This sucks so much
I don't even know where to start. The situation has gotten so out of control. I've never been so hurt and angry in my whole life (and I was a victim of severe child abuse, a broken home, and many other betrayals). I hardly know what to do as everything I have tried has failed miserably to bring some semblance of peace back into my head and heart.
I have been in open relationships since my very first relationship as a teenager of 15. I am no stranger to the pitfalls and the wonders of non-monogamous relationships. My boyfriend and I have been living together for over a year. From the start, we have talked about non-monogamy as a place we might like to explore together. About 3 months ago, I agreed to open our relationship at his request... He had just finished Opening Up and Ethical Slut and felt that he was ready and an opportunity had presented itself. We spent two weeks hammering out our expectations and boundaries. The first relationship he had worked out great... I now believe it did work out because this first metamour and I were friends and she respects me. That relationship ended a little while ago - amiably and responsibly - when she started dated another person. That had been our agreement from the start, along with the agreement that if any one of us became uncomfortable we would call the whole thing off. In that relationship, all boundaries were respected and everyone was open and communicative at all times. We three got to be very close and still are as friends.
As that relationship was ending, he picked up with a new woman who was an acquaintance of ours. The same biundaries and agreement was put into place and agreed upon by all. But that relationship has become a disaster. At first everything seemed ok, but then it started to become very clear that she was quite unable to communicate with me openly. As a few more weeks passed, there were many small incidents of miscommunication and misunderstanding - including twice when she was quite angry with me unjustifiably and bottled it up inside rather than talking to me about it. Then I was asked to reconsider a boundary I had said was very important to me and non-negotiable - no sleeping over - and although I initially stuck to my guns, I eventually gave in because he wished to take her along to an out of state conference that I could not attend. After that point, I had been thinking about telling my boyfriend to break it off as I had become very concerned that she was after more than what was available to her through the open relationship agreement. I decided to give it one more chance after they returned because, frankly, I was very distracted with a big deadline. My stupid.
Several weeks passed, the deadline was met, and we went off together with our extended group of friends to celebrate my birthday. The next week, about a month ago, he informed me that he had fallen in love with her and wanted us to have a polyfamily. I was in such emotional shock that I said 'ok, sure', but after a couple of days it had eaten at me so badly that I told him that I just couldn't do it. The more I had thought about the situation, the more I came to see all the earlier red flags and realized the depth to which I had been lied to and manipulated by them both. A long talk with him revealed that my fears were well founded - while on that conference trip they had decided to hide their true feelings from me (for several weeks until after my birthday had passed) and also proceeded to make a bunch of big life decisions without my knowledge nor a chance to provide input (such as that she would be moving in after her teenage son turned 18 and that we would be building an extension onto the house to accommodate this. I was devastated and - pointing out all these problems and citing our original agreement - asked him to break it off with her so he and I could get counseling and heal our relationship.
That night, she broke it off with him. He came home and promised me that they would just be friends and that he wasn't going to be trying polyamory again anytime soon if at all. We spent the next several days rebuilding trust, being together, and having a wonderful time. However, behind the scenes, his friends were telling him that he should do whatever makes him happy. This advice was given by them without knowledge of his promises to me. He asked if he could talk with her one last time for 'closure' and I agreed it was needed. A couple hours later he came home and informed me that he 'had to put himself first for once' and that he wanted both of us. At the time, I felt I had no choice in the matter ... He said that he wasn't going to change nor give her up, implying tat either I could change or I could leave. I chose to stay. I started reading more about polyamory and came to realize just how wrong this whole situation was. I have made no secret of how hurt I am and how opposed I am to being dragged into this. Not a single day has gone by in three weeks that I haven't cried - hard and long - over the pain he has introduced into my life. I even tried to negotiate a way to go forward with them both, in writing, but within a few days several of the agreed to boundaries were violated or repeatedly challenged. As a consequence, I felt increasingly disrespected and hurt. Further attempts to express my feelings and concerns and negotiate better boundaries for my mental health were unsuccessful because he would mentally check out or else challenge everything I requested as 'unreasonable' (research indicates that my requests - things like going slow and needing time to heal and that she not come to our home) are in fact common.
Yesterday, after I saw my therapist, I wrote a letter to them both explaining in brutal honesty my feelings and my concerns and my decisions regarding the whole mess. I basically said that I wasn't going to leave, that I believe he is blinded by uncontrolled nre and her very subtle manipulation of the situation, that the deceptions that brought about the situation were too many to salvage, that I am not interested in being friends with her at all, and urging him to consider that he and I need to rebuild our relationship first and establish a strong foundation between us before we would be able to have a successful polyamorous experience. In this letter, I let out a lot of ugly emotions - the real brutal truth about my feelings and about the depth to which I am hurt by his continued cheating (because that is what this is to me at this point). I also asked him to honor our original agreement, and said that if he wouldn't do so he would have to maintain two separate relationships rather than expect me to subject myself to the emotional abuse of a triad with a third who has proven herself a liar, manipulator, and disingenuous friend.
After that letter was sent, he made an appointment with a kink friendly marriage counselor for next week. We had a good day... the first in a long time. After dinner, he went over to a friend's place to talk some things out. While there he calls me to tell me that he sent the letter I wrote to his parents (!!!!) and that they are afraid I will become violent towards him because my letter was so 'angry' ... and they urged him to stay overnight at this friend's apartment. So even though he promised me he would come home when he left, he again renegged on a promise and again busted a boundary I had negotiated (that I not be left to sleep alone two or more nights in a row). Fine, it's his parents, i love them and I don't want them to be scared, so I agreed. I asked him to come home for a little while so we could talk and he could then go back over there for the night.
I then had a complete meltdown. It was just too much that he sent my letter to them without asking if it was ok with me. It was just too much that his parents, two people I admire and love, would also turn their backs on me in this situation and make me out to be - as I perceive it from them and Her and some of our other friends - 'the bad guy'. So, after the first day in which I had finally found some peace, the whole mess came crashing down around me again. I cried so hard that I threw up three times and after blowing my nose (did I mention that I have been sick for several days with the flu?) I actually got so dizzy I fell down. That was where he found me when he came home. And again our talk involved me pouring out my soul while he sat there obviously feeling horrible but unable to say much else other than that I am 'wrong about her' and that we should wait for the counselor because he has no idea how to fix this.
So here I am, left alone in our empty house to sleep alone, again, with all this pain and hurt and no one to comfort me. The thing that kills me is that I am not opposed to polyamory and I am willing to work with him to get there as a main relationship goal after we rebuild our relationship from this mess. But this part seems to go in one ear and out the other because he wants this particular woman despite all the red flags popping up everywhere and the obvious issues with her behavior. I just can't get through to him even though he recognizes how incredibly unhealthy this whole situation is for all of us - and now that includes his parents as well as our friends.
Guess that's enough for now. I feel better just to get it out. Because this other woman has pushed nearly all my friends away from me, I really have no one to talk to about this (especially tonight). I'd be grateful for any advice from those with experience. I'll be happy to answer questions if anything is unclear. I will be very disappointed if, like my experience on another site, I am told to suck it up and just accept the existing unhealthy poly relationship or leave.