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-   -   New & confused. (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=6580)

abhainn 02-10-2011 02:49 PM

New & confused.
Hi I'm new here and new to non-mono and finding it... sometimes complicated... wondered if writing here would help to clear some things and any comments or advice would brighten the path no doubt.

As background, I met a guy some time ago, who turned out to be poly and we started going out together. Very quickly it felt like finally having found my way, like sitting down in a comfortable chair, this suits me, this is how I've always been. So that's fine.

Some things were hard, initially, and very sore. How could he love these people, and love me? Does he love me? Does he want me? Am I being compared to...? Then I started going out with a girl, on poly basis, and have learned something about how different people slot to your emotional space differently.

With my boyfriend we have a regular weekly thing at his. Rest of the time he sees his other partners and sometimes we keep in touch, sometimes we don't.

Now, why I'm writing here is that some things are bothering me, but I don't know how to bring them up or what my 'rights' are, what I can ask and what I can't. We don't have any rules, it is fully open, but very respectful and supportive in many ways.

Sex is quite important to me in this relationship. I fancy him. I want him to fancy me. Sometimes he doesn't. Because he knows it's important to me, he will still have sex with me, but he's not in it fully, and I feel that and it hurts me deeply (this may be silly, but it is how I feel).

I suppose what bothers me the most is that I can't help thinking it is to do with the other partners, especially the woman who has the night before mine, who he has sex with through the night (something he slipped when we were still quite new to each other, I don't know if this is generally true, or just true for that week/that time).

Now I'm finding, that although I'm not jealous of his other partners, I'm jealous of this woman. I feel she is taking something from me. She has taken his sexual energy, and he comes to me to rest, when I need his sexual energy, too. I feel close to her, because he loves her, but I hate her, too.

I'd want to talk to him about this, but don't know how to bring up something like this, and have kept it too long now, it is becoming really painful. :confused:

redpepper 02-11-2011 06:20 AM

For me in my relationships this kind of scenario you describes indicates a lack of connection. If he is not telling you about other partners and his attachment to them then I would wonder how your connection could hope to build.

I, for one, need to know emotional details about my partners love for others and what they do in their lives... not necessarily what they do sex wise, but how much they love them, what they love about them, what they think about feel about everything in their lives.

Knowing peoples emotions is huge to my sense of depth and connection and therefore makes me want to be intimate with them... this is me... what is it that turns him on? what turns you on to being connected? This is where I wonder if there is a gap in your relationship so far.

I wonder if taking a chance and making yourself more vulnerable to him and asking him to do the same would help... it sounds like you have reached a plateau in your relationship where it might all seem a bit hum drum to him. Would you be willing to go deeper? Or is the fact that he has other partners and your fear that you don't stand up to them in some way holding you back?

I'm not sure here, but I hope that some of what I say resonates with you in some way. Good luck.:)

abhainn 02-11-2011 08:41 AM

Hi Red Pepper, thanks for reply, the lack of connection indeed resonates.

Unless I ask, he doesn't tell me much/anything about his partners, it's almost like they don't exist. On the other hand, I don't know what to ask, and how to ask (learning, though), I feel I'm intruding in his 'private life'.

Sometimes I'm scared of asking, there were many times in the beginning when the answer hurt.

It's such a slow growing into poly, isn't it, and the difficulties change. Early on, I used to scan his flat for signs of other people. The toothbrushes, what a shock ;) I don't do that anymore, my place is more established and secure.

Every time when my level of emotional connection has changed, it has been hard. When love deepens, security lags behind for a moment. That is scary and sad.

As an answer to your question, yes, I think I'd go deeper. Carefully. We are both being very careful in this way, I notice.

And yes, I often feel I can't reach him, and then don't know what to do, how to find the connection.

Good pointers, thank you.

vodkafan 02-11-2011 11:44 AM

"when love deepens, security lags behind a moment".

I found that quite profound. I will remember that.
abhainn I think this place is going to be a great resource for you, don't be a stranger. Lots of basic info about rights that you asked about is on here, I think the admins have organised it so it is easy to find.

vodkafan 02-11-2011 11:47 AM

" when security deepens..." Bollocks forgot it already. Too much wine this morning sorry :o

redpepper 02-11-2011 08:18 PM


Originally Posted by vodkafan (Post 65924)
" when security deepens..." Bollocks forgot it already. Too much wine this morning sorry :o

too much wine this morning! Geesh! You brits are wild! :D you start the vodka at noon or... ??? ;)

vodkafan 02-12-2011 05:58 PM


Originally Posted by redpepper (Post 65993)
too much wine this morning! Geesh! You brits are wild! :D you start the vodka at noon or... ??? ;)

I work night shift. So sometimes I have a wine or beer or indeed a vodka when I get home from work around 6 am. Just one . It is indeed a bad habit though. I find that the different types of alcohol have different effects; a red wine will help me sleep but a beer or vodka will keep me awake.

redpepper 02-12-2011 08:58 PM

@vodkafan-:D thanks for the explanation. you do know I was teasing right? *poke* *tease* :p

@Abhainn-I find your posts sad. I can see how your apprehension is causing you to keep yourself at bay to the point where there is no room for sexual energy. I think I would be similar. I don't do well in the type of poly that you describe.

It is reassuring that you are taking little steps, but I would wonder what is going on in his head. What is the purpose of being with you? He seems to be a busy man, with other lovers that are closer to him... what is your purpose? I know that sounds rather mechanical or something... but I am hoping that you can see this outside of emotion.

I have many loves too and I don't have a lot of time for some of them. They each play a role in my life that makes me feel fulfilled and whole. I love them all for who they are and the wholeness they bring to my life. Perhaps he feels the same way?

There is nothing wrong with that. If he enjoys you for a certain reason then I think I would ask him what those reasons are. If they continue to work for you then great. If not then perhaps this situation isn't right for you. My loves each know (at least I try to keep them updated) what it is that I get from being with them and I try to keep on top of what I give them in their lives... we talk about it, rearrange when necessary and keep at it. If there is a time when it doesn't work and we aren't being fulfilled then I will understand if they need to move on, or I do... I have had several loves in my life that that has happened with. My ex wife is a big example. Relationships play out, until their is nothing left to play out I reckon.

I think if I were in your situation I would check in to what the purpose of being with this man is... I think I would decide if he is available enough or not, find out if he is available more (in terms of in his heart mostly, time secondly) if I decide he might be worth investing in. If he isn't or I find that he isn't worth investing in... I would move on, or add another that is worthy of my time and love.

abhainn 02-20-2011 11:36 AM

Thanks for a fantastic reply redpepper. It made me think, and went off to investigate the other areas of our relationship, why are we together, how emotionally involved are we etc. We also had a weekend together so much more time to let questions float around.

Our relationship has been really rocky from the very beginning, and we've unintentionally hurt each other and both pulled back and taken cover, but not often properly talked about what went wrong.

Well, now we did.

As for the relationship, he loves me. I love him. We have more time available for us if we want. He's told me something about the things he needs/gets from me, as have I, and that was meaningful and important.

Then, having established that there really is a relationship, that we do want to keep it, I brought up the sex thing, without any reference to any partners though. Two nights of upsetting discussion and he admitted that sex wasn't interesting with me.

We didn't have time for much more than for me to ask why he didn't want to have interesting sex with me (not 100%sure what this means for him, but have a good idea). --- Edit: on second reading this seems like an odd question to ask, but there is a reason for it, I just don't want to go into any detail before we've actually had this discussion. ---

So, it appears we know the problem. Now we need to find out if we want to fix it, and judging by the communication after, we do. Next question then is, what to do...

The understanding I have of the problem is very different than two weeks ago. As a consequence, my envy is gone about his other lover. Clearly, it has got nothing to do with her. Secondly, I understand why I've been so distraught by his lack of interest in me: I've felt continuously and deeply rejected because he hasn't wanted to share his style of sex with me.

So, for now, thank you for the really helpful replies and support as well. I'll report back after the next move and again, any advice and pointers would be great.

GroundedSpirit 02-20-2011 05:24 PM


Originally Posted by abhainn (Post 67335)
Secondly, I understand why I've been so distraught by his lack of interest in me: I've felt continuously and deeply rejected because he hasn't wanted to share his style of sex with me.

Hi Abhainn,

Yea, this is one of the complex parts of relationships and why sometimes good ones drift towards ignoring the sexual part. Sexual taste varies widely in people and it also changes with the season, wind, age, phase of the moon etc :)

This is why I'm a big promoter of opening up the sexually compatible dialog early on. And even testing it. Because right now, all you have established is that your styles & preferences aren't in the same place - at least right now.
There's obviously a couple possibilities from here. Maybe your 'style' right now is all you know, all you've been exposed to thus far etc. Maybe you are ready and willing to explore some - broaden your sexual horizons etc. If this is the case you should express this to him as soon as possible. Chances are he would relish the opportunity to try to take you on a new journey of discovery. This can be a very exciting and bonding thing for people. Shared exploration.

On the other hand, you may be happy and comfortable with how you express your sexuality and it's going to be a case that you two aren't going to really be that sexually compatible. That doesn't rule out a relationship, but you would have to just acknowledge up front that sexual pleasure was going to be coming from a different direction - and that would be fine !

Good chance to do some self exploration eh ?


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