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-   -   Minxxa's Little Corner of the World (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=9390)

Minxxa 04-30-2011 04:00 AM

Minxxa's Little Corner of the World
 
OK. So I thought maybe it's time to start a blog on here, though I may or may not update it super often. But there are some things going on that don't fit into the seperate thread thing, and things that only people here might appreciate!!

So I'm going to do this a little at a time. A brief intro...

I'm 43 years old, married and have two kids (not by my current hubby) who are 18 and 15. He has a 14 year old daughter who will be living with us before the next school year, but currently lives with her mom.

I've been nonmonogamous (I use the generic term because it fluxuates between true poly and more... not. :) ) for 15 years, since my relationship with my ex. It didn't work out with him, but not because of that. It didn't work out because of a whole host of other issues that had I paid attention I would have noticed before we got married. :p

But we made two beautiful children, so I can't complain.

My current hubs and I have always been nonmonogamous, though he was a little less honest when I met him. I first introduced the concept of ethical nonmonogamy to him, but it took a few years for him to overcome the fear of the truth and get with the game. We had a few scuffles early on because of this, but at some point we have worked through it, though we continue to have an issue here and there to deal with. :)

I have ventured out a lot less than hubs. Mostly because a) I have MUCH less time on my hands, and b) I am more introverted, and take time to warm up to someone enough to want to get nekkid. Hubs is more extroverted and connects with people faster.

Currently he is stationed (he's military) across the country, so we-- yet again-- are seperated by distance. Blyeah. But wierdly enough this time apart has been a learning experience. We ended up reconnecting after having pulled away from each other for various reasons, and are now actually in a whole new nice world when it comes to honesty, communications, and meeting each others' needs.

It's a work in progress. But I'm okay with that!

Minxxa 04-30-2011 04:03 AM

So to continue... I am in school to get my master's agree in counseling psychology. My goal is to be a couples therapist, specializing in sex therapy. This weekend I'm at a conference for sex education, counseling professionals and really enjoying it. :)

I met with one of the special interest groups-- the one dedicated to altsex (alternative sexual practices), and it seems we will be working on forming workshops to submit for next year's conference, which is totally exciting! I think it's important for people to realize that they most likely know people that are into BDSM, or nonmonogamy, they just don't know it. I'm good with helping to dispell assumptions. Assumptions... are one of my pet peeves.

I'll expand upon things, of course, but for now, that is all!

Magdlyn 04-30-2011 12:32 PM

Oh good for you! The world definitely needs more counselors adept at dealing with BDSM and queer and poly issues.

I once had an open minded therapist I used for 3 years. She was cool with poly, and with me being a homeschooling mom as well. Then we changed insurance and I lost her. I tried another counselor who, on my 2nd appt, told me married women "should never" get a crush on anyone other than her husband. Needless to say, I never went back to her.

Ivy 04-30-2011 06:13 PM

I agree! My most recent therapist specializes in LGBT work, but seemed to feel that my involvement with another woman indicated that my marriage was falling apart. Um...no. Hardly.

You're a rare and valuable asset to society. More open-minded psych folks = win. :D

Minxxa 05-01-2011 04:13 AM

So two days at the conference, lovely!! But my brain is sore from all of the sensory input. Chilling out tonight and then tomorrow I"m only there for four hours, then I have to do real life stuff! :)

Talked with hubs tonight about some guidelines. He is the kind of guy that meets someone and hits it off and it's on... and I don't do well with sudden entrants into the pool. :) We had kind of pulled that type of happening out of play, but with him so far away I didn't like the thought of him having NO connections until he came home. So I'd thought about it and then put it away and tonight it ocurred to me, that the two things I don't like are sudden changes in direction (i.e. "hey baby I met this girl and want to take her home TONIGHT"), and also long weekends together (which tends to happen because his amours tend to be long distance and have to do things like FLY or DRIVE 5 HOURS to see him). So we talked tonight and I said that I was good to go as long as I knew in advance what was up, and it was a short-time thing (as in, hanging out on Friday night, and that's it). At least while he's away. I'd like to think I can expand past that, but with him gone and our ability to reconnect physically with touch removed from the equation, I'm just not as strong.

He thanked me for working on my stuff, and said he knew it was going to be his turn soon to do the same. I think I need to be more cautious with him, though, as I've had a lot more time/experiences to work on things AND I tend to be more in touch with what's going on with me than he does. I'm okay with that though.

An interesting thing happened this weekend. I was semi-gussied up on Friday (sort of dress casual with makeup!) and I felt good about things and I swear I was getting all kinds of looks, eye contact and attention I normally don't get. Just goes to show you that attitude and self-concept are everything. LOL.

The same day I got a text from a past amour (like 12 years ago, before me and hubs) and we got to catch up. Not that I think anything will happen, but I felt sexy and adored and it was nice. :D

Minxxa 05-02-2011 06:44 PM

An interesting thread came up on another (the only other) forum I'm on (it's a health/diety type of site) regarding sexting as cheating. It has provoked some interesting discussion over there. I had to poke my head in to talk about assumptions-- my pet peeve in all parts of life! That assuming that sexting is bothersome to ALL people is not correct, and that these are the discussions we need to be having at the beginning of all relationships. What do we find a dealbreaker, what constitutes honesty, cheating, etc. Expecting others to be in agreement with your view without finding out their views is, to me, being a bad partner.

Obviously you can't talk about EVERYTHING up front, but hitting the biggies should be important. One of the speakers this weekend was Marty Klein and he discussed porn issues within relationships. He talked about how at the beginning of relationships things come up and we either accept them or leave For example, he comes home and says I feel comfortable with you can I wear your underwear? And she either says "yes" or gets skeeved and leaves. Then at some point we-- fall in love -- and we stop having those discussions at all, or we notice things and gloss over them. Then when things come up later, we want to retroactively change the ground rules because we don't like it. Which can be done, but it's hard and messy and takes a lot of skills that I think many people don't have.

Anyway... thought it was interesting because there was a contingent of "well obviously that's horrible and if my husband did that I'd run him through the wringer" discussion. I had to give another side...

Now I get to get through work and go take my final afterwards. EEK!

Minxxa 05-03-2011 09:48 PM

Worry
 
I had an interesting thought/epiphany, actually brought about by the question Magdlyn asked me about what I felt about what I thought about when my hubs was with someone else. And all I could come up with was curiosity. What's going on doesn't "bother" me, for some reason it just bothers me or is obessive for me to try to figure out what MIGHT be happening.

I let this sit for a few days, but I started to have flashes of different experiences throughout my childhood and past, and even as an adult. I have always been a worrier, and always had periods of compulsive thoughts where I obsess about something (could be good or bad) to the point where I'm not living in the moments of my life and am fairly unproductive.

I checked out info on both GAD (Generalized Anxiety Disorder) and OCD (obsessive thoughts) and think that there's some evidence there to suggest that I may be (albeit peripherally) dealing with one of those issues. The interesting part is it's not usually the event/thing/object I'm obsessing over that is making my life uncomfortable, it's the OBSESSING about it. And it's just a general discomfort with the unknown and discomfort with things beyond my control.

Also, my father, whom I didn't know very well (he and my mom divorced when I was 2 and I knew him only between the ages of 13-20 and then he moved back to Kansas), suffered from depression, but also from OCD.

Interesting, and I will be talking to my therapist (tomorrow) about this and we'll see what's up. She's the expert, but I'd be curious to find out. It does give me "some" calm to think that this focus/obsessiveness/self torture I do might be less due to lack of willpower and more due to the way my brain is wired. Hubs has ADHD and I know he's spent a lifetime thinking he was just all f-ed up in his head, when really his brain just works differently. Understanding how he works has helped our relationship because I know what I can/can't expect of him and stop taking some things (like never being able to remember my schedule!) personally. We just adapt... when I really want/need him to remember I give him a written and verbal reminder! :)

Anyway, that's my epiphany for the day. Something to maybe work on to improve what is really the ONLY discomfort I have with our nonmonogamy-- my ridiculous focus on his activities at any given moment. It would be really lovely if I could work on that and at least lessen the impact.

BlackUnicorn 05-04-2011 11:52 AM

So nice you decided to have a blog! It's giving me a lot of food for thought already.

1) The military thing. Do you feel that him being away from home for long periods of time (?) created distance between the two of you, or did it just take the attention away from the distance that was already there to begin with? Do you think you would have been able to re-connect if he had been involved with someone else at the time? Was he?

2) There are a lot of assumptions going on in the therapy business on how non-monogamy is ultimately destructive for a relationship, sometimes together with covert homophobia. The most recent example I can think of was a story of a happily monogamous woman who unexpectedly fell in love with an older woman, and after six years (!) called things off (the hubs was aware of the situation the whole time). Instead of focusing on the intense re-evaluation this woman was going through for the whole of six years (impressive length for a first non-monogamous AND same-sex relationship, methinks), the writer of the book explained how this 'need' to have a relationship with an older woman was a result of insecure attachment to her mother in her early childhood. Of course, because she just couldn't be a bisexual or lesbian, much less honestly being happy with her husband while still wanting another relationship with someone else - there had to be something pathological behind such non-monogamous choices :rolleyes:.

3) I have a diagnosis for GAD, which I no longer fully identify with, but it certainly helped me to understand how my sympathetic nervous system was just wired to go off from stimulation that others wouldn't probably pay any mind to (I am easily distracted and have trouble prioritizing stimuli). I hope you get some answers from your visit to the therapist!

Minxxa 05-04-2011 01:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BlackUnicorn (Post 79872)
So nice you decided to have a blog! It's giving me a lot of food for thought already.

Thank you! I've definitely already picked up a good bit of mental stimuli getting me thinking in different ways as well as getting some good normalization of some of my more irritating feelings. :)

Quote:

Originally Posted by BlackUnicorn (Post 79872)
1) The military thing. Do you feel that him being away from home for long periods of time (?) created distance between the two of you, or did it just take the attention away from the distance that was already there to begin with? Do you think you would have been able to re-connect if he had been involved with someone else at the time? Was he?

Interesting question! I don't think it created distance between us. I think it did two things: 1) it allowed us the distraction of being apart to NOT deal with things we should have a long time ago, and 2) it took that place where we needed work and pulled it open, expanded it, and made it a bigger elephant in the room when we were finally back together.

The three deployments in a row was the topper. Just NOT enough time between to reconnect, work on issues, etc. We had planned on going to couples therapy this year-- can't do that until he gets back now. Though we did have a pretty good breakdown/breakthrough on our own which has helped us a lot. We still need to go to therapy-- more importantly my husband whom I love dearly needs to go talk about his own shit independent of me. :) He's got a lot of his own past stuff, issues with how his ADHD brain functions, stuff like that. I think it would help him, but of course that is up to him. (As of now he's planning on it, but we'll see!!)

We've been in different stages where reconnecting would have been made even more impossible had he been connected to somebody else because we weren't talking/communicating well, and it would have been a distraction for him to again, not think/talk about what's going on with us. But it was his connection with someone else this time (although more peripherally), that instigated us finally talking about this, so in a way that issue forced us to deal with stuff we hadn't and REALLY talk, so I'm grateful for that. :)


Quote:

Originally Posted by BlackUnicorn (Post 79872)
2) There are a lot of assumptions going on in the therapy business on how non-monogamy is ultimately destructive for a relationship, sometimes together with covert homophobia. The most recent example I can think of was a story of a happily monogamous woman who unexpectedly fell in love with an older woman, and after six years (!) called things off (the hubs was aware of the situation the whole time). Instead of focusing on the intense re-evaluation this woman was going through for the whole of six years (impressive length for a first non-monogamous AND same-sex relationship, methinks), the writer of the book explained how this 'need' to have a relationship with an older woman was a result of insecure attachment to her mother in her early childhood. Of course, because she just couldn't be a bisexual or lesbian, much less honestly being happy with her husband while still wanting another relationship with someone else - there had to be something pathological behind such non-monogamous choices :rolleyes:.

I totally see this. It's why I picked my therapist because she's poly/kink friendly. Many therapists will look at this situation and think "well of course, you need to remove this outside stuff because THAT'S the issue". I needed someone who was not only anti-nonmonogamy, and not only accepting of nonmonogamy-- but somebody who knew something about it in practice and could actually offer advice, perspective on how to make that work BETTER.

That book above reminds me of something I've heard from a lot of sources lately. Basically, most people hear something (a story, situation, etc.) and they filter that through their own perspective and experiences and biases and come up with a version that may or may not have any connection with the original story. We are all biased-- the key is to know that you are, have a good idea how you are biased, and check yourself constantly to make sure your bias isn't getting in the way.

Quote:

Originally Posted by BlackUnicorn (Post 79872)
3) I have a diagnosis for GAD, which I no longer fully identify with, but it certainly helped me to understand how my sympathetic nervous system was just wired to go off from stimulation that others wouldn't probably pay any mind to (I am easily distracted and have trouble prioritizing stimuli). I hope you get some answers from your visit to the therapist!


Interesting! I was just reading about the sympathetic nervous system. I definitely have a mind/body connection that is sometimes not in my best interests. :) I am really hoping to get some perspective on this. At least knowing my brain works a certain way and learning some better tools to deal with it than are currently in my toolbox would be nice. I've always tried to "mind over matter" it, and talk to myself out of thought patters I know are incorrect and destructive. It's just not always as successful and it's TIRING. LOL

Magdlyn 05-04-2011 02:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Minxxa (Post 79776)
I had an interesting thought/epiphany, actually brought about by the question Magdlyn asked me about what I felt about what I thought about when my hubs was with someone else...

Glad my random comment about your "feelings" helped!


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