I got out of a very codependent relationship recently. So I am speaking on this from a place of familiarity and compassion. There are a few things that you have said that hints that your relationship is codependent.
Originally Posted by onoma
So last night when she tells me I just need to tell her how we can fix this, and that she'd do _anything_ to make me happy, it was all I could think about. I just needed to say that I'd be ready for kids if things worked better between us.
Originally Posted by onoma
As a general rule I don't think she's manipulative. If anything I think it's hard for us both to separate... but I could be wrong.
This just does not sound healthy to me. I think that you are grasping at straws, trying to find a way to save this relationship. I don't blame you at all. I did the same thing. I kept trying to figure out a way to make it work. Leaving was probably the hardest thing I ever did in my life. I felt terrible, and I felt terrible that he felt terrible. I couldn't eat, I couldn't sleep. I thought I would be a ball of icky emotions forever.
But I wasn't. I'm living independently now and am quite happy. I'm starting to examine all my codependence issues in therapy and in Codependents Anonymous. Although I still have a lot of work to do, I haven't felt this self-empowered, self-sufficient, and FREE ever in my life. It was probably the best decision I ever made, although it was so hard at the time.
People on this board are telling you, "do not get into poly when you have problems in your existing relationship." I feel like you are ignoring those people because it's not what you want to hear. This is more than just the words of a few people, this is practically Polyamory 101. There are several bits of wisdom that are repeated so often in the poly community that it could be a handbook for newbs. This is one of them. Here are more
You say that the relationship was great before you lived together, but if you two can't live together, then how can you expect to start a family together? You say that she has had a rough couple of years, but if she is still having a rough time, then now is not the time to start a family.
If she is trying to tie you to something that you aren't willing to be tied to, and she is putting a timeline on it, then the kinder thing to do may be to end it now. Rather than hem and haw for a year or two while she keeps getting older (and surely more stressed out about the relationship). Or worse yet, having kids and then splitting up!
I just think that you want to focus on the poly question because you are avoiding the real issues in your relationship.