You guys started on this path to poly through an affair. Many of us here have. There are several steps to get from cheating to poly. There are things you can't rush. DH and I were in a VERY similar situation and it kind of drives us nutty when people have an affair and discover they can love more than one person so say they are poly! No, they aren't.
You're wife had an affair, the fact that she CAN love two people at once does not excuse it, it does not mean she is poly, and it does not mean by saying she is poly the hurt feelings of betrayal and the affair are 'easier' to get over. They aren't. It's been five years for us and guess what? Still dealing with the affair. It was an online affair, imagine how much longer we would be working on it if it was more than that!
We often say that if you start this journey through an affair then it's not Affair >> Poly. Rather it is Affair >> Non Monogamy >> Ethical Non Monogamy >> Poly. Now I'm not saying everyone needs to take the same amount of time we did to get there, but saying that you had an affair because you are poly is ridiculous. Poly is a relationship style, not a state of being! People will say they are hard wired poly, the truth is they are hard wired non mono. HOW they choose to have those relationships tells if they are a cheater, ethically non mono or poly!
So your wife sees this other woman as manipulative, guess what? So is your wife. Pulling a divorce card or veto card is often considered VERY manipulative. Also, more than a little hypocritical considering you didn't pull a divorce card on an affair! Rather you were willing to work with her and do counseling. Now, I'm not saying the ex wasn't manipulative, I just don't think it was on purpose. Humans can be very selfish creatures and be manipulative without realizing it. In little ways that they don't notice.
Also, where is the kindness? The compassion? Your wife stumbles into poly by an affair, she obviously hadn't heard of poly knows little to nothing about it and you guys hit some bumps. Sounds like your ex did the same. Why is SHE vilified for it? Have ANY of you done any ground work on poly? Read some books, discussed how you feel about certain aspects? Decided what taking it slow means, learned to communicate honestly and effectively so that when bumps arise feelings can be discussed and dealt with in a way that isn't a veto or divorce?
Being able to use NVC to say when you are hurting or upset by something is important. Seeing the EXACT SAME THING is not! DH and I still don't see things the exact same way, it's not required. What IS required is the ability to honestly express our feelings and own them, not put them on someone else. To be able to hear the other person, understand that their feelings are their own and valid for them. Not right, not wrong, but VALID FOR THEM. Just as your feelings are valid for you. Respect the other person's feelings but they aren't yours and honestly shouldn't be. You are TWO DIFFERENT PEOPLE. That means that sometimes your own insecurities and issues will be yours to deal with, and yours alone. Your wife feels insecure? She can tell you, ask for some reassurances. Dictating how you feel and how you view other people should so NOT be on the table.
Me: 40 pansexual poly.
DH: My husband of 21 yrs and father of 3 teen girls.
DC: LDR of +9 years/former