Really struggling - any (gentle) advice?
I'm new to this board (although not new to poly), so please be gentle with me.
I'm one of the hinges of a W. The other hinge is my bi male partner of 11+ years. One end of the W is his gay male partner of 10+ years. The other end is my straight male lover of 18 months.
Although I've been in poly relationships for a while, I've never felt jealousy before, as I've only been in situations where the men I've been with have dated other men. Dating a straight guy who wants to have casual 'fuck buddy' arrangements with women has opened a can of worms. Sigh. I assumed I'd be fine with other women, but I'm not. We started off with an agreement to discuss it if we saw other people, but have had to change that to a DADT policy, as I was having a major (and I mean REALLY major) flip out if he saw anyone more than once.
He's not big on rules (I wanted him to limit how many times he sees the same person), but has agreed to;
- not seeing anybody who is a 'rival' for my position in his life
- not letting the presence of another eat into our time
- no sex in his bed with others
- anybody else he sees will know about me
He volunteered all the above, other than the no sex in his bed, which I requested and he reluctantly agreed to.
I still struggle with him seeing others. I think if I was more desirable and lovable, he wouldn't need to see other women. My self-esteem seems to be plummeting and I feel quite depressed. It's triggered a lot of bad childhood stuff in me and I've switched to stronger anti-depressants and have started seeing a poly counsellor. I burst into tears numerous times a day thinking of him with others and worry I'm on my way to a very serious depressive episode.
I know I shouldn't feel so depressed and hopeless about this and my inability to shake this depresses me further. I thought I had poly sussed, but it seems I was only coping so well as there were no other woman around!
Thoughts? I've obviously read Ethical Slut, Opening Up etc....
Me: bi poly female in W relationship. I'm one of the hinges.
Lad: bi poly guy, the other hinge of the W. We share a house, but not a bedroom. Long-term relationship.
Mr Smiles: Gay / homoflexible guy, end of W, partnered to Lad. Long-term relationship.
Muffin: Straight guy. The other end of the W. We've been dating about 18 months.