Originally Posted by GalaGirl
I wanted to hold this up. When DH and I were dating we were not exclusive. We were open (now we are in a closed time.)
He was ready to say things like "I love you" much sooner than me. I told him I am a slow burner there and not to take my lack of words as "not love" or "lack of interest." I'm just a slow burner and well... yah. If people are mind, heart, body and soul? I find sharing my body or mind a whole lot easier than sharing my heart and soul. It isn't that I do not want to, it's just that these things come online at different speeds with me, dude.
Where he's wired pretty close together -- he gets those things online much faster.
For a YEAR he'd go "I love you." And I'd go "I know." Sometimes with a smile, sometimes with a look of terror. Like "Aaaaah! He's in love, and I'm faaaaallllling too and aaaaah not READY! Don't expect so much of me, I'm not ready!"
I asked for a year of space and he gave it. By then I was not totally confident about dealign with hurts, but I was more ready to try, and yes. I was ready to say "I love you" back.
So... I think an honest talk with B about his inner world state is in order. How are his buckets? Mind? Heart? Body? Soul?
Esp if he's not super emoter -- I get it. But the trio convo has to happen. Don't put THAT off or not be accountable. Shoot, maybe there's a friend 4th pair of eyes/ears he could practice organizing his bucket thoughts with before talking in trio?
However it gets organized... have the "What's this all about here? What now? How to proceed with grace?" convo
Is his own bucket stuff ALSO mixed up with his feelings sloshing about at seeing you and A together? Jealous you guys are fast burners? Is he feeling left behind like a third wheel? It's unfair to push him to burn faster -- he's the one feeling the burn. And maybe he wants to love, but he feels inadequate at his speed?
If DH had told me "hurry UP! Just love me and say it already!" I would have been terribly hurt, horrified and rather than allowing myself to simmer and open up into loving him more I would have clammed up. Threatening to leave me when I was at a vulnerable emotional growing place. And the reason for a year? My previous ex had bombed in a year, so I wanted to have some distance from THAT before opening up to the risk of hurting again. Two break ups too close together would have just STUNK for me. DH respected that and was content to say "I love you" while I responded with "I know."
Perhaps it is another thing. A case of "well, gave it a try and now feeling it's more friend level than not. NOW what do I do?" in B's head.
Maybe if spoken word is no good, just written word? He needs to give a report on the buckets -- all of you really.
Be a friend first. And really? If there's a break up looming? Prepare to be a good ex. You agreed to "all in, or you go."
(I don't think that was the contract I'd sign up for, but I'm not you. So honor this contract, exit gracefully, be a good ex then. Steer clear for a bit and let them sort their dealio.)
Then see what happens. Maybe you and A end up together. Maybe not. Maybe the trio wants to renegotiate a new contract and try again. Who knows.
But allow yourself to end ONE contract WELL before plunging on to another thing. Even if it's some of the same cast of players.
The tending of heart gardens can be painful, seem bleak, barren. But for new things to grow, gardens must be tended, the glunk put in the compost, and then new seeds planted. Everything in turn, in season. Can't harvest anything before planting seed, can't compost anything without pulling out, etc. One thing at a time.
Hang in there.