Originally Posted by monogamishSF
They had very little alone time, so my partner thought they were going slow. The fact that we spent so much time with her socially didnít strike my SO as ďseeingĒ her
Stop! It isn't.
Your SO wants to have a solo relationship with this girl, right? So it's natural that the two of them would want, well, solo time. Without you. And if you say yes to a secondary, you kind of have to accept that part.
I am not quite sure where the insecurity is coming from; your SO broke your trust once, and time passed, and now you two want to go forward somehow. Yes? It sounds like you weren't ready for the dating-separately thing, but you did it because you wanted your SO to be happy. That's a problem. Don't break your own boundaries.
If you say something's okay, you have to be ready for the repercussions, and your SO needs to be able to trust that you are. At the very least, research the fuck out of everything you're getting into before you get into it.
You know, next time.
She took off her jacket, went to the bathroom to brush her teeth, and came to bed to snuggle. And then she kissed me hello. Friends, my SO has perfect skin and never wears makeup, so NEVER washes her face, except in the shower. And she had washed her face. My ears pricked. She brushed her teeth, too, and since she was making out with someone, I appreciated that courtesy.
At least she washed first! But I have to ask: how in the hell is your nose that good? My partner washes plenty and I can't say as I've ever smelled so much as a trace of my metamour's perfume or shampoo, let alone... that.
So here's a second breach of trust. Apparently you really haven't gotten past the past, which, I will repeat, means that y'all probably shouldn't have gone forward at all with the dating-separately. Doing that means relinquishing a lot of control. The way you've described your boundaries reminds me of medieval courtly love: maybe a kiss in church! Love poems! Admiration from afar! It's pretty clear to me that at least one of you is sexual, so... what were you expecting of them? Can you give me a time frame, here? The narrative doesn't really provide one.
Also, when she came home from her first date, I smelled the same thing on her hands, and she insisted it was her own, from changing a tampon. As Iím writing this, Iím starting to re-think that excuse for the n-th time. I didn't buy it at first, but then eventually believed her that time. And have even since asked, just to be sure, but again: Iím never going to know what happened that night, and who knows what she didn't tell me from their last date.
Careful. You're veering into paranoia. Let's get back on the path of rational thinking and focus on what's in bold. You're right: you will never know. So you have a choice here. You can beat yourself up and let it poison your relationship, or you can concentrate on what you do know. (Since trusting your SO is kind of not in the picture at the moment.) You know what she has told you, and that it was enough to break your boundaries.
The only person you can change here is yourself, so ask yourself what you want to do next instead of focusing so hard on her. Is this the relationship you want? If not, why are you staying? Love isn't love when it's at the expense of who we are and feeling safe.
Your therapist is absolutely right: before you do a damn thing else with another person, get it sorted between yourselves. The thing is that your SO has a point. You've got her on a tight leash. You have your reasons, but so does she. She wants to move forward with her life. You can move with her, but you can only ask her to move so slowly. The alternative is to accept that your boundaries and her desires are incompatible and go from there.
And never take leaving off the table. You need to be ready to do what's best for you. If that's moving on, then so be it. Otherwise, you'll get tangled up in this nasty mess of "How can I make it work?" Honey, you can't. The two of you could, possibly, at some point, if you can rebuild trust after two violations in, what, a year and a half?
Maybe I'm just a fool-me-twice kind of girl (shame on me, I am GONE) but I damn sure didn't stay with anyone who wasn't right until... there he was. The one who was. The one who respected me, my boundaries, my needs, and a hell of a lot of the extras. The one whose partner was able to trust him to be with both of us, and considering she's monogamous, that is a giant leap of faith. I told myself, after a string of not respecting my own needs, that I wouldn't bother unless I had all of that in place.
I've needed it there. When I was doing myself dirty, going along to get along, I picked up a lot of scars. Bless him, he gets this, perhaps better than I do some days, and in turn I respect what he's giving me. It sounds like that's missing from your relationship. It sounds like something you need, and if it doesn't show up, what are you going to do?