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Old 12-28-2010, 05:26 PM
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Polymonial Polymonial is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Los Angeles, California
Posts: 27
Default Progress report

Thank you so much for all the kind words and support. It's all been extremely helpful! I've been following up on all the links, references, papers... reading a lot on the subject, including the book Opening Up (since I can get it in Kindle format and read it w/o others knowing what it is :-). I'm also discovering that polyamory is a lot more common than I ever imagined... a good friend of mine is openly polyamorous, and apparently he knows of a bunch more friends of mine that are as well... but aren't open about it yes.

So... here's the latest status for the three of us (me, my wife, and her OSO in a vee relationship):

1. From the beginning, I've felt compersion for my wife in: (1) discovering her full sexuality (being bi), (2) falling in love with another woman, and (3) being much more complete, happy, alive in the process. It is wonderful to see. I still feel that way.

2. All three of us get along spectacularly, plus my wife's OSO gets along great with our kids. She (the OSO) will be moving in with us as soon as possible, and we have all accepted her into the family as a full, equal member. In fact, we are all committed to each other that this will be a lifelong partnership... not just for a few years, but a long-term, committed relationship. I have a very good feeling about this.

3. All three of us have had various jealousies towards the others from time to time, but we always talk them through and work them out.

4. My biggest issue is basically having to split my time with my wife. Since she now has two partners, I'll only have half the time with her than I used to have, and I mourn that loss. At the same time, I recognize that my wife is now a different person, that there's no going back (at least not on the fact that she's bi and has a need for two partners in her life... one male and one female). We are consciously starting a new relationship with each other (my wife and I, to be specific), and as such, started dating again, romancing each other, ... and honestly, we're having some WILD NRE between us right now (after 17 year of marriage). It's wonderful. At the same time, I've also had a few bouts of depression, where I mourn our loss of time together and change in the relationship, from being two peas in a pod (<-- as Forest would say) to, well... I guess the analogy breaks down. Two pods, perhaps, with one of the peas in each pod? You know what I mean! ;-)

5. As a new poly couple, I would also like to bring in an OSO of my own. Of course, the key is to find just the right person - someone who gets along great with all of us, who loves kids (and would even like to have another), large families... it could be epic wonderful. We could either do this as an "N", in which my wife and I are married and each have an OSO, or we could even consider having my wife re-marry her OSO, I re-marry my OSO, and we're then two couples bound together in a poly relationship. In fact, that arrangement has several advantages, including: (1) medical insurance (two married couples instead of just one, so more sharing of benefits), (2) better acceptance (since my OSO would be married with children, easier on her parents, friends, etc.), etc.

Ok... so now, here's our latest issue. My wife gave me permission to start dating (so long as I don't go any farther than kissing without getting permission from the vee, which is only fair). However, once I started dating, it caught her off guard and she got very jealous and started having strong mono feelings/reactions herself. She fears that I would fall in love with an OSO so deeply that I would end up leaving her, or that she would no longer be my primary. She's fears that I would have even less time to spend with her (since our time together has already been split in half due to her taking on her OSO). My wife is jealous that my OSO may be younger (which is likely in order to have kids together), that I would be romancing her, that she may enjoy doing activities with me that my wife doesn't (e.g. hiking, etc.), etc.

Therefore, even though my wife was the original poly in our relationship, I recognize that she's having very mono emotions, and I'm being very sensitive to her feelings. I'm going through the "Fourteen Steps to Opening a Monogamous Relationship" with her (even through she's already has an OSO of her own). I'm letting her know that this is something that I need. That it doesn't lessen my relationship or love for her at all... I still love her with all my heart, that my love for her is unconditional, and nothing will ever take that away. That she is not powerless in this process, and no one can be added to our family without permission from everyone. That I'm not doing this for a fling but rather only want an OSO that gets along with the entire family and would be committed/dedicated to a long-term/lifelong relationship. That we (my wife and I) will continue to be romantic together, go on dates, and have great fun and love together, even when I have an OSO (and have similar experiences with her too). And that we can slow down and put my dating on hold for awhile, to give her the time, space, love, and support that she needs to feel more comfortable with this.

When I resume dating (a few months from now), my wife is asking for a LOT of visibility into who I'm seeing. Specifically:

1. If I put up a profile on a dating website, she wants access to read it, and she doesn't want me using a photo of myself that's easily recognizable.

2. For each person that I start talking to electronically, she wants a link to their profile. She's very concerned about me inadvertently meeting an axe murderer that wants to off us all.

3. She has lots of questions like: why did you pick that person to talk to? what is it about her? is THAT the type of person that you like, someone younger, etc. And then comparing herself against them.

Honestly, I don't mind telling my wife who I'm talking with or dating once I've been able to establish a little rapport with that person, for example, after a week or so. But I'm very uncomfortable talking about each and every person before I have any rapport... that just seems too early and disruptive to the dating process, especially if my wife gets jealous each and every time. I'm also admittedly uncomfortable with my wife reading through my dating profile or telling her which dating websites I'm on, not because there's anything bad on them, but because I need a little bit of space to myself on this. And ultimately, if/when I find someone, I'll let my wife know all about her.

My questions to this group are:

1. How much transparency in dating is good vs. excessive / too-much-information?

2. When is the appropriate time to tell my wife about someone I'm interested in talking to (as a potential date): (a) before I even meet/speak to the person, (b) after I've said "Hello" but before she responds with her own "Hello", (c) after we've both said "Hello" to each other but before we actually carry on a conversation, (d) once we've officially met but before we know each other, (e) once we've established a rapport with each other and want to start getting to know one another, (f) once we've had kids together, etc.

3. Is it reasonable for me to have my own space, at least in the early stages of dating / getting to know people without my wife being involved at every step? Or is it important that she knows everything about everyone at all times, even in the earliest stages of meeting someone, so that she feels comfortable, empowered, and we can address any issues of fear, jealousy, concern, etc. that may arise right away, head on?

4. What other advise do you have for me in starting the dating process?

As always, thank you for all the wonderful advise I've received from this group and warm support as we build our poly family, which I believe will be great.
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