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  #1  
Old 10-12-2012, 01:20 PM
Sinensis Sinensis is offline
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Red face First Time She's With Someone Else

Hello everyone!

I posted quite some time ago about the trouble I was having as my partner and I were working into an open relationship. She has previous experience in open relationships and, at one time, a triad, and I hadn't been in anything other than a monogamous relationship (or just casual dating) before.

She just left today to fly across the country for a conference, where she'll also be meeting up with a former--and now current--lover. This is the first time she'll be with anyone outside our relationship. (I've gone on a few dates and had one lackluster make out session, but nothing more; grumble small town grumble so many straight girls grumble.) Granted, she hasn't arrived there yet, and I know they're not physically together right now, so maybe my feelings will change when they are, but I feel...

surprisingly fine. A little tender, maybe, and I'm aware that my feelings probably will fluctuate some, but given how much work I've had to put in prior to now, and how many insecurities I did and, to some extent, still do have, that's kind of a big deal. The lack of being upset itself is kind of uplifting. I'm kinda proud of myself. I guess I wanted to brag a little. That's not something I do often--I've actually been repeatedly admonished by my therapist to stop dismissing my own accomplishments. But for me, just getting this far is a big deal. I've got a hesitant smile on my face, knowing that I won the jackpot of partners with someone I'm unbelievably compatible with, who will happily encourage me and celebrate with me when I finally find an outside partner, and who will be coming back home in a week, full of love for the girl who's committed enough to this relationship to put in the effort needed to make this poly thing work. Not to mention fired up and raring to go.

Yay.

Here's hoping I don't wind up posting a follow up of late night angst. ;P
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  #2  
Old 10-12-2012, 01:43 PM
InquiringOne InquiringOne is offline
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Stay positive Sin! You're doing great. And you should celebrate your accomplishments. Half the people never even recognize hey need to change. You've taken concrete steps toward it and are now about to reap the benefits of making yourself a better person. Congratulations!
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Old 10-12-2012, 01:48 PM
polypenguin polypenguin is offline
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that's great! It's always nice to hear about someone is surprised at how WELL they are taking their partner being with someone else, especially for the first time. It's very uplifting to feel good (or even just not bad), when something like that happens.

congratulations, and my best wishes to you both
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Old 10-12-2012, 06:49 PM
Sinensis Sinensis is offline
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Thanks, guys!

Quote:
It's very uplifting to feel good (or even just not bad), when something like that happens.
Oh yeah. It's uplifting and sort of surprising at the same time. I feel like I just jumped out of a tree and landed on my feet, and now I'm standing there in a crouch going "I'm...I'm okay? I'm okay. Huh. I'm okay!" Sort of halfway nervously waiting for some sort of pain to start, but feeling increasingly giddy because I seem to have made it without injury.
And maybe there will be some pain. Maybe I'll have turned out to have sprained an ankle or something, but it'll heal, and I'm still on the ground and not stranded in my tree anymore.
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Old 10-13-2012, 11:30 AM
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That is great to hear! I know initially, when my wife would travel to see her boyfriend across the country, I always seemed to have a little nervousness. But once she was on her way, the thoughts of her with her boyfriend, having a good time together and her being happy to have time with him alone, always made me feel good about it. Knowing, even while with him, she was also thinking of me while away. Its a good feeling known as compersion, being happy for her knowing she is happy and enjoying herself with her boyfriend.
Well, today is a new day, would love to hear how the night went for you, if you talked to her last night and how you are feeling now. Hope all is good.
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  #6  
Old 10-13-2012, 04:48 PM
Sinensis Sinensis is offline
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Awwww, thanks so much for checking back in and sharing your story! Does the nervousness happen every time? Does it seem to get less each time, or is it more or less consistent for you?

I'm feeling great, actually! I heard someone mention compersion on a local poly listserv I lurk on, and my first thought was "that sounds lovely, and like something I could never achieve in a million years." I don't know if what I'm feeling qualifies, exactly. I had a little bit of a twinge getting into bed last night, but otherwise I just feel happy and relieved. I feel happy for her, but if I'm being totally honest, I mostly feel happy for/with myself. I feel happy knowing she's thinking of me, that I'm doing well by her, and I feel magnanimous and generous. That, in turn, has made me more generous. On my lunch break yesterday, when a one-eyed homeless man asked for a bit of change to buy lunch (yeah, he seriously had one eye), I went and bought him a meatball sub. That, in turn, exponentially increased my happy/generous high. (Would that I could do that every day--I'm a grad student working 25 hours a week and collecting both loans and interest on those loans, due to graduate into a rough market in about seven months. Eeeep.) When I got home this morning (I spent the night at a friend's house for non-sexual comfort snuggles; hopefully being alone tonight doesn't affect my mood too much), the police were here because my crazy, angry, unhappy neighbors had had another disruptively loud argument, and I just felt detached from their world, their seemingly constant experience of anger and resentment.

(...that said, I still think one of them's a total jerk and the other's a bit unhinged, but it's not bothering me the way it sometimes does. But, y'know, I just wanted to admit that I'm not pretending to be some sort of transcendent, anger-free spiritual wisp.)

I've been thinking more about that tree simile, too, and it feels more and more accurate. I'd climbed up a tree of my own anxieties and was stuck up on that one narrow point, wanting to get down and explore but too scared to take the jump I needed to. And then I did. And the thing I was so afraid of, the thing that was causing me so much distress by worrying about it in the future, turned out not to hurt at all. I landed and, having recovered from the shock of not having broken limbs, I'm skipping away.

It certainly doesn't hurt that my girlfriend is being wonderful about all this. She left me a little gift in our mailbox, and another one in one of my favorite mugs, both with sweet notes. I have the sneaking suspicion I will find more throughout the week.
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Old 10-13-2012, 05:13 PM
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You so remind me of my husband He had similar reactions when we started out on our poly journey. Glad to read about other positive experiences. ^.^
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  #8  
Old 11-16-2012, 02:14 PM
Sinensis Sinensis is offline
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Default Just some frustration

Sigh. A quick little grumble on my part. Not about my relationship with my girlfriend--that's still going fine. About my attempts to find an outside partner.

I'd finally found someone I experienced a mutual attraction with when I went to a festival in October, in a town about three/four hours away (where I used to live). Nothing happened then, but we'd talked about getting together again, and now I've been making plans to visit that town, both to see people I haven't seen in ages and go dancing and hiking and to meet up with this girl.

The girl, in turn, has a not-quite-relationship with a traveling musician. They're free to do whatever they like when they're not together, but when they happen to be in the same place they're exclusive. Turns out this girl will be in town then, too.

I've been looking for an outside partner for eight months. I've lost track of how many dates I've been on. The people I've encountered here, aside from my girlfriend, I just haven't felt attracted to--and now of course there's this. I don't know what's going on. Is it this town? Is it me? I wouldn't have thought finding someone to have sex with me would be so hard. :/ At any rate, it's annoying, and it's kind of grinding at my self-esteem.
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Old 11-17-2012, 01:46 AM
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nycindie nycindie is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sinensis View Post
I wouldn't have thought finding someone to have sex with me would be so hard. :/ At any rate, it's annoying, and it's kind of grinding at my self-esteem.
Is that a joke or is that what you really want & the vibe you project - that you just want someone to have sex with? If so, that might be why you've not been so lucky. Maybe you keep meeting women who want actual relationships and not NSA sex.

However, gotta say this - eight months isn't terribly long. So, relax and don't pressure yourself to find someone just because your gf has someone else - it isn't a race. I think it's great to just date as much as possible without making the dates auditions for an ongoing thing. Date people you wouldn't even think are your type, and date just to enjoy someone's company, without any ulterior motive. In other words, let your goal be just to have fun on dates and meeting new people and that's it. If you do that, then you won't feel disappointed if it doesn't turn into having more dates with someone, and if it does lead to more it will be icing on the cake.
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Old 11-17-2012, 02:32 AM
Sinensis Sinensis is offline
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It was, in fact, primarily a joke, but let me clarify a few more things while I'm at it.

-What I'm looking for is certainly more than NSA sex, but we couldn't be called full-blown polyamory. Neither of us is capable of having sex without some kind of emotional attachment, so romantic feelings with outside partners are expected, but "in love" love is just within the relationship, and we are each other's only primary partners.

-The issue hasn't been people not being interested in me--it's been the other way around. I just haven't felt a connection on anything other than a cerebral, conversational level. So even if there were "vibes," they evidently don't put people off.

That second point is what's been making this harder. I don't LIKE turning people down. I mean, it's something I have to do, but telling someone I'm not interested in them that way always feels hurtful. A few have turned into some fun friendships, but others have decided to step back when it became clear it wasn't turning into anything else. And that's fine, of course--but I barely have time for my current friends as is. It's hard to let go and just enjoy the company when some part of my brain is fretting over other things I should be doing if it turns out to be a dead end. :/

I've dated many people I didn't think were my type. So far they remain not my type. What was especially baffling was that when I went and visited this town, I suddenly felt very attracted to multiple people, something I haven't experienced where I'm currently living (thanks to grad school) at all. Hmmm.
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