Today my BF surprised me with a visit. We havent seen each other much lately because he is working a new job. Havent even had any alone time for each other for almost a month, and I have been missing him a lot. We spend as much time as we can texting, talking on the phone, but those are not really good substitutes for face to face time.
So, knowing I was feeling down and under the weather, he drove to my house when he found out he wasnt needed at his job today. He talked to me on the phone the whole way here, not letting on that he was on his way. After informing me that he needed to go because he had arrived at his destination, I then heard a knock at my door. Needless to say, I was thrilled beyond measure that he made the effort (he often cant do spontaneous things like that), and that we were able to spend time together. It wasnt even alone time, as I was home with the 3yo. It didnt matter, I got to see him. Two and half hours! Woo-hoo!
So, my conflict comes in because my husband wasnt informed beforehand that BF and I were spending time together today. I will usually tell him that I am seeing BF so that there is disclosure. Hubby still struggles a great deal with me having this relationship, and we are still trying to get to a place where things are just okay. It would not have been an issue if I had told him. When hubby got home, he asked about my day and I immediately told him that BF had come up to surprise me today. When I told him that I did not know about it ahead of time, he looked at me with that "Sure you didnt" look on his face. He was upset, not just because we had seen each other, but said that he was upset because he felt like he was being "penalized" for working a job. That HE doesnt have the ability to just go and surprise someone in the middle of the day, and HE is stuck at his job all day long.
We devolved into an argument about whether it was okay for BF to do something nice for me. This was an unusual opportunity for us, and BF really wanted to do something nice for me. He did not feel as though he needed to get hubbys permission to do so. I was really upset that he would try to make me feel shitty about something that I didnt even plan, that was designed to make me feel better when I was in a crappy place. Hubby would just turn it around and say that I should be coming to him when I feel that way, and that I could get comfort from him. But I find that when I am missing BF, snuggling with someone else doesnt replace that at all. If I am sad, It can help. But they are not interchangeable.
I have been in this second relationship for 14 months now. We are fully sexually involved, condoms off the table, everything. Hubby knows all of this. However, he still struggles every single day with the fact that I am poly and that I have this other person. Hubby is convinced that if he just had a relationship of his own, he would not feel so left out and hurt and alone. I have explained to him that I dont think he should go and get himself a girlfriend just to make himself feel better. As he and I continue to try and make things work between us, I feel more and more distance between us. His insecurities are constantly coming up, and I feel like I am always dancing around him. Making sure I am anticipating his needs, troubleshooting his emotions, making sure I am not doing something to hurt him. From my perspective, it is constant work, every hour of every day, to not hurt him deeply.
From his perspective, I have something he does not. I have another to love, and love me back. Another outlet for sexual expression, someone who completes me in a completely different way than he does. I understand why he feels the way he does. He loves me passionately and deeply. We have a family. He would be perfectly happy being mono with me forever and ever.
I am feeling very much at a loss right now. He says he wants to keep trying, to keep making the effort to nurture each other, and make it work. I dont know if I can. He has made so much effort, has come so far from where we were when this all started, that it makes me feel as though I am just giving up on him. I dont want to be that person. I do love him. He is an amazingly wonderful man, father, partner, etc. I just always feel like his dims my light, you know? He cannot handle the person I want to be. I want a very different kind of life, more sexually open and expressive, BDSM play with people other than him. I want to be the Real Me. And every time I open that door, he has to brace himself, and I close it again to spare him the pain and "go at his pace".
Poly is hard. I could really use some support. How do I support him, when I feel so much like he is dragging me down and keeping me back? I have waited 17 years to have the poly life I wanted. I cant wait anymore.