Originally Posted by NovemberRain
What sort of advice are you seeking? I can't quite tell. That seems a very articulate explanation of the problem. I can relate, I have a man that would like more distance than that, even.
Why do you suppose he is jealous, when he only wants three days a week?
Okay, I did ask him--and I'm also elaborating on why I want advice.
Husband says he doesn't like actually knowing what I am doing all the time when we're not together--it's not that he's jealous about needing more time with me; he's happy to let me be away from him, but wants not to know what I'm doing in my him-free time. Right now, he feels he has to know too much about my "other" life because we are living together full-time. I also bring my boyfriend here sometimes when husband is sleeping and we are intimate together in another part of the house, which husband has said is ok (said so before I ever did it; I definitely sought his approval first) but then brings up when we talk about his jealousy as a difficult thing to deal with. There isn't a really logical other place to go. If there were, I certainly wouldn't bring my boyfriend here for that.
I will say, though, that even when he complains about seeing and knowing too much, he also complains that one thing that makes him jealous is not knowing much about my relationship with my boyfriend. He feels like it's some Big Important Relationship that he doesn't understand...So he seems to complain when he knows things about the relationship (D/s elements in my relationship with my boyfriend are very threatening to him, and while I don't tend to explicitly tell him things we do, he sometimes surmises things or sees evidence of them), but then he complains when he doesn't know. It's a catch-22 for me. I never know what to volunteer information-wise or what not to.
I guess what I want evidence about is how to help my husband over his jealousy and try to repair our relationship. Right now our sex life is practically non-existent, but I don't feel like I can just jump back in with the relationship the way it is. I would really ideally like to be with both my husband and my boyfriend, but this relationship with my husband is not working as it is. I am not the best with other people's jealousy--basically, when I feel jealousy (and I do!) I work through it myself or with my friends/extended poly community, and I try not to bother my partner with feelings of guilt when I know they're not doing anything wrong, and it's all my own issues. But it seems like many people say snippy, jealous, passive aggressive shit to their partners when they're envious or jealous. I call that "brain vomit" and I am really not sympathetic about brain vomit. For example, I have gotten passive aggressive texts about my boyfriend's penis from my husband, and that's just not the kind of thing I'm going to tolerate. So where I think some partners might receive those texts and be like "oh, it seems like you're jealous, what can I do to reassure you?", I'm more like "why are you saying this stuff? it seems you're jealous, which is okay, but please just be upfront about it--this is unacceptable, so please stop."
It's almost like I don't want to reward bad behavior, and I feel like reassuring him when he's approaching things on that level is doing exactly that. It's almost impossible for me to consider, in the above scenario, fawning over my husband and having sex with him after he sent me passive aggressive texts, but I think that is what many people would do, and it might actually work in the sense that it would reassure the partner and curb the feelings of jealousy. (Dan Savage seems to recommend this kind of treatment; like "oh, your husband is sulking--sleep with him!" I don't like to sleep with sulky people who are acting juvenile. And feeling obligated to have sex is kind of a trigger for me anyway...)
I feel like I'm kind of babbling...the point is, we have gotten to a point where his jealousy about my other relationship has driven a wedge between us. It's really less the jealousy itself and more his inability to communicate the jealousy in a way I can deal with, as well as his inability to identify what would help--he does say that not being in the same space/house as often would help. But living apart seems like an extreme and drastic measure, when we have lived together for 8 years and have a child together. And financially it's basically impossible at this time anyhow.
Another thing we have tried is him hanging out with my boyfriend. They do get along and they do hang out occasionally, and it does seem to help somewhat, but it's not a cure-all by any means.
And we're in therapy.