practical problem of family and triad
We have been Poly for a year with our third. She is a part of our life almost everyday. While we have had bumps and bruises this is the first major hurdle in dealing with social situations. First let me tell you that out of the three I am the only one who has family in this town, H's parrents live 2 hours away and K's parrents live an hour away. My dad lives here and my mother lives 2 hours away in the same area as H's parrents.
My parrents know of the fact that there is some relationship with K closer than just friends and they have been very good not to pry. My father is in the same profession as I and he and i have a very good relationship for the first time in my life. He hasnt asked, but has heard tell of some relationship and has choosen to stay out of it, however I am planning on telling him some of it in the near future.
My mother is a pshychatrist and I have divulged that there is a closer than friends relationship between the three of us with her in the past. It did not fall into a discussion of what Poly is, that is something I have planned on doing in person, because of our professions and busy schedules we only see each other a few times a year.
K's parents visit some but she maintains her own residence as she has joint custody of her kids. Mostly her mom comes and they only know of us a friends, but I'm sure if they thought about it they could figure it out from the closeness and amount of time we spend together including several trips a year the three of us take, often without the kids.
H who is my wife of almost 18 years is essentially estranged from her mother, she talks occsionally to her father. There was some personal drama last year and i was asked about H and K having an affair or something. H was in the midst of being diagnosed finally with a mood disorder at the time and I didnt feel that it was the proper time to disclose, plus it was her job to do so if and when she felt right about it.
Now we have had our 1st aniversry as a triad and for the most part everything is good, we have made it through many bumps and bruises, but H & I 's son is graduating from High school on Monday. We live in a very small judgmental town in the deep south. My father in an attempt to help H and parents heal some old wounds invited them to come stay with he and my stepmother on Monday night so they could go to graduation. My mother will be here as well. Stress will be running high for H that day to say the least.
Now to our problem, H and I want to not alienate K because she is part of our family or at least the one we interact with daily. Our kids expect us all to be together most of the time, because they have lived with this for a year, infact our younger two and K's two are bff's and cant wait to play with them on every other monday when they come to K's house. K practically lives with us the other week and we are in the midst of planning a summer vacation all together like we did last year.
So how do we handle graduation. First we realize its fr our son and to avoid drama, right now she is not invited to the party at my dads house that night, I have a problem with that since I feel like I have moved to the next phase of having K around so they can get used to it. H is under such stress that she cant even think aout it. We havn't discussed it with K.
H is stressed out to the next level because of many things like the fact its dance recital weekend for our two girls as well as graduation of her little 17 year old boy, all 6'5 of him.
K feels left out sometimes and I hate thinking of her feeling that way. I want her involved and to feel like she is part of our family, because she is. BTW our 17 year old knows about K, and that she is more than just a close friend which is the way our 11 and under 4 girls think of us.
Add on top of that the fact that we live in a very small town where people are very judgmental and prone to gossip. When there are festivals and group events we all three go to so there you have it. Any advice will be greatly appreciated.
Only you can decide at what point to stop living your life a certain way because of what other people think. Yes i realize that is easier said than done, and there are all sorts of ramifications and repercussions that come with telling the world to eat a big steaming pile of "idgaf". We all face choices that expand and limit our horizons in different ways. For example, you have kids and a job, it's not like you can just say "ok, let's all move to Boston or Seattle where people won't be all up in our private personsl lives". But you can think about maybe that's something to work toward over the next 5 years, if you're one of those "5 year plan" types.
Sorry i don't have the magic bullet for you. Maybe someone else does.
Seeing as she is a good friend in the eyes of most, can she not come in that capacity?
Say something like "she is such a good friend, she feels like family, has helped our son with lots of school stuff, so of course she is here to celebrate with us!"
As far as graduation, if your son wants her there, there should be no issue on that front.
Bringing her to party when you know she was not invited might cause problems, though. If I do not invite someone to my home, I do not want them there, and I will ask them to leave. If you bring her, it may cause a scene. It is your son's graduation party, and the attention should be on him. It is a reason to celebrate, and I understand why you would want her there. Has your soon expressed interest in inviting her? If so, is it possible for him to ask the host? Truth is, you can have all the problems in the world with it, but unless your name is on that mortgage and you are paying the bills, you have to respect it or...
Another option is for you, H, and K to not attend the party, and I am sure you all are not willing to do that.
I believe I read that your father is not aware of your relationship with K or your polyamoury aside from run of the mill small town gossip, so how would he have even known to invite her, if he is the host? You said he is staying out of the relationship and your business. Perhaps you could ask if he minds if she comes?
Son's graduation-son invites who he wishes.
Does he want her to join in?
In which case the rest of the world can F'off.
As for the rest-I can't speak to it-because I don't live my life in the closet in anyway. I just don't care who judges me.
But-really-the choice is between the three of you.
Thanks for the advice. the party is at my dads house, my youngest sister is the same age as my son, so its a joint thing.
I was really worried about hurt feelings of K. We have talked and to avoid drama with H's mom, who wont return H's calls on mothers day nor her recent texts, K has decide to stay at home. I hate having to live in this secret world but its probbably for the best for now and, H and I really appreciate K's feelings on avoiding the drama.
As for a five year plan, no its not that easy. i am a small town general practice lawyer. My reputation as a good lawyer brings in my clients, I dont advertise at all, never had to in the 13 years of practice. My practice is not very mobile, i cant take my clients with me to another state, if I move I would have to take a lesser paying job teaching or in the government or public sector, each would mean a loss of independance and income.
K has a problem with ex, he is the type to make an issue out of it and try and petition the courts for full custody. Being a southern state and the judges being conservative minded, I cant ask her to take the risk, so our plan is more like a 10 year plan.
We are here until all our children graduate from High School and go off to a university. Then we have looked at living in Florida Keys or in the islands. K is a speach pathologist and can find work anywhere, I will be looking to slow down my practice, and H is the stay at home one, who toys with working on a masters in counseling, maybe specializing in poly and other alternative lifestyle counseling, or may just tend the garden and plant flowers.
We will see.
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