Most of this really has nothing to do with OUR situation, as none of us were actively seeking a poly relationship. They weren't considering 'opening' their relationship and I wasn't looking for a couple to be a part of.
One bit of your post does resonate a bit. As I've read a lot about being 'equal'.
Originally Posted by Ceoli
So much pressure gets put on the relationship to be this wonderful equal partnership of three people that when something indicates that maybe that's not right for everyone, it explodes into a mess of hurt feelings and loneliness. There are other ways for relationships to succeed. Maybe the closed triad should evolve into a V of some sort, or maybe the triad should remain a triad but opening up to each member having other partners, or maybe the third needs to let go of the pressure of being equal and relax into some kind of secondary relationship...who knows? There are all sorts of ways to approach things. But if it becomes an "all or nothing" scenario, it automatically dis-allows most other outcomes that may indeed be the solution, thus creating a much larger possibility of failure.
I can not fathom a triad being equal right off the bat (unless three uninvolved people came together at roughly the same time). I never expected that coming into this relationship. The primary relationship (as much as I hate these terms) is the primary
relationship. Period. Perhaps as the relationship grows and evolves over several years things may become more balanced and end up more equal (we were actually having this discussion yesterday amungst the three of us ), but I really don't think it's realistic to expect that from any persons perspective in the triad at the start.
The third is the third. I joined the relationship last. That's just how it is. Like it or not, it's reality. There were also things I knew I would be excluded from (ie the work holiday they went on last weekend). And that's ok, because I KNEW that it would be that way. I may not like it all the time, but that's how it is. I don't expect this to change just because I'm here. The primary relationship has to be strong and healthy for any triad to work (or any V for that matter). My relationship with either of them could be wonderful, but if they're are issues between them, things wont be right. There will be tension and things will start to fray and fall apart if they're not addressed.
Perhaps I'm going off on a tangent here, but I so rarely do I shall just let my thoughts flow on this subject.
In our relationship, I fully accept that I am the third. That doesn't mean I always come last, or I'm not loved. It does however sometimes mean that the needs of the primary relationship will have to come first if there is something serious that needs to be delt with. It's not easy being the third. Defenately not. But none of the postitions are easy. Both the people in the primary relationship have to come to terms with sharing the other with someone new (assuming they're just starting in the poly world), which as I've seen can be difficult. No one said this type of relationship would be easy. You can try to figure out everything that may come up, but there will be things you've never thought of suddenly appear and have to be dealt with. There's also a whole nother person's feelings, needs, etc to think about on top of the two of a mono relationship.
Another difficult thing I will say about being the third is the occasional times where you just can't help a situation and have to sit and wait it out. There may be an issue that has nothing to do with you that needs to be delt with in the priamary relationship. This can be aggonizing. You feel helpless, unsure, worried etc. It's hard to sit back and wait for others to sort through things when the outcome greatly effects you as well.
As for the structure of a relationship not being flexable enough to change if needed, I know in our situation, it wouldn't happen. For us, it IS all or nothing, and that's just how it is. I can't imagine us having a V, no matter who the hinge is. I love both of them too much to give up one or the other, and I've always said that I will walk away if their relationship is deteriorating to the point of breaking up because of me. And I would. As much as it would kill me to do so.
I think in some situations, it just wouldn't work for things to change. I don't feel we're putting SO much effort into making sure this particular type of relationship works out. It's just the way our realtionship is. I don't think it's wrong, and I don't think it's bad that we can't or wont consider a different structure. Perhaps this is because of the manner in which the three of us came together.
So this ended up being a lot longer than I anticipated, and I might even have forgotten some things along the way. Mostly it's my perspective on a triad, and the thirds position in it. Being new to the poly world, and not even knowing about it until we were already in it, makes it all a learning experience for us. And of course it's not all been smooth sailing, but we're weathering the storms when they come and isn't that the whole point? Get through the rough patches and there will be clear skies ahead.
I'll end this for now.
OH! I lied... I have one more thing to say. It's not anything that was brought up in this post, but previous ones. About the third having the most to lose.
I don't necissarily think that's always true. I think it all depends on how the relationship has ended, who's decision it was and a lot of other factors in the relationship.
In ours, I DO have a shitload to lose if this relationship were to end. I've moved halfway around the world, sold all of my belongings, left my job there (as shitty as it was), would be completely broken hearted. I would be alone. The first two of these points makes it more difficult for me than for a normal person. For them, yes they would still have each other, but (from my perspective) a big issue would be the kids well being. I love them and they love me. They would not understand if I was gone all of a sudden. This for me is a huge one. I know there would be other issues for them, and they can share thoughts on that if they wish but I think that the kids are a big big big one. For me at least.
now I'm done for the time being.