STAGES OF GRIEF WHEN OPENING
Still a bit sad on the family deaths. Overall happy and content in my own immediate life though. Kid is doing well. DH and I seem to be in a phase where we are really
into in each other. Kid even asked when we're going to STOP flirting. We laughed.
My Formerly Abuse, Divorcing Friend called really late one night this week sobbing. I tried to comfort her. We both acknowledged it could be stress from an uncoming court date.
She's still on her way through the stages of grief
and seems to be back in the "4. DEPRESSION", REFLECTION, LONELINESS" place. She seemed to move on to 5 and 6 but slid back a bit. Sometimes the stages of grief jiggle up and down a bit til you are really out.
It made me think of this post I made in this thread.
Well, you might not like them. You might like them. I think laying eyes on them helps you put down some anxiety/fear about them being weirdos. Your wife is precious to you, so you want to lay eyes on them to try to put some of the anxiety/fear down that they could treat her poorly. There is no GUARANTEE in anything in life but it could help you. Maybe explain to her that way? Dealing with "Fear of the unknown weirdo" is one of my biggest ughs.
Originally Posted by duke
My wife communicated to me she felt like they were young and hot and indeed said she was afraid of being rejected by them, so to request a meeting might up the seriousness too much. She has a suspicion I'm requesting to meet them in order to 'screw her out' of her experience. This is certainly not the case. I look forward to knowing and liking this couple.
Have you guys made the time/space to talk about loss?
Because while part of you could be like "Great! I'm ready!" the other part of you that is "Argh! It comes at a price tag! Now it is NOT just me and her!" may need some air time to feel better.
It could sound obvious that if you are Open, you are no longer CLOSED. But maybe that needs to be articulated, acknowledged together and mourned together a bit even if you both are reaching out toward Open because you both want to be there.
Like "Yes. This is a milestone in our journey together. This era of our shared time is now past. We are entering a new era now. I'm in it with ya, but yeah. CHANGES. Whoa. We will never be the same."
Could that be it? You are stage 4 of the stages of grief? Kinda skipped the 1-3 front chunk because there you both chose to tread willingly so there's not shock, denial, anger, etc. But you still have to digest on through the rest of the way?
It's ok to feel weird. The "new normal" is going to feel weird until it is the "old normal." Could try to focus on what you have and not focus on what you do not have. Give yourself permission to feel whatever it is you need to feel.
Sun is sun. Rain is rain. Emotion is emotion. Internal weather just IS. Do your best to let it blow on through in appropriate ways. Cheesy at it sounds, you only get rainbows after rain. Y'all are chasing the Open Rainbow. Figures you have to get through some rain to get there. You will be ok. Do what you need to do for self care while you weather it out.
I've had that feeling. Jiggling through stages of grief. And in terms of Opening? I have talked to DH about that loss of primacy, of not longer being closed.
HE is the one who said to me "I don't think of it as loss. I think of it as.... expanding.
I remember smiling in the car and thinking to myself "God, he's incredibly generous. And cute. And nuts. Even if it is expanding to include more people, there is still the need to process that loss. May not be a big ding, but it is a ding."
And it's me who is the known polywired person in this mixture.
I've brought it up over the years in a "what if" way and more seriously this summer. He's told me over and over -- if there I want to tread, he's willing to entertain the thought. He's told me also Yes
. I can go there. Yes, we can talk about the HOW to go there well.
And I still had to process grief over "loss of primacy." I'll process it again, if there we go. He'll process it. I don't think it is a one time pass there. It is pass and repass.
I remember feeling it when we had the kid. It is no longer just us.
There we chose to tread -- into parenting. But it is no longer just us. Especially in those newborn days that were so rough -- ugh. I remember missing
it being just us! I didn't even love my kid until a few weeks in. She was some demanding stranger. I needed time to get to know her and while still demanding as a newborn, I grew to love her. But I wanted to hear from DH that he acknowledged it too -- it was no longer just us. That time was now over. It might come back when she grew up and moved out but it would be different. Because of the journey to get there. "Empty nest" is not the same as "never parented."
Brain drugs are so interesting. When I see friend crushes, I feel all goofy and crave seeing DH. That brain cascade of "Whee! Gimme more!" Sometimes I don't get another hit right away from DH and I experience withdrawal. And I experience that like non-interest in DH and a desire to see the friend crush for the new hit. Doesn't mean I do not love DH. It means I need a few days to clear the brain dump. I'm just not gonna get to ride the cumulative ping-pong effect this time and get a double dose of “whee!”
I feel that way after kink -- deliciously tranced out. And coming out of that can have some hangover time. I crave another hit, and if it does not happen, I go through this withdraw thing. Aversion. Like morning sickness - just don't even want to THINK about it.
The brain dump of grief is no different -- it can have some hangover time. It just feels like it skips the first few stages if it is experienced as grief post Opening.
- There's no 1: Shock and Denial.
- There's no 2: Pain and Guilt.
- There's no 3: Anger and Bargaining
We choose to Open -- so it's not any "betrayal" stuff to get through first.
You land right into
- 4: Depression, Reflection, Loneliness.
And have to work on through the rest...
- 5: Upward Turn
- 6: Reconstruction and Working Through
- 7: Acceptance & Hope
And it should
be felt -- experience the change and note that it did indeed change. If you Open, you are no longer Closed in the way that you were across many layers of the math.
To Open is a huge paradigm shift in the family math /poly math! To not feel anything at all would leave me wondering. Does the player understand
what this is? Will there be a backlog later of emotional hooha coming to crash down later?
Where I think explosions happen is when brain drugs mix.
"Grief of loss of primacy + Jealousy" is a powerful cocktail.
When it happens in a swinging context where there's been the agreement of "sex but no feelings" that's naive to me. You share sex with someone, you are GOING to get brain dump. Ask anyone who's had a kink scene. You need appropriate aftercare. Go having naive swinging sex with someone, and not aware of that brain dump? You start growing feelings for the sex partner. Now you are in violation of your agreement with first partner. Now what?
If no space has been made to discuss changes or findings, you are sorely tempted to withhold information from old partner so you can keep getting your drugs -- in the arms of the new partner. Which leads to stronger feelings. And lies of omission. And guilt/fear of being found out. And resentment of old partner as a co-creator of the uncomfortable situation (the limiting agreements).
When it happens in a polyamorous context it's the same thing. "Drunk on NRE and neglecting the ORE" happens how
many times to people?
The "brain drop" also happens in monoshipping -- stop with the pink fluffy lala clouds and enter the realities of being together. Rose colored glasses are off – and you experience withdrawal from the brain dump. Sometimes you think you no longer love your person or that “the magic is gone” – it's not necessarily gone. It's just not pink fluffy lala time any more.
Monodrop" gets a lot of things written about the experience. There's a some articles about subdrop and aftercare too. I always wonder why I can't seem to find any on "swingdrop" or "polydrop" and what the aftercare for those things would be written specifically from those angles of it. Drop is drop, really.
That transitional space where things feel weird because this is NOT the "old normal." And the "new normal" is not yet "normal" -- it is alien. Have to move through the change and.... arrive.