Thread: So here i am..
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Old 01-30-2012, 09:01 PM
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zappafreak zappafreak is offline
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Seattle,WA
Posts: 22

Originally Posted by nycindie View Post
Personally, as a solo unattached person, I wouldn't be involved with a married poly guy if we could not have any overnights at all. I would not want to feel like a mistress being used for sex and then the guy puts his shoes on and leaves. If it's a real relationship, I want him to snuggle and sleep in my bed with me. I'd want to feel like there is something I can count on, and that what we have is about more than sex. One night a week sounds reasonable, I could even live with one night a month, but to never, ever have overnights would make me feel like I'm in High School or serving as a sexual release in his life and nothing more. So I can totally understand your gf's response.

Having occasional overnights is not too much to ask in poly arrangements, in my opinion. It seems an unreasonable rule to me. I would expect that a partner of mine has his full attention on me when we're together, but of course there are always cell phones in case of an emergency at his home. That being said, I also totally understand your wife's objection to the overnight stays, since you did let yourself get carried away previously, and she (wife) was feeling neglected. However, I should add that it is not your fault she stayed at home alone when you were with the gf. She needed to be more proactive in giving herself things to do and other people to be with, if she didn't want to be laying there at night thinking of the fact that you were not home.

But if I were you, I would not have accepted any ultimatums. I would have negotiated an agreement between all of you, even though it would be more difficult because the gf wouldn't want to sit down with the two of you to do this. But I think the first step would have been to tell your wife that you would be willing to not have overnights for a specific period of time, not longer than you are comfortable with, and then make it clear that at the end of that period you will start having overnights again - but will work out a frequency that would not impact your obligations at home much. At that point, I would have asked her what length of time she would be okay with. Then I would ask the gf what period of time she could live without overnights for a while. I would have let her know that the ban on overnight stays is temporary and to please be patient and understanding. Then I would settle on a period somewhere in the middle, where you and both women would be comfortable. And at the end of that period, then negotiate for a number of overnights per month or week with the both of them again. Each person has to make a compromise, that is what negotiation is about.

To me, negotiating boundaries is much more cooperative and considerate than issuing and kowtowing to rules and ultimatums. As I see it, married people who choose to have polyamorous relationships are also choosing a responsibility to all the people they are involved with, not just their spouses. If I get involved with someone who has a partner, my main boundary for myself is that no metamours can set rules for my relationships. In other words, I do have my own boundaries that need to be respected, one of which is that my relationships will be shaped and determined solely by me and the person with whom I am involved. I don't want to be in a situation where I need to ask permission from someone outside the relationship to let him kiss me, fuck me, take me out in public, sleep over my place, etc. That doesn't mean I can't or won't negotiate in areas like time management, but it means that the guy I get involved with would simply coordinate schedules with his wife, not have to get permission (which might not be granted). I want to have relationships with an adult, after all, not someone who needs a note from mommy. So I always ask before getting involved if a partner has rules or boundaries that will affect me. If they seem untenable to me, I would rather walk away from a situation than get involved and be dictated to by a metamour's unworkable boundaries or insecurities. Nor am I interested in the drama of trying to change someone. However, if their rules might be more compatible with my own rules by some tweaking here or there, I'll discuss it.

Regarding her refusal to meet your wife, I don't think that's so bad either. While I certainly would respect a partner's existing relationship and welcome a friendship with his spouse/SO, I am not of the camp that believes all metamours should be friends. I would probably have exchanged a few emails, myself, or spoken on the phone with her, but I don't see meeting her as necessary.

Everything I've stated here is just my perspective, with the aim of being helpful by letting you see how someone in your gf's position might possibly view things, and not a criticism.
NYCindie, thanks so much for writing this. It's very helpful to me to see your perspective on this. That is also a great suggestion to have a period of time to not have overnights, with the intention of doing so in the future. That would have been a good thing to offer up.

I know that ultimatums are bad, negative, and leave resentment. However, my wife didn't sign up for a poly situation and I feel that I owe it to her to concede on this point for her sake, at least for the time being. Making the switch from swing to poly put it all in a whole new perspective for us, and although I am very comfortable with it, this is where she feels her boundaries are for feeling good with it. That could certainly change over time, but this was a growth time for us. She is not currently interested in being poly, but I am thinking that could very well change. I might be wrong in that, but for me this feels like an evolutionary step of sorts, and much more fulfilling than simple swing. And hey, maybe I'm getting old..The emotional connection with my partners means more to me now.

That being said, I definitely appreciate your perspective of how that would not be acceptable to you as a "solo unattached person". What my wife and I need to find out is whether that feeling might change for her, or become more acceptable, or if we will just let that be our rule and I will learn to be careful about single unattached women.

So I guess for right now, I am Poly, she's a Swinger. We'll see where this takes us.
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