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  #1  
Old 10-28-2013, 06:35 PM
PolyMC PolyMC is offline
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Default Hello from (Upstate) NY

Hi All!
Brand new to the forum today but SOOOO glad to know that I am not alone in what I was surprised to recently discover about myself, literally within the last 4 months.

I've been happily married to my DH (I'll call him "A") for 9 1/2 years (I'm heading for the big 5-0) and love him dearly and would do anything in the world to avoid hurting him. I found something really special with him and don't want to give that up for anything--it's a second marriage for us both.

However, about three years ago I met a guy (who I'll call "M"), via email, due to a mutual hobby. I hadn't really expected it to go beyond 2, maybe three email exhanges in total. But the emails have kept up, nearly every day steady, usually several times a day, ever since. It wasn't long before I found myself trying to deny the feelings I was feeling -- in fact, "A" observed even before I did that I was starting to fall. And fall I have, although unfortunately for me it's quite one-sided, perhaps because I am married. But this is still a very deep emotional relationship/friendship and we have met in person a few times. If "M" is aware, it's never been explicitly discussed, mainly because I know I'll probably be in for a disappointment. (I know, denial much?)

Then a couple of months ago, I reconnected with my first love from over 20 years ago (who I'll call "T") -- there were a lot of unresolved questions I had that I felt needed answers as we just sort of drifted apart and into other relationships. Soon after our reconnection we discovered that we still had strong feelings for each other and it wasn't long before the word "love" was being used nearly as frequently as it was back then.

So now I find myself in a very weird (for me) position...being potentially in love with three guys at the same time, with only two of them returning the feeling. To be fair to "A" I have told him everything and he is fully aware of how I feel about both "M" and "T", who at best would be LDRs that I would only see a couple of times a year each due to the distances they each live from me. "A" is still reeling a bit from hearing my "Honey, I think I'm a poly" announcement -- he always was and always will be a mono and has no desire to change. "T" is also a poly -- in fact it was our getting together that sort of gelled that for both of us. I don't know for sure about "M", but I suspect mono.

"A" and I have sat down on several occasions to come to an agreement on "ground rules" regarding the other "relationships", mostly governing what could happen (or more accurately what *SHOULDN'T* happen) when I am on a visit with either "M" or "T". At the moment he is mostly "don't ask, don't tell" with respect to the details of the other relationships, but still wants the reassurance that the agreement lines haven't been crossed. I'm more than happy to oblige there. He is tolerant of me having some, but not total leeway and I have accepted the rules we've agreed to. For him having been hit with this out of the blue, I am quite surprised that he has been this tolerant (could he still be "in shock"?)

I have also, perhaps to my detriment, (and maybe as my way to prove to him that he will always be my first and foremost relationship) promised him that if he ever gets to a point where he can't handle this arrangement anymore, I will not pursue the poly lifestyle. He told me that part of the reason he is being tolerant is that he doesn't want me to resent him for giving up part of who I am, even though it was a recent discovery.

Whew, this is the first time I've ever verbalized my situation and in reading it over, even *I* can see how complicated it is. Of course, this could be just because it's all so new, but dang, for being so new, I'm in deep! For those of you who may have been in a similar situation, can this ever work out so that no one gets hurt? Sometimes it just seems like an impossibility, but I haven't given up hope.

"G" -- married to "A", but love "M" & "T" as well
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  #2  
Old 10-28-2013, 06:53 PM
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FullofLove1052 FullofLove1052 is offline
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Welcome to the forum. I hope you find it useful. There is a wealth of information--some good and some bad.

My only concern is your husband's tolerance. Tolerance can sometimes wear off when reality sets in and shock leaves. He is tolerating your need/want for others, but he does not accept that part of you. Acceptance is important to me and can lead to incompatibility and very different opinions down the line.

I will say this...it is easy to make agreements and think one can handle the reality vs. theory. Often that is not the case. Can poly/mono marriages work? Yes, but it takes understanding from the poly person that the mono person has sacrificed their want/need for monogamy and has to be okay with a host of things. I learned these lessons the hard way, so I would advise you to proceed with caution and not rush anything. I would encourage your husband to lurk or join and read the various threads.

Just take some time and ease in to this because it is a change from what you both have been used to for years. People tend to crack like eggs when they move too fast and then everyone suffers. Poly can be rewarding for some.

Feel free to start a blog here: Life Stories and Blog, or continue to explore the threads. Post questions if you have them. There are quite a few seasoned polys on here, and some of them offer really good advice.

Good luck and enjoy!

Ry
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  #3  
Old 10-28-2013, 11:17 PM
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kdt26417 kdt26417 is offline
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Hello G,
Welcome to our forum.

I think you'll have to check up on A often to make sure he is still feeling "okay" (if not great) about these poly relationships. I don't know that any polyamorous (or monogamous, for that matter) relationship can ever work out so that no one gets hurt. Wouldn't it be nice if such could be the way it is. Happily ever after and all that. The truth is, people get hurt feelings, have arguments, and have to renegotiate the situation so that everyone can live with it.

Of course, that's not at all the same thing as saying that it can't work at all. Sure it *can* work, in some cases, with sufficient honesty, communication, patience, and diplomacy. I'm just saying almost every worthwhile relationship involves some sacrifices, regardless of whether it's a poly relationship.

Make sure you have M's wholehearted consent before pursuing anything too heavy with him. Of course, before he can consent, he'll have to know what he's consenting to, so at some point you'll have to let him know what's going on, with respect to both your feelings and A's.

I guess I'm curious about what ground rules you and A negotiated, but it's up to you how much you want to share of that kind of detail. As long as it works for all involved parties, then all is well.

Take advantage of the resources Polyamory.com has to offer, and do visit our blogs board. You might also find our Golden Nuggets board to be helpful.

Regards,
Kevin T.
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Old 10-29-2013, 05:06 AM
PolyMC PolyMC is offline
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Default Thank You For the Welcome!

It's so nice to finally be in a place where I can talk about this openly and not feel so "closeted" as I do in the real world.

"A" and I have had many discussions since I became aware of my growing romantic feelings for two other men -- often he feels a little overwhelmed and past his comfort zone at the very idea. At this point in time I have not had any physical contact with either "M" (outside of several wonderfully long and cuddly hugs--I still don't think he is aware how deep my feelings run, and even if he did I doubt that he reciprocates the romantic feelings) or "T" (whom I haven't seen in person since we were dating oh so many years ago--our "relationship" at this point is online/phone) so the negotiations are very much in their infancy stage. I have already made several trips to visit "M" (which began the negotiations) and nothing has happened there to even warrant discussion. There are upcoming solo trips planned to visit both "M" and "T" (one at the end of the year and the other in the spring) which naturally makes "A" a bit nervous.

In answer to the question regarding our "ground rules", and please forgive me if this is too graphic for this forum, at this point "p-in-v" sex is prohibited -- anything else in my sexual repertoire is acceptable. In our discussions, we both agreed that as my husband and primary partner "A" should be exclusively entitled to the p.i.v. Initially he wanted to include other activities (basically, anything "below my belt") but we ended up agreeing to this proverbial "line in the sand". My feeling with potential partners is that there are so many ways to give and receive pleasure that this restriction shouldn't be a hindrance. Am I being naive?

I have maintained all along that "A"'s happiness is first and foremost on my priority list, which is the reason I made the promise that if he ever gets to a point where he just can't handle any of this, I will continue to live as a mono as I have for the past 10 years since we met. He is a keeper and I'd be devastated if anything happened that would cause me to lose him. "A" often remarks, somewhat in jest, that he is happiest when he can be in denial. Discussions and references to "M" and/or "T" are a little too real for him right now. (And remember, "A" noticed that I was falling for "M" even before I did.) My personal rule is that "A" and I will be on the same page before I allow myself to become physically involved with another man. And of course any potential partners will need to be on-board with the not-the-run-of-the-mill arrangement as well. I don't ever want there to be any secrets, which I feel would destroy any of these relationships, whether in their current form or taken to the next level.
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Old 10-29-2013, 09:56 AM
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Emm Emm is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PolyMC View Post
I have maintained all along that "A"'s happiness is first and foremost on my priority list, which is the reason I made the promise that if he ever gets to a point where he just can't handle any of this, I will continue to live as a mono as I have for the past 10 years since we met.
Make sure you tell M, T, and any other potential partners early that they are disposable so that they can make an informed decision about becoming involved with you before their emotions are engaged. It's not fair to lure someone in with the promise of a relationship only to rip it out from under them on a whim, particularly if they've had time to become attached.
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Old 10-29-2013, 12:56 PM
PolyMC PolyMC is offline
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Point taken, although that brought me up a little short with calling them "disposable" because that's not how I see it nor how I would ever want it to be perceived. I will never enter into any relationship (nor take the existing ones with "M" and "T" to the next level) if I don't believe I can fully commit to it or feel that "A" is not on-board. I love them all enough to not want to hurt any of them. And "A" is not the type to agree to something and then "pull the plug" and do a 180 down the road. That's why we're having our discussions and agreements now, before any of the relationship dynamics change. But you've definitely given me something to think about...so that I can make a fully informed decision.

Last edited by PolyMC; 10-29-2013 at 02:35 PM.
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