Originally Posted by wokeupconfused
We grocery shop together, we go to functions together, people recognize US as a couple. IF I show up somewhere with a different lady on my arm..... well you know small towns and the gossip...
I live in a small town and work in another and we have been here now for over a decade. Due to my work I frequently run into people that know me when we are out. Due to my profession we are not "out" as poly (which is definitely something that could get me fired) - so how do we handle it?
No PDA between Dude and I when we are out together in town. Whenever I run into someone who knows me I make a point of acknowledging them, introducing them to Dude as "our friend" or "our roommate" depending on the situation and make a mention of MrS. Bold as brass. If you don't act as if there is anything to hide then most people assume that there isn't - they may think you are weird but since most people want to jump to "cheating" as an assumption then if you don't fit a "cheater" profile in their mind then poly is completely off of their radar. It probably helps that Dude and MrS or all three of us together are seen as often as I am with Dude or MrS individually.
For instance, Dude and I ran into the insurance guy who handles my disability insurance while picking up pizza. He is also the insurance guy for many of my professional colleagues. He saw me with Dude and his first comment was "Oh, did you and MrS break up?" (with a glint in his eye because he has been hitting on me since we met - blech) I laugh and say "No, 16 years and still going strong - he can't get rid of me that easily, this is our friend, Dude. >they shake hands< MrS is at home working on >blank
< and waiting for pizza." I then have to endure a lengthy sob story about how he and his wife just went through a messy divorce, etc. etc. until our pizza is ready. So, once he got the "is she available? is she cheating?" out of his system and the conversation was focused on HIM...crisis averted.
Another tale - MrS goes to movies with our friend JB's wife (who likes movies that MrS likes and JB and I don't), afterwards they went to dinner at a restaurant that MrS and I used to frequent a LOT when we lived at the old house. (MrS and MrsJB have no relationship other than movie-going friends BTW.) The waitress
asked if he had broken up with me (waitresses always remember MrS - he has a memorable appearance and tips well for good service) - he laughs and says "No, but she does have terrible taste in movies." he explains the situation and the conversation turns to the movie that they had just seen. No crisis.