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-   -   No consent and pursuit ensued (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=41818)

Earthgirlk 03-03-2013 05:46 AM

No consent and pursuit ensued
We are a poly couple.. He just met a woman.. He told her that he is poly
And part of a couple she said I don't know if I can do something like that. It is a woman who lives in our small town so she knew that we were together and approached him. We are differing in viewpoint on consent. To him she was consenting when she approached him knowing he was already in a relationship.. To me, when he told her of our lifestyle and she responded with " I don't know about getting involved in something like that. That was the end if the discussion, no consent was given. He told me she was playing hard to get. I responded that is not honest. ( on her part). And asked if he found his lack of honesty attractive and he said yes? With his wooing and her developing a lot of nre with him ( while still saying idk/not yes) like 4-5 calls a day AND 20-30 texts on top of that. She finally "agreed" to date him. The whole time I was like wtf? I know mistakes will be made and I'm pretty sure this is one of them. But he doesn't see it that way. My feelings aren't jealousy more like confusion.

I've never actually met her. We have just seen each other in town so I don't have a read on her. But with the way the thing started sets off my intuition alarm... Anyone gave any insights?

JaneQSmythe 03-03-2013 06:40 AM

In this particular case, if she "agreed" to date him AFTER he clearly informed her that he was already in a relationship ("he told her of our lifestyle") then I think that consent was given. (Unless there is some other part of the story that you haven't told us - like he has some OTHER pressure to hold over her, like he is her boss at work or something.)

I would take her "I don't know about getting involved in something like that." as expressing her doubts as to the WISDOM of getting involved in something new (like poly). I'm sure that PLENTY of people have agreed to date someone that they were uncertain about (I'm not one of them, but I assume it happens) and probably a certain percentage of those turn out fine.

If she is a.) above the age of consent, b.) fully informed as to the situation, c.) cognitively able to to assess the pro-and-cons and d.) not beholden to him in any OTHER way that you haven't told us (i.e. he could have her fired)...THEN, well she is free to be convinced by his arguments and make her own mistakes as a grown adult. NOW, whether pushing her with 4-5 calls a day and 20-30 texts was excessive on his part, to "convince her" - actually, yes, I think it was. And the fact that she required that much "convincing" might mean that she was very, very close to "No" - but the fact remains that she didn't HAVE to answer his calls or response to his texts, maybe she WAS playing "hard to get" (a stance I don't understand but is taught to many girls from a young age - who learn to measure their own desirability based on how assiduously men pursue them).

Will this end happily? No, probably not (and that is speaking statistically, regardless of the details). But it will be a learning experience for both of them, hopefully they will do it better the next time. (He won't be so eager to pursue reluctant dating partners and she will learn to say what she means and stick to it.)


Earthgirlk 03-03-2013 07:02 AM

The calls and text were mutually exchanged. And I like you have never quite understood the concept of spending time or energy " playing" anything unless it was a part of mutually Agreeed role play or something like that. You named the fear though.. The working out badly but the word statistically put it into perspective. I have been poly for 10 years he has only been poly since we got together two years ago. I guess I have been unconsciously Applying the principal of what I would do.

Earthgirlk 03-03-2013 07:07 AM

The. " consent ". Was after the 2 weeks of the texting and phone calls. Just for clarity.. So was it Actual reluctance or " how bad does he want it , I will just create some uncertainty and see". I won't ever know.. Painful to watch though.. Thnks for the insight!

AnnabelMore 03-03-2013 08:05 PM

Yeah, I'm a very straightforward person myself, so I don't get it either. But some people, some women especially, seem to have a very hard time saying "yes" at first. Maybe they're not even sure what they want. Maybe they need a little pursuit in order to feel like the other person is serious. This does NOT mean that it's ever ever EVER ok to violate consent or to cross someone's stated or implied boundaries. But it doesn't sound like that's what he did, just that he was persistent. There's nothing inherently wrong with that as long as it's done with respect.

Lynn 03-04-2013 03:07 PM

She approached him knowing he had a relationship with you. Then when he told her he was poly, she wasn't sure she could do that. Am I the only one who reads this as, she was willing to cheat but not overjoyed about sharing, with everything out in the open?

ManofDiscovery 03-04-2013 03:44 PM

I don't see a huge amount wrong here...she didn't say yes or no upfront, she just wasn't sure.

Sometimes you can only decide if you're comfortable with something after you throw yourself in headfirst.

Although 20-30 texts a day is a bit intense.

GalaGirl 03-04-2013 04:51 PM

I don't know what's going on with their end of it. But he didn't have YOUR goodwill/consent/enthusiasm.

I know some people like the chase/to be chase. I prefer a stronger line --
  • Yes = yes
  • maybe = no
  • no = no

Then it's clear cut and aboveboard. On the "maybe = no" I think it's better to err on the side of caution. Polymath can get pretty big depending on the number of players.

So they are dating now. Could be good if he spent some time with you now to smooth things over. She could spend some time with you. THEY could spend some time with you.

It could have been better before so your trust in his judgement would not have taken a ding. But have to move things forward so... could do it NOW then.


Marcus 03-04-2013 10:06 PM


Originally Posted by Earthgirlk (Post 187942)
The. " consent ". Was after the 2 weeks of the texting and phone calls. Just for clarity.. So was it Actual reluctance or " how bad does he want it , I will just create some uncertainty and see". I won't ever know.. Painful to watch though.. Thnks for the insight!

I'm not sure I understand why there is an issue. What is it she didn't do? Respond specifically and immediately "Poly huh? Sounds like fun, I'm in!"? Not everyone has been exposed to the idea of being in an open relationship and I'm sure the introduction of such a worldview could be a little intimidating.

Earthgirlk 04-04-2013 08:36 AM

Marcus--- I took your pointed question to heart. I personally, am poly heart and soul and was "never exposed" to open relationships/poly or anything of the like. I just never felt capable of living in the confines of monogamy. I never knew that my relationship preferences/style had a name, or that the feeling I had when I was 11, watching my best friend kissing my boyfriend because she had never been kissed by a boy and I had, was called compersion. I started to learn all that in 2010.

with that said, doing what I do for 10+ years, what works for me is dealing with people who are poly and they know. I've found that the try it/curious types i've run into were just a headache, and ultimately were trying to figure out how to get me to be monogamous. So when someone is hesitant instead of resonant, I leave it be. Just my experience.

UPDATE** the whole thing ran 5 1/2 weeks. I realized I wasn't having a problem with the new relationship per se-- I was anticipating and anxious about seeing new aspects of my partner that I hadn't seen before. Like that part where he tells me he knew three days into the phone calls that the whole thing was doomed.

He has had 3 once in a lifetime chances ( our euphemism for 1 nite stand/recreational sex) with different women. However, I never met these women and he never heard from them again. This one, he brought home after 3 weeks. (well after the "doom") Introduced her to another partner, I spent time talking to her on the phone, and now this...?

For five weeks he has been telling me that this is so worth exploring.. I really want to get to know her. This feels special. Then today he tells me that he knew it was doomed BEFORE i met her, BEFORE they had sex, and BEFORE she agreed to "try it".

I am feeling confused and hurt... at the same time introspective and inquisitive. I saw him choosing an incompatible partner.. very clearly and it upset me.. Is it because I have too?

i am inquisitive and contemplative.. but will take any feedback.

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