Hi. I have been lurking on this forum for a month or two and decided to finally introduce myself.
I am a single/unmarried 40 year old woman, fairly new to poly, in an N-shaped configuration (not sure how else to explain it). My partner (DJ) is a hinge to a V and is married to another hinge, but there is no crossover between the legs of the Vs, except a growing friendship. If anyone has an easier way to explain that, Iíd love a suggestion.
I was married for 6 years in a mono relationship that was not happy or fulfilling. I realize that this is due to where I was when I chose the person and who we were as a couple. It has been nearly 7 years since my divorce. In those years, Iíve done a great deal of growing and learning about who I am, my strengths and weaknesses, and what Iím hoping to find in a relationship.
About 4 years ago, I met a man who introduced me to poly. At the time I was a grad student and had very little extra time to open my mind to the idea and consequently put it on the back burner. A year ago, after graduation and following the break up of a dating relationship, I began to explore and learn about ethical non-monogamy/polyamorous relationships. At first, as a single woman interested in dating more than one person, the concept was rather simple. To the outside world, I was just enjoying the benefits of being unattached, but what was more central to my journey was the fact that most of the men I was meeting that were poly, also had what I would call a ďhigh emotional IQĒ. I was attracted to the fact that many of the men I met were not afraid to express their thoughts and work on their relationships. I was intrigued. Further, I found that the challenge of dealing with my own insecurities and fears was in line with what I was already personally working on. A poly relationship felt like the most authentic relationship I could imagine.
Being an unmarried woman (bi-curious) with no children but interested in poly has often put me into the elusive ďunicornĒ status that has been a challenge to address. At one point, I was heavily recruited to be the 4th person in a ready-made quad. I was even offered a place to live, assistance with job search, a car, and a new family. Unfortunately (fortunately?), it was not a good fit for me and, after a whirlwind two months, I declined the offer.
Three months ago I met DJ. I was at a point of dating-exhaustion and almost cancelled on him. I was so not interested in yet another date that will just be a ďlearning experience.Ē I was ready to take a break. Surprisingly, DJ and I fit together really well. It is that effortless but stretching kind of connection. Looking back it feels like weíve known each other for much longer than 3 months, but weíre well aware that everything is still quite new and shiny for us.
DJ has been married to M for 21 years, and decided to open their relationship about a year ago, at the request of M, who had an interest in developing a connection with T. After a couple months of discussing and negotiating, it was decided that DJ and M would give it a try. So far, things are going well. T lives about 3 hours away and due to Mís job, she can spend half the week with T and half the week with DJ. Of course there are challenges and complications, but for the most part they are happy with how their relationships have transitioned.
As mentioned before, I entered the picture about 3 months ago. I have had an opportunity to meet and begin to develop a friendship with M. I have more of an acquaintance-type relationship with T, but it is certainly friendly and relaxed. DJ and M have 4 teenagers and Iíve begun to spend time around them and it feels relatively comfortable, considering the inherent awkwardness of it all.
Wow, thatís a longer story than I had anticipated telling. Iíve been slow to post here on the forum because I fear asking something stupid or just saying something naÔve. But, Iím here to learn and Iíve appreciated reading the posts of others and feeling a sense of connectedness through an online format. Being new to poly and new to this N-shaped configuration, there are times when I just feel a bit lost and in need of feedback. I hope in the future Iíll be a bit more brave to post my questions and benefit from the responses.
Thanks to anyone who got to the end of this introduction. :)
I think you're already quite brave for such an open introduction. (I did read the whole thing!)
I think this forum is an awesome place, and you can learn quite a bit by reading around here. I remember I was quite giddy with NRE when I found this place and it helped me calm down a lot.
Thank you so much for sharing with us! I sure resonated with you as I read your intro. I'm a 49 year old straight man. I too was married, (18 years for me) and my wife and I tried several poly situations during the marriage. Like you, I felt poly was the most authentic and it just fit me in all ways.
I also very much agree that poly living gives a person the opportunity to deal with their fears and insecurities. In fact, I feel it gives a person multiple opportunities along these lines that no other life-experience can give. It was extremely educational and enlightening for me, and I grew in many ways from the experience. Most beneficial for me was the Spiritual growth because that was how I focused my attention as I went through all of it.
Please don't be concerned about asking stupid questions or appearing that way! We each are learning in every moment, one way or another. Its when we open ourselves, be vulnerable with each other and strive to create warm, kind, compassionate, authentic "space" for each other to BE and know its "safe" that we truly grow in so many ways. Yes, there is room in the creation of that safe space to also be brutally honest as well, but if we put some consideration into how to be honest, and firm, we can still be warm and kind in our responses. At least that is my approach, everyone has their own unique approach.
Thank you for being here with us and having the courage to post!
Welcome to our forum.
"N" seems to be a pretty accurate description of your relationship configuration. I hope you, DJ, M, and T work out a good arrangement for all four of you.
It seems to me you wanted to learn a lot before committing yourself to a poly situation. Polyamory.com is a good place to learn, contemplate, and figure out where you want to go in life. Take some time and read our various threads, and post any thoughts or questions you may have.
Glad to have you aboard,
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