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-   -   Not so much jealousy as feeling like a loser (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=9531)

cuddlecakes 05-04-2011 05:19 AM

Not so much jealousy as feeling like a loser
In my first officially non-monogamous relationship, we both wanted it from the first date (9 months ago) and we're a pretty awesome couple. She is constantly telling me how great I am and how she can't imagine ever leaving me, she doesn't understand why I'm not constantly surrounded by women, etc. I trust her and am not worried about her leaving me.

Since we started dating, I've tried going out with 3 other girls, weren't really into each other, pretty awkward, nothing happened. I'm really shy and maybe a little picky, so that's pretty typical for me?

Meanwhile, I can't even keep track of all the guys she's gone out with. I can think of 8, but there are probably others I'm forgetting (several with the same names). Went on several dates each, excited about them, made out with most of them, had sex with at least 4. It's kind of intimidating.

Likewise, the latest guy she's seeing already has a wife and a girlfriend, and after their date tonight I find out that he's also currently dating another girl, and is interested in yet another... who just happens to be one of the three I unsuccessfully went out with. :/

Before we met, I hadn't kissed anyone in over a year, and I was trapped in self-reinforcing feelings of insecurity, loneliness, and depression. Now that I'm seeing just how easy dating is for everyone else, how they're all having such a great time, and I'm just seeing her and struggling elsewhere, I'm beginning to feel the same as I did then. It's bizarre to feel lonely or insecure when I'm in such a happy, stable relationship, but I can't help but compare myself to the success of others and feel like a loser, or feel that I'm somehow being taken advantage of, though I know that's not the case.

BlackUnicorn 05-04-2011 10:03 AM

Hullo and well met!

I know this will probably make you want to punch me in the face, but when it comes to dating, you only need to go on to one REALLY good date if it's with the right person (my first-ever real relationship began with a nine-hour first date, and we didn't even have sex - just nine hours of talking, straight). And in the end, even that didn't work out because we were fundamentally incompatible to have a long-term monogamous relationship together.

Check out the Life-Stories and Blogs sections - plenty of people struggle with dating. So you are not alone. Poly may well feel like a joke when you struggle with having A relationship, much less multiple ones. So you are already better off in some ways with having a primary for whom you care deeply.

Is finding someone becoming a mild obsession? If it feeds into your negative self-image, it might be good to take a break from active searching all-together for a while and work on self-image issues instead.

MrFarFromRight 05-04-2011 10:59 AM


Originally Posted by BlackUnicorn (Post 79844)
Is finding someone becoming a mild obsession? If it feeds into your negative self-image, it might be good to take a break from active searching all-together for a while and work on self-image issues instead.

Excellent comment! You're not in a competition here. Accept the fact that you're shy, work on that shyness (and ESPECIALLY any feelings of inadequacy - these are in your head, not in your worth as a person), and relax a little.

Think about this: Would you really rather be dealing with 16 sexual relationships with physically VERY attractive people, be the most popular guy around, [have your girlfriend jealous of your success], have it leaked that you're dynamite in bed, have strange women 'phoning you up in the middle of the night... but for all those relationships and all that sex to leave you feeling emotionally empty, physically used, and with the taste of dust and ashes in your soul?

Would you really?

Stop trying to compete and appreciate your girlfriend. Isn't she wonderful? If somebody else comes along (or you go out and find them... but without STRESS) and it all works out happily, even better. But don't suffer until then!

Look at me: I'm polyamorous (by conviction) and have had no more-than-me sex in years (by circumstances). [links to my introduction and my thread "Polyamorous and celibate"]

Oh GOD! Am I jealous of you!!!:(:(:(:mad::mad::mad:


Welcome on board!

MonoVCPHG 05-04-2011 02:55 PM

I've got to ask...your wife is practicing extremely safe sex right? Your indirectly sleeping with a lot of people. Sorry if the question is out of turn but my curiousity has gotten the best of me :o

Ivy 05-04-2011 03:51 PM

I'm in the same place. I just left a relationship where my (female) partner was a magnet for male attention. I found myself constantly trying to figure out what was wrong with me. Since then, my husband and I have wanted to open up our relationship more completely--and I'm terrified, 'cause he's a good-looking, confident guy who knows exactly what he wants. I'm jealous, of course, but that's not the problem--I'm afraid he'll be much more successful at dating than me! :(

Our solution: we've put things on temporary hold while I learn to flirt. Just flirt, so I have a better sense of how often people are attracted to me, and how I'm comfortable responding. It also takes away the pressure of "achieving" sex or a relationship. So far, it's been helping my self-esteem...but it's also scary as hell.

It helps, of course, that neither of us is actively involved with anyone at the moment, so that may not be an option for you. But it might be healthy for you to figure out your style of interacting with women, and see when it works and when it doesn't. It certainly sounds like your style is very different from hers, and that's okay. :cool:

amuk 05-04-2011 03:54 PM

It's not that dating is easy for everyone else. It is just easier for your girlfriend than just about everyone else. Sounds like you are feeling rather hurt and perhaps you are feeling a need for your girlfriend to slow down a bit and allow you to catch up to where you want to me in your own dating world.

I feel the comment about not understanding why you aren't constantly surrounded by women to be rather condescending...as if if is some fault of your own that you aren't. In fact, your feeling intimidated over your girlfriends focus on her other relationships over your feelings sure isn't helping you be attractive to anyone else. Here again is more reason for her to slow down on her outside relationships if your happiness is truly important to her.

I want to be clear that I'm not saying that she has any direct power over your emotions. We cannot expect anyone else to be able to make us feel a certain way. However, I feel it is very important for primary partners to show they take their partner's emotions into consideration and choose to make sacrifices when their partner is feeling hurt by a situation that involves both of them.

redpepper 05-04-2011 07:45 PM

I think its a matter of choice really. What is your poly compared to hers? I understand that you care about her, maybe even love her, but perhaps your gut is telling you something about your core values, what you would prefer in a relationship or maybe there is something missing. I only offer this as a thought, of course I could be totally wrong and you really wish you were as permiscuous and datable as her.

By the way. I don't think you're a loser. If it is that you value a connection that is built on getting to know someone first and something a bit more special and private about your sex life, I would date you over her any day just on the grounds of values alone. I just thought it should be said that there is room for that. My poly is not not of the "dating" and casual sex variety. Yours doesn't have to be either.

MrFarFromRight 05-05-2011 10:12 PM


Originally Posted by amuk (Post 79906)
I feel the comment about not understanding why you aren't constantly surrounded by women to be rather condescending...as if if is some fault of your own that you aren't.

I rather understood it as an attempt to encourage cuddlecakes, to make him feel that he is attractive. Is that condescending? Maybe. [shrugs]

@ cuddlecakes: I've just read your 6 comments on your thread, "Hello" and it really seems to me that you need to work on this insecurity/contest issue.

I also think that you should pay attention to redpepper's comment. I wonder if your gf is really poly (does she actually define herself as such?), a flirter - giddy with the freedom of a new date 4 times a week or whatever - or a swinger, hopping into (and out of) as many beds as possible. For me, poly implies emotional attachment. This seems to be important to you, too, and is probably why you're moving much more slowly than her.

This isn't meant as a criticism of her. If she wants to swing, is careful about protection, and you're OK with that [in principle] then that's your [plural] business. And maybe she is investing emotions into all those other relationships. What the hell do I know? But I think that you [singular] do have to stop using her as a measuring stick... and then beating yourself with that stick.

Derbylicious 05-07-2011 02:17 PM

I've found that comparing myself to others never works out well for me. Is it that she has more partners than you or that you really wish that you had more partners? If it's the first then let it go. If it's the second then it sounds like you need to put yourself in the position to meet more people (especially since you are self-proclamed picky). You're not likely to make a connection with everyone you go out on a date with and there's no point in forcing something that isn't there. It just won't turn out well for anyone in the end!

Ivy 05-08-2011 07:59 AM


Originally Posted by Derbylicious (Post 80390)
If it's the second then it sounds like you need to put yourself in the position to meet more people...

This. Which can be incredibly hard to do if you're comparing yourself to someone else, so make sure you're going out separately.

And finding out that everyone else is sexually interconnected is a horrible, isolating feeling--I've been there, and I felt like a sexual leper--so try to socialize with people outside that circle. It really does help.

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