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  #341  
Old 07-28-2012, 12:08 AM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is offline
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Sigh -- this is why I don't want to be open with kids. But here's what I'd do if so.

DISCLAIMER: I apologize if I sound harsh, but in these moments I find it easier to just Spit It Out in the hopes of moving something forward even if it is Hard to Hear. So since you asked for feedback... I humbly offer it in good intention spirit.

Quote:

Baby loves Granny very much and this is one of the only reasons my GF stays in contact with her mother. Granny's relationship with me is frosty, despite my efforts - she will not look at me, speak to me, acknowledge my presence, or my existence when I am not present.
This is because of Granny's OWN discomfort. NOT YOU. Your presence makes her confront and face things within her that feel yucky. It's easier to project it on you (the not wanting to feel yucky) than to harness that to do the personal growth work it takes within to not give a rat's ass what anyone else thinks! To embrace other people being happy in an alternative family model. To embrace that what you thought was your vision of your child's destiny is NOT what the grown child (your GF) chooses for self. To love her child (the GF) in whatever presentation she wishes to be in, even if it is a foreign presentation to her (the old parent.)

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We are worried about how Granny may effect our daughter as she grows up. She's beyond disapproving when she speaks to my GF.
Then GF needs to stand her ground as an adult person and say "Granny, I love you, but this poor treatment of me must stop or else I cannot be around you. And I will not be. "

That she continues to take abuse from Granny teaches Granny that is is BASICALLY OK TO KEEP ON DOING IT and this reinforces to Granny that her opinion that it is "wrong" to be in this formation. It is NOT wrong, and you be how you wish to be. But be like honorable Jedi about it. GF is not honoring herself to allow verbal/emotional abuse to slide at the hands of the mother.

Baby is growing watching this, and you do NOT want her growing up thinking it is ok to take crap from close people -- you don't need to pre-groom her for some domestic battering partner for instance! Children are sponges.

Quote:
We have thought about cutting contact with her, but we do not want take away that special relationship between Granny and Baby. To be honest, it also really helps us out to have Granny look after her every two weekends.
Baby is 3 and won't give a damn, and if ties need cutting better sooner in Baby's life than later. It's because you guys like having the time off without having to work for it too hard in Babysitter Juggly Land. Own this.

It is also because GF is not ready to have the classic apron strings moment with her mom -- she still wants to be a mom pleaser. Own that too.
GF is not ready to do the "I love you, but I do not love THIS -- your treatment of my other loved ones. So behave in a civil manner, or I will remove myself from the equation and grieve and miss you. But I won't tolerate this treatment of me and my loved ones, not even from YOU."

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Secondly... she's just started pre-school and my GF calls me their au pair. We are concerned about what teachers should or shouldn't know... what we should tell Baby as she's growing up, since she will tell friends and friends will tell their parents... etc. I know that children can be bullied for anything... but we want to make sure we are being responsible.
That is a stickier wicket than Granny.

I do not know your area. I do not know how safe you may be as "out" -- so if your polyship decides to remain with you as the silent partner, or go with the role of "au pair" or "godmother" through these early school ages, good enough. So long as you all arrive at it together -- the agreement for this polyship.

Baby herself -- I'd just live life as ordinary as you can make it, and then somewhere when she starts asking about why her fam is structured diff than hers start with talks about how babies come -- bio babies, foster babies, adopted babies. Leave it there. Next time stretch it out to how parents come -- from divorces as step-parent people, and lead it to "when a heart is so big it takes 3 to hold it" -- the land of poly.

It is ALL ok, it is ALL acceptable, but the sad reality is that some people don't like it because it makes them uncomfortable and they have not yet grown their hearts big enough to be ok with how other people want to live. You have endless children's books (How the Grinch Stole Xmas is classic) even if not actually on poly to help you on your discussion. (Heather has Two mommies -- and more. )

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How does it work for you? Are there any problems that we should expect in the future, any stumbling blocks you feel are worth pointing out? Basically, we'd just love to hear your experiences and thoughts, if you have any.
What to do when you get outted. Including outted by the child herself.

It's not IF.

It is WHEN.

That is a reality best planned for. Also the reality of the polyship ending. And your role in the child's life after that as the non-bio person. If you want to maintain a parental role, are the papers drawn up so? As her godmother? Or similar? What about if the partner's have accident and die? Do you get custody of her? Does she shoosh over to Granny?

Think these things all the way across carefully in your polyship.

GL!
GG

Last edited by GalaGirl; 07-28-2012 at 02:30 AM.
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  #342  
Old 07-28-2012, 12:51 AM
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LovingRadiance LovingRadiance is offline
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Quote:
That is a reality best planned for. Also the reality of the polyship ending. And your role in the child's life after that as the non-bio person. If you want to maintain a parental role, are the papers drawn up so? As her godmother? Or similar? What about if the partner's have accident and die? Do you get custody of her? Does she shoosh over to Granny?
Very important. Something we established prior to ever being poly. Things to really consider before having children even if you ARE NOT poly.
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  #343  
Old 07-28-2012, 02:18 AM
sparklepop sparklepop is offline
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Originally Posted by LovingRadiance View Post
I've written about this at length in my personal blog.
I will definitely have a read of that - thank you!

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It's VERY hard on kids to have adults who treat other meaningful adults in their lives with disdain.
I agree with this entirely.

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As for other kids-again, no issues. Other kids come over all of the time and even stay the night.
That is really good to know.

Thank you for this reassuring answer!
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  #344  
Old 07-28-2012, 02:30 AM
sparklepop sparklepop is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
DISCLAIMER: I apologize if I sound harsh, but in these moments I find it easier to just Spit It Out in the hopes of moving something forward even if it is Hard to Hear. So since you asked for feedback... I humbly offer it in good intention spirit.
GalaGirl.... I always like your blunt responses... please feel free to get as harsh as you like. That sounded much more flirtatious than intended.


Quote:
This is because of Granny's OWN discomfort. NOT YOU. Your presence makes her confront and face things within her that feel yucky. It's easier to project it on you (the not wanting to feel yucky) than to harness that to do the personal growth work it takes within to not give a rat's ass what anyone else thinks!
I absolutely agree with and understand this. I do not take it personally - I simply think it's a shame that she does not know how to, or want to, do the personal growth work. But c'est la vie.

Quote:
Then GF needs to stand her ground as an adult person and say "Granny, I love you, but this poor treatment of me must stop or else I cannot be around you. And I will not be. "
This is something I've encouraged GF to seriously think about for the future. As you say, Baby is only 3 and the younger she is, the less effected by everything she is going to be.

Quote:
That she continues to take abuse from Granny teaches Granny that is is BASICALLY OK TO KEEP ON DOING IT and this reinforces to Granny that her opinion that it is "wrong" to be in this formation is "wrong." It is NOT wrong, and you be how you wish to be. But be like honorable Jedi about it. GF is not honoring herself to allow verbal/emotional abuse to slide at the hands of the mother.
Again, I agree with this. Deep-rooted emotional issues between GF and Granny. I won't go into it here, but yes, GF has had a lot of therapy before about Granny. Obviously there's an element of 'second chance' thinking from Granny to Baby.... it's one of the reasons GF keeps her around... she was truly quite rubbish as a parent; yet seems to blossom as a Grandparent.

Quote:
Baby is growing watching this, and you do NOT want her growing up thinking it is ok to take crap from close people -- you don't need to pre-groom her for some domestic battering partner for instance! Children are sponges.
This is a very, very good point.

Quote:
It's because you guys like having the time off without having to work for it too hard in Babysitter Juggly Land. Own this.
Another good point that I have also tried to talk to GF and hubby about. It's better to pay a babysitter or I'll look after her when I'm there, than to have Baby's upbringing swayed by Granny... unless Granny can get on board.


Quote:
Next time stretch it out to how parents come -- from divorces as step-parent people, and lead it to "when a heart is so big it takes 3 to hold it" -- the land of poly.

You have endless children's books (How the Grinch Stole Xmas is classic) even if not actually on poly to help you on your discussion. (Heather has Two mommies -- and more. )
Thank you for this - really great advice.

Quote:
What to do when you get outted. Including outted by the child herself.
That's definitely something that needs to be discussed. Thank you for highlighting that.

Quote:
That is a reality best planned for. Also the reality of the polyship ending. And your role in the child's life after that as the non-bio person. If you want to maintain a parental role, are the papers drawn up so? As her godmother? Or similar? What about if the partner's have accident and die? Do you get custody of her? Does she shoosh over to Granny?
GF and hubby are in the process of getting the Godmother paperwork changed from Granny to me in the event of their death. The agreed role is that I will have joint input in terms of a non-bio parent. We've started to talk about all of these things; but yes, you're right, everything needs to be decided and solidified for the future.

Incidentally... out of interest (not confrontation) - do you believe that it is wrong, or too difficult, to have children in a poly environment?

It's something that we've all battled with, so I would be very interested to hear your thoughts.
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Metamours:
Hubby (37m): GF's husband
Garcon (26m): GF's submissive/third partner



“Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without." ~ Buddha
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  #345  
Old 07-28-2012, 05:05 AM
KyleKat KyleKat is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sparklepop View Post
Incidentally... out of interest (not confrontation) - do you believe that it is wrong, or too difficult, to have children in a poly environment?

It's something that we've all battled with, so I would be very interested to hear your thoughts.
You should ask the guy and his wives from the show "Sister Wives" if they think it's too hard or wrong. The answer is not in the slightest. I have two kids. I just had my first couple of dates with someone outside my marriage. No, not for a second did I consider it to be a problem. Kids are strong. They are smart. They are awesome. You already said Baby misses you when you're gone. Would you really want to give that up? That unconditional love?

Dennis Leary said it the best, "Racism is learned, not instilled at birth. Know what my kid hates? Naps! End of list."

This applies to all faux pas or taboo subjects. The kids won't have a problem if you handle it correctly. I could ramble on about this for several more sentences but you get my point.
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  #346  
Old 07-28-2012, 06:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sparklepop View Post
Incidentally... out of interest (not confrontation) - do you believe that it is wrong, or too difficult, to have children in a poly environment?

It's something that we've all battled with, so I would be very interested to hear your thoughts.
As we are just starting down that road my answer would be: No. Why should it be more wrong than having a children in a 'normal' 2-person-relationship? The more healthy adults around a child, the better for the child. (Stress on healthy and mature in this case ) That's my conviction.

As KyleKat I believe that the only problem arising for a child will be if you treat this circumstance as a problem or a secret. Because the child will feel like there is something 'wrong' with the life you are leading and it will put the little one under pressure to keep this secret or to know that the whole family is in a bad way leading a 'different' life than all the others. If it's OK and the most natural thing to do for you, it will be the same for the child as well.
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  #347  
Old 07-29-2012, 01:14 PM
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AnnabelMore AnnabelMore is offline
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"Incidentally... out of interest (not confrontation) - do you believe that it is wrong, or too difficult, to have children in a poly environment?"

Your tagline is basically my situation, except I'm 28 and have been in my vee for 3 years. My gf's baby just turned 1. I KNOW that having me in their lives has helped with their needs for babysitting, and I believe that 1) having me in his life as a loving, interested, engaged adult enhances the baby's life, and 2) having me in their lives helps, to some small degree in their struggle to maintain a functional, positive marriage during this trying first year with the baby.

So, I think it's easier, not harder.

Of course, you didn't qualify... perhaps you mean socially, not logistically? In our case, we're lucky enough to have friends who are just as out-there as we are, and family that is accepting if not necessarily whole-heartedly supportive.

As for the potential for future bullying, it's true, kids DO bully other kids for any reason at all... if it's not his parent's funny relationship, it could be his hair color or the way he dresses. At least if he gets bullied and I'm around, he'll have a third person to cry to. I mean, should gay people not raise kids because their kids might get bullied for it? Well, a study showed that the kids of lesbian couples are just as well-adjusted as the kids of straight couples, so I don't think there's much of an argument there.

Rather than trying to make our families more "normal", I think we need to try to make the world more accepting. If that means standing up to bullies (including older family members), I think that's a great things for kids to see and understand.
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  #348  
Old 07-29-2012, 04:12 PM
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ImaginaryIllusion ImaginaryIllusion is offline
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Originally Posted by AnnabelMore View Post
Rather than trying to make our families more "normal", I think we need to try to make the world more accepting. If that means standing up to bullies (including older family members), I think that's a great things for kids to see and understand.
That's awesome!


Right now, neither my wife and I have live in partners, and remain closeted with family, so I can't offer much experience wise to the issue with Granny. I'm sure it will come up eventually, since the kids WILL out us eventually, and we know it.

But similarly to what's been said already, we don't keep secrets from the kids, and we live our poly life at home as openly as possible. We don't change or hush the conversation when they enter the room, or change our terminology when talking about girlfriends. We've had them to poly camps where they've met other kids who have extra mommy's and daddy's. For us the conscious decision we made was to normalize poly as much as possible.

For our own concern with schools and such, we don't worry too much, since the kids are known to be very happy, outgoing and well adjusted...they get complimented on it frequently by teachers, family, friends, and strangers in the grocery store! So we're not too worried about whatever they may have to say because it's quite evident with our kids that they're growing up just fine regardless of what their parents private lives are like.

Your mileage may vary.
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  #349  
Old 07-29-2012, 07:02 PM
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Polyamory has only recently come to the attention of the scientific community, and there aren't a ton of studies at this point about how children are affected. The few that have been done show similar findings to those done on children raised by homosexual couples (of which there is a substantial amount of research). That being, in itself, polyamory has no affect on children. In studies done on families with homosexual parents, the only negative difference found is that children of gay people are exposed to more intolerance from individuals who do not approve of their parent's relationship. It's likely that further research will show similarities with the children of poly parents.

In short, it's a "people are ass holes" problem, not a "polyamory isn't healthy for children" problem. Not being polyamorous won't change the fact that some people are just dicks.

As far as Granny is concerned, I would bet a significant amount of money that if the poly thing wasn't an issue, she'd find something else to be upset about and still cause problems.
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  #350  
Old 07-29-2012, 07:14 PM
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You should read Redpepper's blog, or PM her about what she went through with her parents over the care of her son.

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Originally Posted by sparklepop View Post
GF and hubby are in the process of getting the Godmother paperwork changed from Granny to me in the event of their death.
There is actually paperwork for godparents? And it matters? I always thought that was just a religious formality, and has no legal standing.
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solopoly.net/2014/10/31/why-im-not-a-secondary-partner-the-short-version/
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