Sorry, I was trying to see if I followed what you were saying, and had a feeling I was a bit off.
Originally Posted by Flight85
Yes, my primary partner and I live together. Yes, my primary partner has hesitantly agreed to the relationship that I have with my long time friend that once was considered an affair. While it was always just an extension of our friendship it was still considered an affair because of how it was handled. The situation now is that my sencondary partner is starting a relationship. I'm ok with that. As dingedheart said, I'm wondering if I'm right or wrong to think that my years of investment and friendship should be valued more?
So, you are comparing the 14 years of friendship, including the few years of being lovers, letting her live with you, and supporting her financially, to ten months of knowing this new guy, whom she wishes to regard as an "equal" to you in her brand of poly. If you and she had never had the affair, would your years of friendship with her still hold sway and determine the place her other friends hold in her life?
I can understand -- you feel that your years of investing in your relationship with her should put you in an elevated position over him. However, I'm not sure what that means to you - do you feel she should ask you permission for things? What would being her primary look like? Because labels don't really mean anything; it's how people act to reflect the perceived meaning of the labels. So, break it down in a practical rather than theoretical way. How do you see being equal versus being primary actually playing out in real life situations?
You should also understand that there are many people, myself included, who don't see love relationships as something belonging in a hierarchy. If I had a lover for ten years and one for one year, I would regard them as equal, because to me, love is love. Loving is loving. Some people don't like having goal-oriented relationships; we just want to have them be the best they can be right now and not worry about "moving forward" in any direction. But that doesn't mean that each person I love equally wouldn't have their own special place in my heart. It doesn't mean that particular circumstances in our relationships, specific to us, would not be respected. It wouldn't mean we couldn't have boundaries, but it would probably mean that I wouldn't automatically
defer to one over the other. I would weigh each situation according to the dynamic of each partner and act in the best way possible to support each relationship in thriving.
Does that make sense and perhaps help you see a possibility for her perspective? What does she mean when she says you are equal? Has she explained or described what she means by that?