Hi BrigidsDaughter, sorry I didn't reply to this sooner, just trying to wrap my head around some stuff.
At the time I wrote those other posts I thought she was upset because she wanted him for herself. The alternative didn't even occur to me (what does that say about my self esteem?!). But, turns out I had it backwards.
Basically we had another big talk in which she told me she could care less who Alan slept with, but she wanted me to stop seeing him. She wants me to move back to live with her, and not have relationships with anyone else (though she didn't mind us occasionally having 'just sex' threesomes).
And I just don't. I can't do 'just sex'. I don't want to stop seeing where things are going with Alan. Its way too soon for me to be talking about moving, and I just don't feel this is working.
I told her, we cried, things between us are over.
I told Alan about it, and he expressed sympathy, and said it was probably better that we worked out that it wouldn't work between us sooner rather than later. And then used that as a conversation starter to tell me that he liked what we were doing but that he couldn't see himself having a 'proper relationship' with anyone right now, that it wouldn't be fair to, he couldn't give the amount of attention that he would want to (he does have legitimate reasons for not starting a relationship right now that I don't want to go into here).
I think before I started thinking about poly stuff I would have broken up with him at that point and called the whole thing done, because I do want a full on relationship with commitment and more time and attention and possibly living together at some point. But from everything I've been reading here and elsewhere on the subject, one thought stuck in my head about letting relationships be what they are, not forcing them to be something they're not. I really enjoy what we currently have as well. I have lots of reasons for wanting to keep things casual between us (distance etc.), I'm not really ready for a very involved relationship, and even when I am, it doesn't necessarily have to be with him.
I realize that the words 'proper relationship' aren't quite right, but I feel I lack the vocabulary to describe it. I sort of feel like we've agreed to have a sort of 'secondary' relationship while neither of us has a 'primary', acknowledging that we both want that kind of 'primary' relationship at some point, but that it might not be with each other? Does that make any sense?