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Old 08-08-2009, 07:16 PM
Fidelia Fidelia is offline
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Default New to Poly and needing help

I need some help, and there’s no one I can talk to. I’m hoping someone here has some insight to help me deal with this.

The Backstory:
I’m in a long-term, stable, very happy monogamous marriage, 17 years together, 15 married. A couple of months ago, I fantasized out loud with my hubby about adding this friend or that friend to our relationship. I was just fantasizing, letting my imagination really take a walk on the wild side, but my beloved jumped all over the idea and was immediately ready to go poly for real. Right then. As in, “Let me make a few phone calls.“ YIKES! In fact, he told me he’d been patiently waiting all this time, hoping I’d want to open our marriage some day but recognizing it probably would never happen.

Yowie . . . I had no idea. I had never given the idea any thought, much less serious consideration. I certainly never knew this was something my beloved wanted. But now I know. And he’s clearly very, very serious. So I started thinking about it.

After much soul-searching, research and examination of my own feelings, my honest assessment was and is that opening our hearts and lives to additional lovers is scary and risky. I’m primarily scared of damaging or destroying the good thing we’ve got going between us, but the other risks are there too (the potential for damaging valued friendships, the social pressure, family issues, plus health risks I thought I’d never have to consider again, etc.). But more than I was afraid of any of these potential problems, I earnestly desired that my beloved have the desire of his heart. And there is a lot to like about poly, as I‘m sure everyone on this forum is aware. So I agreed to try polyamory.

The first person we decided to invite into a new relationship with us was my bff of many years, whom I’ll call Star. I felt uncomfortably shy starting the discussion, so my husband spoke with her, and he told me she’d agreed to try it out.

The Incident:

(I’m going to *try* and just report the facts, with as little of my own commentary and opinions as possible.)

Star came to visit us for a few days, which she’s done many times before. (She lives a couple of hours away from us.) On the first night of her visit, she and I were sitting in the living room visiting when Hubby came and invited the two of us to join him in the bedroom.

I took him up on his invitation, went into the bedroom and waited for them. And waited . . . And waited . . . and waited. Forty-five very long minutes later, feeling very confused, I went to see what was up, and saw the two of them leaving the guest room together. I immediately felt extremely hurt, confused and abandoned. I confronted them, accusing them (mostly him) of ditching me, having asked me to join him/them in the bedroom and then not showing up. A great deal of yelling ensued. There was “much wailing and gnashing of teeth” by all parties. It was pretty ugly.

When things calmed down some and we could talk more rationally about the situation, it boils down to this: the two of them had gotten caught up in the heat of the moment and simply forgot that I was waiting for them. I’m glad they felt they could be honest with me, because God knows I’d rather deal with a bitter truth than sweet-tasting lie, but it doesn’t ease my pain at all to know that the two people I love most in the world could so quickly and easily forget me. And that when the moment came to turn toward me or away, they both chose to turn away.

They’re both sorry and say it will never happen again, and I truly believe they mean it. My husband in particular has said a thousand times how much he loves me, that I’m the most important person in the world to him, and that no one could ever take my place in his life. And I want to get past this. I believe in the healing power of forgiveness and I want to believe them. But the very first time the opportunity arose, they forgot me. What they say and what they did do not agree.

I really don’t know what to do now. I feel like a stranger in a strange land. Polyamory can be wonderful in theory, with so many opportunities to give and receive love openly and honestly, and grow as a person, but my practical experience of it is that it sucks. I wish now I’d kept my fantasies to myself, or at least said HELL NO! to my husband when we discussed it.

And the worst of all is that there isn’t anyone I can talk to about it. They’re my two best friends! The two people who hurt me are the two people I confide in! I feel like I’m stuck in a hole and can’t get out.

I hope someone here has some words of wisdom for me. I really need them, and I would so appreciate the help.

Thank you for your time and consideration.
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  #2  
Old 08-08-2009, 08:21 PM
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vandalin vandalin is offline
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Greetings and welcome.

Talk to him and tell him how you are feeling. And then slow the train down! It sounds like you went a bit faster then you were ready for. If boundaries were set and not stuck with, then there are things that really do need to be discussed. Openness and trust are very important and what happened to you decreases both of those immensly.

I'm sure others will have better or at least more in depth advice/words of wisdom, but I wish you luck in finding what you are looking for.
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Old 08-09-2009, 12:55 AM
Fidelia Fidelia is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vandalin View Post
Greetings and welcome.

Talk to him and tell him how you are feeling. And then slow the train down! It sounds like you went a bit faster then you were ready for. If boundaries were set and not stuck with, then there are things that really do need to be discussed. Openness and trust are very important and what happened to you decreases both of those immensly.

I'm sure others will have better or at least more in depth advice/words of wisdom, but I wish you luck in finding what you are looking for.
Thank you for your kind words, Vandalin. I sincerely appreciate your response, and I wish the same for you and Cajun, whatever Elric decides. We have talked, and talked, and talked some more. We're at the point now where there isn't much left to say. He knows I'm hurting. He understands, I think, the depth of my sorrow even though it's hard for him to look at. He's hurting to know that I'm hurting. Star's hurting over it, too. Everyone wishes the situation was different. We've each owned our parts of what happened, and they've said they can't believe thier actions. I couldn't ask them to be any sorrier than they already are. It just still really hurts, and I haven't yet been able to move past it. And that's not like me.

It never occurred to me for one moment that I would need to establish boundaries to protect my heart from them. Either of them.

Last edited by Fidelia; 08-10-2009 at 04:50 AM.
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Old 08-09-2009, 01:20 AM
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aussielover aussielover is offline
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Hi, welcome. I'm sorry I don't have any words of advice, but I wanted to give you a hug *HUGS* I'm really sorry that happened to you. I'm not sure I understand how they could have forgotten about you when the whole point was for you to all be together.
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Old 08-09-2009, 01:42 AM
Fidelia Fidelia is offline
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*hugs back* Thanks, Aussielover. I don't understand it either and neither do Hubby or Star. That's part of the problem too.

And you know . . . I think maybe that's part of why I'm having such a hard time moving past this. How can we know for sure something like this will never happen again when we don't know why it happened in the first place?
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Old 08-09-2009, 03:37 AM
Quath Quath is offline
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Sorry this happened to you, Fidelia. It sounds like you all are trying to handle it well. It is very hard when it is new and there is little social context to go on. We are brought up in a world where the rules of monogamy are pretty much understood by most people. But polyamory is a learn as you go process.

It is good that your husband was honest with you about what he felt. It may be easier to liken it to something not so emotional. For example, my wife asked me to join her by the pool. I told her that I would be down ina minute since I was watching some funny videos on the web. Next thing I know, she is back in the house in her regular clothes. So I asked her when she was going to get her bathing suit on so I could join her outside. It turns out that I had been goofing off for about half an hour and she had finished swimming.

Sometimes we lose track of time. It doesn't mean that the other person is unimportant. It probably means that something new was happening that was overloading the normal thinking process. I think there are lessons for everyone in this. They need to realize how easy it is to loose track of time and need to keep you in mind. You should let them know that you are waiting for them before it becomes an annoyance to you.

A lot of getting polyamory to work is to keep all communication open. Tell Star when you are feeling jealous and encourage her to do the same. Let your husband know he can tell you if he is feeling jealous. of you and Star. Communicate your desires but always be open to negotiations and don't see any rule was a "forever" rule.

If it happens again, just go out there before you get annoyed and join them where they are. Or suggest you are waiting.

i wish you well.
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Old 08-19-2009, 07:15 AM
Timoval Timoval is offline
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Is there a comparison?

I dipped a toe into the swinging scene when I had gained my freedom, the sexual side of polyamory does not seem that different. People express a desire to fulfill a fantasy, a husbands friend, the friend of the wife. Many of us have these thoughts and fantasies. It is my belief that as a race we are not naturally monogamous.

Are we using Polyamory as a way to legitimise the fact that we would like multiple partners with the approval and participation of our spouses?

Or is it just a label for a sexual adventure?
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Old 08-19-2009, 04:59 PM
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MonoVCPHG MonoVCPHG is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Timoval View Post

Are we using Polyamory as a way to legitimise the fact that we would like multiple partners with the approval and participation of our spouses?

Or is it just a label for a sexual adventure?
I honestly think it is used both ways. This is not my opinion; this is what I see first hand in the poly community.

I used to judge and get caught up in a form of "disapproval" because I personally wouldn't be healthy in a "sexual adventure" approach. The key is that I would not be healthy; others can be and may be.

Now that I have come to the realization that other people's relationships are not mine I am much more open to the various approaches to poly for what they are.

That does not mean I like to see the term abused by those who are dishonest in what they are looking for or use it to manipulate a partner. It just means if everyone is honest about what they want from relationships then I am fine with it.
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Old 08-19-2009, 06:12 PM
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redpepper redpepper is offline
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The sexual side of poly is worlds different than swinging (why does this keep coming up... I feel like I repeat myself over and over... It makes me stronger everytime in my convictions)!

It is like the difference between drinking a really good latte or an intant coffee (to those in Britain, I realize this analogy might be off as I know you generally drink instant coffee).
There is nothing like sex with connection, love and the lust that comes from needing and wanting to be close to someones soul, not just their interesting body.

Swinging, as I have said before, is akin to masterbating in someone elses body. Having poly relationships with others above and beyond your primary partner has the potential to be far deeper and as spiritual bonding as a primary relationship.

I am finding that poly has changed me in ways I am not able to articulate yet. Its coming and I will certainly write when I know, but my understanding of myself and who I am in the world has changed. I am surrounded by love and support in ways I never have need before. Not only that it has changed how I interact with my husband.

No my friend, it is very different than a flash in the pan swinging night or going to meet someone with the intention of having sex with them without the connection.
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Old 08-19-2009, 09:10 PM
Fidelia Fidelia is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Timoval View Post
Is there a comparison?

Are we using Polyamory as a way to legitimise the fact that we would like multiple partners with the approval and participation of our spouses?

Or is it just a label for a sexual adventure?
I am not widely experienced in polyamory (see the OP) and I have no experience whatsoever in swinging, but I do know there is a clear distinction. Polyamory involves full, close adult relationships among the partners, whereas swinging involves consensual extra-marital or non-marital sex among the participants with little or other relationship required or desired.
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