Hi + confused + need help.
Thanks for being here and thanks in advance for any guidance and coaching you can provide. I'm joining this site as a means and attempt to understand my partner.
I am generally monogamous, though I've tried everything and have no issue with folks who choose polyamory. I've just always felt it creates unnecessary drama and logistical issues that take away from all of the relationships in the poly relationship as well as other interests that are time consuming or attention intensive like art or athletic training for example.
When I entered into this relationship with my partner I knew he was poly. I had refrained from entering into a relationship with him for years because I didn't believe poly was for me and something I didn't want to negotiate from a time and logistics standpoint in particular. Eventually - and without coercion i think it is important to mention - he decided he didn't need to be poly and it was worth giving up that option to be in a relationship with me and though we hadn't been in contact for a while he sought me out to propose this to me, so I took him at his word and we are now in a relationship.
Due to various outside issues, some of which are mutual codependence issues which we are in counseling for, he is now questioning everything and wondering if he was really honest enough with himself and me when he said he could and wanted to give up poly to be with me.
I am trying really hard not to take it personally and not feel deceived, but the bottom line is that I do. I guess my overall question is this: what is it that a person can get from multiple partners that is worth the overall difficulty and drama that you can't from a single partner?
Please don't judge me as closed minded - again I'm really trying to understand and not take it personally - I'm reading what I can find online, posting here, and even reading The Four Agreements again to limber up my mind for this... So - why does this feel extremely selfish of my partner and like a way for them to not really deal with our issues?
Wouldn't this be like me saying I was ok with poly to manipulate him into the relationship in the first place, then deciding I wasn't ok with it after we were deeply involved and demanded we give it up?
Argh! Please help. I wish there were a magic spell to invoke that would immediately make me ok with all this without feeling like I'm compromising myself and what I want.
What I want is this: a happy satisfied and healthy partner who is stimulated by and engaged in their life with me who is my partner in crime. I want to be their go-to girl - the one they call when something good or bad happens - their emergency contact - the one they want to go on vacation with - etc - and not have to wonder what I mean to my partner.
Is this possible? If so - how?
He has been in several poly relationships previously - all of which appear to be failures to me in that the moment he decided he wanted to see someone else - even though his partners were seeing other folks - they would freak out and it would end the relationship. So for the most part he's been in poly relationships without really dating other people - just allowing his partner to date other people and having the option open to do so himself, but not actually doing it.
And finally - one more question - isn't this just a way to avoid commitment? And I don't mean this to be judgemental - I'm really just trying to understand. What is the difference between being poly and just dating whomever you feel like whenever you feel like it? I realize there are supposed "negotiated boundaries" but what ARE those boundaries and how do you ensure they aren't being crossed? Why is it different than just serious (not casual) dating?
If we've committed to each other - what does that mean if people are invited in and out of the relationship on a whim?
I truly believe there are infinite people in the world who are interesting and wonderful people who I COULD fall in love with, but why keep trading in who you DO love for a possible new love? For the momentary excitement of the first few months? Everyone outside a committed relationship looks shiny and fun from within one mainly because they hide their flaws simply by living somewhere else and/or being less involved in the day to day minutae. It's easy to look amazing, witty and fun if you just pop in and out of a relationship, but when you deal with bills, pets, family, cleaning the toilet - it mars the shine. How can you even begin to compete with someone a) who doesn't live with you and doesn't have to deal with him never cleaning the bathroom and therefore doesn't seem like a disappointed nag and b) ends up looking really fun because the time they would spend together would be time specifically carved out for meaningful interaction whether it be deep or just fun - not cleaning the cat litter box, food shopping or negotiating "boundaries" for the relationship.
Please help - as you can see I am spinning wildly out of control.