How do I continue on as a secondary without a primary?
Hello all. I am new to forum posting, but not to forum reading. I've been reading voraciously since starting this journey. I also attend the local poly group meetings. I appreciate the care and compassion that I see in this group, in addition to the thoughtful debates. Iím still a little nervous.
As background - I am newish to poly. I dated once in the poly scene before meeting my current boyfriend. My SO and I have been together for a little over a year since the first ďI love you[s].Ē He has a live-in partner (by description, primary), and two girlfriends in addition to me. I am his only partner without her own primary relationship. I will note that we donít use hierarchical terms like primary/secondary, Iím simply using them for short-hand descriptors.
I see my SO on a scheduled day once a week starting in the evening through the following morning. He usually needs to leave before I technically have to get up. I usually end up sacrificing a good bit of sleep when I see him since we have such concentrated time together and we try to make the most of it. We also see each other in group settings 2-4 times during the month for events, like poly group meetings.
Here is my current struggle. I love him and we are awfully good together, however, this relationship canít meet some significant needs for me. Now that the NRE has worn off, the excitement of him walking in the door no longer makes up for the fact that I donít have a partner to share my day to day life with, someone who I can take to my office Christmas party (my workplace is conservative), or someone with whom I have a foreseeable future. This is not his fault, or my fault, or his OSO's faults (they are bright and kind women whom I trust and admire), or polyamoryís fault. Itís simply the way things are. I am in a loving and supportive, if limited, relationship, but I am lonely.
Here is my question: how do I stay in a relationship that on a fundamental level doesnít work and leaves me wanting? If this were a monogamous relationship where we would never set up our own household and I couldnít include him in my social activities, I would move on and date someone who was more available. If I couldnít plan a future with a man I had been dating for over a year (regardless if that future came to pass or not), I would admit to myself that we werenít compatible enough for a long term relationship and begin the search for a lifetime companion anew.
I imagine if I found a primary, this equation would change. I am looking and have looked for a long time. Since I cannot make my decisions based on a hypothetical primary who may or may not suddenly appear at an unknown time, I have to strive to be happy now, which sadly I am not.
If you found yourself in this situation: how would you justify staying? How would you justify leaving? Both scenarios have me hurting.