It's been too long for me to remember what it was like in details. I knew it very young, there were not as many resources handy, there was no Internet. I just stuck to my ethics and winged it.
I really don't understand how I could have fallen in love with another man while being VERY happily married to another. The two relationships are very different
Because each one brings out and touches different parts of you because they ARE different. And because love is a pleasant feeling that arises when you are close to someone. What's there to understand? Spend time together sharing vulnerable intimacies (of the mind, body, heart and/or soul) and you grow feelings of trust and affections for your sharing partner there. Do not spend the time sharing -- the feelings fade.
My Primary says he's okay with this, so why am I feeling guilty whenever I spent time alone with my BF?
Are you neglecting your DH? Is DH in the habit of being truthful or in the habit of being a "say it is ok but really not ok" type person? What causes you not to trust/believe his words when he says he is ok? Does his actions/body language say different? Something in your own head making clouds?
Just accept you DO feel guilty. Then investigate what is poking you -- a perceived reality
(which could be false) or an actuality
(which could need attention.)
Ideally, I enjoy the times when we're all three together the best, but my Primary has asked for this weekend "off" so he can adjust better (more slowly).
That is reasonable. Do you understand your polymath tiers in this polyship configuration? Each mini relationship inside the bigger polyship needs TLC and it's own time. Even his "me relating to myself alone time."
I never wanted to be in the position to have to split my time between the two, so I hope this is only temporary.
Welcome to reality: There is 24 hours in a day. You now have 2 partners. There's THREE people wants, needs, and limits to take into consideration now. You have increased your commitments. You will not always be able to meet all commitments simultaneously. Some will have to come in turn. Could learn to be ok with that.
While sometimes they are willing to share time in trio to move the polymath tier of
(You + DH + BF) <-- the team working together in harmonious polyship
You still have to TLC all the other mini tiers that your name appears in. They have to tend to their tiers. Each mini rship must be ok for the larger polyship to fly ok. Because yuck in any tier will be felt across other tiers. Serolynne does a nice polymath article.
I take it out exra layers to include self care and break up possibilities but it is the same idea.
I write it out sometimes for people. Here is a 3 people polyship.
It doesn't matter they are in a triad shape thing and you are in a "V" shape thing. 3 people is 3 people worth of polymath tiers. And since you seem to worry about preventing/handling problems, that one talks about coping with "the elephant in the room" too. Could think about how your polyship will handle elephants.
I'm wondering how other people adjusted to the sudden realization (if it was) of being polyamorous?
I was always crushing/falling in love with many. It was "my normal" in my inner world. My realization was dating people who did NOT experience the world this way and coming to realize that they
experience the world otherwise. And may not be ok/secure with hearing about my internal world news. It caused insecure, and baffled me because my COMMITMENT was to them and shown in my behavior toward them.
Sun is sun. Rain is rain. Emotion is emotion. Internal weather can just blow on through. My reporting internal weather is not my BEHAVIOR. My reporting internal weather is sharing vulnerable and trying to cultivate emotional intimacy with the partner I am with.
Isn't that what one DOES to cultivate trust, love and all that? Turn to partner with your vulnerable stuff?
So yeah... that was a weird realization for me then. That not everyone is prepared to deal in emotional intimacy the same way as me, and that there could be degrees and types of intimacy.
How did you come to terms with falling in love with a second person while still being in love with the first? Was it difficult or easy for you? Did you seek poly counseling, or do it on your own?
You are not clear to me. I think you could mean a two part thing there.
A) "How do you come to terms with the realization you have the capacity to love more than one?"
I just love them. I did not see loving as a problem. Mere loving someone doesn't mean I have to act on it or pursue or cultivate by spending more time with them, asking them if they want to try to grow something beyond friendship or beyond initial love stages. I am ok just enjoying them from a distance and keeping it to myself.
B) "How do you come to terms with BEING IN a multipartner relationship? The HOW of doing it successfully so everyone's wants, needs, and limits are respected and met ok?"
My serious relationships have been long haul and good. My break ups have been ultimately parting on decent terms -- even consider the grief process for break ups all go through. Can't ask for more than that. One of my friends tells me I'm a boundary queen and wishes she could learn that from me. I laugh because sometimes sometimes other people tell me I have too high a personal standard
I think all people have a personal standard -- you develop what serves you best, and if you stick to that and actually take the time to calibrate with your polyship people so ALL people are on the same page when creating a SHARED standard? Rather than just assume
everyone is on the same page and trip on that later?
Then you could improve your odds of not having as many crazy shenanigans heaped on your head when polyshipping. Life happens, stuff comes along that people cannot control or help.
But reducing the stuff that comes along because of lack of communication/preparation (stuff one COULD help and deal with if making the time to calibrate) ... it just makes the flying together a lot more pleasant!
Recognizing personal limitations is a valuable thing -- knowing yourself and what you are NOT capable of is as valuable as knowing what you ARE capable of. Pitch it toward the happy medium, and Life is lived in a way that is mostly ok, most of the time for you. Whether or not you chose to be in a polyship at the time.
I can't help wishing I wasn't able to love anyone but my husband, as it was for 17 years of happy marriage.
I do not understand this. It the marriage not happy any more?
If you do not want to be with anyone but him, why are you in a polyship?
You ability to love more than one, is not a horrible thing. You chose to act on it and enter polyship. So did your polyship people. I assume all entered prepared to pay the price of admission, right?
So why are you sounding like you do not want your polyamorous capacity? Or do not want your polyship? I am confused.
Your relating/coping/management skills in being in a polyship consisting of more than one? It's sounding pretty normal. You grow the skills as you go.
You get general knowledge in reading
or similar. You get experience in doing
and that is how confidence is grown. By doing
. Reading the recipe for how to bake bread is not actually baking the bread. And it could take a few stabs at it with the same recipe before you can produce a yummy loaf consistantly. Sometimes the first few come out wonky.
So... why lament that you are not skilled ALREADY in something you have not attempted before? Is that what you are doing here? I am not sure.
Both your DH and BF sounds like they are accepting the price of admission here -- sorting through their own jealousy/weird as the "new normal" BECOMES normal. It's going to feel odd in the transition time for all. That IS normal.
Is it that you are not comfortable witnessing their discomfort as they do their own growing things? Growth happens out there on the edge of the comfort zone.
Where is problem that causes this purple wish thing above?
You will be ok. Hang in there in the learning curve for whatever is is your polyship wants to be. Try to keep it real.
Could reading more resources together help in the polyshipping journey?