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Old 06-07-2012, 05:14 PM
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Anneintherain Anneintherain is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Seattle-ish
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Originally Posted by neo651 View Post
I've known this girl for 10 years. I'll spare you the extremely long story and skip straight to the bulletpoints. We've known each other for 10 years. We are each others' best friend. We've briefly dated twice. Both times I ended it. We've always been in love with each other for basically the entire 10 years, despite not realizing it at various times.
Can I ask why you two broke up those two times, as it seems like she wasn't poly at the time. How often would you be able to see her physically now? Is the long distance something that has an end in sight?

Originally Posted by neo651 View Post
-I hate this feeling that from her busy schedule with her other two boyfriends that she has to find time to fit me in now too.
-I hate the idea that if not for them I could be spending 3x as much time with her.
Well obviously with long distance that isn't true now...and...DO you feel that she has to find time to fit you in? Or do you feel she's doing it gladly?

A more useful way to look at is is how much time do you need to spend with a partner to feel happy in a relationship? If I didn't spend at least 3 days a week one on one time with my husband, I'd feel kind of neglected and disconnected. If you want to spend 7 days a week with a partner then it seems obvious dating a poly person wouldn't work for you unless you were content to spend time hanging out with her other partners sometimes.

Friends and lovers alike, there's usually X amount of time you enjoy hanging out with them, and then after that you get stir crazy and want to have some space. For instance, if my husband wants to hang out with me more than 5 days a week I start feeling irritable and we retreat to separate parts of the house to do our own thing.

Originally Posted by neo651 View Post
-I feel, that by consenting to be in a relationship like this, that I'm validating an internal sense of inferiority. I feel like I'm admitting to myself that I'm not good enough to justify being someone's only partner and so I have to settle for being a cog in a machine instead.
Obviously if you feel like that, you feel like that. Except a poly person often doesn't necessarily have just one "one and only" and so you can't not be good enough in that dynamic, justifying a monogamous mindset just will make you run around in circles as it doesn't make any sense. If it's important to be sure to be #1, obviously poly carries more risk, as even if she agrees you'd be her husband and father to her kids, when you leave your heart open to loving others, you can't guarantee that you wont end up with just as strong feelings for somebody else.

Lots of poly people DO have a #1 in their heart, or primary partner (or feel totally in love with other partners but not that they are their "heart & home"). Have you clarified this point with her? Do you know how long her other relationships have been going, how committed she is to making it work with them, are they married or otherwise seriously involved with others? Obviously if she would like to live with more than one person and have kids with more than one person it sounds like that might be more than you are willing to take on. Certainly don't make assumptions about things that are deal breakers for you.

I'm guessing her other two partners are important to her as she took their input about how she shouldn't be doing things with you if you weren't her partner too, which indicates to me that she's not a casual relationship sort of girl? Have you met her other partners? That can help realize that you aren't all cogs in a machine, but people, probably awesome people, that all care about the same person. I know time is scarce but I'd suggest that if you go see her, meeting her partners and THEIR other partners if everybody is game could really give you a better idea if it's a group of people that you'd feel safe having in your life, cause for better or worse, if you date a poly person these other people will impact on your life, whether or not you spend any time with them.

Originally Posted by neo651 View Post
-The little time I do have with her is poisoned by my jealousies. I can't just enjoy our time, I'm compelled to continually talk about these issues even though all I'm doing is going in circles
I have no coping mechanism for this and I don't know how to create one.
Have either of you read books about poly? There are lots of good books out there. Is she trying to help you find sources to deal with your feelings or not? Obviously if she doesn't know where to find things for you to read or people to talk to that might help that's one thing but if you're struggling and she's not finding ways to support you, that's not a positive sign. I'm not assuming and hoping she isn't leaving you to figure it all out on your own, but I just thought I'd throw that in.

Do a tag search for jealousy, read the sticky page on books and whatnot, and if you haven't (I'll recommend Opening Up by Tristian Taormino), read this article NOW if you haven't Opening Up is good because it has discussion checklists for things you may not have covered, like deal breakers, safe sex, and almost every thing else that you've talked about here.

Anyway, my long winded spiel gets down to this. In poly, it's very useful to focus on what you DO need to be happy and see if you think you can get that from a relationship. Whether it's X dates a week, agreements about safe sex that you need from a partner, agreements or understanding about how a partner handles their sexual & romantic life (are or aren't comfortable with a partner having random hookups, casual relationships, other partners who they'll go off and vacation with etc). If you need her focused on you when you're together does she refrain from phoning or answering texts from other partners, etc etc.

If you know you need certain things and she can/will provide them, then maybe you'll be glad if you try. Conversely if there are things you need that she cant give to you, well - mono or poly that's just not smart to get into a relationship with a person if that's the case.

Good luck to you!
Happiness will never come to those who fail to appreciate what they already have.
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