Nervous polywog needs advice, please
Hello! I could really, really use some advice regarding my current situation, which happens to be my first steps in polyamory. Here's a bit of background first, I suppose.
I've been dating L for almost five years. I'm so, so happy with him, but some days I can't help but feel that I'm not quite getting everything I need out of our relationship. I thought, for a long time, that something was wrong with me, because I can't imagine living without him; we've discussed marriage and kids, moving in together after grad school, the whole shebang. Why wasn't that enough for me? I felt confused, and selfish, and abnormal. So after several months of confusing feelings, I came across polyamory. I was overjoyed -- I wasn't alone! I wasn't betraying my boyfriend by wanting to seek love from other people, in addition to him!
So, after a few weeks of research, I brought it up with L. The discussion went both better and worse than I had expected. Better, because I had been worried that he would reject the idea entirely, and he simply said "okay" and had me explain polyamory to him; worse, because he is extremely low self-esteem and was afraid that this meant he was losing me. After a lot of discussion (and a lot of me reassuring him that if he wasn't game for a poly setup, I love him enough to stay monogamous), he gave me his blessing to pursue other partners. We do have a few rules; for example, L has the right to veto a potential partner if he's really not comfortable around them. I know that any partner of mine is also going to be a part of L's life, and everyone at least being friends is a must for me.
Okay, so the thing that I need advice on. The long and the short of it is this: I know that the idea of "sharing" me with another person scares L, but there is someone that I'd like to pursue, T. Even though L has reassured me, and even playfully teased me by asking if I was bringing anyone home for the holidays, I know that he's scared of a change in our dynamic. Do I protect my boyfriend a little longer, while he still comes to terms with the new aspect of our relationship? Or do I go ahead and pursue T, who might not even be interested?
Gosh, I feel kind of silly...Hopefully someone can give me some insight into this matter?
CatharticIntent A word or two about your dilemma,
I feel like I need to throw in the disclaimer right off the bat, that my thoughts, opinions, and therefore my approach to non-monogamy (including polyamory) does not align with "mainstream" poly. So my practice of it tends to be in opposition of real life communities rules and unspoken tenants, which often means said people take it upon themselves to make sure that I pay dearly for having the tenacity to dwell all while not choosing to remain silent. I say choose and take it upon themselves because they are extremely confused when it comes to rights and wrongs esp since I know what lines I am holden to as well what those divisions will mean in regards to which side people -- by their own free will -- choose to stand on.
For the most part it's not my job to keep track of all the ways and means they violate me, as I know whose land, time, and space this belongs to no matter what lessor collects rent nor who rent is paid. I know who I AM and to whom I am not subject to.
Because matters of the heart can often feel seem confusing, I find it essential to stick to the truth you know through the practice of honesty. You don't have to worry about making excuses for your heart, or any organ for that matter, so my view is that it is best to [i]not[/b] make excuses for what organs do, and instead take ownership of the decisions you make and the actions you choose to take if you decide that is your will. It is far better to know the consequences than it is to rationalize or justify yourself to anyone you don't choose to share your life.
I am thankful for women, non-caucasians, LGBT and everyone who had the courage to speak out against unlawful inequity in regards to retaining citizenship of Human Being. As it was all necessary as some refuse to listen, and therefore refuse to learn of the truth and choose the convenience as short term easement of lies. Believing in lies is only a lease of an existence, but coming here in order to know the truth is enough to be granted as much time as you need, so that you may take ownership of your life and who you are able to share it with
You do not need an excuse, nor do you need to justify who you desire to share your life with. It is OK to have a preference which you are allowed to set in stone, or daily scribble in wind swept sand, if someone chooses to accept your offer to share your life that is all that matters. So I personally don't subscribe to theories of being "wired" or born with some sort of identity of polyamory at a ridiculously young age. People who claim to see many colors of love during a black and white stage of innocence are people who I view as still being extremely conflicted and confused and so without really knowing who they are, they will always remain subconsciously a subject to the whims of a mainstream opinion in whatever community they reside in -- which unfortunately -- is the opinion of some random dominant male or the slickest sales team.
If you know that your boyfriend is someone you want to offer your love and your life to share, in hopes he will choose to accept it, I would be very weary of attempting to excuse your will as if it were wrong. I back away from theories that claim those we share are life with, fall short or in some way aren't good enough. So I would not talk myself into believing things like
I view that type of belief as the worst one you could buy into when those who you hope will accept your offer of love have insecurities of not being enough, or worse, just being less than someone else could be. But if that is the way you honestly feel, that you know is the case in your life, then go ahead and offer it as an explanation.
Personally I have found that not to be the case in my life, and telling trying to rationalize anything other than it simple being what I currently prefer, only ends up causing more more confusion among a person I wanted to share my life with, because it essentially translates to if I find someone who doesn't fall short, then I will leave, which doesn't really reassure anything other than their fears are legitimate
I think the biggest problem with authors who subscribe to this style of proprietary polyamory is what I view a not knowing the difference between a want and a need. Moving the label from need and attaching it to desires only serves to complicate and obscure something that was never unclear until it was muddled with lies and rationalizations.
Rather than dreaming about a black and white beginning transitioning into a world of color, why not simply wake up and open your eyes, see the truth, live it
in this life and the next
Thank you very much for your input, Dirtclustit :)
Change can be scary. It can also be an adventure. It's all a matter of perspective.
I liken your situation (which is fairly common) to using a muscle that hasn't been used before. Take it slow. Don't try to take on too much too fast. It may be painful. But pain doesn't always mean that damage is being done. Pain can aso be a part of growth.
Make this a positive experience for him. If it makes you a happier person, then share that happiness by doing/saying those things he enjoys. Help make the change an adventure for him.
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