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Old 12-05-2011, 12:40 PM
AppleCrumble AppleCrumble is offline
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Thanks all of you for helping analyse this a little more. I went away to think about things for a bit. So I知 going to attempt some more well thought out replies (if still a little muddled) to your comments. (mods, if this is meant to move to another forum for things beyond simple introductions, please do so!)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Magdlyn View Post
"Opened up to me emotionally in rather an intense way," means what, exactly? At first I thought you meant she shared something about her past with you that she trusted you to hear. But now I am wondering: did she say she loves you? In the "in love" type way going beyond mere friendship?
When I said open up to me emotionally, I meant that she told me a lot about problems going on in her life, personal insecurities, that kind of thing (see also Footnote). We had talked about stuff like that before in a vague sense (e.g. I致e had a crap day...) but not on such a deep level. Furthermore, I related to some of the stuff she said, and I opened up to her as well. I think in that kind of conversation, where for the first time both people are vulnerable but supportive to each other... it changes the dynamics of the relationship.

She痴 now a very close friend, rather than simply a friend-with-benefits. I guess I love her as a friend (she has said that to me), and I知 very attracted to her. I think she feels that way about me, too. Does love-as-a-friend + attraction = romantic love? I知 not sure it does. This follows on nicely from that point:

Quote:
Originally Posted by AnnabelMore View Post
If you really are "monoamorous", then it's best to just say so up front. However, if it's just about not being comfortable with the idea, in other words if it's just too scary, you may want to reconsider you approach to things.
After some reflection, I think you池e right, part of it is being scared. How do you think I should consider approaching things differently? I care about Sabina as much as any of my close friends that I love, but I知 very scared of saying 的 love Sabina. because terminology-wise, it sounds no different from saying 的 love Mr W. And (I think) there痴 a very key difference in terms of the commitment I feel to Mr W. I don稚 want him to feel any less important, that he痴 not the main romantic interest in my life because he is!

And yes, I know (at least intellectually) that your love for one person does not lessen your love for anyone else. However, I feel that I am monoamorous in the sense that there痴 only one person (Mr W) that I want to have a house and kids with; to get old with. For me, there are constraints on time and energy for that kind of commitment to other people, and therefore I don稚 think I知 prepared to spend my life with more than one person (though I admire people who are able to). I am committed to him in a way I could never imagine myself being to anyone else. That said, in my lifetime, I think I could have meaningful secondary relationships with people outside that primary bond I have with Mr W. But they would be exactly that: secondary.

Sabina may be a good example of this secondary bond I hope to have with other people, if/when we start things again. I would care about her, we壇 be close, we壇 be attracted to each other but we wouldn稚 be planning our lives together in the same way. I知 rather certain this feeling is mutual. We致e been clear about from the start that this kind of commitment is not something that either of us wants. The extent of commitment I have with Sabina is that (1) we壇 let each other know (but not necessarily ask for permission) before either of us started relationships with new people and (2) we are concerned for each other痴 well-being committed to checking in now and then, making sure that we池e comfortable with the way things are going. I think this is a significant commitment and obviously I care about her, but I still think it痴 a very different thing from what I have with Mr W.

I知 also aware of it seeming a little selfish, that perhaps I知 not taking Sabina痴 feelings into account as much as Mr. W痴 or my own. I don稚 know what to make of that, other than to be comforted in the fact that we do all talk really honestly about or values/expectations... and hopefully that way Sabina痴 feelings are also heard.

_________

Footnote: This is kinda an issue separate to how to define the relationship, but I think it痴 also relevant here somewhere... What also concerned me was that one of the insecurities she told me about involved being unable to be fully emotionally intimate in a long-term relationship (i.e. she痴 been unable to open up to her partners in the past, and she often puts up walls in relationships just when her partners were expecting that things should be more intimate). I think part of the reason she told me about this was that there was no expectation of emotional intimacy the same way there is in a lot of committed relationships, so paradoxically she felt more comfortable opening up. But I started to worry that perhaps our non-committal relationship framework wasn稚 the best thing for her to work on that with. We致e talked about it more and she痴 reassured me that she痴 comfortable with this, and as nobody has come along that she sees having a long-term relationship with and she doesn稚 really feel ready to work on long-term relationships before she has dealt with some of her personal issues. So I think in that respect, continuing things as they were would be ok. We池e all consenting adults, and there痴 a lot of discussion and transparency going on here that can only be healthy, right?
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