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Old 12-02-2012, 12:29 PM
sparklepop sparklepop is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 265
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Hi Random,

I really like your thread - it is very interesting to me. I don't know the wife, or you, or the man-hinge, so I'm only going on what I can see!

Liking Metamours
I'll let you into a secret.... I live with my girlfriend and her husband. We are both her primaries, but we are not involved with each other. From the start, he has wanted a close bond with me. My GF also tried to force, or assume, a platonic love situation. To be honest, I don't think I'll ever get there.

He's a nice guy really and has accepted me into their lives commendably. On the plus side, he can be lighthearted and very generous. On the bad side, he is often needy, overly-physical, inappropriate, unaware of boundaries, can be very miserly, can be extremely moody, very messy to live with, lots going on in his head, doesn't communicate well. We have very little in common and I, like you, used to wonder if our situation would work.

Two years in, I've settled my feelings and see it this way - as long as we can get along ok, not antagonise each other and just live in harmony, that's a good start. When relationships are forced between metamours (which is understandably the case - our hinges love us both and want their two favourite people to get along!) it can make it even harder. I hate being forced.. I am stubborn I'm not saying all this to bitch him out... I'm saying it to show that it IS ok to accept that your metamour just isn't a person you'd choose as a best friend.

How frosty your relationship is will obviously effect the future... but, I see something very positive in your relationship. You've already said you probably wouldn't want to live with him. I applaud you for your realism! So... actually... you are in a situation that could very well work out for the best!!

Early Poly Mistakes

My GF and I refer to the first 6 months of our poly journey, and the lovers we lost, as Casualties of Poly Hell. Like you, the three of us went into poly together with little previous experience. It's like three blind mice trying to lead each other.

It's very, very, very common for people to be overly-controlling at the start of poly. You want guidelines, you want to go at a steady pace, you don't want to mess up by going too far too fast. Some of us are more controlling than others. We cling to control when we feel that something is slipping away from us. Now, none of us would have ever sent each other's external partners schedules; but we have discussed schedules between ourselves - i.e. let's only see other people once a week. Was she being a bitch or could she not trust hubby to be honest with you, or her, about certain things? I've read a lot of threads recently about hubby following his peeny-weeny and not wanting to get involved in fights between wife and girlfriend... so burying his head in the sand and not really being clear with anyone. If your BF needs everything to be done for him, or if he has chosen a controlling partner... there's probably something in that!

How is the controlling, regarding yourself, nowadays?

Ways to Work With Your Metamour
If you are going to stay in the relationship, you don't HAVE to like the wife. BUT... if you do happen to stumble upon a way to feel easier about her, surely it's good for you in the long run, right?

So... start with forgiveness. Understand that she felt the need to control because she was insecure and scared. Understanding that someone isn't a power-house can make them much less of a monster in your mind. It doesn't mean she always acted the right way; but it does mean that you can look beyond her actions and see her motivations. If I can't stand someone, but can see their fear, I start to feel sorry for them, which cools down my animosity.

Next, remember that women are competitive creatures. I don't care what they say about men - I think women are the ones to watch!! You've said it yourself - you've felt jealous about her; so of course she'd feel jealous about you. If anything, she'd be incredibly threatened by you, because their relationship started long before you came along.

Thirdly, remember that just because someone suggests something, doesn't mean they're going to be 100% ok with it. Have you ever suggested a restaurant that sounded good, dragged other people along, then found out that the food was awful? Or a film, or a holiday destination, etc? Something can seem like a great idea until it smacks you in the face. You also have the added responsibility that YOU were the one that suggested this thing... so how can you possibly have a problem with it now? Better hurry up and get on board! Rushed = guilt = stress.

Fourth, look to your own behaviour. Are you being nice? You say your boyfriend knows you don't like his wife.... how much have you said? It might be time to consider being more diplomatic and keeping some of your opinions on a more neutral basis.... only talking to her about issues between the two of you, instead of putting him in the middle (if you ever have). Even if she bitches you out to him all the time and you know it - be the better person and keep a little quiet.

If you can look at all of these things, you might find that it becomes easier to think of your long term future with him.

Now, on his part, he also needs to cut you some slack. Perhaps you can show him some of the threads on the forums about metamour like-levels. You could even ask the question here - "how much do you like your metamour? would you be happier if they weren't around? If you have multiple lovers, how much do you expect them to get on?" Then show him that.

How often are you asked to go out with them as a group? If she doesn't like you much, what's the point of that? To make himself feel better, burying his head in the sand?

One thing my girlfriend did raise with me a few months ago was the family dynamic. I'd signed up to live with them as a V and be a second mommy to their toddler. That means I can't just expect weekends away with my GF, alone, all the time. I was starting to expect it, because I'm just not that excited to spend time with her husband... and she pointed it out to me. She made me think and it was good. I can suck it up and spend time with him, because it makes her happy and it's what I signed up for - she's not single, she has extras.

Now, if I didn't live with them, it would be a slightly different story. She'd probably still want us to do things as a three (or four, with toddler) and I would still do it, to make her happy, even if I had little interest in it. But would I do it every weekend? No. Would I do it more than I spent time with her alone? No.

So... my questions...

How often do you currently see BF? How often would you like to see him? Middle ground - how often do you think is possible and fair with your arrangement and his commitments?

How often do you see wife? Do you ever see her alone, or always with him? How often would you like?

You are right though.... you are responsible for vocalising your needs and I do know it can be awkward and uncomfortable to do so. If you realise your needs aren't being filled, you have to tell that to your boyfriend. Just be careful not to put it across in an accusatory or ultimatum kind of way. Ask him what his needs are and what he would like. Also, what his wife's needs are. I do absolutely agree that you should not have to be in a mono/poly relationship, if you need something more. That is absolutely fair. You sound like you've got your head screwed on
__________________
me: female, 29
GF: my primary girlfriend, 39

3 year, open poly V, long distance
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