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Old 10-05-2009, 04:35 PM
dearprudence dearprudence is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Philadelphia burbs
Posts: 21
Default Cheating vs. Polyamory: Merged Threads, General Discussion

My most important criteria for anyone I'm involved with is for them to be open with any and all significant others. The degree of openness is between them, of course, but I will not get involved with anyone who is cheating on a partner. I accept that everyone manages their relationships as they see fit. Judging people is not what I want to do, and I know everyone makes their own decisions for their own reasons. But I will not participate if someone decides to cheat.

I choose not to condone or participate in cheating because I've been hurt by it, and I can remember that pain very clearly. I believe everyone in a relationship is entitled to a choice to be there. Cheating to me is denying your partner his/her choice so that you can hold onto a relationship on your terms, not mutual terms. I also think that living an honest and authentic life is the most amazing and fulfilling way to live, with all of its pain, difficulty and challenges included. Then there is the other aspect of not inviting drama into my life. Enough of that enters the picture anyway. There are a thousand other reasons as well.

My husband (C) shares this value, but perhaps not as strongly as I do. He believes in accepting people's flaws, and letting people learn things through their own experiences and on their own terms. But he has just finished Opening Up, and I think that has offered a new perspective for him. I want him to have the same boundaries and values as I do, but I can only control my own, and tell him why I hold true to the things I do.

So, his girlfriend (M) of five months is seeing someone pretty seriously, and he does not know about her other relationship with a married man. C & M have a couple of things they are trying to work through at this early stage. She has some jealousy and possessiveness issues, and also really wants to get married. So C has added to their conversation the fact that she needs to tell her boyfriend what's going on, that he deserves to consent to this.

I am not going to tell C what to do, because we don't have that kind of veto power. Well, I should say nothing has happened thus far for us to implement veto power. What I want to say to him is that I'm not comfortable with this for my own reasons - not because I want to tell someone what to do, but because I think it's shitty, and not something I want to be around, even once removed. C & M have to work through their own relationship, but in the meantime, I'm not too cool with M coming over to our house, hanging out with her, and her spending the night in the guest room with my husband. I feel like that is the only boundary I can put up to keep this at a distance. I don't want to tell them what to do... well, I guess I do want that, but I can't demand that. To keep me comfortable and sane, I need distance. I won't be rude to her or confront her. I just want to state my feelings, protect myself and stand up for what I think is important to me.

M lives with her parents, so our house or a hotel are really the only places they can go for intimacy. So then I wonder if this is my way to try to control the situation by limiting the time they may spend together.

I may be jumping the gun because C has only started talking to her about this as of yesterday. But I'd like to hear any advice or objective perspectives that can be offered. I can get irked or angry about things my husband does or doesn't do, but ultimately I can only control my own behavior. What can I put in place to do that?
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