Problems with (My) Polyamory
Here's a brief bio: I'm a 29 year old, straight male. My fiancÚ and I have been together over 2 years, and we have opened our relationship up about 6 months ago. Prior to that we were in the building trust stage of our relationship, and I knew when we started dating that she was poly and it was something she needed, but she was willing to wait for me. We initially opened to women (for her, she's bi) and then through introspection I gave the go ahead to open it up all the way; it not being fair for me to ask her to repress or partially repress part of herself for my benefit. Once the floodgates were open, she went a little crazy (which she has since apologized for) and has settled into the idea of a poly rather than an open relationship.
I agreed to all this mainly because I don't believe in random encounters nor do I believe anyone can be everything to one person, and I feel better if she had an OSO (proper term?) that had been established on a friendship first. Also I love her with everything I am, so for me it was not right for her to repress part of who she is. I have always been a mono and I agreed because I feel that being poly will force me to address baggage I have been carrying around with regards to others leaving or being replaced (one of which was another fiancÚ) and issues of self-worth and confidence lest I deal with them forever. So I am dealing with my own self-worth and inadequacy issues.
So after several others (term needed please) that were not considered to be OSO material for various reasons not going to be discussed here. She has found a guy that makes her happy, which is fantastic. However, and it's a big however, there's issues now with my jealousy, anxiety and anger; and it's any time she goes out. I never had an issue with the physical aspect of it: have a shower, it cleans off and then I can "remark my territory"
Now we have established guidelines and rules for permissions for overnight stays, house privileges, dog privileges (she decided that she would ask if it's okay to take our dog to the park with the OSO since she is my little girl) and the list goes on; we discuss openly concerns or new guidelines (since I'm a recovering mono, and she hasn't had any other partner allow her to explore this) and have the great mentality that if for this to work we both have to be happy in it.
To this other gentleman's credit he has put our relationship beyond his own wants/needs and acted in nothing but an outstanding manner. He and I have agreed to meet but then my fiancÚ is petrified of a tug of war ensuing if she sits too close to him, or too close to me, or he touches her, or I touch her, say the wrong thing, etc. etc. I suggested maybe he just picks her up and I say hello at the door, shake his hand and break the ice as a start.
All that being said, back to my anxiety, which stems from fear of loss; my jealousy, which is the irrational fear, based jealousy manifesting in the pit of my stomach. This comes from the feeling that by her attention being given elsewhere and her affection (re: emotional affection) there's less for me. Now my rational brain says love isn't a finite commodity, but my reptile brain (the part with no reason or need for it) wants it all and any that goes anywhere else is at a loss to me! mine! mine! All mine!
I also believe part of the jealousy is that she has found it so easy to find willing participants (term please) in the lifestyle and I am having a heck of a time finding any at all. Which I am sure is common, but if anyone has any ideas of how to break the coming out part to a potential interest. Right now I have been waffling using Plenty of Fish, keeping that I am in an open relationship in my profile, taking it out. Getting hate mail from it, people not reading it and freaking out when I mention it, etc. etc. etc.
The anger is my rational brain reasserting itself in some way, as I get angry with myself for being irrational and then lash out. To this end I have been using the exposure therapy method where I don't force my anxiety away, try to control it, but let it come and dissipate on it's own. This has had limited success. So I am hoping that since I doubt this is a unique problem there are readers out there with insight to help move my personal growth along.
I'm not going anywhere, and neither is she. Our communication is open and honest, and our relationship is the best it's been ever. But I need for the sake of that to continue to fix what's wrong with me.
Thank you for reading the novel of a first post.