You are having a crush on an exBF. Him too. This at this point in time is a CRUSH.
This is not being in a polyship or considering being in a polyship.
1) Is B right - that if I'm not juggling things like physical time together and sex, is it even worth calling poly?
It could be (polyamorous) in feeling for YOU (love share with several partners -- in your case a husband and a crush person).
A person could be polyamorous -- they have the desire/capacity for loving more than one at a time. But a polyamorous person could ALSO be single, married, in a polyship, not in a polyship, etc.
It is not (polysexual) for you here (sex share with several concurrent lovers, but not necessarily group sex) at this point in time.
It is not (polyamourous AND polysexual) here. It is not any polyshipping kind of relationship here at this point in time either. Nobody is dating here.
It is A CRUSH.
I subscribe to Love Theory.
I would call this one of the lightest flavors of love -- a crushy "liking" thing because you were both having fun catching up and reliving old times. A warm glow. A meeting of the minds.
2) Should I just forget the whole thing? B suggested that I write the e-mails that I would send to JP, just not send them for now. Most of them have been either catching up on 38 years or what has been going on that day. Think of them as kind of a journal, and maybe one of these days or months or years A will calm down and we'll be in communication again.
You exBF/crush guy just made his wife aware of his feelings. HOW he did it --- who knows. It doesn't sound like it went down well.
Does you talking to exBF/crush guy right now ADD to his burdens or TAKE AWAY at this time? I think ADD. Because he's got stuff to sort with his wife -- heavy stuff.
I'd go with your husband's suggestion as a middle path so that YOU can process. You get the writing outlet at this time and get to "put it out there." But your exBF/crushy guy doesn't have to "receive it right this minute." Or ever.
At this time what he could need that you could give?
You could give him space and time to sort out whatever he needs to sort out and not be adding to his burden.
You could be firm and point him back to solving his stuff if he's hanging about. You could not be his pen pal crush person that he uses for escapism to avoid dealing with his problems at home. He could deal with the old before starting anything new -- even a crush thing.
3) all the definitions of poly talk about everyone being out in the open with it. I feel like we didn't start that way because we had no idea where it was heading.
Was your intent for this relationship to date? Or was there no intent other than keep pen pal stuff up? Maybe you did not intend anything. You are in a grey area. While you did not intend to go into a grey area?
I find it interesting he has to email from work and keep that hidden, and that he was not as quick to make the BF's wife aware as YOU seem to have been with your own spouse. Then depending on how he let his wife know it could have snowballed into bigger. If he drops a bomb on his wife, then she wants divorce, and then he threatens to move out to "punish" her? Dude, they don't sound stable in their OWN marriage. Not because of the crush thing but for OTHER things long before you. To do all that emotional hooha over a little pen pal crush is disproportionate to me.
Frankly, that would turn me OFF. If something as simple as a crush can break down the entire system like that? Neither person sounds emotionally stable or secure. Forget polyshipping here -- even crushing here is a no go to me. I don't like drama.
For YOU I think it could be better to let it go, and let him sort his life out. Then let future tend to itself. Deal with future stuff at THAT point in time.
Your OWN spouse on the other hand, sounds awesome, secure in himself and in your shared marriage. And you having a little pen pal crushy thing isn't going to ruin his entire world or send him off the deep end. He's a blessing. Kudos to him.
You could let him know you appreciate him and his support/understanding.
And YOU sound up front honest in your efforts, if a little confused with the current outcome. Kudos to you for trying to play ball on full frontal honesty. That's awesome too.
4) We were a couple of old friends catching up. There's the piece of me that's kicking myself for having even brought up the reading material and/or giving JP the idea that he needed to talk to his wife, and there's the other part of me that insists that it was the right things to do, and that it would have just hurt more if it had blown up even later.
Yep. Full frontal honesty is best. Your intent seemed forthright.
Your exBF? Who knows but him what his intent was toward his wife with all this?
But again... you could get some perspective. This is/was an email crush thing at most. If something so small can send the whole system crashing in their marriage? They have other, deeper problems besides a crushy email thing with you.
You could steer clear so YOU and YOUR spouse don't get sucked into their unfolding drama.