Issue with secondary
Just wondering if this has happened to any folks and how you deal with it.
I have a long-term primary relationship (20+ years) and a long-term long distance BF (friends for 5 years, building a more intimate relationship for 4). Most of the relationship time with BF has been long distance, from a few hours away to across the country.
Over time, we've become very close, communicate almost daily and see each other when we can. It isn't often, but is good. This is his first poly relationship, although he believes he's naturally wired this way. We've had our issues, including him not telling me about a woman he was seeing occasionally when we first started becoming more than friends and lived in adjacent cities. He's grown a lot in terms of communication and we've been through a lot together.
I don't have a problem with him seeing other women (how could I?!), but I'm utterly annoyed with his ongoing drama with the woman above. We're both about 10 years older than him, and she really wanted him to settle down with her, which he was not into. He's been upfront with her about me. She now lives across the country from him, but periodically pops up, wants to visit, they visit, have drama, he breaks it off and swears he'll never see her again. Repeat.
He recently moved closer to me, and we discussed me visiting him in his new place, but thought it might be busy right now, so we were waiting. Enter drama woman. She called him, wanted to visit immediately and he said yes, then writes me a long e-mail about how tormented he is that he said yes, etc. etc.
Here's my issue. I don't care if she visits him (apparently the sex is amazing...although we'll be back to condoms again since she isn't known for her safe sex practices), but I am SO tired of listening to the pre-, during and post-visit drama. I'm the kind of person who thinks for a long time about things before I make a decision, and I tend to stick by them. Hearing the same pattern over and over again is driving me crazy.
The problem is, if I try to disengage, he thinks I'm being jealous, and strangely tries to reassure me with platitudes that make me annoyed ("I wish it were you coming..." etc.). If I told him I didn't want to hear his drama, he'd be hurt or angry or think I was lying and was just jealous.
Have any of you had experiences where it's hard to separate out someone else's perception that you're being jealous when there's another issue at hand? I know my instinctive response of avoiding him for the next week while he processes is not the right one!
"Love takes off masks that we fear we cannot live without and know we cannot live within."James Baldwin