Originally Posted by Valentine
I am not "involved with" or "dating" or "sexual" with a polyamorous man married to a "monogam-ish" woman, but I used to be......
I've had a hard time letting go. Some of the old patterns have cropped up when we spend time together alone (cuddling and a few kisses that I enjoy more than I have enjoyed sex with most people I've been with), and I am struggling with my feelings.
Pride: I don't like having limits placed on my behavior - particularly "private" behavior - by a third party. I feel that I am not respected or trusted. This hurts, and sometimes I feel angry.
Shame: When I am faced with boundaries created by a third party, I feel that my sexuality and emotions are dirty and dangerous, respectively; that being sexual and emotional is inappropriate in this situation or with this person. I have fears of slut-shaming from his wife and our community.
Guilt: I am afraid to act on my own desires because I am afraid of hurting his wife and/or being judged by others. I feel very anxious about spending time with him or being physically affectionate with him.
For the record, this was my first poly-type relationship, and it lasted around 7 months, which he considers to be a "long term" relationship. To me, it seems a very short period of time for me to have developed such strong feelings... but maybe it is all the conflict creating a pressure-cooker situation.
I do not know what to do at this point. I'm worried that continuing to interact with them (mostly with him) is harmful.
Wait -- so you are not "involved" or "dating" or "sexual" with him, anymore? Because it kinda sounds like you are. And from what I read, it sounds like you deserve better. A relationship you can live and love out loud. This sounds toxic to me. There are other fish in the sea -- maybe you should find one that doesn't have restrictions placed around him. This is only my opinion, hope it doesn't sound harsh.