Hello, poly friends! :)
I've spent time reading on the forum for a few months now. I really appreciate the amazing community that has developed here and have found reading very informative, helpful, and at times challenging.
About me: My marriage with T has been open for about four years. Our intent was to open things up so we could develop flirty, sexual relationships with other people while being open and honest with each other. We did not actually date anyone at first, but did have lots of fun flirting with friends.
About three and a half years ago, we met another couple and ended up in a whirlwind romance with them (BF and GF). The relationship started as friends, them some sexual play. Very quickly though, BF and GF approached us and introduced us to the idea of polyamory and expressed their desire for all of us to be romantically involved and basically create a larger family. I was honestly reluctant. I saw some red flags (GF could be controlling and jealous, instability in the existing relationships, concern about their kid), but when I expressed those concerns, GF was quick to explain them away. I really liked both of them, T and I liked the idea, and so I was convinced.
At the beginning, it was wonderful. We all clicked so amazingly and spent tons of time together. There just seemed to be this magical connection between the four of us and it didn't take long for us to really feel like family. It also didn't take long for things to start falling apart in certain areas. GF's jealousy got the best of her and BF and I had to stop being sexual together. To make a long story short, GF suddenly started to question polyamory, asked everyone to back off, and then made excuse after excuse and rule after rule keep things at a friendship level, all the while claiming that she DID want to be with us... just needed to think, needed more time, needed something else to happen first.
T and I got tired of the games and being strung along, so we started looking to branch out a bit and make some poly friends. I was very confused and a bit heart broken about how things had developed, and really needed to connect with people who understood polyamory and who could maybe give some advice. GF reacted very strongly to this... accusations of us abandoning them and such. Then suddenly, she became very into poly again. She wanted to talk to us about restarting the romantic relationships and "really doing it" this time. Again, I was reluctant. I expressed many concerns, but she seemed very certain and I wanted it to work SO much. So we agreed. We all started dating again. BF and I took some time to warm up to the idea of actually being "allowed" to be together, but it was amazing. GF started dating someone outside our quad.
Then, suddenly, it all fell apart big time. She changed her mind again and wanted out of ALL of the relationships. She and BF separated. BF, T, and I decided to stay together as a Triad because we love our big family. We made it very clear that we all wanted GF (now, ex-GF) to be just as included in our lives, just in the capacity she was comfortable with. But the trouble just grew from there. It has been a difficult year filled with drama and tears
At this point, our triad (T, BF, and I) is still together. We've moved into a house and are working on getting through BF and ex-GF's divorce and keeping things as happy and stable as possible for our kids.
I've found myself in an uncomfortable place where I am going to be practicing a kind of poly I wasn't prepared for. I liked our quad... I liked being poly-fidelous. It felt comfy and safe, but offered the excitement and variety I need. Now I am being challenged to accept a more open kind of polyamory and, well, it is hard.
So, that is why I am here. There is a lot I need to learn about and ideas I need to consider. I am VERY scared and insecure about BF dating other women because, so far, my experiences with that haven't been great. None of us are currently dating or looking to date in the immediate future, so I have time to sort through things. I am working hard to overcome these issues and think involvement here will help me considerably. It already has in many ways!