It has been my observation and experience that poly comes in a great range of shapes and sizes, and it is difficult to give much standard advice that works for everybody. A few generalizations are possible with basic qualifiers.
One thing I usually recommend is (assuming you haven't read it already) that you pick up a copy of the book "Opening Up
: a guide to creating and sustaining open relationships," by Tristan Taormino. It covers a lot of important poly topics as well as topics about open relationships in general.
An important concept about polyamory is that it is primarily about *romantic*
relationships -- not necessarily *sexual*
relationships. While sex is part of many poly relationships, it is more the romantic emotional part that actually defines a relationship as being poly (that and of course the involvement of more than two adults in the equation). So how often or how seldom you have sex isn't necessarily what determines whether you're poly or poly-inclined.
On the other hand, I've seen evidence of a spectrum between monogamous inclinations and polyamorous inclinations. Some people have just *gotta*
have poly in their life. Others could take it or leave it. This says nothing about what point on the spectrum is more/most superior, it just says that different people have different wants and needs. Perhaps you have intellectually realized that polyamory is a valid way of conducting relationships, without necessarily have a driving need to put poly into practice into your own life. If so, then it is now up to you decide whether you want to practice polyamory personally.
It's quite possible that if you get involved in a poly relationship, your sexual libido levels will increase -- by how much, who knows. That sort of thing is hard to predict.
You mentioned that sex seems to be an all-or-nothing occurrence for you; you're either not in the zone at all, or else you're right in the thick of it. Whereas I take it the Lady you are with has more of a transitional stage of warming up to sex? Is this a problem for the two of you? Is it making it harder for you two to have as much of a sex life together as you'd like to have? If so, you might want to look into seeing a sex therapist for help.
Communication is admittedly reeeally really important when it comes to making poly work. However, I can't say it always *has*
to happen. Like in the V I'm in, two people are strong communicators, while the third person is a weak communicator. This "weak link in the communication chain" has been a challenge for us, especially in the past, but we have learned to live with and work around it and things seem to be fine. Indeed, there's a fairly highly rated book called "How to Improve Your Marriage Without Talking About It" ... by Dr. Patricia Love and Dr. Steven Stosny. I don't know that that's the answer -- to blithely dismiss the importance of communication and do without it. I think it's better to hone your communication skills (quantity and quality) as time goes on. But I'm just saying that being "communication challenged" doesn't necessarily spell doom for your poly prospects.
I actually suggest you do a word search (tag search better yet) for "communication." Proceed with poly if it interests you, but work on your communication skills at the same time.
"The question (or one of the questions) I have is whether the Lady and I overly protect each others feelings by muffling the entire field of sexuality (with each other or with others), with a comfortable situation as reward?"
Unfortunately I can't really answer that question at all. It's too personal. I'd have to know much more about you and the Lady you're with. I think this may mostly be a question for you to ask yourself. Do you smooth things over (sexually) so as not to rock the boat? The fact that you're asking it, almost begs the question, so maybe the answer is a rhetorical, "Yes." But before assuming that, I'd do some digging into your own thoughts and feelings (both you as an individual, and you and the Lady as a couple), and see what comes to light.
Reading and journaling would be helpful in that regard. I suggest visiting the Life stories and blogs board
on this site; it may help you locate a mirror set at many different angles. Ask yourself the same question after several months of heavy introspection and see if the answer has changed.