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  #11  
Old 05-11-2012, 11:14 PM
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With regards to this troubling language that keeps popping up:

"freaking out in a non-productive way"
"because of expressed hurt feelings"
"polluted her thing with her lover"

NOT GOOD. I dunno if you're aware of this but her continually projecting her guilt and in turn making you feel worse than you already are is NOT OKAY!!!! It has nothing to do with you being mature or not. If you are experiencing something emotionally and voice that to your partner their response should be to support you through whatever it is. Period. Not try to make you feel like shit when you already feel like shit. Like you're raining on her parade.

Who says that? Seriously?!?! I know she's not used to considering another person's feelings, and that much is obvious, but, really?!
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  #12  
Old 05-11-2012, 11:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yakchef View Post
I'm sorry, I realize now that this isn't a polyamory issue at all, it's my own self-esteem issue. I shouldn't have posted this thread.
Your self-esteem certainly plays a part but this has more to do with her being manipulative. She keeps invalidating your feelings and you keep blaming yourself. All bad.
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  #13  
Old 05-11-2012, 11:21 PM
km34 km34 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arrowbound View Post
With regards to this troubling language that keeps popping up:

"freaking out in a non-productive way"
"because of expressed hurt feelings"
"polluted her thing with her lover"

NOT GOOD. I dunno if you're aware of this but her continually projecting her guilt and in turn making you feel worse than you already are is NOT OKAY!!!! It has nothing to do with you being mature or not. If you are experiencing something emotionally and voice that to your partner their response should be to support you through whatever it is. Period. Not try to make you feel like shit when you already feel like shit. Like you're raining on her parade.

Who says that? Seriously?!?! I know she's not used to considering another person's feelings, and that much is obvious, but, really?!
Agreed.

You already have low self-esteem/social awkwardness - why isn't she supporting you and HELPING you improve instead of continually making you feel worse?

It may not be a poly issue, but it's not your self-esteem issue, either. It's your girlfriend continually doing things that hurt you and then telling you to get over it instead of working to figure out 1- why she does the same things over and over again (seriously- losing track of time happens, but doing it multiple times AFTER it being brought to your attention is blatant disregard for your feelings) and 2 - what could be done to improve your self-worth/confidence/esteem.
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  #14  
Old 05-11-2012, 11:23 PM
mostlyclueless mostlyclueless is offline
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If you'll forgive me for paraphrasing a line from Sex and the City, you're should-ing all over yourself.

Forget this shit about what you are supposed to feel and want and how you're supposed to act. Your feelings are important and meaningful and just as valuable in the relationship as this girl's.
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  #15  
Old 05-11-2012, 11:56 PM
ThatGirlInGray ThatGirlInGray is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yakchef View Post
I don't really know what to say to that because it feels like that's an introduction to a "breaking up" conversation and I have a strong emotional reaction to it. If I could corral my feelings I guess she's just checking to make sure things are working for me too. She says that she loves me and the only time she breaks up with people are when she doesn't love them any more. But in my experience, you can love someone a lot and still not be with them, and that's what I'm hearing when she says that.
You "guess" that's what she's doing? Has she said that's what she's doing? Because she should be capable of observing that you're "really monogamous" (which is NOT a bad thing!) without it sounding like an accusation. If that's what you're hearing, she needs to change what she's saying and/or the way she's saying it.

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I feel resentful of the fact that her time and energy seems to be mostly devoted to this other person.
This is completely valid. Feeling this does not make you a bad person or immature.

Quote:
I suppose she's right.
No, she's not.
Quote:
I will fully admit that I'm immature and that I'm not handling my feelings as I should be. Laundry IS a silly thing to argue about. What I was upset about was her "last minute" tactic, which just seems like going through the motions to me. Of course, that's understandable due to the NRE I guess, and I shouldn't take it so personally. I shouldn't have overreacted.
Being angry about the last-minute tactic is, again, perfectly valid. She's behaving like a teenager, trying to get away with not doing her chores on a technicality. I don't care how understandable NRE is, she's an adult and needs to control her actions and manage her time better.
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It just seems that at every turn or strategy that I take, I'm wrong. I should be able to accept being wrong without feeling bad about it, and then apply logic and reason to come to a workable solution that benefits both parties.
Key word is "workable". No matter how logical or reasonable a solution is, it's not workable unless BOTH parties hold up their ends of the agreement.
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My partner told me that even though I feel like I work hard she's the one doing all the work in the relationship because she has to deal with my emotional drama. She told me I don't understand how much work it is for her to try and respect my boundaries and then come home and find me upset. Processing is exhausting but when I bottle up my feelings, I tend to come unglued about stupid things (such as laundry), but me not bottling up my feelings is exhausting for her.
This is just pure BS. She's not doing ALL the work, no matter how difficult it is for her to work through some of these emotions with you.

Quote:
The other day we were at the grocery store and I put some frozen vegetables in the cart that were on sale. She said "I won't eat those, I want these instead" and put in something that I considered expensive. I said "No..." and she made a pouty face and took it out. This type of exchange happened with a few other items and I snapped and said "Well when you get a job and start contributing to the household again you can pick out whatever you want." She got mad and said "Oh I see how it is, since I'm just a leech I don't get a say in what we eat." Later I apologized for hurting her feelings because it was a nasty thing to say, but the damage was done.
It doesn't seem like either of you are real clear about how a partnership works. Nothing should be a unilateral decision, even groceries. Right now I'm home with the kids while MC works. Since he earns the money, does he get to decide what the whole house eats? How about the fact that I'm doing the grocery shopping and cooking? Does that mean it's all my choice? In all cases, the answer is no. We decide together. And sometimes he chooses to spend money on something I wouldn't have and sometimes I choose to spend money on something he wouldn't have. That's life.

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I don't have other partners and I realize that's probably part of the problem, and I would have a different perspective if I did.
yeah, you guys would have even less time together and to take care of household stuff.
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Unfortunately I struggle with dating due to social awkwardness and self esteem issues, which is my own fault and shouldn't affect her own perogative to find partners and have her own needs met. I understand that. I feel like I shouldn't be looking to date until I improve my emotional maturity and my distress tolerance because it's not really fair to other people and I'd just be wasting their time. Honestly I wasn't looking to date when I met my current partner, we were really close friends for a year before we started a romantic relationship and I resisted for a while because I was afraid of becoming a big old manbaby (like I'm being right now).
Recognizing your own struggles and trying to do what's fair for other people, instead of just what you WANT, is actually VERY emotionally mature. She could take some lessons from you about being fair to others.

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One thing she really enjoys doing is to "close out the bar," meaning she wants to stay out as long as possible. In the past that caused her to miss the last bus home and thus have to spend the night, breaking the "advance notice" boundary, but that's not really her fault.
Yes, it is. It may have been an accident, but it was still due to a choice she made. And if it happened more than once, then it's not even an accident anymore.
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I mean, with NRE she gets caught up in the moment and forgets until it's too late.
Too bad. She needs to grow up, set an alarm on her phone, whatever she needs to do.
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I do resent that because it means for those moments she "forgets to care" about my feelings, which she said herself is accurate (forgetting to care).
That's fair.
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But it's not malicious or intentional, someone forgetting is a mistake, so I can't hold it against her.
Has she done EVERYTHING in her power to try to correct her behavior? If not, then you absolutely can hold that against her.

Quote:
I don't know how to ask for less intensity with the lover because intensity is what it is. I don't think she can just turn down a dial or something. She has a really strong bond with this person and that's something that I can't change or alter. It is what it is.

She said last night that because I've expressed hurt feelings and freaked out in a non-productive way that I've polluted her thing with the lover so much she might as well just break it off, which makes me feel terrible because they're obviously falling in love with one another and I don't want to be the "bad guy."
The first paragraph is true, and good for you for realizing that. The second paragraph is, again, BS. You do not control how SHE feels about someone. That's her emotions and reactions and she needs to own them, not guilt you about it.

Quote:
Also yeah, I can't ask her to spend less time with the lover (she's actually a girl) because I'm not around. My partner pointed out last night that because of my work schedule I don't go out much, so what's the point of sitting at home waiting around for me? That's not time invested in the relationship. It's just her making a pointless sacrifice.
As long as she's getting stuff done at home (chore, errands, etc) during your work hours, so that when you're home you two can spend quality time together, sure.

"Having a trust issue" is different from having a partner who is not trustworthy. You seem to have the latter, not the former. And yes, I would tend to agree that you seem to have some self-esteem issues, which are leading you to put up with getting the short end of the stick in a relationship. Ultimately it doesn't matter how much she SAYS she loves you if her actions don't make you feel loved.
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  #16  
Old 05-12-2012, 12:11 AM
ThatGirlInGray ThatGirlInGray is offline
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I posted the above post before I realized there was second page! Yes, yes, yes to Arrowbound and km34.

This may not be a poly-specific issue, but it's certainly a relationship issue, and I've found that those who can make poly work tend to be pretty good at relationships in general, so this was a perfectly fine place to post this thread!
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  #17  
Old 05-12-2012, 01:27 AM
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Emm Emm is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yakchef View Post
I've expressed a few times that if she is really chafing at the "advance notice" rule, as she seems to be, we can ditch it and I can learn to deal. But she wants to keep it because it's the only other boundary besides safer sex that I've asked of her and she wants to work to establish trust in our relationship, which I respect and appreciate.
Quote:
Originally Posted by yakchef View Post
One thing she really enjoys doing is to "close out the bar," meaning she wants to stay out as long as possible. In the past that caused her to miss the last bus home and thus have to spend the night, breaking the "advance notice" boundary, but that's not really her fault. I mean, with NRE she gets caught up in the moment and forgets until it's too late. I do resent that because it means for those moments she "forgets to care" about my feelings, which she said herself is accurate (forgetting to care). But it's not malicious or intentional, someone forgetting is a mistake, so I can't hold it against her. So that's why the boundary of advance notice is hard for her.
I don't quite understand. She wants to to establish trust in your relationship by refusing to ditch the one boundary you have set, and she does this by... regularly forgetting to respect it?

A boundary is not something you impose on her. A boundary is a limit that you create to show yourself what constitutes a reasonable way for your girlfriend to behave around you and how you will respond when she chooses to behave otherwise. It's the line you draw between "I can deal with this" and "I can't deal with that". When you - hopefully after discussion and introspection - decide on a boundary, you don't give it as an ultimatum to her: "If you do that I'll leave you". You give the ultimatum to yourself: "If she does that, this is how I will respond in order to protect my safety and sanity". She is, of course, free to do whatever she likes, but with your boundary set you know how to respond when that happens and you know that it is her choice which has led to you needing to do it.
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  #18  
Old 05-12-2012, 01:59 AM
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nycindie nycindie is offline
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It sounds like she has difficulty managing her time and her responsibilities. While reading your initial post, your description of her behavior made me think of how ADD manifests itself in women (quite different from how ADHD is for men). Has she ever looked into that possibility? Women aren't usually diagnosed until they are adults (and they are usually in the “predominantly inattentive” subtype, rather than hyperactive).

ADD, or ADD tendencies, makes it hard to prioritize and handle multiple tasks. One is often trying to catch up with promises made and live up to responsibilities, because there is usually some disorganized thinking and forgetfulness, as well as the frequent need to be hyper-focused on something or someone, and it's hard to meet day-to-day adult expectations. Women with ADD tend to be disorganized, forgetful, stressed out, and extremely sensitive to criticism. There are websites where a person can fill in questionnaires to see if they lean toward ADD. I don't think it would hurt to look into it.
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  #19  
Old 05-12-2012, 04:01 AM
WhatHappened WhatHappened is offline
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Am I understanding right? You work long hours to pay all the bills while she does very little in the way of chores or helping out, spending much or most her time, rather, with other boyfriends, as often as not forgetting one small request of advance notice for staying out overnight...and she's telling you she's really the one working the hardest in this relationship? And you're constantly apologizing for being difficult when you're supporting her and asking virtually nothing in return?

What exactly is she working so hard at?

What are you getting out of this relationship?

To me, this sounds like an abusive relationship.
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  #20  
Old 05-13-2012, 12:13 AM
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Rowan Rowan is offline
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Im not hearing the one important thing that *I* would need to hear.

Ill explain with an example. My hubby went out to the bar to meet a friend (female) knowing there was a hookup chance. He told me he'd be home no later than 11:30. At 1, I texted him, asking if he was in the ditch or the doghouse (yes, im sarcastic). He immediately called me explaining that she got hammered and he was on his way home and would explain. When he got home, he said she was too drunk too drive, so he drove her home; her babysitter drove back to the bar with him to get her car, then he called me.

Long story later, my issue was the bar was 3 blocks from her place and that didnt equal an hour and a half. While i was happy he didnt let her drive drunk ... he still put me in a position of worrying needlessly and that i did not appreciate it.

He didnt see my issue, but has respected my feelings and has not done this to me since. That is what worries me. As individuals, we may see a situation differently and not agree with the other persons feelings. Sometimes, we have to treat them as important, regardless.

Im sure she does, im only asking if you feel *heard*.
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