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-   -   What is this feeling? (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=7598)

Vivien 03-09-2011 08:34 PM

What is this feeling?
 
My partner A and I have been together for nine years; polyamory was one of the starting conditions of our relationship, and though she has been open to having another partner, she's only recently gotten involved with someone else (I'll call her C) for the first time. I've had other relationships and am currently involved with A and another lover, B, who is important to both of us. That's the background.

Here's the weirdness: I find A's new relationship with C somewhat disquieting. I was prepared for the possibility that I'd feel jealous, but I don't. I just feel... unhappy. I can't figure out why, or even exactly what I'm feeling. I've ruled out some things: I've tried to examine my feelings as honestly and objectively as possible, and I really don't think what I'm feeling is jealousy or envy. I don't feel neglected by A. I don't know C well, but I like her so far, and I feel genuinely happy and excited for A. I am happy in my relationships with A and B. I don't feel unhappy when A is with C. I enjoy the time when she's out and usually find something fun or productive to do. Soooo.... what is this feeling I'm having? And why?

A has been so very generous and warm toward my girlfriend. I want to be as generous as she has been, but I really can't right now. I'm disappointed in myself. Am I more afraid of change than I realized?!

Can anybody identify? What was it you felt - if it wasn't jealousy - and how did you handle it, and how was it resolved?

nycindie 03-09-2011 08:41 PM

Hi Viv,
It could be that this unhappiness is not your own. You might just be sensing someone else's unhappiness. It might be A, B, or C, or someone else in your sphere. We are all intuitive beings and often we pick up the thoughts and feelings of those around us, it's very common and happens every day. However, sometimes it's tricky to know which thoughts are our own and which ones came through in the "radio waves" from other people. I know it sounds weird, but think about it: haven't you ever walked into a room full of people and sensed a certain mood? Feelings can be contagious!

Magdlyn 03-09-2011 10:59 PM

How long have A and C been together? You say it's recent. It's a new relationship.

You don't feel threatened or jealous because you've had other lovers for years and you and A both know either of you having a lover is not a threat to your relationship.

But, having C in your lives is a change. There is a new dynamic. Neither of you can yet know exactly what C brings to your poly family. Heck, my gf has her first real bf now, since she and I have been together. (We've been together 2 years and she started seeing M last November.) I am still getting used to what it means to share my gf with her bf, and even she and he are still in the exploratory period of what they mean to each other. What they are learning from each other. How they are growing as people.

So, perhaps what is going on for you is, you are just feeling unsettled. A new person is in your family boat, and you all need to rebalance in your seats.

Magdlyn 03-09-2011 11:08 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Vivien (Post 70216)
...Am I more afraid of change than I realized?!

Can anybody identify? What was it you felt - if it wasn't jealousy - and how did you handle it, and how was it resolved?

I have felt twinges of jealousy from time to time... mostly tho because my gf and I have an egalitarian relationship, but her relationship with her bf is him=Master/her=sub.

But otherwise, my feelings are not "resolved" yet, per se. It's a work in progress. What helps is having gotten to meet with her bf (and his live-in gf). Also, my gf does share details of her dates with her bf with me, even sexual details. I know this doesn't work for everyone. Some people don't want details. But I like being apprised of their progress. It makes me feel a bit included, and more empowered. My gf also likes to share the details with me. The actual happenings are easier to deal with, for me, than what my imagination would dream up.

Ariakas 03-10-2011 12:14 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Vivien (Post 70216)
My partner A and I have been together for nine years; polyamory was one of the starting conditions of our relationship, and though she has been open to having another partner, she's only recently gotten involved with someone else (I'll call her C) for the first time. I've had other relationships and am currently involved with A and another lover, B, who is important to both of us. That's the background.

Here's the weirdness: I find A's new relationship with C somewhat disquieting. I was prepared for the possibility that I'd feel jealous, but I don't. I just feel... unhappy. I can't figure out why, or even exactly what I'm feeling. I've ruled out some things: I've tried to examine my feelings as honestly and objectively as possible, and I really don't think what I'm feeling is jealousy or envy. I don't feel neglected by A. I don't know C well, but I like her so far, and I feel genuinely happy and excited for A. I am happy in my relationships with A and B. I don't feel unhappy when A is with C. I enjoy the time when she's out and usually find something fun or productive to do. Soooo.... what is this feeling I'm having? And why?

A has been so very generous and warm toward my girlfriend. I want to be as generous as she has been, but I really can't right now. I'm disappointed in myself. Am I more afraid of change than I realized?!

Can anybody identify? What was it you felt - if it wasn't jealousy - and how did you handle it, and how was it resolved?

Are you feeling apathetic?

We worry a lot about feelings in poly. But you aren't feeling anything... bad. You seem to be dealing and you are trying to understand. But really, maybe you are just feeling normal... I wouldn't hunt for emotions if you aren't feeling them. :)...

redpepper 03-10-2011 06:31 AM

Don't be so hard on yourself for not being as warm and generous as she was. You are not her and you bring other things to the table. You have a wonderful partner that you can be proud to be with. But she is proud to be with you for other reasons that make you special. Be the best you can be and the best host to her new love and that is all you can do to make all your experiences the most happy.

Perhaps your sadness is simply because of the knowledge that change is ahead and you were happy where you were. When new partners come into our loves lives it means that there is a shift. We might be cool with that, but not willing to welcome it for some time.

I think you should let it go and let it be what it is. See what new and happy things come to your life because of this new metamour... sounds like its early days yet and the growing pains, although manageable, are still just that, growing pains. Give it some time. The thing with change is that it always changes. As long as you are checking in with yourself about your needs being met and are working towards your own goals, all will come out in the wash I think. :)

Vivien 03-10-2011 01:56 PM

Thanks for the thoughtful replies. It gives me warm fuzzies to have this kind of community available, and I feel better for having gotten some feedback.

I think this must be about change, as a couple of people suggested. RedPepper, you're right that I'm really happy with the dynamic between my two partners and me, and so I'm reluctant to embrace anything that might negatively impact that. I'm going to try to just be with this feeling and let the whole situation play out. I really am happy for A, so maybe reminding myself that change is an inevitable part of life will help me focus more on the happy feelings.

GroundedSpirit 03-10-2011 02:32 PM

First reaction
 
Hi Vivien,

My first thoughts seemed to run with RP's.
It's probably a touch of ......sadness. That sense we have when things are changing and we know (or believe) that things will never be quite the same. It's similar I think to nostalgia, which we all seem to get a taste of from time to time.
It's not 'bad'. Change is part of life - right. And there's no telling that the future won't hold things that are even more exciting. But we can't "look back" on the future.
I'd say sit with it - but don't over-absorb it. Like anything nostalgic. It's like strong drink. A little won't hurt - may even feel good. Too much can kill ya.

:)

GS

Anneintherain 03-11-2011 12:46 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by redpepper (Post 70310)
Perhaps your sadness is simply because of the knowledge that change is ahead and you were happy where you were. When new partners come into our loves lives it means that there is a shift. We might be cool with that, but not willing to welcome it for some time.

I am very glad I found this forum. I have seen so much good advice from you redpepper.
To the OP, I don't have any advice, but I do hope if there is something happening you just haven't put your finger on yet that is causing your feelings of unhappiness, that it comes to you in some quiet moment soon.

MrFarFromRight 03-11-2011 02:03 AM

Hi Vivien!
I think others have given sensible answers here. I liked nycindie's suggestion that you might be picking up on somebody else' sadness, and RedPepper's advice not to worry. And I certainly don't want to deflect from those sound comments. But a couple of "off the wall" ideas came to me, and you might be willing to consider them.

1) I believe in ESP. My grandmother had it pretty strong, and I had it until it freaked me out (getting depressed BEFORE somebody close to me died - without warning) and blocked it out. Later, I decided that I'd thrown away a gift and cultivated it again, so that I got to the point where I could sometimes feel my girlfriend's moods... when she was over 1000km away.
Things might seem fine on the surface, but you might be picking up undercurrents (who knows? maybe even of future problems).

2) One of my sisters used to go wild about her uncouth brothers chewing food with our mouths open. The sound sickened her. Later (as an adult, and through some kind of therapy) she came to realise the basis of this revulsion.
It seems that when very young, she used to wake up at night and go down the hallway to our parents' bedroom, where she'd get into bed with them. On occasions, the door would be locked, she'd feel rejected... and she'd hear these sounds from inside the bedroom that sounded much like the sounds someone makes when they chew with an open mouth. Slurp slurp, smatch smatch.
Once she made this connection - that the sounds reminded her subconsciously of her earlier feelings of rejection - she was never troubled by them again.

I apologise if I've muddied the waters, but if there's any chance that either of those 2 points helps...


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