Since deepening relationship with "secondary", feelings changing for "primary"
I am in an open marriage that came out of my husband's longing for this freedom. It took us a couple of years to get here, and was the result of me seeing that he would not likely be able to stay in our marriage (of 9 years) if we didn't have an open marriage. We took our time, building a framework that respected each of our needs, and slowly began to move forward.
This summer we began seeing another couple, also married. We see them separately, but we do spend time together with them regularly- we both have two young boys similar ages, so it works for the kids to spend time together. We all get along well and there are relatively few problems in our interactions.
However, my relationship with my secondary has developed significance and deep emotional involvement. (This is not the case between my husband and his secondary, which is mainly sex and activity focused with a friendship basis) My secondary and I are very similar and we are both having the experience of having needs met by one another that our primary partners have never met- in my case significant needs that I have asked for throughout our relationship but that my partner was never able or interested in meeting.
For me, the experience of finally having these needs met and being treated in such nurturing, loving ways by my new partner really highlighted for me what is lacking in my marriage. This realization is leading me to feel less love for my husband, and to feel less able to stay in a marriage that has never met my needs. I think for years I've been able to cope with getting less that what I wanted because I strategized, explained it to myself with all kinds of stories, and just generally accepted things as they were, even though part of me knew it wasn't what I wanted. Now that I am getting what I've always wanted -but from a different man- I am confused, and feeling less tolerant of my husband and the ways he is failing to meet my needs - which I communicate clearly and which mainly focus around being an equal partner, participating fully in our marriage, showing love and appreciation etc.
Now I also realize that there is a significant amount of NRE flying around with my secondary so I'm trying not to jump to conclusions right away. Also challenging is that my secondary is having pretty much the same experience/realizations about his partner/marriage...
Any thoughts on how to proceed? Is this just NRE/new love or are my realizations about my partner/marriage accurate? I guess someone else can't answer that for me. But insight or experience with this would be appreciated. I don't want to leave my husband due to a NRE high, but I also am feeling less able to be in this marriage and more clear about who I am and what I need...I guess part of the open-marriage arrangement helped me to come back to myself and my own authenticity and its stirred up a whole lot of questions about what I've "Accepted" vs "chosen" and what I want my life to look like in the future....
Thanks for reading!