When Monogamy Fails
I have been when my husband for seven years, four dating and three married. We had our first child a little less than a year ago. I have known for awhile things were not good between us, I guess I figured we would work it all out over time. Having a small child brings a huge, well burden, to a marriage/relationship. Still, I was willing and waiting to work things out- give it time. We created and suffocated in a bubble. Just the tow of us and our child. No friends and very little outside the home experiences. We relied too much upon one another.
About a week ago my husband made a passing comment to me about he wished he could be asexual. I was so confused. I knew he wasn't happy where things between us were, but it still REALLY hurt. I felt abandoned and rejected. I asked him if the problem was he just wanted to go out have sex with strangers...he said no. He began to explain the concept of polyamours lifestyle to me. At first it all seemed like just a way to cheat on your spouse. But I made myself stay open to the idea. I have tried to understand.
In the following days we where extremely open with one another. I never felt so close to anyone in my life. But there were so many questions and feelings. Including, the fact, that I was finally able to openly discuss my attraction towards other women. I have never felt I could be open about being bisexual, and am still learning how to be.
Basically, after all of our talks, I have decided to give this a try. To be open to the possibility of future. I have read and heard being poly makes the love between two people even stronger. And I have to agree, so far.
My fear is:
This is the beginning of the end...the more people that come into our lives the further and further we will be from one another.
I want to know if there are other people out there that are going through or have gone through the transition from monogamy to poly. It seems everyone I talk to has always been poly. I know there is no blueprint for all of this but knowing it is possible makes this feel easier. And we both have a lot of things to work out. I need to learn to find my own self worth apart form him. We have to continue to communicate and let go of the fear and doubt.
A child under year of age is tough work I think. I don't have kids myself buy my sis and her boyfriend have 4 - the youngest has just turned 1. I see how little time they have for them and how much time they both spend working, seeing to the kids and keeping their homes running. I can so understand why and how friendships, social lives, time for each other and interests would disappear.
Really open communication is good. Seven years is a long time to be with somebody without feeling able to discuss fancying men and women. There must be so much that you and your husband have to find out about each other still.
I can totally understand you guys wanting to strengthen your marriage and become closer - it sounds as though it has been rather neglected over the years.
I don't get why you are choosing to do that through polyamory. Your post has talked a lot about you, your husband, your hopes for being closer to him and your fears about that not happening.
But - there is nothing in your post about what you or your husband have to offer to other partners. The other people you guys might date are living, sentient, caring, feeling human beings, not tools to strengthen a marriage that is proving to be hard going for the moment.
You say in your post that you have no friends and very little outside of home experiences. Why have you got no friends? Is it because you don't have anything to give to friendships? No time, money, energy? If that's the case - what makes you think that either of you would make a good partner for somebody else?
Why are you not going out much? Loads of my friends with babies take them to baby groups - breast feeding, weaning, yoga, water aerobics. There is much you can do with small children (I was on a camping holiday last year with 7 adults, 2 toddlers and about 15 dogs). If that's not your thing, you could be meeting friends for coffee.
My sis and her boyfriend take their kids (6, 4 year old twins and a 1 year old) skiing most weekends. The baby spent his first birthday on a mountain. They spend their weekends living with a large group of friends close to where they ski.
I love to spend time with my friends who are active, interesting parents. I'm not sure I'd see them as fun to be around if all they did was stay at home and be ground down by the demands made on them. I would support existing friends going through a tough time but certainly wouldn't start a new relationship with somebody who was struggling. Where would they find the time and energy to invest in getting to know me if they had no time or energy for their spouse or to maintain friendships?
You guys just don't sound like you have time or energy or the desire to be good partners and I wonder why you are choosing to consider polyamory?
I wish you luck and hope that you do find a way to strengthen your marriage.
It is so hard to accurately explain oneself on here...
Our child is the center of our world. I do go to plenty of mommy groups and playdates. In fact, that is part of the problem. Being so wrapped up in child rearing. I want to hang out with people who don't talk about diapers and sleep habits.
I understand the point of not taking into account what other people can bring to our lives. The truth is that is exactly what we are both excited for, meeting new people and having new experiences. I think regardless of being single or in a poly relationship, you start by finding new people to share life with. And sometimes these friendships develop into something more.
What I was looking for was other couples that have made the switch from monogamy to poly/open relationships. To hear their advice, funny stories, and their success.
Sounds like you could benefit from resources.
That one in particular contains links to going from mono to poly and avoiding pitfalls.
You have just started to really talk to each other. Keep talking and figure out your boundaries and HOW you want to approach this. Don't be in a big rush to explore dating. Talk about how you want to break up too, even if you do not want to or expect to. You have a kid to provide for here. Maybe consider postnuptial agreements. Who knows.
But if you can't talk about it honestly now while nothing is happening and it is just the two of you? If adding a new person in your life (baby) caused this much hooha? What will adding yet another bring? More hooha?
Think about opening "too fast" and adding yet another person who changes your family dynamic and familymath/polymath there. Think about opening "just right speed" so both of you can weather the transition time realistically.
Maybe you prefer to sort that "what if we break up?" stuff all out before Opening. Because you DO NOT want to be sorting all that out if you get to some kind of crisis mode after having Opened.
Better to have a plan and not need it than need it and be all crazy. YOU are responsible for your own well being. As for the mom thing -- even as a SAHM, I put my kid in daycare twice a week part time. I swapped sitting with another mom and housekeeping too.
To free me up to volunteer and interact with adults or have "me time" to read and garden for my OWN mental health and well being. Again, you are responsible for your own well being.
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