That strong connection I had with Aurora became muted by the distance. I think that I had to numb myself to those feelings because it hurt too much to be apart if I didnít. It was an unconscious coping mechanism. At this point I really need to renew that connection. Iím not 100% sure it will still be there because itís grown so faint. We have discussed this and are going to wait and see what happens when we see each other.
Iím going to visit them next month. I havenít met their kids yet but we talk on skype and they like me. I worry about juggling time with each person, when thereís a limited amount of time. The kids are important in there too, I see how they crave more time with me. I anticipate there being some emotional moments if one personís needs arenít getting met, just because I saw that when I was in my previous relationship and dating Aurora. But I feel like the three of us (me, Aurora, Drew) are pretty sensitive to each otherís feelings and needs and able to work through things.
Aurora has never made me feel like I am secondary. She isnít comfortable with the hierarchical system that some poly people seem to use (she has started to learn about the poly community since I introduced her to the term). However, Drew has made me feel secondary. His kids are the most important thing to him, and keeping the family intact is one of his highest priorities in life. Itís happened twice that he thought that his relationship with me was upsetting her, and he was willing to break it off with me in response. It makes me feel like Iím disposable to him, but I donít feel disposable to Aurora.
Aurora and I talk about everything, sometimes things like that, which Drew probably doesnít intend to reach my ears. Sometimes when Aurora shares the things that happen between her and Drew I feel a bit awkward, like I know something that Iím not supposed to. When I wasnít involved with Drew, it was sort of like, best friend venting about husband. Listen, be supportive. Now itís a bit more complicated than that because what goes on with them effects me. Sometimes she shares things that I donít think Drew would be ready to share with me, because weíre not at the same level of intimacy. I havenít asked her to censor herself but I just feel uncomfortable at times.
One thing I realized once I finally met Drew is that a lot of what Aurora will share about him is non-verbal cues that she picks up on. I donít pick up on them very well and I have a hard time reading him. Iím so verbal, and so accustomed to talking about emotions, and he is not. I actually find it harder to talk about that stuff with him, when normally I am fairly open with anyone Iím close with.
All three of us have issues under the surface. Drew seems to bottle up emotions and push them deep down inside. Whereas Aurora and I canít help but have our emotions bubble up and over, whether itís sadness, anger, whatever. I havenít fought with them, I think itís too early for that, but they fight from time to time. They seem to work things out though.
I donít really feel like I can tell my real-life friends about all of this. I told one friend who I consider to be pretty open-minded, and she thinks that it is doomed to fail. She is trying to prepare me for that. She also doesnít really understand poly--she has said more than once, ďultimately, youíll want to be the one special person to someone.Ē I could have done better to explain the poly thing but she really has her mind made up. And is trying to save me from poly.
Itís weird to me to live with my friends not knowing whatís going on in my personal life, but my closest friend is from a country thatís pretty sexually conservative. I think this would be a bit too much culture shock for her. One other friend knows that Iím dating, because she met Drew briefly when he visited. Though I didnít mention that heís married! She is worried for me because I got out of a bad relationship recently. So I feel like you layer poly on top of that and itís just ... too much for people to understand. I did just come out to my codependence group recently though.
I do worry about all of my issues impacting my decisions, my relationships, etc. The distance is forcing us to take things slowly, though and Iím hoping that will help with that. I am still sort of figuring out who I am, in the absence of a partner. I think itís a really good time for me to be living alone and working through my issues.
Plus Iím dealing with a lot outside of my relationships. Real life has been rough lately. But Iíll omit details due to the aforementioned paranoia about my ex recognizing me. We arenít officially poly-fi but I donít have room in my life right now for anything else. Aurora doesnít seem to have any interest in anyone else. Drew likes to play with other women from time to time but his most recent plaything was causing friction with Aurora. She didnít approve of the way he was being treated, and just generally disliked the woman.
Aurora likes to daydream and plan, and she ends up talking about future plans a bit more than Iím comfortable with. Up until recently, I would be like, ďI havenít even met Drew yet! Iím not going to assume he will father my children.Ē (Iím in my late 20s, they are older but would welcome more kids.) It helps that Iíve met him now but I need to spend more time with them both, and meet their kids. I want to take this slow and allow it to develop naturally. Sometimes I feel like sheís pushing things along. Sheís so sure that I am ďthe one,Ē the one that sheís been looking for. I am just being careful, because in my previous relationships, I really havenít been. (All two of them - it tends to take me a *really* long time to realize a relationship has gone bad.) At least Drew is happy to let things evolve naturally, gradually, to let me set the pace. Aurora will say that she is, but inside, she wants to push forward.
I welcome any advice for navigating a triad, comments on my situation, whatever you guys can offer.