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  #1  
Old 12-04-2011, 06:55 PM
secretposter secretposter is offline
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Hi I'm new here and I know I'm going to get alot of flak for what I'm about to type. Here goes anyway. Honestly not sure why I'm typing this here but right now I'm feeling okay but I know as things progress not being open with my wife is going to drive me utterly bananas.

Anyway, here it is. Married for a long time to a woman I love to bits. Our relationship has been through some bloody difficult times. Alot of which down to me. Repressed sexuality in childhood, jumped out at me like a lightening strike after marriage. I now accept that I'm bi and have poly tendencies. Taken me a very very long time to accept this. Years of refusing to accept this caused depression and all sorts of crap in my marriage.

Anyway, we have discussed this alot. After alot of war between us, more counselling than I'd care to admit we are together and happy. My wife is bi but mono and as far as I can see she's not for turning.

Thing is I've met another woman who is in an open relationship and is happy to remain so and we get on like a house on fire. What drives me nuts is the fact that I cannot tell my wife about this wonderful person in my life. It's frankly cracking me up.

I'm okay now but I know as my relationship with this other woman progresses it's going to become more difficult but it has reached the stage that losing either would break me.

Yes I'm breaking all the rules, yes I'm playing with fire, yes I'm in a situation where I'm lying to my primary - god I hate titles like that -

I hope that as the counselling progresses my wife will become more comfortable I don't know. I do know that as things stand if I tell her about the other woman in my life it would crush her.
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  #2  
Old 12-04-2011, 07:22 PM
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hyperskeptic hyperskeptic is offline
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First, welcome to the forum. Many of us here - myself included - are relatively new to all this. In that sense, you're in good company.

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Originally Posted by secretposter View Post
Hi I'm new here and I know I'm going to get alot of flak for what I'm about to type.
Flak isn't likely, given what I've learned of people on the forum. Stern advice, tough love, the occasional good talkin'-to, yes, but rarely flak, especially for people who 1) are in a vulnerable position, and 2) are up front about the fact that they are conflicted . . . as you are, in the very title of your post.

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Originally Posted by secretposter View Post
Anyway, we have discussed this alot. After alot of war between us, more counselling than I'd care to admit we are together and happy. My wife is bi but mono and as far as I can see she's not for turning.

Thing is I've met another woman who is in an open relationship and is happy to remain so and we get on like a house on fire. What drives me nuts is the fact that I cannot tell my wife about this wonderful person in my life. It's frankly cracking me up.
Okay, here's a stern bit of advice, from one newbie to another: you have to talk to your wife about this, right now, before things go any further. Be as judicious as you please in setting it up, maybe do it in the context of counseling, but tell her.

As for what to tell her, that you have developed strong feelings for another person is an important fact about you. It's not something you or she can wish away. It's not something you can ignore.

Does your wife already know you lean poly? Have you discussed that aspect of yourself? Does she know what it means, i.e., that you are able to develop strong feelings for someone else without detracting from your feelings for and commitment to your wife?

If she already knows that, telling her that you currently have strong feelings for someone else shouldn't come as that much of a surprise to her.

It's what you do on the basis of those feelings that matters. Once you've told her that you have feelings for the other woman, you pretty much have to tell her what, if anything, you've done on the basis of those feelings. Again, past actions are now a matter of fact.

Once all that's out in the open, you then have to figure out what to do next. That is not a matter of fact, but a matter of choice. Since it seems you've been doing the hard work of keeping your marriage going, it seems your wife should be involved in whatever choices follow from all this . . .

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Originally Posted by secretposter View Post
I'm okay now but I know as my relationship with this other woman progresses it's going to become more difficult but it has reached the stage that losing either would break me.
Here's another stern bit of advice. Put on the brakes, for now. If you allow the relationship with the other woman to "progress" without coming clean with your wife, you will very quickly find yourself just plain cheating on your wife . . . if you aren't already doing so by withholding important information from her.

Really, just don't go there.

Besides, it's important to keep your feelings in perspective. It may feel as though losing the other woman would "break" you, but that may just be "NRE" talking.

(NRE = "new relationship energy", the giddy rush of emotion and urgency and near-obsession at the beginning of a new relationship, which can blow out of all proportion the importance of the relationship and your own feelings. If not acknowledged and treated with some caution, NRE can do serious harm to existing relationships that seem less immediately urgent. There are many, many posts on these forums about NRE. Check the glossary, and do a search for NRE.)

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Originally Posted by secretposter View Post
I do know that as things stand if I tell her about the other woman in my life it would crush her.
I won't presume to know about your relationship and its history, but imagine how much more crushing it would be when your wife learns - and she will learn, sooner or later - of your deception.

("Deception" may be too strong a word for what you're doing now, which may be just withholding information to which your wife is entitled by moral right. But, as things "develop", deception is almost bound to follow. Again, don't go there.)

Others may be able to advise you more fully on how to talk to your wife about all this, and what, precisely, you should say. This is one of those situations in which your very choice of words is a matter for serious ethical reflection . . .

I wish you all the courage and strength you need for what's ahead.
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"Mystical explanations are considered deep. The truth is that they are not even superficial." - Friedrich Nietzsche

Last edited by hyperskeptic; 12-05-2011 at 03:50 AM. Reason: spelling (I'm picky that way)
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  #3  
Old 12-04-2011, 07:28 PM
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AnnabelMore AnnabelMore is offline
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Well, good on you for coming here and posting, at least. Since you know the sort of reaction you're going to get, I see that as a desire to change.

No secret in life is completely safe. Do you really think your wife might not find out?

If/when your wife does find out on her own, what do you think her reaction will be? Worse or better than if you told her yourself? Do you think you'd ever be able to fully gain back the trust you'd lose? How much of the progress you've made in therapy would be blown out of the water by her finding out?

That doesn't even touch the questions of what happens if you get an std, what happens if the other woman gets pregnant... these things do happen.

You can either passively wait for this to explode in your face or you can deal with it proactively and hopefully have a lesser explosion on your hands. Which would you prefer?

My advice is to tell the other woman that you plan to tell your wife and that you need a little time to work things out at home, you don't know how much. Then cut things off. THEN tell the wife and explain the step that you took. Tell her that you know this must be very hard to accept and that you're so sorry but that you love this woman amd you want to try to find a way to move forward. No one can guarantee her response, but others have made this sort of thing work. A show of good faith can only help your chances, plus give you back a little of your self-respect.
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The major players. Me, 30ish bi female. Gia, girlfriend of 4+ years. Clay, boyfriend/dom. Davis, ex/friend/"it's complicated." Eddie, roommate & fwb.
The supporting cast. Eric, Gia's husband. Bee, Gia and Eric's toddler. Dexter, Gia's lover. Helen, Eric's lover. Izzy and Nikki, Clay's partners. Liam, Eddie's husband.
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  #4  
Old 12-04-2011, 07:33 PM
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AnnabelMore AnnabelMore is offline
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"Once you've told her that you have feelings for the other woman, you pretty much have to tell her what, if anything, you've done on the basis of those feelings. Again, past actions are now a matter of fact."

YES. This is a *very* important point. We've seen many times here when a person finds out about a partner's indiscretions, begins to heal and regain trust, and THEN find out that there are more things that were still being hidden, and all that positive progress is completely lost and then some. When you come clean, come clean 100% if you care about trying to make it work.
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The major players. Me, 30ish bi female. Gia, girlfriend of 4+ years. Clay, boyfriend/dom. Davis, ex/friend/"it's complicated." Eddie, roommate & fwb.
The supporting cast. Eric, Gia's husband. Bee, Gia and Eric's toddler. Dexter, Gia's lover. Helen, Eric's lover. Izzy and Nikki, Clay's partners. Liam, Eddie's husband.
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  #5  
Old 12-04-2011, 10:39 PM
secretposter secretposter is offline
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Thankyou all for the responses. Advice I would give myself were I in anothers shoes. What drives me crazy is that the other woman came into my life unexpectedly, yes this may simply be nre still filtering. Yes I'm a newbie, yes I have a lot to learn. More than a little overwhelmed at times, the secrecy is cutting me. I look into my wifes eyes and I see the trust in her eyes for the first time in years. I think of the journey we're on the hurdles crossed the time spent, the re-learning of each other. It is all in jeopardy. My other partner literally has my life in her hands and that scares me sometimes. The coldly logical side of me shouts end it now. The side that enjoys her company shouts that I have never been in a position like this before. I can just be me talk and not be condemned for being me. I am at a point in my life where there is someone in my life that I connect with in a different way. I feel like such a child at times grappling with constructs that fascinate me, whilst not fully understanding them entirely. It feels like a new journey one which I would dearly like to take, incorporating into my life as best I can. I think I'm babbling now but I really am caught between two stools.
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  #6  
Old 12-05-2011, 12:03 AM
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hyperskeptic hyperskeptic is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by secretposter View Post
More than a little overwhelmed at times, the secrecy is cutting me. I look into my wifes eyes and I see the trust in her eyes for the first time in years. I think of the journey we're on the hurdles crossed the time spent, the re-learning of each other. It is all in jeopardy.
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Originally Posted by secretposter View Post
The coldly logical side of me shouts end it now. The side that enjoys her company shouts that I have never been in a position like this before. I can just be me talk and not be condemned for being me.
I'm sorry, but there's still only stern advice for you. You seem to need a good talkin'-to.

[Commence talkin'-to.]

You HAVE to stop now . . . but what you have to stop is the secrecy.

Do it now.

Just do it.

There is no other way.

Seriously.

Whether anything else stops as a consequence of that is up to you, your wife, and the other woman.

Quote:
Originally Posted by secretposter View Post
My other partner literally has my life in her hands and that scares me sometimes.
This sounds more than a little like a cop-out. You have your life in your hands. You have to choose.

Also, might it not be a bit soon to refer to the other woman as a "partner", as though your relationship with her is already a "primary" relationship, co-equal with your marriage? It takes time to develop that kind of relationship and, it seems to me, it's not the sort of relationship that can thrive in secret.

Quote:
Originally Posted by secretposter View Post
but I really am caught between two stools.
Then let yourself drop to the ground, take your bruises, and see what happens when you try to stand up.

The only way out of your predicament is through.

End the secrecy.

Do it now.

[End of talkin'-to.]

Sorry about that. It's strong medicine, but it's the only medicine that will help.

P.S. One picky little point: It's much easier for people to read and respond to posts that have paragraph breaks . . . Could you edit your last post to include them?
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"Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge" - Charles Darwin

"Mystical explanations are considered deep. The truth is that they are not even superficial." - Friedrich Nietzsche
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  #7  
Old 12-05-2011, 12:30 AM
mennodaughter mennodaughter is offline
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Lying to your wife, hiding your relationship, and maintaining secrecy is NOT poly. It's cheating. You can call it whatever you want. However, if you are not being honest with your wife, you are cheating.

Do with that what you want. However, continuing down the path you are going can easily destroy your marriage.

Personally, I've lived through both consensual openness and cheating in my marriage. The consensual openness and now the poly has NEVER been an issue in my marriage. The cheating nearly destroyed us. It destroys 2/3 of marriages where it occurs, actually. Anyone who has survived cheating can tell you it's not the SEX that is the deep, devestating blow to the relationship. It's lying that destroys a relationship, not the sex.
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  #8  
Old 12-05-2011, 12:48 AM
secretposter secretposter is offline
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I know this. I know that all the rules are being broken on this one. This I know.
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  #9  
Old 12-05-2011, 01:18 AM
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hyperskeptic hyperskeptic is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by secretposter View Post
I know this. I know that all the rules are being broken on this one. This I know.
Then what are you going to do?

If the answer is that you're just going to drift along on your current course, continuing to cheat on your wife, then why did you post to this forum?

There is no point asking for advice unless you know you have a choice to make.

And, really, you have no choice but to choose. Not choosing is also a choice.

So, I ask again, what are you going to do?
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"Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge" - Charles Darwin

"Mystical explanations are considered deep. The truth is that they are not even superficial." - Friedrich Nietzsche
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  #10  
Old 12-05-2011, 01:32 AM
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AnnabelMore AnnabelMore is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by secretposter View Post
I know this. I know that all the rules are being broken on this one. This I know.
I'll phrase it slightly differently than Hyper, and I'll encourage you to stop thinking about "rules" and instead just ask yourself this:
What do you possibly hope will be the outcome if you continue in your current course? What positive end goal are your actions striving for?
__________________
The major players. Me, 30ish bi female. Gia, girlfriend of 4+ years. Clay, boyfriend/dom. Davis, ex/friend/"it's complicated." Eddie, roommate & fwb.
The supporting cast. Eric, Gia's husband. Bee, Gia and Eric's toddler. Dexter, Gia's lover. Helen, Eric's lover. Izzy and Nikki, Clay's partners. Liam, Eddie's husband.
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