New to it all
Hello everyone! I'm Lynn and I am new to the whole polyamory thing.
My husband and I have been married for 3 years now. To start with I have always been open minded about a lot of things. I have been bisexual for as long as I can remember and never understood why one can't be happy with more than one person. I just never knew there was a term for it.
My husband is the first person (man) who actually accepts my bisexuality, embraces it, and allows me the freedom to pursue it, WITHOUT the jealously issues. He also is the only person I had found who is on the same wave length and is as open as I am about things. To start out with, we had initially agreed to have 3somes every once in a while with women we trust but it was more like they were our play-toy or friends with benefits when it suited us.
After a couple of years we started off joking about the idea of having someone as a relationship, in a sense, with us. It went from joking to serious discussions.
I started talking to his ex-wife and we clicked right away. Now, she lives with us (I fell for her pretty quick and we get along wonderfully) and the 3 of us are involved with one another. He, however, is rarely home as he works across country.
So, I do have some questions because it is a unique situation (I mean how many people actually get involved with ex-wives and so on? lol). I wanted his children with us so they can grow up with our children (their half-siblings). He tells me all the time that the only reason he is involved with her is because he wants me to be happy. He knows I need a female companion, I want the kids here, and I need help around the house with all the kids (there's 5 all together for now).
I DO care for her and love her in my own way because she provides different things for me that he can't. (I won't be with another male while with him and have no interest for some reason) Anyways, I love him in a different way that I don't think I ever could for her because 1. he's my best friend 2.we are so in sync with our ways of thinking about things 3. we understand each other as no others have 4.we communicate way more on more things than either of us have ever seen anyone do. We are soul mates, to sum it up....
I kind of feel bad because I know he does not trust her nor does he really have deep feelings towards her anymore and not like he does for me. He has told her numerous times (I have overheard this and she has told me) that if I ever leave she will be gone right then. He does care about her in some ways, but I think it is mainly for the 2 kids they had together before and because he wants me happy.
He does try to treat her equally, but there are a lot of times she and I both notice he leans more towards me.
Anyways, even though is it working out well so far, can this eventually cause issues where I will have to end things with her because of his not really wanting to be with her with a close relationship like he and I have?
Sure, we have had issues so far with jealousy and envy, but it has been from her end. We have worked through that and she feels horrible that she has done it and has sought out treatment for it (turns out she has a chemical imbalance). It's gotten significantly better.
Also, is it normal or okay to feel slight twinges of envy or slight hurt when it is his night to go to sleep in her room? I mean because I know what they are doing. Some days it bothers me slightly and some days it does not. I think some parts of it is because I want to be there too, but we have it set up where we rotate nights so that each gets individual time together...and we have nights where the 3 of us enjoy each other when the mood hits.
I know that is a lot to read and I apologize.....I just am not sure how to word it and not sure where else to ask for advice. I'm new to it so am not sure the best ways to make sure it is balanced and everyone can be happy and enjoy life together without any major issues.
I already know that I have no worries of him leaving me for her, that isn't a problem. I just worry his distrust of her and his acting as if he has to do it because of keeping the kids together and my happiness is going to make it so her and I have to end our relationship (even though me being with her does not bother him). He just feels he has to give her what she wants in order to keep her there because she wants to be with him as much as with me. She has also told me she has issues sometimes because she does not want to share me, yet she does not want to share him either....
Sooooo...how do I best work through this so everyone can be happy, be themselves, and enjoy life and the kids?
If he doesn't have much feelings for her, doesn't trust her and she feels similarly, why are they romantic/sexual partners? you know, a triad, where three people are romantically/sexually involved is one form of polyamory, but actually the majority of polyamorous people have multiple romantic relationships that are separate from one another. They don't share partners at all.
Wouldn't it lessen the pressure a bit if they were given the option to not be involved in the way they are and then you could continue your relationship with her and they could go back to being co parents?
It would be nice if it were that easy lol. As I said, he does care for her somewhat. He just thinks he has to be involved with her in order to keep her there because it is what she wants. If she leaves then I would no longer have my companion, the help, or my step-kids with me because she would take my step-kids with her (which I understand since they are her children). He knows that if she left or the kids left I would be devastated. He does not want that to happen, so he gives her what she wants in that aspect so that I can be happy. (He just does not understand the concept that I can be happy with a different situation to have the kids here). Does that make sense?
He has tried on several occasions to tell her that just a friendship between him and her is okay with him and what he wants. Even if it is just a friends with benefits every now and then. Yet, she still does not want that. So, he obligates himself to the whole thing with her.
In some ways it bugs me because what if he and I decide we want to have a relationship with someone we BOTH trust and care for and not just me being the one who feels for the other person...I'm afraid she will prevent that from happening, even though it is the lifestyle we have wanted before she ever came along.
I don't want him with her out of an obligation for the kids and I, but how can he get out of it with her when she will not accept that happening? If she flips out because of it, then that means the kids will essentially be taken from us and moved across country with her. Yet I don't want to lose her either. I just can't get either one of them to understand he does NOT have to be with her if he does not feel the want to be involved....Complicated I know....Hence why I asked for advice. *sighs* I already know I would never choose her over him. So, that is not the issue.
I'm sorry you are struggling though. :(
It doesn't sound complicated to me. Complicated to FEEL maybe, but not complicated BEHAVIOR.
You want to have the ex-wife as GF/lover and cohabitate so all the children live under one roof. Your DH and his ex-wife go along with this and try it on. Now you feel struggle because you now know DH is not really into her as is doing it "for you", and you know she is into him and because you care about her, probably don't want her being used/strung along.
So how do you restore right relationship within yourself, with DH, and with her?
Could ASK them both where they stand rather than wait for things to explode from tension or whatever.
Could ask DH to confirm that he prefers to STOP having sex with the ex-wife. Could tell him you are ok with it, and you are ok dealing with whatever happens next once he ends it. He doesn't have to put out and have sex with her for your sake. Is he ok if you continue to date her? Continue to cohabitate? Could get answers.
Could also ask your GF (his ex wife) if their side of the triad breaking up means she also wants to break up with you. If that means she wants to stop living together. Ask her if she's aware you want to continue to date other people and not be exclusive. Could get answers.
Could ask you what YOU want? Maybe you want to date her but NOT cohabitate but live nearby?
You could lean into it and resolve it rather than shy away from it from fear of potential conflict. You seem to be avoiding it because you don't want to feel anything yucky once it is out in the open. And in being avoidy... things could just escalate.
You could think about changing your conflict resolution method from "avoid" to something else. It's being felt now -- at least by you and DH. She seems to know he's not all that into her. So... you tried it on and found it's not working for ALL parties.
I'm glad you could join our forum.
The only hope would be for your husband to explore the reasons why he doesn't trust her, and see if there is any way to rectify the root causes of that mistrust. Maybe if he trusted her more he would be more inclined to relate to her romantically. All of this would take a lot of work and cooperation on his part though, and she might have to do some things to restore the trust as well.
Things like bits of jealousy over her nights with him, and her reluctance to share, are emotional states that may fade away over time. Sometimes it helps to communicate (such as a three-person sit-down) about these feelings, not assigning blame, just getting them out there. It may be a good idea anyway to have regular sit-downs (such as once a week or once a month), especially in the early stages of your triad relationship.
On the other hand, if she continues to not want to share, and that feeling becomes more instead of less intense, then you could be headed for a nasty break-up somewhere down the road. You're exposing yourself to a certain amount of risk by venturing further into this triad relationship. It looks like you're already committed to it though, so I guess you'll have to see where it leads.
Perhaps you will benefit from the Life stories and blogs board, where you can observe experiences other people have had with poly, and what has and hasn't worked for them. Plus the Poly Relationships Corner is a good place to post further thoughts, questions, and concerns.
I am sympathetic knowing you just want everyone to be happy and are trying your best to be helpful to your companions. I wish you well in your endeavors and hope this post helps in some small way.
Thank you all for your responses.
Gala, you are right on the nose with your understanding of it. I was afraid it was something too complicated for most to get. I never thought of it from that aspect as being complicated to feel, not complicated behavior. That helps make things easier to look at. Thanks for the different questions posed.
We already do sit downs and discussions. I've been trying to facilitate that a lot. We've discovered that he doesn't trust her because of stuff she did and put him through while they were married. We've discovered that they have nothing in common for the most part. Yesterday she told me she can't understand why it is hard for him to understand or "get" what she is trying to say when she tells him of stuff she is dealing with, yet she can tell me and I get it completely. She says it confuses her because he and I are like 1 and the same person with everything except maybe 5% to 10% of who we are, including he is male and I am female lol. I don't know how to get him to acknowledge her issues when she brings them to him because he acknowledges me and mine when I put them forth, so I know he can and he is very good at it.
I will be attempting to get them to look at the root of his distrust of her, but as you said, Kevin, he has to be willing to work through it.
Thank you all for the diferent words of advice. I will see if those will help.
Whew, wow. You are asking a lot of your husband, by falling in love with and making him live with his ex wife. And he is certainly in a strange place, fucking his ex so she won't leave YOU!
Wow. He and she broke up for a reason. Or reasons. Now you want to love and fuck her, and you want HER kids with you, so your husband has to fuck her.... She wants that. Just loving you and fucking you isn't enough for her.
If you insist he does NOT have to fuck her so she will stay... and he stops, and she leaves, why does she have to then take her kids and move "across the country?" If she loves you, why can't she get a place in town, to continue being near YOU, to let the kids be with their half siblings? Does she love you really? Why would she leave YOU if her ex told her he just doesn't feel sexual chemistry for her anymore?
There are billions of women in the world. Why did you choose to fall in love with and have move in the woman your husband divorced?
I've thought about having her get her own place nearby so he doesn't have to deal with being with her when he is home (he only comes home for 1 week every 5 to 9 weeks because of his job) but he knows it won't be good for the kids because she stresses easily and they don't listen to her much. They do better with me and I'm more level headed. So, we both decided to keep her with us in the house.
I never expected to fall for her, it just happened. So, technically I didn't choose to fall for my husband's ex. He is okay with it though. So when you say I'm MAKING him, that offends me. I'm not MAKING him do anything. He is choosing to do it and we BOTH agreed to it. He just has it in his head that I have to have her here to be happy because he is afraid that if his kids are taken away it will devastate me...which it will...but it will devastate him more because they are his biological kids. He and I BOTH want his kids to grow up with ours since they are half-siblings. I never got to grow up with mine and he never got to grow up with his. So, neither of us are close to our siblings due to that.
It is a complicated situation, but please do not insinuate that I am making him do things he does not want to do. He chooses to do things for whatever reasons that are his own. If he wants to cut things off with her totally, then that is okay with me. I will survive and support him with it. He is my "primary" so to speak. My marital bonds are with him, not her. I have promises towards him, not her. We will find other ways to get to see the kids if it ends up that way....
So, I didn't ask advice to be accused of forcing anyone into anything. I was asking in order to find ways to help them get past whatever issues they have so we can all be happy together to benefit each other and the kids. I was merely trying to explain his reasons that are his own and that he sees it as in his head.
Well, keep us posted on any new insights that come out of your sit downs and discussions. Communication is so important.
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