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Old 02-28-2012, 02:08 PM
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RfromRMC RfromRMC is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Raleigh/Durham, North Carolina
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Wow. There's a lot going on here. We see posts all the time here about coming to terms with poly. Didn't expect to see one where the poly wasn't an issue cuz the dude still hasn't fully come to terms with being gay (or bi?) yet. I'm gonna address this piece by piece since there is much to discuss....
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Originally Posted by Geodude View Post
I'm a gay guy who is the newest member in a triad relationship with two other men. One guy identifies somewhere between a Kinsey 4 and 5 bisexual, and he has a couple of close emotional friendships with women, although he is sexually only interested in men.
He could very well be more bi than he's letting on, but that's not bad per se! One great thing about polyamory is it does allow bisexuals flexibilty. You haven't mentioned anywhere whether your triad is going to be intended to be a closed, polyfidelitous one, or an open one where everyone can still have the freedom to explore. I would recommend at least considering the latter.

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He has has our other partner as his partner for the better part of a decade now. However, he has had trouble with coming out and has some internalized homophobia that I think partially manifests himself in his relationship with his friend.

While he has explained her as being just a friend, they are often interpretted publicly as being an intimate couple. This past Saturday at dinner, he mentioned that the two of them were going to brunch the next day with another couple. This, along with the public displays of affection that she shows him, had me confused about their relationship, so I asked him to clarify it for me. Again, he said that she's just a friend.
Well for one, he's had a gay relationship about a decade and he's still not comfortable being out as gay (or at least bi)? No offense on this one but he should consider seeing a therapist about that. Definitely a gay or gay-friendly one...and also bi-friendly and poly-friendly. Fortunately there's some good ones out there. As for him and his gal-pal, it sounds no big deal to me so far, if your other partner doesn't have an issue with it. As long as you both feel the guy isn't lying to y'all and sleeping with her, I wouldn't worry. Again, if your triad is an open one, then you could even encourage him to explore options with her....or not. That's something you'd have to think about.

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The PDA wouldn't bother me at all if he wasn't awkward about myself and our other partner doing the same, even at an appropriate level. He expressed concern about flaunting our sexuality and making people uncomfortable even just by hugging when we have straight guests in our home.
Ok this part right there is BS in my view. One, he's being somewhat hypocritical. Two, straight friends visiting a gay couple/throuple's home should expect to see a little PDA. Hugging? Get real. Your guy really needs to get over his insecurities. So I'm stressing the therapy option a second time here.

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1) His friend may not be totally clear on where they stand and/or where he stands with his other two partners. Or she is just taking whatever affection she can get from him. I sincerely doubt there is any malice to her actions, though.
Is she poly too? I wonder if she's figuring that you've been added to the mix to keep the gay partner busy while the bi-leaning one will then get the freedom to see her. I can see how someone might think that.
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2) He has some serious internalized homophobia and is more comfortable being seen in a heterosexual relationship that doesn't exist than in his real relationships. I think that his issue of the comfort of others is more of a projection of his own discomfort with being seen just by his sexuality, rather than as a full man who happens to be homosexual.
Yes, again I recommend therapy. And again, I wonder if you being added to the mix gives him the freedom to appear as a couple with her, while his male partner can appear as a couple with you? (Keep in mind this is probably sub-conscious and not intentional.) Not that it's a deal-breaker necessarily---it is a benefit of poly in an odd way. But you should be aware of it.

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These two issues are intertwined with eachother, of course. If socially, he wants to spend time with his friend and either of his partnerns, she continues to dote on him and gives off the typical social cues that the two of them are together (such as internlocking arms, sitting close on a couch, etc), which makes me uncomfortable as a primary partner and is probably the number one cue that tells me that she doesn't really 'get it'. He doesn't like to correct people about his relationships because it's none of their business, but by asking, aren't they making it their business?

I want to address these issues as I transition from the position of a secondary partner into a primary partner, but our other partner is not concerned. He isn't threatened by her (neither am I, at least not consciously), and the partner in question has come a damn long way in coming out in the 6ish years since the two of them have been together. However, am I really in a place to express concerns about an existing friendship if I'm new in the relationship?
It IS your business and if you're gonna be a part of this new family, you have every right to get some clarification about what's going on here. That said, you never state anything to show that you're unsure that your two new partners fully love you and care for you. Obviously that's why you're getting into this. So while he obviously has insecurities about his sexuality, you should try to also be aware of your own insecurities about trusting that his love for you and the other guy is genuine and real. So strongly consider that as well.

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Along with our discussion on these issues yesterday, I expressed concern about how I will be introduced to his family and friends once I am living with my partners full-time; something that I don't think he gave previous thought to.
Yeah, all three of you (or four?) need to really think about everyones' role in all this. Everyone's comfort needs to be addressed and dealt with in a secure, considerate, caring way!
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Last edited by RfromRMC; 02-28-2012 at 02:11 PM.
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