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Old 02-26-2012, 02:56 PM
yami08 yami08 is offline
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Default The search for clarity

As someone who is new to this concept, I am finding it increasingly difficult to control how I feel about her. It's been close to a year of great times and building this amazing connection. I would say that I'm currently in a Vee...with her being the hinge. She has a primary relationship, which is currently very strong and what I'd like to think is stable. I on the other hand, am single and have been on this search for my primary relationship.

Though I have dated other women during the past year, I've found it difficult to create emotional connections to these people. It would seem that she gets most of my heart. The connection to this women is just unreal, nothing I've ever experienced in the past, so it's not something I can easily deny or try and downplay, though I find I must at times to ensure I don't destabilize the Vee. However, as of late, I have found that I am increasingly having thoughts of how it would be, to be the primary in this Vee. How do you all control this? It was a lot easier to control before we started having deeper discussions about our relationship.

She has stated that this likely won't happen, but I also suspect that it's her defensive mechanism to keep me at bay. We both have expressed love for each other, but she has also confessed that she has become confused about her primary relationship...and has questioned whether that person or I am the one she should be with. Those same exact thoughts that I've had, are becoming stronger each day and it's becoming more and more difficult to deny that they exist.

Though I am always constantly trying to discover myself, I believe I would be very happy with her. And although I've tried over the last year to understand and accept this open lifestyle, I am not sure yet whether this is the lifestyle for me.

I'm currently seeing a therapist, who has been somewhat helpful thus far to provide more clarity for this situation. I've been told to focus more on what I want and how "we" - her and I can try to work through this. This makes sense, but I also fear I will push her away if I ask for too much too fast.

It feels really good to just put this all down in writing rather than a jumble of thoughts in my head...
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Old 02-27-2012, 02:03 AM
bookbug bookbug is offline
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Why can't you and your gf's primary be co-primaries? And why do you have to look at it as hierarchical situation. Personally, I detest such designations. Each relationship is unique.
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Old 02-27-2012, 04:53 AM
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redpepper redpepper is offline
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Drop the hierarchy crap and just love her with as much energy and vigor as feels comfortable? Why do you have to put a cap on that just because she has another man in her life. I get all the best of my partners love right now because both are unpartnered with anyone else (hinge of a vee with the two men I live with). I also get the best of my married gf's love... its just different than what she gives to her husband.... ya, lose the hierarchy, it seems obvious to me you've outgrown it. Congrats, that would mean you are no longer a newbie at least by my standard anyway.
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Old 02-27-2012, 05:38 AM
yami08 yami08 is offline
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I definitely don't like the use of hierarchies to describe us, just thought I'd give some perspective. She has also thrown out those titles here and there, but I haven't made it clear that it bothers me...and it does sometimes.

bookbug - I would definitely love to be a co-primary. It would seem that the way we are building this relationship, it is leading to that but I won't assume. Perhaps I am giving her too much of the decision power, not stating my wants and needs. This is something I am currently working on.

redpepper - I somewhat agree with you, but I also don't want to shower her with this love perhaps not wanting to smother her. She has on occasion pulled away when she feels she is getting too close to me. Her way of balancing the Vee I'd assume. the last thing I want is to rock the boat...but sometimes my feelings for her are too strong, and I am finding it increasingly difficult to manage.
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Old 02-27-2012, 07:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yami08 View Post
redpepper - I somewhat agree with you, but I also don't want to shower her with this love perhaps not wanting to smother her. She has on occasion pulled away when she feels she is getting too close to me. Her way of balancing the Vee I'd assume. the last thing I want is to rock the boat...but sometimes my feelings for her are too strong, and I am finding it increasingly difficult to manage.
I don't think one has to smother to love someone. I love plenty of people who don't even know it, let alone smother them. Its a mind set. The idea being to decide that loving her is to fulfill your need, not to create something in her life with her that is shown from the outside only. Its all inward stuff I am talking about. I hope that makes sense as its hard to explain....
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Old 02-27-2012, 10:03 AM
zylya zylya is offline
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Does her "primary" actually know about this secondary relationship? Just because a) she's debated which "one" to choose, b) she is against you meeting him and hasn't provided a reason why not which leads to c) you backwards rationalise this by saying he must be mono and can't accept her.

Just a couple of potential red flags - obviously if you have more info, let us know.
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Old 02-27-2012, 01:07 PM
yami08 yami08 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redpepper View Post
I don't think one has to smother to love someone. I love plenty of people who don't even know it, let alone smother them. Its a mind set. The idea being to decide that loving her is to fulfill your need, not to create something in her life with her that is shown from the outside only. Its all inward stuff I am talking about. I hope that makes sense as its hard to explain....
I understand. I definitely have emotional needs that require fulfilling and for the most part, I believe she is aware. I definitely do not smother her. I only mention this because she has the tendency to pull back her emotions at times when she feels we are getting too close or that I have expressed too much. She seems to be doing this to ensure there is balance for her feelings between myself and her bf. These are not assumptions, she has admitted that this is why she has pulled back so I feel at times I need to be careful of how much I express to her.

It is against my nature to hold back in this way. I have never had to do this in any other relationship, but I also feel that there are times when you have to be strategic about how you handle certain relationship dynamics, especially during the NRE stage. My goal would be to build her perception of my value in this relationship, rather than her thinking I'm a dope who's fallen head over heals for her (which is exactly what has happened).

Last edited by yami08; 02-27-2012 at 01:25 PM.
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Old 02-27-2012, 05:44 AM
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I will be blunt. I think you need to stop entertaining the fantasy of replacing her primary partner and come back down to earth. You don't have to be her primary for her to be yours. Sure, she may be confused about her primary relationship, but that sounds like NRE. It's still fairly new for both of you. But you are spinning off into these thoughts that you are "the one" she should be with, indulging in that idea, and fantasizing that she feels the same way but is keeping her feelings for you "at bay." This is not good because that kind of thinking could lead to unnecessary drama. Poly isn't about figuring out which person should be THE ONE to love -- but you can just let yourself love her with all your heart and treat her well, and not worry about who is in first place.

Continuing along this train of thought will cause problems because eventually you'll put her in the position of having to choose, and that isn't fair. Both her relationships could get messed up if you don't make an effort to start seeing the reality that she loves two people. So, I agree with the others that you just shouldn't be focusing on where you are within the perceived hierarchy. Try to stay grounded. If you want to be in a mono relationship, you either need to move on or accept that this is a mono/poly arrangement. There are Yahoo groups for monos in poly-mono relationships - maybe something like that will help you find your way. And make sure that you cultivate the friendships in your life and find ways to expend your energy that aren't so focused on her.

Also, do you have any sort of friendship with her SO? If not, I think it would behoove you to get to know that person and start seeing him or her as an ally in loving her, not your competition.
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An excellent blog post on hierarchy in polyamory:
solopoly.net/2014/10/31/why-im-not-a-secondary-partner-the-short-version/

Last edited by nycindie; 02-27-2012 at 05:56 AM.
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  #9  
Old 02-27-2012, 06:07 AM
yami08 yami08 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nycindie View Post
I will be blunt. I think you need to stop entertaining the fantasy of replacing her primary partner and come back down to earth. You don't have to be her primary for her to be yours. Sure, she may be confused about her primary relationship, but that sounds like NRE. It's still fairly new for both of you. But you are spinning off into these thoughts that you are "the one" she should be with, indulging in that idea, and fantasizing that she feels the same way but is keeping her feelings for you "at bay." This is not good because that kind of thinking could lead to unnecessary drama. Poly isn't about figuring out which person should be THE ONE to love -- but you can just let yourself love her with all your heart and treat her well, and not worry about who is in first place.

Continuing along this train of thought will cause problems because eventually you'll put her in the position of having to choose, and that isn't fair. Both her relationships could get messed up if you don't make an effort to start seeing the reality that she loves two people. So, I agree with the others that you just shouldn't be focusing on where you are within a hierarchy, And try to stay grounded. If you want to be in a mono relationship, you either need to move on or accept that this is a mono/poly arrangement. And make sure that you cultivate the friendships in your life and find ways to expend your energy that aren't so focused on her.

Also, do you have any sort of friendship with her SO? If not, I think it would behoove you to get to know that person and start seeing him or her as an ally in loving her, not your competition.
Thank you for being so blunt. I need that. I admit that I've thought about it one too many times. It would seem that during the first 6 months, I was dealing with it very well, I was dating others, out and having a blast with my friends and my confidence was very high. Lately it hasn't been the same as I have realized I've fallen in love with her. - I'll definitely try to stay grounded. She is not comfortable at this point allowing us to meet. Though she would define their relationship is "open", I suspect he is a Mono and hasn't completely accepted her being Poly.
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  #10  
Old 02-27-2012, 05:54 AM
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Anneintherain Anneintherain is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yami08 View Post
Though I have dated other women during the past year, I've found it difficult to create emotional connections to these people.
You know, sometimes it just takes a long time to meet somebody you really click with, that is pretty common. Maybe they weren't right for you. Don't read too much into that. My husband was a bachelor until he was 40. He dated a hell of a fucking lot. He said he formed a deep connection with about one out of 20 people he dated. Don't know how common that is to dating at large, but I just wouldn't extrapolate your experience to mean you won't fall for other people ever. You are still possibly in the NRE stage with your girlfriend, and that can make it harder for you to be open to others.

I am not sure why you need to control how you feel about her?
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