Thread: New beginnings
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Old 02-21-2013, 10:55 PM
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kdt26417 kdt26417 is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Yelm, Washington
Posts: 13,871

Hi Butterfly83,
Welcome to our forum.

Although I am not one of the wives here, I will try to tackle your questions from my perspective.

"How do you hold together your original unit as a marriage and include someone else?"
Your "new unit" contains many "sub-relationships," such as
  • your husband and the new person
  • you and the new person
  • you and your husband
  • all three of you
Your original unit as a marriage = you and your husband. It needs time and attention, as do each one of the sub-relationships. (Yes, the platonic sub-relationships usually need time and attention as well.)

"What do you do if your you feel your unit is not as solid?"
The biggest deal in any poly relationship (any relationship at all, really) is communication. If something is not as solid, it probably needs more/better communication.

Communication needs two things:
  • honesty
  • kindness
It consists of two things:
  • talking
  • listening
You'll always need to get better at each one of those things: the honesty, the kindness, the talking, and the listening. Communication is such a deep and complex part of a relationship, I know of no one who can do it perfectly. It is a lifelong endeavor. So do it a lot, and get lots of practice.

"Can the new partner be equal in reality, or is your primary the main priority?"
Some relationships exist in which the new partner is secondary, and remains secondary. It can work, for some people. Personally I prefer the model in which all three partners are primary (be it a triad or a vee). That model also works, for some people. You just have to figure out which model works best for you.

"How important is the primary relationship above the other?"
That, too, entirely depends on the unique relationships and the unique people (each with their unique individual needs) involved. Some secondaries don't want to be very involved, in which case they don't need to have a high priority. Other secondaries want equal co-primary status, and while they may not get it right away, it's nice if they can earn it over time.

"What if there is disagreement over this?"
Well then we're back to that communication thing. All three of you need to sit down together, talk, listen, negotiate, and seek some compromises. Actually it's a good idea to schedule a regular three-person sit-down (once a month? once a week?), especially early in the poly relationship, so that major drama can be staved off by keeping each other on the same page.

"How do you create boundaries so everyone gets what they need long term?"
Communication; sit-downs. Sometimes it helps for each person to write down a list of their wants and needs, and share the lists amongst each other. Then, you try to work together as a team to get all three persons' needs met (or as many of them as reasonably possible). The important thing here is working together as a team. Try not to get into a situation where each of you is squared off at one corner of a boxing ring.

"How do you integrate when children are involved?"
Same drill: communication and sit-downs. I think it's important to discuss matters about the children ahead of time, before the children are intermingled (with other children or other adults). Agreements must be come to as far as how discipline should be handled. Here again you may need to make some compromises. Try to come up with a system that all three of you can live with, so that the kids have a consistent set of boundaries to live with.

"How do you contain that green eyed monster?"
Check out the following links:

Let us discuss the greeneye monster shall we?
How to slay the greeneyed beastie.

Jealousy, Envy, Insecurity, Etc.
How do you achieve compersion?

The Theory of Jealousy Management
The Practice of Jealousy Management

Jealousy and the Poly Family
Kathy Labriola: Unmasking the Green-Eyed Monster
Brené Brown: The power of vulnerability

Hope this helps.
Kevin T.
Love means never having to say, "Put down that meat cleaver!"
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