I cannot say it better.
The question for you is :
- are you monoamorous and just NOT wanting to be in any polyships?
- Or Monoamorous AND could enjoy being in a polyship?
Either way is perfectly valid, but you have to learn which it is about yourself and then let him know.
Monoamorous: desire or ability to love one at a time.
Polyamorous: deisre or ability to love more than one at a time.
A polyamorous person could choose to be in a monoship relationship structure -- just me and you make only 2!
A monoamorous person could choose to be in a polyship structure -- one of the "V" arms for instance. They have their one and only Sweetie but the Sweetie is shared.
If you prefer your own romances to come in monogamous shape only that is ok! It's not a soft limit, but a HARD LIMIT. If you are sure already about this -- go with being sure. Do not do things you really don't want to do. That's not self-respecting behavior.
But if I expand on Option 2: Enter a Time of "In Between ON PURPOSE" for Year.
I would add this perspective.
You choose to OPEN in mind and heart (even if in body or soul)
-- and share his inner life with him and listen to his poly thoughts and feelings. Because he is polyamorous and you are willing to honor that and not leave him emotionally high and dry on a limb. He is your partner and if in a monogamous structure you are it.
The only partner he gets to share is vulnerable with. You decide to get secure and be ok with being a little uncomfortbale until it gets comfortable -- willing to hear this thoughts and feelings on poly. No guilting or shaming -- just be willing to learn to be an active listener.
While he choose to guarantee a CLOSED relationship structure, a monogamous one
. Because you are monoamorous and he is willing to honor that for you for that block of time. He is willing to not ask you to open further than you can go. He is willing to share his poly thoughts and feelings but will not push
for Open in body and soul as well and make you nuts with it and feel emotionally unsafe.
Could agree to leave it there for a year and then assess how it is going a year later. Could have the break up emergency plan already mapped out. Sometimes KNOWING how it is going to play out can ease the fear/discomfort/yucky. So... map it out.
- If willing to stretch further, make the next plan for the next year. (This includes first Openings -- just dates. No jumping into bed right off! And the safer sex talks for then that DOES come online in his other relationships. If you two are fluid bonded, what he does with his body affects your health. Where is the TMI line going to be drawn in this arrangement? But don't jump the gun. Note it has to be talked about, but just ID.)
- If not willing stretch further, invoke the break up plan you formulated. Agree to break up peacefully and be good friends and exes to each other. That's nothing to sneeze at.
And in the meanwhile, read online resources together to create
1) mental intimacy shared
2) emotional intimacy shared
3) better understanding of polyamory and put down fear of the unknown. Not because you want to DO it all the way right now.
But because then you are not "whatiffing it up" in your head into SCARY places in this year of "trying it on in a safe way" -- just in mind and heart.
I am not minimizing your hurt at all -- just hoping to get you to realize all is not destined to automatic DOOM
here. You can choose for yourself in your own life how you want to be living it.
You and he can choose to talk and choose how you want to be for the next year, and how you want to be as exes if it comes to that at the end of this period of serious discernment.
But then the pressure if off and you don't have to be all "DECIDE NOW" or "UGH!" inside.
Continue as lovers, and dating partners for this time. CONTINUE or dial it down to friends, whatever you best feel is the right thing at the next
time. Maybe you are only willing for 6 mos. Or 3 mos. Pick the time together. And then... could see how it goes.
I know this is hard to feel right now, but this too is an experience shared. Sharing Vulnerable with each other builds trust. So the next go around on whatever it is then isn't so scary. It may be NEW to the couple, but the couple can assure each other with "Alright. Here's another. Not the same as last time but we made it through that. We can make it through this."
Whether the relationship is a couple of friends or a dating couple in the future? Trust is a good thing. So are friends. Nothing to sneeze at. You can handle this, and you will be ok however it turns out.
Remember to breathe
at this crossroads place. Assess your options. And whatever it is you choose -- to break up, to try to learn, to do something totally different and not yet listed... YOU choose. You are the pilot of your own ship. You make your own choices. You will be ok. Breathe, breathe.