If the issue is really that they were not having a healthy relationship to begin with then ya, I agree. Take a break and figure out what is going on and work on creating a solid relationship again. What I don't get is where jealousy gets mixed up in that.... I guess it seems to me that there are two stories going on here and I am unclear which is the situation and which isn't and if they are related, then how?
K, tell me where I am not getting it if you please?
First off I hear that he asked them to go on hold while they sort their relationship out. She doesn't want to, they don't want to but are anyway and he is feeling guilty about that....
Second of all I hear that he is feeling jealous and that he called it off because he is not in love with the couple and just wants to be friends... what the jealousy is about I don't understand? Jealous that they are all in love? Jealous because he isn't attracted and they are? Jealous because the wife could continue on with the couple and he doesn't want to and will be left with no one? Unclear. What is the fear here or threat?
The first scenario makes me want to say, ya, take a break from all of it. You would do better to sort out your marriage and then go back to the couple and see about creating something with them in some kind of configuration. Either involving everyone sexually or not.
The second makes me think that the jealousy should be dealt with and that there is no reason that wife should stop seeing them. He could bow out and get the encouragement and support he needs to get through the fear and threats that the jealousy seems to be based on.
The thing I find with poly is that nothing really has to be over... just adjusted. If you like these people and they are fun to be with, good support, loving, kind, caring.... whatever value you want to add that makes you connect with people, then why end it all?
Friendships and poly partners are pretty closely linked for me. They are my extended family. I choose them to be in my life because they fit. Not because of rules, boundaries, compromises, sexual encounters, who does what when (event though that is all important stuff too). If you still want these people in your life and it makes you all miserable that they aren't, then have them in your life and negotiate what that means. Ending it all is an option for those that don't want people in their lives and who feel that they would be better off to go in a different direction.
I guess it comes down to a matter of what direction to take and if you both have different ideas of that, how to make it so you can both do what you want to do and still be together.
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