Welcome to the forum.
I can very much relate to your story and I am truly sorry that you are going through this.
So, firstly - has the sex completely stopped during the four months that J has been with W? Have you had sex at all? Do you know for certain that she is regularly having sex with W? What was your sex life (and relationship) like just before she started dating him (still disconnected like before, or better?)
I think it is very understandable for you to feel that your needs aren't being met, since you said that your shared hobbies and time have also dwindled. You are lonely in your partnership and that is a sad thing. I understand that feeling and I am very sure that many people on this forum have felt that way at times, too.
Has J explained this so far? Has she given you reasons for having sex with W, but not you? Do you have a child or anything else at all that could effect the frequency of your sexual relationship? Is she kinky and you're vanilla, or vice versa? Is there anything that you know she finds fulfillment with in him that she doesn't in you? When you do (or did) have sex, was it fulfilling?
Your Needs In Primary Relationship
The first thing you need to do is decide what you are willing to accept from a primary partner. I'm hearing that you need:
- a primary who has an active sexual relationship with you
- a primary who will work on your relationship before adding other people
- a primary who will not neglect the relationship during NRE
- a primary who makes you feel valued and understood
- a primary who wants to take action and work with you
- a primary who gives you reasons for their actions
- a primary who shares some hobbies with you
All of these things are completely reasonable. If you want those things, you absolutely should have them. Even if it isn't perfect, you should be feeling like at least 70% of all that is being met, or aiming to be met, most of the time.
NRE is a tricky one. I think it's complete crap when people neglect their partners during it. However, I do think that some distraction does happen and can be forgiven. I do think that if a partner says "you seem wrapped up in NRE, I'm unhappy, can we talk, connect, do something together?" that a caring NRE partner would immediately be concerned about this. I'm not hearing that J is concerned about this. I'm hearing that she's hiding from it. What you're talking about isn't a momentary distraction - it's long term neglect of your relationship that is never fully patched up.
I do think you are completely right - it's completely acceptable to want a primary that fulfills you in certain essential ways. Poly can be great for getting extra needs met, if you believe in it. But, yes, there is a fine line between avoiding relationship problems by seeking others and simply meeting some other (or shorter term) gaps in your life.
If sex with your primary is important to you, then it's important. If it's not important to her - if she values something else, whilst wanting to get her kicks elsewhere, then she needs a partner who is happy with that. There is nothing wrong with finding sex important - I find it essential to my primary relationship.
How Much is Enough?
If this helps at all, I'm in a similar situation to you. My GF and I have had little to no sexual contact at times when she has been focusing her sexual attention on a new partner. I find this normal - but unnerving. It certainly is not conducive to greater security. I expect a little dip during her NRE, but I have time frames and she knows about them:
4-6 weeks of disconnect - I bring it up, we talk
3 months - bigger issue, needs action of some kind
6 months - very big issue, possible that I will no longer be happy in the relationship
Having these outlined means that she knows, ahead of time, what's important for me. For her, sex isn't *as* important and I accept that. So we compromise. Our compromise is that I'll be patient for 4-6 weeks. If it gets to the three month mark, I'm going to be considering our compatibility.
This also helps me keep things in perspective for *our* relationship. I used to have sex about three times a week with my ex GF. My current could go a month without sex, with no problem. So, things feel good for me in the middle - about every 2-3 weeks. The comfortable point is usually halfway between what you want and what your partner wants.
Outline Your Needs
You have to think about your limits and expectations. What are they? Do you need equal amounts of sex, between you and W? Do you just need *something*? What is measurable and acceptable for you to be happy? What about dates? I'm assuming she has dates, outside of the home, with W? How often? Do you guys go on dates? How often?
So, you've talked to her about this, but you feel that talking about it is stressing her out and causing avoidance and pressure? Again, what reasons has she given for not wanting to have sex with you, but wanting it with someone else? Are these reasons acceptable to you? Are you frustrated because nothing is changing, or because she isn't giving you an understandable answer?
Obviously, I completely understand that this isn't all about sex. It's about intimacy and other relationship issues. Your expectations on those things are equally as important to figure out.
Me: (30f) open poly
Serious long-distance relationship with GF (40f)
Casual FWB with Descartes (27f)
“Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without." ~ Buddha
Last edited by sparklepop; 01-31-2013 at 08:21 PM.