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-   -   Missing One from Group and feeling Strained (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=63309)

Scarlette 11-11-2013 07:16 AM

Missing One from Group and feeling Strained
Hello poly folks! Since me and my group are pretty insulated as far as this whole poly thing goes, I am seeking advice and thoughts to something that has been troubling me lately.

My husband Michael and I have been involved with another husband and wife couple, Hanna and Issac, since the middle of this year. My husband, being in the Marines, is currently stationed away. Has been for the last year and will be for the next 6 months or so (he finally met the other members of our group a couple months ago while on a visit).

Since Michael is gone, Hanna and I have been trying to make do with getting our needs met as much as possible from Issac. Obviously that is putting quite a strain on our group. Since I am a stay at home mom with our young kids, I only get to see Issac and spend the night with him one night a week on Sundays at the moment. The other weekend night and day is Hanna's.

I'm starting to feel as if my needs don't really matter as only being "the girlfriend". I'm dealing with the fact that I only really have 24 hours of his time, but its always spent at their house with Hanna around (mine isn't available to stay at). We can't have sex without her possibly in the other room hearing or watch TV without her possibly coming in and chatting with us. I don't mind her around, she is my friend, but they don't have to worry about those same kinds of things because it's not my house to just be around. If I suggest getting a hotel, she say she feels like we are just trying to avoid her.

I'm just feeling really frustrated that my time with his is also partially spent with her, but she can see him all week and half the weekend alone. It's an issue I just don't know the resolution to.

FullofLove1052 11-11-2013 11:35 AM

Tricky. It is half her home, and well, you cannot actually ask her to leave for your sake.. Does Isaac feel that this is a problem? If yes, has he asked her about it to at least see if she would be willing to get out of the house for awhile? Do they children, and could they be the reason she stays at home? Have you ever talked to her directly and said that you and Isaac would like to be alone? Do you and him date outside of their home? If so, what is stopping you from having a date Sunday evening and spending the night in a hotel? Would she have a problem with that? I would venture a guess that she knows that you and him need quality time alone as a dyad.

london 11-11-2013 12:32 PM

I think you need to emphasise that you are in a romantic relationship and quality couple time is recommended in all relationships. Ask her how she'd deal with not having any alone time with her husband. If I'm reading this right and she is dating your husband too, set a good precedent by facilitating their alone time when he is around.

Magdlyn 11-11-2013 12:49 PM

Why do you say you and your husband are involved with another couple? It sounds like he only met them once. Maybe you all had 4way sex? Maybe you just wife swapped?

Be that as it may, sounds like YOU are involved with Issac, and his wife Hanna is jealous and rather resentful you're around on the weekend taking up his time. She's not your gf? You don't have sex or dates with her, right? So, you've got a bf, Issac. Hanna has maybe had sex with your husband when he was on leave. But he's gone now. Maybe she is wondering what is in all this for her.

I also wonder why you and Issac don't go out for romance. A day at the beach or hiking, picnicking in the woods? Is there some kind of weird rule that Issac has to have his dates with you IN his house with Hanna jealously lurking around?

Personally I can have my bf over and my live-in gf gives us plenty of space to have sex or cuddle. She doesn't resent Ginger in the least, so when she does show up to hang out with us, it's after he and I have had plenty of time to get our rocks off and chat one on one. Also, he and I go out on dates to cultural things we enjoy. Often we invite miss pixi (since she and Ginger are friends), sometimes she comes along, but usually she has other things to do, and just tells us to go have fun.

You definitely need to see why Hanna is being so resentful she'd make that remark, "You're trying to avoid me," when you suggest you and Issac get a hotel room. That's an awfully harsh way of putting it. Why does she think you two never should get to be alone together? Where does her insecurity come from? Sounds like you 3 need a good sit-down heart-to-heart.

Natja 11-11-2013 02:17 PM

Yes, this is confusing to me, you call it a 'group' situation but he only met them after you got involved and even then he is gone the rest of the year so far.

It doesn't seem like a group situation, it seems like you have a fwb with this other guy and his wife is jealous, it is not like she is getting her groove on for added distraction either. Perhaps this is not what she expected?

Either way, it seems a right old mess and I agree with Magdlyn, you all need to do a proper sit down and talk about what you all want and expect from these relationships.

PolyinPractice 11-11-2013 02:46 PM

For what it's worth, here's my two cents:

First, you really haven't given much background, so my advice may be totally off...but, here's what I'm seeing.

Your husband is away often and for a long period of time, so you both agree it's okay for you to get your needs met elsewhere. He's allowed to play with whoever it is you find, as well, when he's home. You find a couple...your husband meets them once (?). Maybe more often....but I'm guessing with him being in the military, that's unlikely.

I'm not faulting you, but you DID have the ability to choose whoever you wanted....and you chose a couple. I don't know Hanna's situation, but she doesn't really OWE you and him any alone time. Maybe her expectation was, "Oh, this other woman is lonely. I like her/am curious about exploring with a woman/whatever. Sure, she can spend time with us." She may see your requests for alone time as forced attempts to shove her out of the picture (even for just a night), and she may well resent that (wouldn't you, in her place?). ESPECIALLLY if you didn't agree on you and him being alone beforehand. Also, it's not her fault you married a military man that's gone a lot. She may have no interest in finding another partner away from him.

It looks like limited, shared time with her is all you're going to get with him. So, you're probably best off either finding a new couple, whose expectations better fit in with what you want....or sharing another partner (like you are now with Hanna)....or finding a guy who can spend a significant amount of alone time with you, without expecting you to be his one and only.

Not saying it'll be easy, but it might help you be less lonely.

Scarlette 11-11-2013 10:15 PM

Thanks so much for all of the advice! I apologize for not being more clear about our set up and a few other details. Since I live it, I was trying not to bog things down with lost of details. :D

Hanna and I where friends at work when I met Issac a few months later. Michael was away at this point and we have been poly for about 5 years. Hanna and Isaac wasn't yet open (and don't have kids for the record), but talking a lot about my views on the subject they decided to try it out. Issac and I started dating and getting serious. Hanna and I messed around a few times, but decided she didn't want to compete with Issac and I's budding relationship. When I suggested to Michael that maybe he gets to know the people I talk so much about, he started talking to Hanna over text. After a while the idea of "grouping up" was brought up as Hanna and Michael started talking about getting serious. They started a LTR while he was away with the expectation of continuing it once he got home. When he came for a month long visit, we all spent lots of time together and decided that the four of us wanted to try becoming a more integrated, blended family.

As far as this issue, after Issac and I talked about it and he said he didn't know what to do but understood what I was saying and we'd work on it. When he got home looking a bit low from the conversation, Hanna got the story and got a bit upset about some of the details that apparently Isaac didn't get and conveyed wrong to her. After a conversation that I made it clear I didn't want to push her out of her own house or take the time she gets with him. She started saying that she just needs to back off and do her thing and if people need her we know where we'd find her. So she's just going to back out completely and not try to get time with Issac. If he needs it, he can come get it. It's frustrating because she is just going to withdraw and essentially become resentful. I keep suggesting a schedule so we can at least know what to expect from the week and I can plan a bit of time to get out of the house and be alone with him. She seems resistant to it (take away from "spontaneity") which I am not sure how her "solution" of withdrawing is better then sacrificing spontaneity.

LovingRadiance 11-11-2013 10:25 PM

That last litle bit about schedules and spontanaiety reminds me of Maca. He was REALLY against schedules. Until HE wanted to date someone and realized he couldnt find TIME. No amount of talking helped. He had to experience it himself.

I am definitely for scheduling at least one date per couple per week. Other times can be spontaneous. But that way no one ends up with zlich just because schedules got hectic.

Magdlyn 11-11-2013 11:00 PM

Wow, and yikes.

So you knew Hanna first. Then you meet her man and tell them you're poly, get them both turned on, start getting sexual with both, then your faraway husband Michael gets involved, you all hang out for a month, then he leaves.

Now, meanwhile Hanna has of her own volition backed off to give you and Issac space to develop your relationship. However, she is passively aggressively watching you both like a hawk. Now she is refusing compromise and being basically a bitch.

I am sure you care a lot about both of them, but isn't this a hazard of dating poly newbies? They really don't get how it all works. Maybe you should back off from seeing either of them, no dates with Issac, avoid Hanna at work as much as possible, for a week or two, and let them calm the f down, and do some talking of their own, and (hopefully) do some research into common poly issues like envy, jealousy, time/calendar sharing. Becoming poly can point up issues in a couples' relationship they been able to avoid looking at until a new person comes into the mix.

Dirtclustit 11-12-2013 12:30 AM

Since you obviously care about their relationship
and it's not like you are glad that Hanna got the wrong impression, I don't see why this situation would be a problem. Your attitude sounds respectful and caring, and Hanna obviously didn't want to feel like she is standing in the way of your relationship with her husband going smoothly, this is a just a minor obstacle

it is truly miscommunication, and so long as it is not an either of yous intentionally misunderstanding each other (which does seem to happen in many metamour's relationships) you just need to be able to approach her and clear it up.

If you approach it gentle and non-accusatory (which sometimes means approaching it as the misunderstanding was your fault -- even if that is not the case) I find it hard to believe that she wouldn't eventually be able to see how getting a hotel was avoiding her.

If she cannot she this, but genuinely wants things to work out, then she is likely not fully stating her desires of possibly wanting to be involved with you and her husband.

There needs to be a distinction drawn between the what is going on here, if she is sharing her husband to take care of your sexual needs while husband is deployed and you cannot explicitly state that, the tension is only going to grow if her idea is different and she has trouble stating it.

Unspoken "go with the flow" type dynamics are the product of years or decades of getting to know and fully understand your partners and who they are, otherwise for anyone other than Master Zen Buddhists is will chew away at your relationships rather than build up

If you are sure about Hanna and Isaac's character as being up to standards that you know fit your lifestyle, and you still can't seem to communicate well enough to understand one another, the sexual aspect of the relationship was introduced too soon

some personalities can get through it this, but things like finances trip them up, whatever ingredient to healthy polyamory you are or are not tolerant of being introduced a little too early doesn't matter. The person more tolerant of early introductions of sex isn't more "poly evolved" [sic] than the one more tolerant of early intro of finances

either one can destroy a polyship which would have been fine, and later unsinkable, had it not been for ignoring the specific ways to destroy any specific relationship.

everyone has the quirky needs, and many people have quirky self-destructs

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