GS--I know that it is ideal not to take it personally and I am *trying*, but it is very hard. Sexual chemistry for me is *rarely* about how one looks. I need to be emotionally connected. So, it came as a shock that sexual chemistry does not rise out of emotional connection for him. He can have sex with someone to whom he has no emotional connection and can have no desire to have sex with someone whom he deeply loves. So, yes, my ego was wounded, but I was willing to work that through. What I'm finding the most difficulty with is him going off and having sex with his new gf while I was home in pain. The exact same thing that he (and I of course) refused to do to DW until we felt he was ready. Understand that FV was completely on board with that the entire time--his ethics are very sound.
I had decided to do exactly what you said, and let go of the sexual thing for now (there was even some relief in that for me). I will do some thinking about whether there were "true preferences" that may have been masked. Thank you.
For six months, FV was repressing sexual desire for you out of respect for the relationship between you and DW. Six months of denying himself while you carried on with your own sex life with DW.
Finally the three of you work out a space where you and FV can be intimate- and it is nerve-wracking for FV. He is used to being restricted by your and DW's rules. You are in an unfamilar place (hotel), there's the awkwardness of the first time, and it turns out that no, really you can't be intimate.
Enter new woman that doesn't impose restrictions at all, it seems. He finds release with her. With you he is still operating in terms of rules and restrictions so he focuses on that in defense because he knows this will be difficult for you, but still has the balls to tell you.
I honestly do not think that he experienced it this way, but I will check with him. Now, that's not to say that it didn't have an impact. In fact, that's exactly what I said to him--that I can't help but wonder how it might be different if we had been "allowed" to run our own course. Eve DW has wondered that. Remember that not only did he wait for 6 months, but I waited too. He and I do not think this is it. How he describes it is very hard to succinctly repeat, but he has said that in the past, this has happened several times--he can be *very* attracted to a woman, even love her, and when in her arms, have no desire to do anything sexual with her.
I personally think that there were a lot of other factors at play. He's kind of uptight, and at the last minute, I suggested that we go back to meeting at a hotel even though we would not be having sex. I knew that this would throw him off, but absolutely gave him an out if he did not want to. He explained that he ended up doing more (longer work out at the gym, more with his kids) than he would have if he knew we were going to have a hotel date. But he insists that this is not what contributed to his lack of desire to be intimate. He thinks it's a pheromones thing. He has many sensitivities to various forms of touch and smell which I was very nervous about, so I think it is a combination of those factors, and do not feel that it is insurmountable. But, part of me wonders if I should protect myself and close the door to sexual intimacy. And now with him having sex with the new woman (whom I've also become friends with), I'm very hurt and am considering ending the relationship all together, even though I love him dearly. I don't know what to do. Part of me says, "hold on and see what happens." and the other part says "don't be a fool, if he was willing to do that, you are just setting yourself up to get hurt more"
As a secondary, I have no "right" to ask him not to have sex with a new gf yet, but I had truly hoped that he/they would do, or not do this rather, out of respect to me. I personally cannot imagine having sex with a new partner while I knew my gf was home sobbing. That's what I'm having the most difficulty with, but yes, it does hurt that he's not currently physically attracted to me. I was surprised that it took him 6 months to figure that out, but understand that a bit more since he has elaborated on his past and current experiences.
Thank you for your lovely wishes too!
Jade: My gut tells me that he does respect me, and I think that ironically, some of what seems insensitive is greatly impacted by guilt. He is seriously thinking about throwing in the towel on poly because he is having such a hard time feeling that he should be giving more, even though both his other gf and I are very understanding (and have our own families).
Magdlyn: As to whether there was sexual interest and tension all along, yes and no. I really tried hard to turn that off in myself because I didn't know if DW would ever feel ok with it. It is only now that he has experienced sexual feelings for another woman that he has been able to get his head around it and give a true green light, although he admits that even now, it would be hard for him.
FV claims that he has no way of knowing until he actually lies next to a prospective lover on a bed. I believe that to a point, but some of it doesn't add up. And I feel that I should have known that this could happen much sooner.
Jade: TY, I just needed a reality check. I do feel it was insensitive, but I can be very sensitive to that *and* I knew that I was ego-wounded so that is why I wanted to check it out with others. I know that I am very poly, because I am very supportive of multiple relationships. Hell, DW has the total green light to have sex with his gf in our bed whenever they are ready. And I truly feel no jealousy for that at all. I think it's really damn cool ;-).
So, I have many poly qualities, and up until now have not experienced jealousy at all (and I'm not even sure this is jealousy; I don't resent FV and his gf having sex, I'm hurt by the timing).
Thanks all. FV has since sent an email expressing frustration in a sort of "I can't win" variety. He doesn't seem to get that it is the timing that I find so upsetting. He is also very stressed about it all, and ready to give up poly all together. So, I try to laugh at the irony of me starting out fast and furious, with 3 partners and now they've all faded away. I'm sure there's a lesson in there somewhere. I'm also supposed to be on a date right now with someone new, but I think he may have over-slept (he's a med student).
I'm trying to focus on having a relationship with myself, and feeling attractive from within, not needing it confirmed by others. It's a big task, I've found!