I see him less frequently now but he swears his feelings for me haven't changed. I am confused because the sub role and partner role have been different, and I do not know how to handle the shift. Do not understand whether I will still fit into the picture.
Could tell him you are confused right now. And to get "unconfused" you would like to talk and come to understand how you still fit into the picture so you can handle the shift better over the next X weeks/months. Is he willing to have that talk?
- Time needs to be made for him to spend with his other partner.
- Time needs to be made to spend with you.
Sort out your time management. If you want to know what time will be spent together -- could ask him out Or if you are "schedule" people rather than "spontaneous" people, could ask him what his thoughts are for what "our night(s)" will be over the next X months so you can know what you expect.
Merely having needs for clear expectations in a time of transition doesn't make you needy or dependent. You could be adding to your own burden by thinking/talking down to yourself like that. You are not your thoughts or your feelings. You are the person DOING the thinking and feeling.
If right now you feel scary stuff like this....
Feeling like a jealous child and am feeling quite judgmental of myself about that. What is ok to ask or expect? I have no idea because my brain is getting scrambled and my fears are taking over logic. Any supportive insight would be appreciated. I am feeling so weak, sad and scared.
How do you talk to yourself in your head? Because emotions are just emotions. If he's given you no reason to doubt him, you could answer BACK to the feelings of internal weather -- that it is just weather of anxiety. He's never gone nutty and he's not going to suddenly start NOW. In the past he has always treated you well, he's (list the stuff to yourself) and do some self-reassuring. That's an intrapersonal skill you could grow so you feel less anxious about changes.
It will blow on through if you let it and if you can self soothe. It just takes TIME to get used to the new normal. But change doesn't have to mean instant DOOM! You don't have to sit around thinking doom-y things cranking your own anxiety up. You are the one doing the thinking. Think something else, something based in actuality
to counteract "fears" or "what ifs" or "perceived reality."
Everyone feels jealous
at times. It's not a feeling reserved only for children. Maybe reading that together helps -- esp page 5 or 6 things?
There's a change to weather here, and to weather it well together -- you could talk to each other about it so that all players here get most of their needs met. If you have a hard time articulating what you need, could circle words from the list.
Then could organize it as to what needs you would like to ask yourself
to meet for you, and what needs you would like to ask him
to meet for you. Then ask.
Then you are doing behavior to help you wind it down
so you can relax rather than behavior that cranks you up
into an anxiety ball. And you are part of the couple that is ALSO doing things together to help transition well so you can relax.
Remember to BREATHE. Don't hold your body tense... that adds to your anxious feelings.
If you catch yourself doing behavior -- stop to ask yourself. Me doing this is ADDING to my problems or TAKING AWAY from my problems?
You will be ok.
Hang in there!