Thread: At a loss
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Old 04-01-2014, 06:09 PM
willowstar willowstar is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Upstate NY
Posts: 122

[QUOTE=Marcus;263639]Do you have a method of handling when he is being emotionally manipulative and apparently doesn't realize it?

WE have a session tomorrow. I plan to bring this issue up, along with another one from two weeks ago and see whether we can come up with something.

Originally Posted by Marcus View Post
I'm really glad to hear that there is a therapist involved, certainly one who doesn't coddle their patients. Is it just couples therapy or are one or both of you seeking individual therapy? I am of the opinion that real personal growth with a therapist is more thorough when it's a one on one scenario.
We see her together, and have also have individual sessions with her. His very first session alone he came home with the manipulation information. I was floored that he had had such an important breakthrough on his very first time! He connects with our therapist very well. I think he would continue to see her even if we werent doing couples counseling. I dont connect with her as deeply but she is accepting of poly and is helping with the understandings of how to communicate more effectively. But I have said that I would choose someone else to do individual therapy as I dont know that she really "gets me".

Originally Posted by Marcus View Post
Keeping this in mind, does that mean that there is a lot of this emotional backlash from hubby? Or was this last day-visit irritating for some unique reason and the others are fine?
There is less of it these days. In the beginning it was constant. But it still happens. I still feel as though BF and I walk on eggshells. Hubby and BF talk on facebook every day, even if it is just a little hello or good morning have a nice day. BF can always tell if we have had sex because hubby lets his emotions show so easily. He will go from being sad and morose the night before to being a bright happy cheery bunny in the morning.

Yesterdays issue was, I think, a response to him having a bad day at work and feeling badly that I got to have a nice day while he had a shitty day. Which I have told him just makes me feel like I am not allowed to have good days unless he does. Which he never does, of course.

Originally Posted by Marcus View Post
I don't understand. He has some issue with your bf in particular? Because you guys have known each other so long?
Just a jealousy/insecurity thing. "He can give you things I cant give you"

Originally Posted by Marcus View Post
Schedules are of interest to me; I find them really helpful and really damaging depending on why they exist.

In my opinion schedules (for personal relationships) are helpful when there are more competing time constraints than can efficiently be handled without one. Husband, boyfriend, job, hobbies, friends... get enough conflicts and it can just be crazy to keep up with so it is put into schedule format to keep track and make sure everything has the time devoted to it you desire. I especially like shared calendars so if someone wants to see if I am available for whatever they can either just call me or check my calendar. One relationship I had the calendar editable to my girlfriend so that she could "claim" an evening with me (it's the only way to ensure that I don't double book).

That all makes sense to me.

The schedule that makes me raise an eyebrow is the one which also comes with behavior constraints. Like "I can text my boyfriend on his nights of the week". For me, this is a tall and vigorously waving red flag that someone is having me take action in service to their insecurity. I think that is a lousy reason to have a schedule, someone claiming my time for their own and deciding for me how I should behave while I'm on their dime. It's a slippery slope, allowing someone to dictate one of your behaviors.
It works both ways here. I was having a great deal of trouble with having both guys ask me on a daily basis "so what is the plan tonight? Who are you spending time with?" I felt like I was choosing between them every day, which I hated having to do. I felt put on the spot. SO, I requested a schedule. That way they each knew when I was available for them. I knew I was getting time with each of them, and that it was as even as possible. Truthfully, NRE was HUGE for me at the time, and in all fairness I would have chosen BF most nights. This way I was able to assure my husband that he had time set aside for him, and it was good for me to schedule that in so that I didnt get carried away. We have been doing it since the early Fall and I think it works great.

However your concerns are exactly what happens on the nights my husband and I have together. He expects me to not text BF with the brief exception of maybe saying good night if we havent already earlier in the evening (which I agree to, the purpose of the schedule is to have time together just for us). BF is very happy to comply with this. Knowing I am otherwise occupied allows him to focus on his own life and do things for himself also. We have also had an issue in the past if I had a "date" with BF on a day that was hubby's night (Mondays). For a few weeks Mondays were available for us to get together. If we had sex those days, my husband was upset about that because he felt like that was "his day". I told him we had scheduled evening time only, that he was at work during the day and my being with BF didnt detract from him at all. It was really none of his business. But he felt it diminished his "chances" at being sexual with me that night. Which it didnt, we could have, if I had wanted to. But in my mind his attitude had MUCH more to do with whether or not I was interested...

We have also had the issue of my husband magnanimously "giving" me one of his nights so that I could talk with BF and resolve an issue we were having. We had a huge fight a couple of months ago and really needed to get some resolution. I was a total wreck. I think he expected that we would then "make it up to him" by giving him extra time the next week, or by my giving him more snuggle time. Which I probably could have done. We did thank him for being understanding of what was going on between us and recognizing that our needs were important in that moment. But I really dont want these things to be used as a commodity, as a trade. If I need time with hubby, BF gives me that unconditionally, even if it was supposed to be "his night". He gives it gladly and says I love you, we will have another night. It is such a different experience...

Thanks Marcus!
Just keep swimming, Just keep swimming... ~ Dori

Willow ~ 47yo bi poly woman, married to Bear for 20 years
Bear-59 yo maybe poly/maybe mono straight man, still feeling it out
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