I think three. By the end of the third we had each talked about our own experiences, how we felt about poly, and a little of what we were each looking for. After that third, everyone said how comfortable they were, and things went ahead to find out if that potential could be realised in some way. There then followed a few "dates" where she and I found out that yes, there really was a potential for something magical.

Then the three of us sat down again and had a long, log talk about wants, needs, likes, and we formed the basis of what has turned out to be a two and a half year (and still going strong) relationship. Most of the fundamental stuff we discussed at the start is still working and still in place, I am happy to say.

Everyone felt involved, everyone felt that they could have their say and be listened to and respected by the others, everyone understood exactly what it was and what it wasn't, and what areas of concern there were.

minibeast 11-06-2010 08:52 PM

Thanks to everyone for your advice and stories so far! We've decided to start out with a quick intro and handshake before their next date (to break the ice, in case she is just nervous about meeting), and then move on to a longer discussion about our expectations, maybe at a coffee shop or over a cup of tea at our home. That way, if not wanting to meet is an indicator of any serious issues she may have with polyamory, we can have time to discuss it. If anyone is interested, I'll post an update to let you know how it goes. :)

Looking forward to reading more replies!

vodkafan 11-07-2010 01:53 AM

Hey, best of luck!! Yes we are interested.

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