@SchrodingersCat- We've been trying, exactly what you describe there...for months now. The little touches, being tentatively affectionate, doing nice little things for each other, little gifts, trying to set aside time to spend with each other. He seems to think things are fine, or should be fine now but I'm still feeling extremely wary and reserved. He seems to be baffled about why I'm not happy or fine, despite my attempts to tell him and now he seems to be getting impatient for us to be ok.
I say this because... in my opinion... being unhappy, especially with a primary partner, can cause a great deal of heartache and at the very least, make poly difficult. You find yourself craving the attention and new love of another, whilst wrapped in a fading-yet-familiar security blanket with your husband. But here's what I know.... if my girlfriend ever got to the point where we were mediocre and she was fully throwing herself into someone else... not only would I struggle more with poly; I wouldn't want to be there any more. It would break my heart.
I think part of the problem is that I don't consider my husband to be my primary partner. I think up until a few months ago, for a good 2 years there we didn't have any relationship, and my boyfriend was my primary partner. I'm struggling to hang in there and see if there's any chance of having any sort of relationship with my husband at this point. And I am aware that he wants more, he wants us to be primary again and I don't want to hurt him, but I am really not sure I can do that now.
If it were feasible for me to take 6 months away, I would try it. Just to see how it felt. That may still be something on the table though he wouldn't like it.
I'm definitely going to see a counselor. I need some help working through all this, I know that for sure.
If reading that paragraph made you feel claustrophobic or resistant... listen to your gut. Is what you really want a platonic, close relationship with your husband, but romance with other people?
I have to admit, I do feel a bit of claustrophobia and resistance at the thought of giving in and settling back in with my husband. If I thought he'd be open to the idea of a platonic, close relationship I would suggest that- but given his assertions lately to the contrary...I don't know. I know I should possibly broach the subject, but I think he will take that as a rejection and just get angry and demand that I get out.
At least things seem to be getting better with my boyfriend. We've been trying to reconnect, he's been trying to reassure me about my place with him. We've been discussing what's been happening with his other girl (not much, so far but I told him I know I need to be ok with whatever happens with her so I've been trying to talk to him about the possibility of them having sex, even starting a relationship, trying to be ok with either and be secure and have faith that it won't wreck our relationship.) I'm starting to feel like things will be ok there.
I honestly don't have a lot of hope that my marriage will last much longer. The thought makes me sad. I know I'd miss him, I'd miss the closeness, the stability, the security I've had with him. I'd miss raising our child together. I'd miss leaning on each other, helping each other out. I'd miss the comfortable, the familiar. I'll admit I'm pretty terrified of the unknown right now, of the thought of being alone, and even if my boyfriend and I manage to stay together through everything, it'll still be long distance, so for all practical purposes, I realize I'll be alone, and that's a scary thought.
---Just had a talk with my husband and we are finding that a problem we're running into is that each of us seems to be making assumptions about the other that turn out to be incorrect. I said we don't seem to know each other very well anymore and that we need to try to work more on communication and that maybe if we were able to communicate better we could get to know each other again and re-establish some sort of connection or level of intimacy again. I also used some of what I'd read here- about how we might want to try to set a time period for us to achieve this, to come up with some specific, measurable, attainable goals for our relationship to improve and revisit what, if any, progress we've made at the end of this time period. He doesn't seem all that enthusiastic, but it gives me hope that one way or another, there might be a light at the end of the tunnel and not endless limbo.
Thank you for the replies, I appreciate them very much.