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-   -   And then things changed.... (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=69122)

KerryRen 03-01-2014 09:31 AM

And then things changed....
 
Hello again. Apparently the universe is listening to me again. Not a bad thing, per se, but in my experience, one must therefore be careful what one wishes for.

Not long after my intro post expressing a desire for a third person, three people contacted me expressing degrees of interest. Not from here; no one new -- all of them friends to some degree.

One, I think, wants just sexual play. He's a fine friend, but I've come to realize I don't want simple sex-play with friends. I'm trying to make that clear, but may have to bypass subtlety for the hit-them-with-a-brick clue.

The second also probably wants sex, but may be able to incorporate a deeper component into it. He's developed a bit of a history as a womanizer, but then, so did my husband prior to our marriage. Call me ambiguous there.

The third, well... that's a different kettle of fish. I've known him for many years. Contact has lessened over the years due to the vagaries of life -- his marriage and children, my marriage and children, schooling, personal and family medical issues. Life got in the way. But we determined to reconnect, and arranged schedules for a meetup. Ten years with next to no direct contact, and then we're talking like we never left off. Catching up, reminiscing, updating our stamps on our mutual nerd cards.

He knows I'm poly. He saw my first triad. Oh yeah, we have history. We loved the same girl once, but alas, not together. He is not quite my oldest friend, but close to that, however one counts it. In our our growing up together, I will say I felt attraction to him but mostly throttled it down because he was pursuing others and the friendship mattered more. He says now that there was also attraction on his side then, left mostly unpursued at the time. Could be. Retrospectively, our close bond may have disturbed the other people in our other relationships somewhat. For all our adolescence relationship-swapping (and apparently there was a lot among our friend group), he and I never connected that way at that time. Ah, a name. Call him "Jai".

So among many other things, we talked about polyamoury. Does everyone have to be involved with everyone else, he asks? Ideally, says I, but that's not how it usually works in the real world. (I have learned some from experience.) I think I differentiated between a triangle and a V.

And at the end of the first meeting, he drives me home and I invite him in to meet the husband. Call the husband "Liam". I think it went well. They both seemed to find each other acceptable, likeable.

Yes, I did make sure Liam knew all about Jai, my feelings and our past, before the first meetup. I initially considered the possibility of opening anything more than friendship with Jai a longshot, but still, a possibility. So I discussed it with Liam, prior.

So, Jai and I arrange a second meetup. Call it a date, if you want -- I'm never sure what defines those. Again, we discuss everything, including the polyship, boiling down to him asking if I'm looking for a third. Well, yes, to the extent that I can, with what limited resources are available. Can I mention that we were pretty much talking around the topic the rest of the time? Excellent conversation, but _not_ saying some things loudly until I, requiring clarity, wanted to be quite sure what we were not talking about, so we talked about it.

So, mutual attraction. What got in between us in the past isn't there now. He's not seeing anyone else; my husband likes him, and doesn't seem jealous. No expectations of a male unicorn muddying the waters.

What do I want, Jai asks, at the end of our second date? Well, now, that is the question. This is opening a box I put on a shelf years ago. What _can_ I want? I think we eliminated the second husband idea for the time being, given that he is exploring not having to take care of someone else (as a husband, son, father) as a new phenomenon right now. It would be too soon for that anyway. Boyfriend? Lover? Not Friends with Benefits; there's enough UST to cut with a knife, but neither of us is comfortable sharing bodies without a deeper bond.

He kissed me; I kissed him back. It felt really good.

I fear I'm not entirely rational anymore. I think I should find a way to be, but my head keeps swimming. I hesitate to call it NRE since we've not actually agreed to a relationship, but I think we'll be there if we can find mutual agreement on our desires.

So that's where I am now. Input? Ideas? Help?

plainsnymph 03-01-2014 05:53 PM

I have a guy from my past , a few actually, that could get my head spinning in a nano second. I also tend to hold fast to feelings forever so if they were ever there they can be rekindled immediately.
I am also incredibly new at poly myself so may not have the best reply/advice.

Why not take it day by day and keep communication open between all parties. I do not think you need to define it or where it is going just yet. just enjoy what is happening and check in with your husband and your friend often to make sure everyone is comfortable and feeling good. And while your in lala land with your friend do make sure to devote time , affection and love to your husband. My biggest fear so far about poly is loosing what I already have with my partner. So I think its important to nurture what we already solidly hold.

SchrodingersCat 03-01-2014 06:32 PM

Would the simple description "Exploring" be sufficient? I wouldn't worry too much about getting attached to defining anything. Just live day to day and go with the flow. Que sera sera. Focus instead on needs and feelings and just keep talking it out. I believe that the worst thing two people can do to a relationship is try and fit it into some kind of box. Expectation breeds disappointment.

KerryRen 03-01-2014 11:58 PM

Yes, exploration and taking it day to day seems right, maintaining lines of communication while we figure things out. I've muchly enjoyed my time with Jai, and then I come home and reconnect with Liam -- not because he necessarily needs it, but it feels right. Not to diminish us as adults, but it's not unlike having a second child sometime after having a first, and wanting to make sure the first doesn't feel neglected just because you're occupied with a newborn.

KerryRen 04-02-2014 12:06 AM

So it's been a very long month or so, during which I've found myself on an emotional rollercoaster; much more ups and downs than I'm accustomed to. If caused by anything, it's the change of relationship status Jai and I have from friendship to more. Or rather, the suggestion thereof.

To have what I want, to be happy, to be in love -- in my experience, when these things come my way the universe is gearing up to kick my feet out from under me. So I get frightened and I want to run. I have run from relationships that might've given me happiness, in the past, because the risk felt too great.

And I've spent much of the last month in my own head, over analyzing. It has felt odd talking to my husband about my feelings for my boyfriend, but he's been fine with it and I needed a sounding board. He's been very encouraging.

I've not been out of communication with Jai. But he's in the process of moving out, and that's preoccupying. He's working full-time as well. We've been primarily communicating via FB messages; sometimes there's days between replies, other times it's outright chat. In a state of emotional uncertainty, I find I want the reassurance of a quicker reply -- if I write a lot and receive silence, I worry about having transgressed a boundary by accident. I also worry about being intrusive by writing too much.

Other times I've been perfectly fine regardless. Ups and downs, with occasional regaining of my equilibrium.

I feel much better now. Jai and I got together today, and we discussed much. We agreed we want to follow this through. He was concerned about hurting me because he is pulling up stakes and adopting a mobile lifestyle in a few months. A valid concern, but he believes he will be back to Spokane from time to time. He is not at present going that far -- he wants to explore Oregon. I think I -- and we -- can handle a long distance relationship if communication is maintained.

So we discussed that. We don't, after all, have to limit ourselves to Facebook, or even the Internet, though I do think that comes pretty naturally to us -- we met by chatting on his BBS, and developed our friendship in large part that way. There's the phone, and the postal system, and probably options I've yet to consider. Even if we choose to limit ourselves to FB and/or email, there's free wifi available almost everywhere, though it can sometimes require looking and asking.

As to speed of replies, he admits to not always being the best correspondent -- but also self-conscious of replying to me, not wanting to make mistakes in spelling or grammar. So he wants to take his time, and sometimes time gets away from him.

Knowing this helps, as does establishing that we are, indeed, moving this to a relationship status. Or a different relationship status. For numerous reasons my anxieties have calmed.

We discussed other things, did other things. A shorter visit than I hoped for, but satisfying on multiple levels.

After returning from Jai's, he and Liam had a nice chat together while I listened and tossed in the occasional comment. They seem to be developing camaraderie. It feels weird, but good.

Jai and I will probably not get together for another couple of weeks, and after that we're aiming to establish a routine of getting together at least every couple of weeks, even if all we do is have coffee and talk. I suspect by the time he leaves in July we'll determine a comfortable form of communication while he travels.


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