New and perplexed
Hi everyone, I'm new to this forum and fairly new to considering polyamory, because of my Christian background (I like my faith, I'm not rejecting it, but understanding how poly could be OK within my religion is a bit worrisome).
I've had a very intense on-again off-again friendship with romantic overtones with a bi woman I've known since junior high, who I've basically been in love with since we met. Usually the "offs" had to do with distance, but we got back in touch when I was in my mid-twenties, and after an intense break up that sent me reeling and moving across the country, I chose to move to her city because she and her partner of over a decade had become very close friends and offered to be available and supportive to me.
After about a year and a half in my new city, and a months-long falling out because I rejected my couple friends socially several times for toxic girlfriends and boyfriends, my friend and I both agreed that being without each other was one of the most miserable times in our lives. I was also (finally) diagnosed last year with PTSD and am not likely to fully recover soon, as it's been a nearly lifelong trial getting diagnosed and struggling with symptoms I didn't have a framework for until last winter. She and her now husband are extremely supportive and have been my safe place on bad days.
They've only ever been monogamous (me, too), but we've recently had several triad sexual/romantic interactions, and they regularly tell me they love me and want to see more of me, and it seems to have only strengthened our friendships with each other. She and I share a third close friend who I can't regularly relate to sexually, but whom we both have strong emotional bonds with, and he sleeps over sometimes and takes care of me in a relationship that's emotionally intimate, but ultimately (by my choice and trauma limits -- I'm uncomfortable having regular physical interaction, alone, with a man) non-sexual. He knows I've spent time with this couple in a way I am not comfortable spending with him, but we've maintained our closeness (after some arguments and tears on three sides).
I made the mistake of trying to discuss the whole situation with my closest family member (my mom) and she told me I was letting her, myself, and God down, and furthermore that I was sick and immoral and that my attraction to this couple (I adored the husband as soon as I met him several years ago) was part of my mental illness. My relationship with my mom is broken now, and these people, the marrieds and my best male friend, are the people I can most be myself with, on good days and bad.
The thing is -- I started a new monogamous relationship with a very nice grad student whom I'm trying to make things work with, so I've talked with my couple friends about placing a hold on our sexual future while I explore the viability of my relationship with Grad Girl. They're still supportive, affectionate, and leaving the possibility of exploring something more with them (down the road) open. They're not interested in anyone else occupying a similar place in their lives.
I'm here because after years of only monogamous relationships and standards for myself, I find myself caring deeply for a couple, one that I could potentially have a viable relationship with, and I feel much more strongly about them than I do the girl I'm seeing now. I don't really have anyone to talk to about all this, and I'm hoping to meet friends and find advice as I navigate the possibility that I may be happier with a couple; they're not the only ones I've been attracted to, it's just that I shelved those thoughts as impossible and inappropriate and, honestly, evil.
I hope this post isn't too long; I'd love a hello, not be averse to advice, and plan on continuing several thoughts and questions on the relationship forum.
Welcome to our forum.
I almost get the impression that sometimes you try to be monogamous because that's what you're "supposed to do," but you keep finding that there is much happiness to be gained in the polyamorous relationship you share with this couple. I guess the very simple advice I have for you is, "Follow your heart," even though I know that's hard to do when you've been raised all your life to believe that something like polyamory is wrong.
One of the best benefits of joining a site like this is that you get to see that lots of people are polyamorous -- lots of perfectly good, sane people. You get to see that lots of people have figured out how to make polyamory work, and how to make it work well. So no longer do you have to be surrounded by judgmental, right-wing zealots. You have a chance to see the other side of the picture.
I would suggest just take your time and do lots of reading here. Find out what calls to you. And along the way, share with us your thoughts, questions, and concerns. It's a bustling site so if you happen to get lost in the shuffle, share again with a fresh post which will help put you back near the top of the "New Posts" queue.
PTSD is a terrible thing to deal with; my heart goes out to you. I am glad that you have companions who are so understanding and supportive.
Please keep us up to date with how things are going, and let us help if we can.
Thank you for being so welcoming. I woke up to see this message at the top of my email, and it really brightened my morning.
No problem; glad to have you with us.
Tell em that Solomon had 700 wives, that polygamy was a big thing in the Bible, and to bugger off :)
Re: Christian faith
Thanks for the support, PolyinPractice. It's a little trickier than that, unfortunately. I really care about the Church (and its fuck-ups, but I believe there's good to be harnessed, learned from, and encouraged there, as well as lots of crap to be eradicated), and the all-loving, sacrificial figure I see as being the object of Christian adoration.
But a growing contingent within my faith thinks being gay is more than OK, and that makes me happy. My hope is that there may be room for polyamory to be accepted on some level, too (a few people, like popular/infamous writer John Shore, don't have a problem with it, which means it may be a view others eventually articulate, as well).
I think my best bet with my folks if I end up living in a poly situation is to keep it out of their sight and hearing. My previous/potential future partners (same people) aren't religious, so they don't have faith-based qualms, and one of their families also is unlikely to see it as a negative. So that's cool.
Well I expect homosexuality to be accepted in the churches a lot sooner than polyamory, but hey the point is, a lot of the churches do seem to be moving in the right direction.
I've many friends who (unlike me) are still in the church, even many who have serious doubts and questions about various things. They've kind of taken it upon themselves to try to help improve the church from within, which I can only admire. I'm not nearly as strong/confident a person as they are.
Nothing wrong with keeping the poly stuff low-key with the parents, and hey if that helps them gradually make peace with it, that's all the better.
All that said, it's true that Solomon had an awful lot of wives. :) He must have had a full calendar ...
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