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-   -   Embarrassed to admit my wife has a loverÖ (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=42095)

ferenc 03-07-2013 12:29 AM

Embarrassed to admit my wife has a loverÖ
 
After years of discussion we've finally taken the plunge into poly. My wife has fallen deeply in love with another man, and Iím pretty ok with that so long as my relationship needs are being fulfilled (they kinda' are but being in NRE my wife still sometimes/at times often thinks about him when she's with me, and is not 'present' which I resent but thatís another issue which we're talking through)

Whatís really bugging me right now is that somehow I feel less of a man because my wife feels the need for another, which is crazy as I know I canít be everything for anyone.

And hereís the really unfair bit Ė it would be super-cool for me to have another woman, but Iím embarrassed to admit my wife has a lover. WTF?

Is it ego, insecurity, cultural conditioning? What is going on here?

SEcondary 03-07-2013 02:02 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ferenc (Post 188814)
After years of discussion we've finally taken the plunge into poly. My wife has fallen deeply in love with another man, and Iím pretty ok with that so long as my relationship needs are being fulfilled (they kinda' are but being in NRE my wife still sometimes/at times often thinks about him when she's with me, and is not 'present' which I resent but thatís another issue which we're talking through)

Whatís really bugging me right now is that somehow I feel less of a man because my wife feels the need for another, which is crazy as I know I canít be everything for anyone.

And hereís the really unfair bit Ė it would be super-cool for me to have another woman, but Iím embarrassed to admit my wife has a lover. WTF?

Is it ego, insecurity, cultural conditioning? What is going on here?

One man can not meet the sexual and emotional needs of a woman. I believe that and read where a woman said the same thing. I think a married woman can also give more of herself to a lover when shes married. My wife has a boyfried of three years. She loves him. He comes over and they have their own bedroom here and they make love. I love listening to her moan.
Why would I not be happy for her.
Its ego bothering you. Theres nothing wrong with you.

GalaGirl 03-07-2013 02:31 AM

Maybe its just "the new normal feels weird until it becomes the old normal."

Maybe it is something else. Only you can answer that by sitting and looking within to see what you find there.

Galagirl

learninginTN 03-07-2013 08:06 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ferenc (Post 188814)
Is it ego, insecurity, cultural conditioning? What is going on here?

Could be all three, really. Many people get past this through a lot of time, research, and communication with all the parties involved. Some people never do.

I encourage you to be very open and honest with your wife about your feelings. Don't be afraid to voice them, and try to create an atmosphere where she feels comfortable voicing hers to you as well.

Work together to establish your comfort limits. I wish you guys the best.

polychronopolous 03-08-2013 03:22 AM

Clearly you have some things to sort through, and you will get there. My only thought is this: You are a guy looking for someone who is accepting of a poly relationship dynamic. What's to be embarrassed about here. You and your wife have a poly relationship and currently she has another partner. So will you when it happens for you. In my unprofessional opinion you are psyching yourself out. Take it easy on you and keep your mind open. Fear is a terrible state in which to live.

Phoenix.

MeeraReed 03-08-2013 05:11 AM

You sound like you're doing pretty well with it. (Yes, it is ego, insecurity, and cultural conditioning--but everyone's got those things).

The simplest solution would be to become more familiar with other men who are comfortable with their wives having boyfriends/lovers. Join a poly social group, read & post more on poly forums, etc. Find yourself a community that includes men in your situation who can model the idea that they aren't less of a man.

JaneQSmythe 03-08-2013 05:41 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ferenc (Post 188814)
Whatís really bugging me right now is that somehow I feel less of a man because my wife feels the need for another, which is crazy as I know I canít be everything for anyone.

And hereís the really unfair bit Ė it would be super-cool for me to have another woman, but Iím embarrassed to admit my wife has a lover. WTF?

Is it ego, insecurity, cultural conditioning? What is going on here?

I'm with the others who think/feel that it could be a combo of all three. I think that my husband went through something similar when we finally (after 19 YEARS) addressed the "no boys" clause to my extra-curricular activities. (Which clause, to be fair, I never felt the need to really challenge...until Dude came along.)

MrS can't really explain how he came to his reversal/refutation but I have a few theories.

In term of ego: I think this may have been predominant for MrS. He knows that he understands me (how my mind works, my likes/dislikes, how I will respond to different situations, what makes me happy, etc.) better than anyone else. I think part of it was his ego being tied up in somehow needing to believe that he was the ONLY person who has ever understood me/COULD ever understand me in such an intimate fashion. When he stepped back from his gut-reactions he came to the conclusion that ... wait a minute, how is it a BAD thing if someone else ALSO comes to understand me in that way? How is more happy, more love, more understanding in any way a NEGATIVE? Sharing that understanding (of me) doesn't depreciate HIS understanding in any way - it can only augment it.

In terms of insecurity: I've CHOSEN to be with him for 20 years, we love each other more each and every year, my life's plans with him include "forever" - I think he looked at this with a fresh perspective and realized that THAT was a solid enough foundation that his insecurities (that he was carrying from when we were first together) were unfounded. I COULD have run off and left him for some "new shiny" guy (or girl) at any point - poly or no - and I haven't (and wouldn't - but that is a whole nother post on my views about commitment).

In terms of cultural conditioning: this is a hard one because I think this conditioning runs deeper than we realize on a sub-conscious level and requires some serious rooting around to figure out the underlying assumptions that these biases are based on. Luckily, for me, MrS was already partway there in terms of questioning the underlying basis for many of society's "rules" (think, hippy-bohemian-meets-rugged-individualist-survivalist-libertarian). The next step seemed to be applying the same type of scrutiny to personal relationship dynamics rather than cultural/societal/governmental "institutions".

For MrS the "epiphany" was already in the making, the stage having been set by various conversations and experiences we have had. The actual trigger for his total re-evaluation of all of the the above was a could-have-been-fatal-but-thankfully-wasn't car accident. (I DO NOT recommend this!) This incident caused him to re-evaluate his outlook on a number of things that he had previously understood on a purely "intellectual" level...

I don't know if any of this is helpful...but "sharing water"...

JaneQ

Helo 03-09-2013 11:12 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ferenc (Post 188814)
Whatís really bugging me right now is that somehow I feel less of a man because my wife feels the need for another, which is crazy as I know I canít be everything for anyone.

And hereís the really unfair bit Ė it would be super-cool for me to have another woman, but Iím embarrassed to admit my wife has a lover. WTF?

Is it ego, insecurity, cultural conditioning? What is going on here?

A little of all three, actually.

Cultural programming has a lot to do with it; your image of yourself is tied up in a picture given to you by the culture around you. Because your current situation clashes with that picture, it creates feelings of insecurity.

There's no real "cure" for it, you just have to fight the programming as best you can. Cultural programming is often bizarrely illogical so countering it with concrete facts is often helpful.

Blopez5293 03-09-2013 04:42 PM

I go with option D.
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by ferenc (Post 188814)
After years of discussion we've finally taken the plunge into poly. My wife has fallen deeply in love with another man, and Iím pretty ok with that so long as my relationship needs are being fulfilled (they kinda' are but being in NRE my wife still sometimes/at times often thinks about him when she's with me, and is not 'present' which I resent but thatís another issue which we're talking through)

Whatís really bugging me right now is that somehow I feel less of a man because my wife feels the need for another, which is crazy as I know I canít be everything for anyone.

And hereís the really unfair bit Ė it would be super-cool for me to have another woman, but Iím embarrassed to admit my wife has a lover. WTF?

Is it ego, insecurity, cultural conditioning? What is going on here?

I would have to say it's all of the above.... and grief. What, grief, when no one has died? On that front I have to agree. No one has died but sometimes the hardest thing to let go of is an idea. And while you, intellectually are ok with an open poly marriage, the heart is not always quick to let go of the status quo. So while you may still be married to your wife, the marriage as you knew it is dead. It is evolving into something new. It is no longer the "you and only you forever" that you signed up for. So, be gentle on yourself and your wife. What you are feeling is normal. And I'm sure that as long as you proceed being mindful, open, and completely honest you will be just fine. And you will both grow with new insights and beliefs. :-)

Icewraithonyx 03-09-2013 04:45 PM

I would also chime in a vote for all three. In my case, I think cultural programming has more to do with it. I'm worried about Wife's lover because I'm worried that will reflect on me as being "inadequate". When a husband has a lover, it's often assumed it's because men are inherently unfaithful. When a wife has a lover, it's often assumed it's because the husband is somehow lacking. Another unfair social norm.


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